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FISHER’S MURDER MYSTERIES (2012)
Producer(s): Deborah Cox, Fiona
Director(s): Tony Tilse, Daina Reed,
Writer(s): John Banas, Deborah Cox, Ysabelle Dean…
(Based on the novels by Kerry Greenwood)
Essie Davis, Nathan Page, Hugo Johnstone-Burt, Ashleigh
Cummings, Miriam Margolyes, Nicholas Bell, Tammy Macintosh…
60 minutes per episode (Australian TV series – seen
Rating: NR – Contains
violence, coarse language, nudity, sexual situations, and drug use.
Reviewed by Cherie Jung
The series is set in 1928 Melbourne, Australia. Essie Davis portrays the lead
character the Honorable Phryne Fisher (pronounced Fry-nee). She is an
intelligent, charming, feisty, and thoroughly modern woman operating in a male dominated
world. As the glamorous “lady detective” she sticks her pretty nose into places
most people wish she wouldn’t. She backs up her intuition, deductions, and wit
with a hand gun and a dagger, much to the chagrin of her Aunt Prudence (Miriam Margolyes) and
Detective Inspector Jack Robinson (Nathan
To the dismay of the local police force, Phryne’s investigations take her through
Melbourne’s back alleys, dangerous neighborhoods, jazz clubs, and usually to the
scene of a crime before the official police arrive.
Miss Fisher has a kind and generous
heart. She attracts friends from all walks of life and seems happy enough
living life to the fullest, yet she is still haunted by the mysterious
disappearance of her sister Janey many years ago.
believe this series is wildly successful because of the attention to detail
(authentic costumes, set design, locations, witty dialog) and its wonderful
ensemble cast, including cab drivers Bert (Travis
McMahon) and Cec (Anthony Sharpe),
Mr. Butler (Richard Bligh), Constable
Hugh Collins (Hugo Johnstone-Burt), Dot
and ward Jane (Ruby Rees Wemyss). To
be honest, I find the secondary characters more interesting than Miss Fisher. I
adore Mr. Butler! Dot and Constable Collins both have an innocence that is
endearing, and Detective Inspector Jack Robinson is portrayed with a freshness
not often seen in a police detective role.
purchased the Miss Fisher Season 1 DVD in 2012 but resisted watching it until
now because I was afraid it wouldn’t be as enjoyable as I’d found the Mrs.
Bradley series. What a waste of my time! I so enjoyed Season 1 of Miss Fisher
that I watched it again, twice, before reluctantly moving on to something else.
I’m currently waiting for my copy of Miss Fisher Murder Mysteries Season 2 to
are thirteen episodes in Season 1.
"Cocaine Blues" – Miss Fisher
tackles a murder, an opium syndicate, and an illegal abortion ring.
"Murder on the Ballarat Train"
– Phryne and Dot, her new lady’s companion, board the train to Ballarat but
when the train makes a short water-stop Phryne discovers a passenger is
"The Green Mill Murder" – a
dead body on the dance floor of the speakeasy the Green Mill has Phryne trying
to prove her friend’s innocence even though he fled the scene and is wanted by
the police for the murder.
"Death at Victoria Dock" –
A factory owner’s daughter has disappeared and Phryne is asked to handle the
matter quietly, without publicity. Phryne
inadvertently becomes mixed up in a strike being staged on Victoria Dock.
"Raisins and Almonds" – When
the owner of a bookshop in Melbourne's Jewish community is accused of poisoning
one of her customers, Phryne searches for hidden clues to reveal what the
murder was really all about.
"Ruddy Gore" – The ghost of
a former actress seems intent on shutting down the theatre as it tries to mount
a production of Gilbert & Sullivan’s operetta Ruddy Gore.
"Murder in Montparnasse" –
Phryne's post-war experiences as an artist's model in Paris are revealed when
the unsolved murder case of the artist who painted Phryne is re-opened.
"Away With the Fairies" – Phryne
investigates the death of a magazine author who was despised by her co-workers.
"Queen of the Flowers" – Phryne’s
work with four disadvantaged girls is threatened by murder.
"Death By Miss Adventure"
– Dr. Mac becomes a suspect when two seemingly accidental deaths at a factory
are deemed to be murder.
"Blood and Circuses" – This
begins a three episode arc dealing with Phryne’s past and the disappearance of
her sister Janey. Phryne is asked to investigate the death of a circus performer
by another circus performer.
"Murder in the Dark" – One
of Aunt Prudence's servants is murdered on the eve of Cousin Guy's fancy dress
"King Memses' Curse" – More
murders lead Phryne to relentlessly track down the only person who knows what
happened to her sister, but will she go too far?
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