Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Season 2: One Good Bid Deserves a Murder

Remember when people kept diaries? You know, before blogs existed?  Oh, come on - you kept a diary in your nightstand with a little lock on it. Admit it!


Ah, the good ol' days...back when young sexy starlets had plenty of time to write in diaries on a daily basis. Or actually knew how to string enough words together by hand to form coherent sentences that folks would later pay millions for. At least one fancy celeb and friend of Jessica's would pay a cool mil: Richard Bennett. He asks Jess to take a million dollar check (written out to her, no less!) to bid on his behalf at an auction featuring a reportedly scandalous diary by a young actress named Evangeline who had recently committed suicide. 

That is some deep trust. Here's a million dollar check, Mrs. Fletcher. Now win me a diary! I'd be outta there faster than you can say, "Smell me later, Bennett!"

Turns out he's not the only person who wants a peak into Evangeline's secrets. After Richard's dead body falls out of an armoire at the auction house and the diary is stolen, Jessica's hot on the trail of yet another mystery.


Lt. Casey – Lead police detective on the case. To Jess: "If murder were a disease, you'd be contagious." We've all been thinking it. About time someone held this woman accountable via a nonsensical quip! 

Dr. Sydney Dunn – Evangeline's former psychiatrist, offered $5k to auctionhouse worker Bert to steal the diary. What secrets about Dr. Dunn could the diary hold, and was she willing to kill to get her hands on it first?

Harry McGraw – Jessica's private investigator buddy du jour. Conveniently pops up to "help" with the case just in time to photocopy Evangeline's stolen journal to sell to the highest bidder after they discover it hidden in Mrs. Fletcher's hotel room. Maybe he killed Richard to protect this little diary gravy train.

William Radford – Ran the auction and faked the theft of the diary, hiding it in a chess set sent to Jessica's room. Oops, he got stabbed and Jess discovers the body. Doesn't mean he didn't kill Richard!

Bert Cromwell – Works at auction house and another one of Evangeline's biggest fans. Was he just in the wrong places at the wrong times, or was he capable of murder?

Sal Domino – Film producer and the diary's current owner. Possession is 9/10th of the law? Turns out the auction was just one giant publicity stunt. Did he kill Richard and William to garner even bigger press?

Robert Rhine – Becomes so desperate to obtain the diary for a Senator who had a brief affair with Evangeline that he pulls on gun on Jessica (counter alert!). Sounds mighty suspicious to me...

Deborah Chase – Sal's "secretary", she had a "thing" for Richard Bennet ever since her mom was president of his fan club. Big fan = stalking = murder?

Sheila Saxon – Evangeline's former publicist, tries to buy a copy of the diary from McGraw so she can make megabucks with a film about the book. Financial gain is one of the most compelling murder motives in the book, I'm told.

Famous Actors
Where do I begin? I'm spoiled for choice on this episode. Let's not even get into the preternaturally unchanging Jerry Orbach of "Law and Order" fame as Harry McGraw. There's also the multiple "Murder, She Wrote" guest star Edward Mulhare as Richard Bennett, most famous to me for his stint on the 80's hit, "Knight Rider". Next is Vic Tayback (Sal Domino), really famous as the Mel's diner guy from the long-running sitcom "Alice". My parents must've watched that show a ton because he seemed more than a little eerily familiar.

Don't forget the vaguely familiar Karen Black (Dr. Sydney Dunn) who I apparently remembered from her role in the Robert Redford/Mia Farrow version of "The Great Gatsby". Finally, rounding out the cast is soap star Nancy Grahn (Sheila Saxon) who plays hard-hitting attorney Alexis Davis on General Hospital. Or at she did several years back when I used to watch that show on occasion. A-hem.

80's Baby!
You've gotta see this poster of Evangeline towards the beginning of this episode. Thank you Eighties for allowing a drapey and shapeless bright red sequined muu muu to be considered sexy. It's been a long time since that sort of attire screamed "young hot ingenue".

The End
Turns out Bert is short for Albert, or "Al" in Evangeline's fearful diary entries. He and Evangeline had a relationship of sorts before she hit it big, which turned to stalking after he was dumped. Bert crumbles like a week-old cookie during an interrogation by Jessica and co, admitting that he tried to steal the diary and was caught by Richard Bennett - so he killed him. Then Bert killed William Radford when trying to force him to reveal the diary's location after it was supposedly stolen. It didn't take much more for him to confess to killing Evangeline as well. Apparently, he knew she was deep into drugs (some supplied by Dr. Dunn) and wanted to "put her out of her misery". Ugh.

I think this episode brings us back to a good mood by ending with a ha-ha moment between Jessica and Harry McGraw, but since I don't feel like watching it to refresh my memory for the 3rd of 4th time, please feel free to use your imagination. I'm sure your version will be more humorous by a landslide. Just keepin' it real, everybody! :)


Elsie said...

I remember this one! I enjoyed the following, "Financial gain is one of the most compelling murder motives in the book, I'm told."

Well played on the crumbly week-old-cookie metaphor, Jess always has them shaking in their boots.

Elsie said...

Whoa Karen Black was born not far from where I grew up, has been married 4 times AND is a Scientologist. Strange days, indeed!

Kitten said...

I love how just a little pressure from Jess (okay, pretty much NO pressure) and everyone confesses!