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Hercule Poirot

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There's no PBS site for this one, but I think we all know what it is.

 

Mustachioed Belgian solves crimes in early 20th century Europe. Based on the novels by Agatha Christie.

 

If you have a clever sub-title for this topic, let me know!

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I've been watching Cards on the Table; I also have read the book. I know nothing about bridge except understanding that the dummy gets to walk around, look at the players' cards, get a drink, etc. Every time I watch it, have to stop when the roommates go on the river near the end. (Though it is amusing seeing the smaller person trying to handle those oars.) I can't stand how they change the roommates' characters. I always seethe and wonder why? Is it because they want to surprise Christie readers? Do they think their ideas are better than Christie? It's just such a boneheaded thing to do. Maybe people who haven't read the book like it this way but I have to stop and pretend it's the same as the book.

(I tried to be careful and not reveal too much.)

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Ooo, the shit is going to hit the fan - PBS is not showing the last episode.

I do NOT get that?? Why on earth would they not air it? Very crazy.

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Yeah, let's show a series for years but skip the last episode and a few others from the last series. . Hopefully they will be available on DVD.

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Yeah, let's show a series for years but skip the last episode and a few others from the last series. . Hopefully they will be available on DVD.

Someone cynical might think that PBS want us to buy the DVDs through its online store.

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Unless there is another reason Acorn got to show it, you are so right. But I think the money they will lose in contributions will be more than DVD sales. It's nuts - we buy the shows on iTunes and the DVDs anyway to see the unedited versions.

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I'm betting Acorn must own the rights for them, and are embargoing them from PBS. No way PBS would bail if they had the choice.

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It will be interesting to see if they say something on Monday now that the news is out. When I saw the original schedule I had assumed they were just waiting another season to show that last episode.

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It doesn't bother me that Curtain won't be aired, I always thought it was one of Christie's lesser efforts, it bothered me Poirot went out with a whimper.

I completely agree with you. When the book came out, I eagerly bought it and read it and got rid of it. No second reading, just out the door. I hated it and I do love me some Poirot. I realize many people loved the book and want to see the episode so I do feel for them. Different strokes....

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So, we're only getting two episodes or will the others be aired next year? That's disappointing. But it was nice to see a new Poirot Sunday night. I've missed all of the characters together - Poirot, Hastings, Japp, and Miss Lemon. I'm 31 and I've watched Masterpiece most of my life. I have seen every season of Poirot. It's bittersweet that it's ending.

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So, we're only getting two episodes or will the others be aired next year?

Going by that NYT article, these are the final two Poirot episodes that PBS will be showing.

 

Heh, if I remember my Agatha Christie history, she hated Poirot when she wrote Curtain so maybe she just didn't care enough to work hard on the book.

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In "The Big Four" I don't understand how Poirot faked his death, or at least how the police were fooled.  Looked as if he went to the flat, tossed an explosive in, and ran.  But any number of people could have seen him run away, and no one mentioned finding a body.    Did Agatha Christie really write this?  If so, did it make sense in the book?

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He tossed his walking stick in, not the explosive.  The killer planted the explosive.  

 

I never read The Big 4, and I admired Dame Christie, but sometimes she left plot holes through which a hummer could drive.

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According to this LA Times article back in April, it agrees with the NYT article.  The last three episodes will only be shown on TV in Britian and then on Acorn TV online.

 

Final Poirot Mysteries to Air This Summer

 

They don't give a reason why the split or the lack of airtime in the US unless it is Acorn wanting people to go to their website for the last episodes to up their numbers. It's bloody annoying. 

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I knew Poirot was ending and was surprised last night's episode was the final one. It didn't seem final. Then I came here and now I know why I'm confused. I really hope this wasn't a ploy or ball dropped by PBS. As much as I enjoy Poirot, I don't enjoy him enough to seek out the final episode.

 

I admit to not paying as much attention to the beginning of the episode, so perhaps I missed where Poirot would've gotten the idea to jump to as many conclusions as he did, re: the son who wasn't dead and the Italian being Hattie.

Edited by Spicy Bubbles

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Once we saw that the husband appeared to be talking to Hattie after yelling at the kids, we knew he was up to something. But that didn't keep me from thinking WTH?

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There were a couple of things that I was thinking of:  we never saw Hattie's face in that opening scene; the folly in the woods looked like some kind of memorial; Sinead Cusack's dialogue about wickedness in the world had to have meant something.  Did I come up with the same conclusions that M. Poirot did?  Non.

 

Characterization wasn't Christie's strong suit, they tend to be two-dimensional, but when a good actor like Sinead Cusack adds her talents the result can be wonderful.

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I read Dead Man's Folly but haven't watched the show yet.  I watched "The Big Four" and found it a bit confusing.  Never read the book, but went to Wikipedia for the synopsis, and of course, it seems a lot of things have changed.

 

Not sure why this series, and the Marple one more in particular, can't be more faithful to Christie's works.  I have wondered for years why the writers have thought changes, some which have been quite significant, were necessary.

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I'm betting Acorn must own the rights for them, and are embargoing them from PBS. No way PBS would bail if they had the choice.

Exactly. They're charging over $50 on their site to let people buy season 13. It steamed my broccoli at first finding out that PBS won't be airing the last two. :(

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I just heard this on NPR: "Later this fall, the last three stories in the series will indeed show up on broadcast television, distributed to local public TV stations."

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I love the way Suchet is playing Hercule here. There is an overlay of weariness, of self-irritation, in addition to all the eccentricities we've come to know -- like his avoidance of the tree-branches during his walks to the river.

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I just heard this on NPR: "Later this fall, the last three stories in the series will indeed show up on broadcast television, distributed to local public TV stations."

That's great news! I can't wait.

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I just heard this on NPR: "Later this fall, the last three stories in the series will indeed show up on broadcast television, distributed to local public TV stations."

Good!  I've been drafting a nasty email in my head to Acorn about hogging intellectual property rights and screwing over people who can't afford fancy media services (me) or who aren't technologically savvy enough (my mom), but I guess I'll refrain.

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Good!  I've been drafting a nasty email in my head to Acorn about hogging intellectual property rights and screwing over people who can't afford fancy media services (me) or who aren't technologically savvy enough (my mom), but I guess I'll refrain.

I'm thinking enough people complained and probably did similar stuff to them, beadgirl. And I don't blame them, to be honest.

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WETA in Washington DC is showing the final three episodes starting this Thursday.  The first one is Elephants Can Remember.  Hopefully everyone else is getting them also.

 

And, honestly, this makes no sense to me - that they aren't being shown on Masterpiece Mystery on Sunday nights.  But at least they are being shown.

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According to WTTW's Guide for November, "Elephants Can Remember" is scheduled for Thursday Nov13, from 8 to 9:30PM, followed by a repeat of "The Big Four". The following Thursday "The Labours of Hercules" debuts at 8PM, followed by a rerun of "Dead Man's Folly".

 

Thanksgiving has "Curtain" scheduled from 7 to 8:45 and apparently repeated from 8:45 to 10:47, followed by "Being Poirot", a repeat of the special with David Suchet.

 

There will probably be additional broadcasts on WTTW Prime and Create, I don't want to flip my computer 90 degrees to read the multi-channel schedule pages. And the final three episodes will be followed by ...

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... A PLEDGE WEEK! 

 

Here's the Guide link:

http://www.wttw.com/res/pdf/guide/WWCIGuide_November_2014.pdf

Edited by Hyacinth B

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*Spoilers* for "Curtain" ahead ...

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I was disappointed that Poirot actually became one of That Guy's victims because he drove him(Poirot) to murder, just like everyone else. But crimefighters resorting to crime seems to be a TV trend.

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*Spoilers* for "Curtain" ahead ...

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I was disappointed that Poirot actually became one of That Guy's victims because he drove him(Poirot) to murder, just like everyone else. But crimefighters resorting to crime seems to be a TV trend.

Curtain was published in 1975, and written in the 1940s, when Christie was unsure of her survival of WWII and the London Blitz. It was stored in a bank vault for more than 30 years.  So I don't suppose that this represents that TV trend!

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Also, the TV version differed from the book (surprise!) in that book Poirot was much less conflicted about the whole thing. In his letter to Hastings, he dithered a bit about the ethics but ultimately made the point that he was the law - he'd been a cop, and as a young cop in Belgium, he'd shot a man dead.

 

This ties into "Murder on the Orient Express" as well - the TV version had Poirot deeply conflicted about whether to let everyone go, whereas Book Poirot always wanted to let them go and expressed no qualms whatsoever about it. It was the two people with him he and the murderers had to convince.

 

Book Poirot was okay with vigilante murder if the usual means of justice were not available. To have him not only so conflicted about it here, but to have the murder shown to be to the delight of Norton who considered it a win for himself, is definitely part of a modern trend in storytelling - it was very Brad Pitt/Keven Spacey in Se7en.

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I watched the final episode of Poirot last night and thought it was a very depressing episode. Of course part of it was Poirot dying in it. But mainly I found the way Poirot went out depressing and also the whole case and the atmosphere. And well, everything about it.

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I love this series, and am rewatching from the beginning on Netflix.  Spoilers below!

 

One question I had was about the Murder of Roger Ackroyd episode. Why does the sister have to be protected from the world. Her brother was a horrible person. What was so special about her? In so many other episodes there are people Poirot encounters that  probably deserve this type of shielding. Why her? She also was the cause of the her brothers death to me. James seemed to be kind of over it after he told his story, until she showed him the gun. What was she hoping would happen? He kills Poirot and Japp? He gets away without killing them? The police would be after him immediately if he did that. Was she trying to help him in committing suicide?

So confusing. 

 

Also, with the episode One, Two, Buckle My Shoe, I find the guilty party especially disgusting. Absolutely no remorse about killing 3 people! Which I know a lot of the murderers didn't but in this episode particularly stand out to me. The poor dentist had nothing at all to do with any of their deceit and crap, and they just casually murder him. The fact that both are babbling on about the lack of imagination the rest of the world has to justify? what they did, straight up sociopaths. And again I know there have been others in the series who show similar traits but for some reason, these two stand out to me.

 She killed her friend, who grant it seems annoying, but only was looking out for her and wanted to meet her. Also I don't get why they couldn't get a divorce before he married his second wife? From the way he told his story the second wife knew what kind of person he was and wasn't expecting some grand romance, just a politically powerful person? So get a divorce, marry the new girl, she obviously dies at some point, (did they kill her too?) he can get married again or just partner to his equally vile soulmate and he has money. But I guess they liked the thrill of their game too much. Which reminds me of Lady Edgeware as well. I haven't re-read this book in a while so I don't remember how it came off in the book but on screen they have to be my most loathed criminals, even though there are many who did "worse" things. I think I have add something to the top of my TBR pile.

 

I am thinking way too much about this, lol.

Edited by dkb · Reason: Added book notes
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This is probably an unpopular opinion, but I LOVED the changes they made to Poirot's character in Orient Express. Unlike Christie when she wrote the book, the show producers probably realized they had to provide at least some sort of rationale for the WTF-ery of Poirot's decision in Curtain. So, from the A&E involvement in the mysteries, they play up the angle of the murderer(s) in two ways: either they were incredibly evil, soulless people who didn't care about the havoc they wreaked, or they were good people driven to desperation and committed the murders to write what they saw as a great wrong rather than for personal gain. That explains the changes in Appointment with Death as well.

I also thought the changes really encouraged me to feel for Poirot in a way the books didn't. His reliance on religion as a higher form of justice; the emphasis that Poirot had sacrificed the chance at family for a career and was now extremely lonely in his old age; the personal betrayals he endured from friends he thought he'd known (and therefore the solidified familial relationships he had with Hastings and Judith in Curtain). All of it helped to explain why a celebrated detective would murder a clever psychopath whose own murders would never be punished by the law, and whose innocent victims (of which Hastings and Judith were nearly two) would never have anyone to argue for their innocence except one detective nearly at the end of his life.

I've wondered the same thing myself: if I had a child who was a psychopath, whose early actions (torturing animals, etc.) indicated they would become a serial murderer later on, would I have the courage to take them out before they could claim another innocent victim? The idea of "Dexter"-ing them is just a fantasy.

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On 9/11/2016 at 8:28 AM, Miss Dee said:

I've wondered the same thing myself: if I had a child who was a psychopath, whose early actions (torturing animals, etc.) indicated they would become a serial murderer later on, would I have the courage to take them out before they could claim another innocent victim?

Wasn't that question answered in another Christie novel?

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I'm intrigued and, I think, provisionally delighted about the Murder on the Orient Express film reboot in the works. I think Branagh will do well as HP, and I've always loved his direction. And not a shabby supporting cast, neither.

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I started re-watching some episodes, thanks to Acorn and Britbox, and I am enjoying them all over again. The one thing I can say is that I can never quite remember the end results, so it all seems new to me. LOL I really like the character of Ariadne Oliver or maybe it's just the way Zoe Wanamaker plays her (I've never read the books).

On 9/24/2016 at 10:25 AM, BlackberryJam said:

Crooked House, I think.

I'd never heard of this book, but I just watched the new movie with Glenn Close and Gillian Anderson on Amazon Prime and it was interesting.

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Oh joy! A New version version of The ABC Murders is in the works over the pond. Playing Poirot? Everybody's favorite Teddy KGB, John Malkovich!!! This both delights and terrifies me.

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I saw the new Murder on the Orient Express which is now playing on HBO, and it was kinda sad compared to Sidney Lumet's wonderful version which was made in the 70's.  Don't waste your time! 

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52 minutes ago, atlantaloves said:

I saw the new Murder on the Orient Express which is now playing on HBO, and it was kinda sad compared to Sidney Lumet's wonderful version which was made in the 70's.  Don't waste your time! 

I did waste my time, in the theaters.  The 1974 movie came together beautifully.  The 2017 was a hot mess, with all sorts of character "twists" to (I suppose) make it less boring (for Brannaugh).  He also had that ridiculous wooden train bridge (which gave the impression that the movie happened on a set, which of course it did, but both the 1974 film and the David Suchet version made you feel the cold, wet, snow).  AND the train was too short (these were only supposed to be the passengers on the through coach to Calais; there were other cars). 

For the love he professed to have for the work, and the all-star cast he assembled, this was just a KB vanity project.  I would like my $8.67 back (Tuesday pricing).

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