Sunday, May 10, 2015

5/10/1997 Jonathan Creek magically appears

May 10, 1997.  On this date an unusual mystery series premiered on the BBC. 

Maddie Magellan (Caroline Quentin) is a true crime writer and while investigating a story she meets a strange young man named Jonathan Creek (Alan Davies) who lives in a windmill, and works as a creative consultant for a famous stage magician.  That job title means he's the one who creates all the elaborate tricks and stunts. Maddie realizes he is the perfect person to solve impossible crimes, and so a partnership of sorts is born.

There is a great moment in the first episode when Jonathan demonstrates how a particular suspect could have narrowly slipped out of her office unseen to commit the murder.  Just as Maddie is about to congratulate him on the solution he says (approximately) "Of course, she didn't do that.  Only a lunatic would take that sort of risk."

And thus the viewer is alerted:  On this show the solutions will have to make sense.

Inevitably they couldn't always live up to that standard.  And Caroline Quentin was replaced by other, less satisfactory, co-stars.  But the show is always worth watching and the solutions are always dazzling.

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