Although truthfully, the show has evolved beyond Detective William Murdoch’s point-of-view to include everyone in his inner circle. But what a circle it is…
I realize many of you are still digesting turkey leftovers but bear with me, I promise it’ll be worth it. Yes, rest of the world, Canadians have already celebrated Thanksgiving. Get over it.
So anyway… Helen Keller, Alexander Graham Bell, and Ruthie Newsome all joined newcomer Ralph Fellows, a hotel detective with dreams of greener pastures, as the group found themselves sitting down to a dinner in the dark that turned deadly in, you guessed it, 8 footsteps. Speaking of that ill-fated dining experience…
ONE) “Marge! What the hell’s wrong with the Teevee?” Said every senior watch Murdoch Mysteries on the CBC when the screen went black to demonstrate what the characters were experiencing as the lights were expunged to mirror what the blind go through while dining – and a murderer struck. Personally, I loved it, for a few seconds at least. It got old fast but it was original and awesome.
Speaking of originality…
TWO) A different sort of Murdoch special effect was more than welcome. After ten seasons we’ve seen dozens of effects from MM propmaster Prop Monkey and his amazing group of software/hardware techies, but 8 Footsteps gave us a super-cool addition. Seeing the contents of one of Alexander Graham Bell’s devices glow as the iconic inventor and the artful detective decipher it was a welcome breath of fresh television air.
“Nothing’s happening, Yannick! Then again, this is The Hook’s blog… nothing ever happens, right?”
THREE) Jonny Harris and Thomas Craig are right where they belong. Yes, both of these incredibly-adept actors have their lives/career paths to walk, but that said, their contributions to MM are irreplaceable. I simple can’t imagine an episode without Crabtree’s wild theories or the Inspector’s gruff observations.
FOUR) Alexander Graham Bell, as brought to life by John Tench. He brought his graphizer and stereoscopics with him, and most importantly, his advocacy for the deaf, born of his love for his wife. Incidentally, every time I saw Bell’s wife I thought of Mrs. Claus; don’t know why, I just did.
But seriously, Tench’s appearance here was yet another example of the need for a Murdoch spin-off. There are literally dozens of characters that could show up and Bell is definitely fascinating enough to utilize. Come on, Shaftesbury!
FIVE) The Ruth Newsome/Henry Higgins romance was a welcome surprise. Ruthie may be bat-shit crazy but as George pointed out, Higgins is no Newton himself! This romance evolved slowly over the course of the episode and it gave both actors a chance to shine. And that final kiss was cheesy as hell but in a world where 600 people were shot by a madman with no apparent motive, we need cheesy more than ever.
Some MM fans are Team Crabtree all day long, but I never tire of Lachlan Murodch’s Higgins. He’s the constable who never gets to kick the football so when we see him score (literally) we have to cheer.
SIX) Colin Mochrie was hilariously gut-busting as Ralph Fellows, hotel detective, period! What else is there to say? And to think, it all started with a simple tweet:
I love the internet, don’t you?
Mochrie’s rapport with Yannick Bisson was priceless. You can’t replicate that kind of talent, kids.
SEVEN) Siobhan Murphy as Ruth Newsome. Yes,as I’ve already stated, she’s nuts, but Ruthie is an innocent in a world that is growing ever darker by the second. Who couldn’t cheer for someone like that?
EIGHT) Amanda Richer climbed an acting mountain… and came down forever changed. And did the rest of us. Richer’s Helen Keller was unforgettable and incredibly-moving to behold. Helen was someone who was a hero for simply getting out of bed in the morning, never mind all that she accomplished.
She inspired everyone who had ever been marginalized to fight to the end and I feel the same way about my friend, Amanda Richer. Amanda is a hero because she always gives an honest performance and Helen Keller is the sort of role most actors would turn away from but not Amanda. Bringing Helen back to life required tons of research, millions of nuances and loads of talent.
A tip of my bellman’s cap to this courageous Canadian actor and the performance of a lifetime.
NINE) Yannick Bisson is still MM’s rock. With MM’s continued growth the show has become a true ensemble but we can never forget the Artful Detective himself. Every week Bisson pours his heart and soul into William Murdoch and it shows. Sure, I’m biased (Yannick’s acting literally help sustain my father-in-law’s life) but no one can deny the legacy Bisson has already created in Canadian culture.
TEN) Hélène Joy is a turn-of-the-century freak! But we love it. Julia’s saucy “scientific” proposition to her hubby was spot-on in terms of staying true to the character, Plus it was hot as hell and CBC needs more of that, especially when competing with tits, dragons, and all the debauchery going on in TV Land these days.
And that’s all I have for you today.
See you in the lobby and on the CBC, kids…