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My name is Alexis and I am a Murder, She wrote fan.

Discussion in 'Notable TV' started by Alexis, Jun 2, 2020.

  1. Alexis

    Alexis Soap Chat Hero EXP: 13 Years

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    Yes, I said it. I am a Murder, she wrote fan! I always watched it growing up. I would always watch it if I found it in re-runs. I get distracted at work when I find it on TV. And now... At approaching the age of 37. I have bought the complete boxset on DVD. All 12 seasons and the TV movies.
    I have thought about getting the entire series but the cost of it always put me off. Then I found it all for under £40 for 12 seasons and I had to snap it up.

    I love it. I love Cabot Cove and it's whimsical sleepiness despite apparently being the murder capitol of the known world. I love all those '80s and '90s guest stars from Dallas, Dynasty, Falcon Crest, Knots Landing and everything in between. I love all the old character actors. I love all the those old houses I get to snoop around just like with Columbo. I even love when Jessica goes to New York to be a sassy sleuth in the middle years. And when Angela Lansbury plays one of Jessica's family members. I even love that's it's formulaic. I just find the whole thing very comforting in it's ridiculousness.

    My boxset has yet to arrive but I imagine there were be some posting about it here. Surely there are a few more fans here. Step out of the closet.
    [​IMG]
     
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  2. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson SoapLand Battles Moderator EXP: 18 Years

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    I have seasons 1 to 10, I was never going to re-rewatch 11 and 12 so I threw them away. There are some episodes without Angela Lansbury (she only does the introduction) and I don't like them at all.
    The episode featuring Andrew Stevens has an unusual dark ending, it's very good.
     
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  3. Emelee

    Emelee Soap Chat Winner EXP: 7 Years

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    It's a fun series. Cosy murder mysteries like an 80s Agatha Christie series. I love how Jessica reacts to a murder. Or should I really say "reacts" considering she seems so used to murders that it doesn't horrify her one bit? I agree that the episodes without Angela are really boring. The episode I watched a couple of days ago wasn't the must fun either, with Jessica being in London and her nephew Grady and his with Donna was house sitting. Jessica just called a few times but I kept wishing that she'd jump on a plane back.
     
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  4. Daniel Avery

    Daniel Avery Super Moderator EXP: 20 Years Staff Member

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    I watched it in the original run and always enjoyed it. Lansbury had good instincts about what the audience wanted, unlike many actors who screw up the show once they're given 'creative input'. She was one of the main advocates of the show not depicting bloody, violent crime scenes. Everyone got 'gently murdered' from the look of things. The formula of multiple-suspect murder investigations allowed all those past-their-prime character actors to get some work, and of course they occasionally snagged some big-name star who made it even more fun. I also thought (as did she) that it was very helpful to show a woman of "a certain age" being such a mover-and-shaker, not some retiree sitting in a rocking chair. She traveled, lectured, met famous people and occasionally got into dangerous situations as she used her wits to outfox killers.

    Though it was done in a clunky, less-entertaining way, the "Jessica-light" episodes in the later years seemed a logical way to address the elephant in the room: Lansbury's heavy work load. Having a mystery with her only participating as a narrator/writer guiding the characters to the answers was a logical way of expanding the scope of the series while giving AL a bit of a break. She certainly deserved to get some rest, since she was in virtually every scene of every episode. Stars half her age (and with half her celebrity) would have demanded a lighter work load, so it's no small feat that she lasted as long as she did before the Jessica-light period started.
     
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  5. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson SoapLand Battles Moderator EXP: 18 Years

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    Although her past was a bit retconned here and there. At some point, every sheik, astronaut and movie star became a "friend from the good old days".
    I think it was the episode with Emma Samms in it that looked a bit bloodier than usual.
     
  6. Snarky's Ghost

    Snarky's Ghost Soap Chat Oracle EXP: 19 Years

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    Isn't that an interesting concept? Murder mysteries which are, and in fact must be, cozy in order to work...
     
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  7. Daniel Avery

    Daniel Avery Super Moderator EXP: 20 Years Staff Member

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    Imagine you're five minutes into this week's episode of Law and Order: SVU, when suddenly Jessica Fletcher walks up and starts sweetly theorizing about bullet trajectories or something equally innocuous. Benson would put her in a half-nelson, start barking out her Miranda rights and calling for back-up because "some old lady's compromised the crime scene". Jessica would be "Oh, My"-ing her way downtown to a holding cell while Benson and her group wonder how the hell 'Granny' made it past the crime-scene tape.
     
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  8. Franko

    Franko Soap Chat Member EXP: 1 Year

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    I don't know if it's true, but supposedly SEVERAL actors were able to keep their insurance through SAG thanks to even just one appearance on MSW.

    Obviously, as the show went on, Jessica kept a high profile and got a chance to meet more people. In Season One, I like to think that many of her famous friends (i.e. not folks from Cabot Cove) were people at that costume party in the first episode.
     
  9. Daniel Avery

    Daniel Avery Super Moderator EXP: 20 Years Staff Member

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    That is actually common practice among producers in Hollywood, at least the more sympathetic ones. I would imagine a guest-star heavy show like MSW would have been able to do a lot of good through such practices.
     
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  10. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson SoapLand Battles Moderator EXP: 18 Years

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    The show had its downsides too. Despicable, vile characters, especially Donna.
     
  11. Alexis

    Alexis Soap Chat Hero EXP: 13 Years

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    Well, I took a bit of a break from Sunset Beach, watched a lot of Schitt's Creek on Netflix then found myself eyeing up the Murder, She Wrote box set. Jessica was glaring at me from across the room, knowingly. It was early afternoon and I stuck in the first disc. The pilot episode was, well, weirdly boring. I guess because it was a feature length and an introduction so the whole Murder, She Wrote universe wasn't fully formed yet. I mean it was classically formulaic and a template for many a future episode and it did have that cosy whimsicalness. It just felt bloated, long and awfully dull.

    I much more enjoyed the following episodes. However, I wouldn't actually be glued to the them. I've been able to watch while doing other things. I have so far mostly been watching the episodes during the day. I've had to shut the blinds to do so. More so to keep the glare off the TV than to hide my secret old lady sleuth shame.
    When I opened the box set I did find the sheer volume of discs in the small casing to be overwhelming. It's a little cube box, when you open it there are only two plastic cases. It's split in two halves and there must be 6 seasons worth of discs in each half. It's a lot of discs! I decided to just not think about that and whack in a disc and go with it. So far I am on disc 2. Due to the amount of episodes and the likelihood of binging multiple episodes in one sitting I wont be writing about each episode as I watch. I mean, it's not called Murder, I Wrote. Or as Ru Paul calls it, Murder, She Done Did Sat Down An' Wrote.

    So far I have had an episode with Howard Duff, Dack Rambo and Cassie Yates and the guy that was a gallery owner that Claudia Blaisdell has an affair with in season 5 Dynasty. Dean?Entertaining enough, it was all down at Cabot Cove docks. I know they filmed a lot of this on the Universal Backlot but can anyone tell me if bits of Cabot Cove are actually the JAWS Amity Island set? I think that was also on the Universal backlot. It just looks similar. I know Cabot Cove is supposed to be some New England east coast place but obviously it's California when they are on beaches etc. In one episode with Melissa Sue Anderson as a diabetic who gets rumbled because her medication makes her face go red when she drinks alcohol, she's living in a beach house that looks very like the beach house Bobby Ewing lives at in the later seasons of Dallas when he's seeing the young Joan Collins from Sins, who's Susan Lucci's daughter. But that's enough of that nonsense.

    I also had an episode I didn't fully understand where Genie Francis plays Jessica's niece and her boyfriend is a drag queen cabaret performer in Martin Landau's club. It was all very silly but still enjoyable enough. I am now about to go into an episode with one of the Redgrave sisters co-starring with a dog from the looks of things.
    I feel like the show gets snappier at some point. I don't remember it being quite this sleepy. Maybe season one is finding it's feet. I also think I would much more enjoy watching it in Autumn/Winter as that's how I seem to remember watching it when it was airing on TV. It was always on a school night in winter. So coming into September I can see me having Murder, She Wrote/Dark Shadows nights.

    Right, back to it. I may as well finish this disc off!
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2020
  12. Sarah

    Sarah Super Moderator EXP: 21 Years Staff Member

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    I read your title completely wrong and thought this was some really badly written fan mail letter from Alexis (Joan Collins) to a fan saying I am a Murder (er) @Alexis :D
     
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  13. Alexis

    Alexis Soap Chat Hero EXP: 13 Years

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    Just as I was reading your post Sue Ellen's Dusty Farlow appeared in an episode. He's out on a country fox hunt with Lynn Redgrave, it's awfully fancy.
     
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  14. Sarah

    Sarah Super Moderator EXP: 21 Years Staff Member

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    Obviously I'm in cosmic communications with anything Sue Ellen related, but please tell Dusty to stop it as I'm vehemently opposed to fox hunting.

    It reminds me of Mrs Doubtfire (your title) 'I am job'.:D
     
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  15. Alexis

    Alexis Soap Chat Hero EXP: 13 Years

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    So this episode where Jessica uncovers the murder who is a dog... Yea! How'd that one happen! How was this not an on the spot cancellation? Dreadful! Better still the lawyer in this one is played by that guy in Disney films of the '60s. Notably that one with Hayley Mills, That Darn Cat. Why didn't they title the episode That Darn Dog? Never mind, on to the next one....

    Oh and it's Casey Denault from Dallas, Andrew Stevens and Chris Deagan from Dynasty, Grant Goodeve. I guess I will just have to finish this disc off!
     
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  16. Daniel Avery

    Daniel Avery Super Moderator EXP: 20 Years Staff Member

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    They try hard to cover up the fact that it is California. The beaches might both have rocky shores, but you can't enjoy a lovely sunset on the beach in Cabot Cove, since the sun rises on the east coast. Also, the houses tend to be a giveaway, since the roofs of homes in New England have to have much stepper roofs to shed all that snow.
     
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  17. tommie

    tommie Soap Chat Mega Star EXP: 3 Years

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    I really enjoy PushingUpRoses "That time on Murder She Wrote" videos:



    Full playlist

    It actually airs here at midnight on linear tv, so I sometimes do watch it if I'm up late enough and remember to turn it on. Beats watching Law & Order: SVU for the 100th time at least!
     
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  18. Alexis

    Alexis Soap Chat Hero EXP: 13 Years

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    To be honest her videos where a big push for me to buy the boxset. I had seen a few of them and loved them and was reminded how much I loved it when as a kid and when I'd find it in re-runs.
     
  19. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson SoapLand Battles Moderator EXP: 18 Years

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    That's a good episode!
    I liked this one too!

    I've watched the entire series in the 1980s, then the reruns and then the DVDs...and I still can't remember the "whos" in the whodunnits. Forever surprising, the fabulous Murder She Wrote.

    Did you like the bus episode with Rue McClanahan? I thought it was awesome.

    Huh, how does that work?
     
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  20. Sarah

    Sarah Super Moderator EXP: 21 Years Staff Member

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    I’ve been to Cabot Cove (Universal Studios Hollywood) :D
     

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