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Weekly issues every Saturday morning and other special articles throughout the week — there's something for everyone. If you love mysteries — explore Mysteryrat’s Maze — and check out our sister site on Blogger for bonus articles.


TV

Mr. Lovejoy? …No, Just Lovejoy

IN THE August 13 ISSUE

FROM THE 2016 Articles,
andKathleen Costa,
andMysteryrat's Maze,
andTV
SECTIONS

by Kathleen Costa


As many will attest, British crime shows peek my interest every time. From dark suspense to quirky ‘dramedies,’ I revel in the varied accents, quaint village settings and it’s just far enough removed from American culture to be fascinating. So sitting enjoying a ‘cuppa,’ exploring YouTube to see if some of my favorites, long gone from even the most independent station, were available. What a delightful surprise to find a show with a wonderful twist on the crime-drama formula was accessible…Lovejoy!

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Murder She Baked Movie Series on Hallmark

IN THE August 6 ISSUE

FROM THE 2016 Articles,
andMysteryrat's Maze,
andTV
SECTIONS

by Doward Wilson


Today we are introducing you to the Murder She Baked Series on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries. These movies are based on Joanne Fluke’s popular and long-running cozy mystery series, starring Hannah Swenson. Hannah’s bakery is called the Cookie Jar and is located in Lake Eden, Minnesota.

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by Kathleen Costa


Inspector Morse concluded its run in 2000, but not its popularity. “What will the next invasion bring?” Two spin-off dramas crossed to our shores providing a positive nod to the original, yet unique enough to become favorites among the “Morse” fans.

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by Doward Wilson


Welcome to Hallmark Movies & Mysteries: the Garage Sale series, starring Lori Loughlin as Jennifer Shannon. Jennifer and her business partner, Dani (Sarah Strange), own Rags To Riches, a resale shop with an eclectic array of merchandise. They canvas estate and garage sales for finds.

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by Kathleen Costa


Paul Revere wouldn’t have been so worried had the British crossing to our shores been an army of detective dramas. He would have foregone his ride through the countryside, put on a pot of black-market tea and sat and enjoyed the invasion. He would have noticed a diversity in the era, setting and style of the lead detective and supporting team, but would have recognized that the programs shared the English twang, unique locations and intriguing characters. Paul would have become a convert!

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by Deborah Harter Williams


As we consider Father’s Day, it is obvious the role that fathers have played in a staple of television comedy: Father Knows Best, The Courtship of Eddie’s Father, Parenthood, Modern Family. But they are also integral to many a plot twist and emotional conflict driving drama as well, particularly in the crime and spy genre.

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Houdini & Doyle: TV Review

IN THE June 11 ISSUE

FROM THE 2016 Articles,
andFantasy & Fangs,
andKathleen Costa,
andMysteryrat's Maze,
andTV
SECTIONS

by Kathleen Costa


In 1920, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Harry Houdini met sharing an interest in spiritualism. Doyle led the movement participating in many séances. Houdini was a professed skeptic, yet hid his true feelings about spiritualism and the afterlife. Their friendship continued for a few years, but a public feud about medium cases led to an ultimate breakup. FOX brings to television, with some literary license, a 10-episode first season exploring this relationship as the two men set out to investigate the paranormal: one wishes to validate as truth, the other wishes to debunk as fakery.

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by Kathleen Costa


Sherlock Holmes. He has been portrayed by many capable and varied actors: classic Basil Rathbone, iconic Jeremy Brent, steampunk-style Robert Downey Jr., and contemporary Jonny Lee Miller and Benedict Cumberbatch. However, a case can be made for another incarnation worthy of discussion. In 1981, HBO presented the 2-hour play Sherlock Holmes and the Strange Case of Alice Faulkner starring in the detective role…Frank Langella.

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by Deborah Harter Williams


Who could be more perfect than Sharon Gless and Tyne Daly to play the iconic leads forever etched in our minds as Cagney & Lacey, which aired for seven seasons on CBS from March 1982 to May 1988.

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by Kathleen Costa


Not only in America were the 1920s ‘roaring’ with jazz clubs, bordellos, gangsters, and emancipated women. Phryne (pronounced FRI-nee, rhymes with shiny) Fisher Detective novels, penned by Kerry Greenwood, are definitely ‘roaring’ with stories a bit sexier than your typical ‘cozy’ and exploring some adult themes and behaviors, but the humor is quirky, clever, and well worth watching. Perfect for television, Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries first aired in Australia in 2012, and now has reached America.

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by Doward Wilson


Hallmark Movies & Mysteries has done an entertaining adaption of A Bone To Pick: An Aurora Teagarden Mystery by Charlaine Harris. I have not read this series, so had no preconceived notions about the movie. Candace Cameron Bure is Aurora, and Marilu Henner is her mother.

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by Kathleen Costa


Sometimes Canada gets it right: Canadian Mounted Police, Canadian Whiskey, Canadian bacon, and along with those, a unique Canadian detective television show. Murdoch Mysteries premiered in January, 2008, based on the mystery novels of the same name by Maureen Jennings, who also acts as an executive producer. The series is seen on Canadian television CBC, but through fortuitous channel surfing, it was found to also be airing on Ovation, a U.S. cable television network, under the title The Artful Detective.

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by Deborah Harter Williams


What are they thinking those television execs? What flights of fantasy run through the minds of the would-be producers of future shows? Where do they get their ideas?
Well, here it is – pilot season – an eclectic mix of new, old, out-there, and you’ve-got-to-be-kidding. Watch for diversity and big screen faces.

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Spring Forward TV Viewers

IN THE March 19 ISSUE

FROM THE 2016 Articles,
andDeborah Harter Williams,
andMysteryrat's Maze,
andTV
SECTIONS

by Deborah Harter Williams


There are still new shows coming up for the Spring Season – or whatever we call the perpetual new season that is now television. And by television, I mean everything from Network, to Cable, to Netflix, and those other streamers. Here’s a preview of new shows coming up in the next month, plus a peek at some of the pilots vying to be future series.

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by Terry Ambrose


In 2015, the Hallmark Mysteries and Movies channel was born and the former Hallmark Movie Channel expanded its strategy of creating movies based on books, having already seen success with Joanne Fluke’s Chocolate Chip Mysteries and Charlaine Harris’ Aurora Teagarden Mysteries. In 2015, the channel also brought out a Garage Sale mystery and a Plum Pudding mystery. The newest beneficiary of this trend is author Kate Collins, whose eighteen Flower Shop Mysteries are just waiting to be adapted to the screen.

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by Sharon Tucker


CAUTION: Spoilers abound.
Having had a bit of time to think about and see the latest Moffat and Gatiss Sherlock a time or two, I have to admit I like it now much better than I did initially. Somehow I had developed an unrealistic yearning to spend the whole action of the story in Conan Doyle’s era, enjoying Holmes and Watson exclusively in their original setting, but I was ignoring the essence of what Moffat and Gatiss always do with Conan Doyle’s characters and plots.
They turn the stories around.

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