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Episode 1

Two-part drama based on Agatha Christie's novel. A dashing young chancer is accused of murdering a rich widow for her money. Can his wife's alibi prove his innocence?

1920s London. A murder, brutal and bloodthirsty, has stained the plush carpets of a handsome London townhouse - the victim is the beautiful widow Emily French. All evidence points to Leonard, a dashing young chancer who seduced the older woman into leaving him her vast fortune before ruthlessly taking her life. At least, this is the story that Emily's distraught, devoted housekeeper Janet stands by in court. Mayhew, a penniless solicitor, is put in charge of Leonard's case.

Initially treating the suspect with indifference, Mayhew is gradually moved by the young man's case. Leonard is certain that his innocence can be proved by his wife, the enigmatic chorus girl Romaine. The entire case rests on her alibi, and Mayhew is reassured to learn that she witnessed Leonard return at 9.30pm, the time when he supposedly murdered Emily. Will she testify and save her husband, or will his infidelity make her vengeful?

1 hour

Last on

Thu 29 Mar 2018 03:00

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Music Played

Timings (where shown) are from the start of the programme in hours and minutes

  • 00:03

    Bessie Smith

    It Won't Be You


Role Contributor
John Mayhew Toby Jones
Romaine Heilger Andrea Riseborough
Emily French Kim Cattrall
Sir Charles Carter David Haig
Janet McIntyre Monica Dolan
Leonard Vole Billy Howle
Tripp Paul Ready
Sir Hugo Meredith Tim McMullan
Alice Mayhew Hayley Carmichael
Detective Breem Dorian Lough
Christine Moffat Miranda Nolan
Stage Manager Paul Dallison
Bernie Ted Robbins
Dora Carla Langley
Deveraux Charles De'Ath
Dame’s Husband Robert Harper
Justice Greville Parris Robert East
Clerk Adam Jowett
Writer Sarah Phelps
Producer Colin Wrattan
Director Julian Jarrold
Production Company Mammoth Screen


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Character profiles

Character profiles

Learn more about those involved in this enigmatic tale of murder, prosecution and defence.

Screenwriter Sarah Phelps on twisting 'cosy Christie'

Screenwriter Sarah Phelps on twisting 'cosy Christie'

Read the BBC Writersroom blog