Last we left the Phrack team, they were standing in the night, stalwart together against the threat of Murdoch Foyle, recently revealed to be Totally Not Dead. Where did he go??? To visit an ol’ friend…
… And drug him with a paralyzing potion in order to lobotomize him, Mummy style.
This is terrible, not just because we have to witness someone having an iron rod slowly inserted up a nostril, but because this man does not deserve that . This man has style. Does that count for nothing? On this show it should at least protect you from lethal canopic jar treatment.
Silk robe and tie aside, this unfortunate man’s name is Albert. First Clue to finding Murdoch Foyle: Albert’s Antiques and Curiosities, which used to be Murdoch’s Antiques and Curiosities.
Having changed and (not) slept after her cousin’s terribly executed, tasteless engagement party, Phryne is ready for action. She’s emotionally fired up, ready to chase down clues. Everyone wants to help her, but she won’t allow any of them to come along. Only Dot has the true strength, wit and good common sense to keep Phryne out of harm’s way.
The two throw on their tried and true speedy-car-time hats and head over to Albert’s. Door says CLOSED, but the dog trapped inside says “OPEN”. Also “YOU BETTER GET IN HERE AND HELP BECAUSE I JUST BIT OFF MY DEAD OWNER’S FINGER!”
I will never get over Essie Davis’ delivery of the line, “It’s a finger, Dot.”
They find Albert in the back room, fingerless, brainless and dead, no Murdoch in sight. Jack and Hugh are surprised that their two lady friends are out this early, especially after such a terrible night, and in their fast car hats! Get outta here and go home, put on some having-a-cup-of-tea hats, or something. On their way out (Phryne being unusually compliant in her state of urgency), they find a photograph stuck to the door with a lobotomizing poker.
With one flick of the eyes, Phryne communicates to Dot, “Nary a word to Jack about this. I have some sneaking into the morgue to do.”
Oh look! It’s Doctor Women-Aren’t-Allowed-Near-My-Corpses. This is a nice throwback to the first autopsy Jack and Phryne attended together. How far they have come! He’s learned to let her do the talking, or they would NEVER find the clues.
Sure enough, they unearth two small Egyptian beads just where Phryne said they would be: hidden in the two dead men’s noses! That Doctor should be embarrassed. How could you possibly miss something so obvious?
Dot also manages to wrangle up a clue: Secret Note in Stolen Ring Box. If I were Hugh I would embarrassed. A false bottomed ring box? It’s not like we are hunting a man with a very specific knowledge base in antiquities and treasure hunting. STEP UP YOUR GAME, EVERYONE WHO IS NOT PHRYNE OR DOT.
Hugh may not be at Dot and Phryne level of clue hunting and undercover sneakiness, but over the course of season one, we have seen what he is good: meticulous paperwork and routine follow through. He looked up the only victim to escape Foyle. He contacted the only victim to escape Foyle. He questions the only victim to escape Foyle. Not glamorous, but still useful. #bless
Phryne’s strength is not routine questioning. Her strength usually involves handsome men. This professor of Ancient Cultures is no exception. Nice three piece suit (not coordinates, but in the same colour family), silk cravat, and possibly his most attractive feature…
…a spacious and beautiful office. Yes, give me gilded pages and oak furniture and the smell of scotch and leather. I would die happily in your tweed clothed arms.
This picture is just to illustrate how adorable these two are. Both so pleased to have Phryne’s respect and admiration! Bert and Dot rarely get to work together, and I wish there was more of them being friends.
Doesn’t last long though. Phryne has to rush off to find a nun and maybe alienate the priesthood in its entirety while she’s at it. Again, TAKE DOT WITH YOU. Smart, sneaky, but also great pull in the religious community.
Not like you, you sinful heathen harlot.
And wait a minute… this nun looks like the lady from the ol’ timey photography left at Albert’s! Could it be…. she wasn’t always a nun??
It’s true! She once also had a great hat! In a more Edwardian-leaning time (15 years ago? Maybe only 10?), this Nun was a beautiful archeology student. She also had a great wardrobe. So lush and romantic! I love high collars on long-haired women. It’s a very elegant look, and it looks best with dark dramatic features. Like hers!
Although all of her drama stems from witnessing her teacher and lover drugging and kidnapping small girls. So… not a good look, in this instance.
Professor Handsome Office has some answers for Phryne about the Nose Jewels. Something something, Egyptian words about stealing girl children, blah blah, the Afterlife.
As if sticking clues about creepy kidnapping rationales into people’s noses weren’t bad enough, we have THIS horrifying turn of events. For his next appearance, Murdoch Foyle will use a bottle of milk to paralyze an entire household, forcing them to witness without possibility of intervening the abducting of their most vulnerable and beloved family member.
This part was no joke, very difficult to watch. I apologize for freezing it on Dot’s face. Hers is the most frightening to me.
Things scale up from Horrifying to Ludicrously Depraved when it is discovered that Murdoch Foyle, just before milk-drugging all of Phryne’s friends, found time to KILL a NUN. WHO DOES THAT?!?!?
Yeah, P! I am with you! This man is bonkers crazy and must be stopped!
Jack is like “Can we do this in a METHODICAL and ORDERLY way?”
Phryne is like “CAN WE NOT?” #ijustgottabeme
Phryne is forced into lock-up to prevent her running off and rescuing Jane-slash-probably committing some manslaughter. Jack knows her too well at this point to let her hurt herself. He also has limited options at his disposal for containing the likes of Phryne Fisher. Short of throwing her in the stocks, I don’t know how you would keep her out of this, Jack.
And even jailing her is not going to work. Because DOT.
It must be done, Hugh. I love you, but you must realize that Dorothy Williams will always be true to her First Love, the free-spirited, stocking-ripping, fast-driving, sexually-liberated madwoman who taught her how to use the telephone!
NO MAN CAN COME BETWEEN A BOND LIKE THAT.
Much to his credit, Hugh understands. Someday Dot and he will be married, and Phryne will be like, kidnapped by the Yakuza and held on a island in the South Pacific or something and Dot will be like “Phryne sent me this message in a bottle and i just have to run out and help her I left you a meatloaf in the ice box, i will be back in like a week ten days at most, and there’s a pie you just need to warm it up its your favourite, blueberry, k byeeeeee” and he’ll be like, “OK! Love you!”
Now, what we have here is an honest to god Underground Lair. Professor Awesome Office is not, in fact, as awesome as his office would suggest, having been in cahoots with Foyle the whole time. I hope he steps on a nail down there and gets an ancient gangrenous infection.
Phryne found you, loser. If I didn’t think that is exactly what you wanted, I would be laughing in your face right now. But we have all realized that Phryne is the one you wanted for your creepy Egyptian rituals.
Of course the Gods would demand Foyle sacrifice Phryne for immortality (or whatever it is he wants I can’t remember it’s not important). Look at those cheekbones. Flawless.
Jack is locked up with Jane. In not his best moment, he slipped trying to arrest Foyle. Hopefully he can redeem himself with his classic Jack knowledge of classic literature or codes or something.
Nope, he is going to make a wisecrack while Jane explains the meaning of that Egyptian Goddess. *tear* She gets that from her Moms.
Freed from the Mummy storage room, Jack incapacitates his suspect. No sneaky Professor to trip you up this time, you get to be the Phryne Rescue Party all by yourself! Note that Jack’s coif is ruffled, but even when drugged and nearly murdered by a madman, Phryne Fisher’s bob is laid flat and shiny as a halo.
So, finally, Murdoch Foyle is foiled and sent back to jail TO STAY. Phryne has closure, finding the remains of her sister Jane resting under a willow tree. A cathartic moment for the whole crime-solving crew.
There’s only one thing left to do: put on your fanciest frock and have a birthday party. Phryne’s birthday in particular was one of the driving forces behind Murdoch’s madness, so it is sweet justice for it to return to her as a happy occasion. Now, sitting down, this wrap is confusing, like she’s wearing a wrap backwards and/or has mummified herself in plastic wrap.
But once she hits the dance floor, we see what’s going on and it is: amazing. With everyone she loves safe around her, what is there left to do but dance?
I spy Dr. Mac! Hurray!
Someday, Jack will bury the loss of his marriage just as Phryne has buried her sister. It takes a long time to come round to something that was so close to you all along. Something’s never change though. Jack will always be understanding, peaceful and stable. Phryne will always be challenging, adventurous and dancing, just out of reach.
Thanks for following along these recaps for the first season of Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries!
Stay tuned in the New Year as we take on Season Two. xoxo