After it’s mid-winter break, Murdoch Mysteries returned this week with a script by Carol Hay, and direction by Harvey Crossland.
It seems there’s a bit of a new musical craze sneaking its way into Toronto despite the efforts of those who would fight to keep our souls pure, like Miss Hamilton (Helen Johns).
The music she is protesting, and the dancing that goes with it, is the sound of ragtime. A small musical group, the Jubilee Singers, is in town, and after their show of performing slave spirituals, members of the band, sneak off to a tiny club and let loose with this fantastic and lively new sound.
Everything would be fine, if Nathan Peters (Darren Anthony), the band’s leader, who was opposed to his members playing ragtime, hadn’t turned up dead.
Murdoch (Yannick Bisson) investigates, and though intrigued by the music they’re making, puts the entire band under suspicion.
Brackenreid (Thomas Craig) gets to get into it this week, when a dock worker, Mic O’Shea (Johnathan Llyr) refuses to cooperate and reveal what he saw, and seems to be more than a little racist. Brackenreid takes him right to town, and makes sure to wear his glove on his punching hand to avoid getting blood on his fist.
It’s pretty sweet to see him tear it up.
The further Murdoch works into the mystery, the more things are revealed, desires to expand the band’s repertoire, falling box office receipts, a previous murder and an illegitimate child.
But it’s the music that captivates in this episode, and it’s too bad there isn’t more of it, but the stuff there is, is fantastic!.
The romance between Murdoch and Dr. Ogden (Helene Joy) is in full bloom, as both are convinced that James Gillies (Michael Seater) is finally dead. Of course, anytime anyone says that, you can pretty much guarantee that they’ll be back. But until then, the two of them have some nice romantic moments, as well as the opportunity to get all dudded up for a formal night out.
One thing I didn’t like, but I guess that’s the point of it, is the final scene of the episode featuring George Crabtree (Jonny Harris) and Emily (Georgina Reilly). Emily is quite taken with ragtime, and goes back to the club she saw them at, only to find them gone, and replaced by purity… but there toying at the piano is Leslie Garland (Giacomo Gianniotti) who seems to have designs on Dr. Grace.
You can see Crabtree’s expression falter as he watches Emily and Garland laugh together.
We’re drawing towards the close of the season, and I sincerely hope George isn’t left with his heartbroken by season’s end.
I’ll be very cranky.
Did you watch this week’s ep?
Murdoch Mysteries airs Monday nights on CBC.