Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries, Season One (2012)

October 14, 2013 8 Comments
Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries

British crime dramas have a brilliant track record; case in
point, Foyle’s War, Marple and more recently The Bletchley Circle. It stands to reason the Aussie’s might too produce quality entertainment (which they do). Joining the British ranks is
this all-new series set in Australia and
features one of the sassiest, most opinionated female detectives you’re likely
to ever meet.

Returning to Melbourne is not an event Miss Phryne Fisher
(Essie Davis) expects to be eventful. But somehow it is. No sooner has she set
foot on Australian soil – and reunites with family and friends, than she learns
that a dear friend has just lost her husband, and what initially looked like a
natural cause of death is soon reversed to one with suspicions. Called in to
investigate is Detective Inspector Jack Robinson (Nathan Page) who soon
discovers that Phryne’s curiosity and clever ability to see clues doesn’t end
with a standard procedure police interview, she becomes a thorn in Jack’s side
– the kind that refuses to leave! When the young maid of the house, Dorothy (Ashleigh
Cummings) is named the prime suspect in her employer’s murder, Phryne makes it
her business to clear the young girl’s name. Over the adamant objections of

Also playing into Phryne’s first case we meet a young constable
(Hugo Johnstone-Burt) who works with DI Robinson, and a victim of a shady
abortion clinic who may have ties to the murder case as well as a suspicious
drug trade. All of this, Phryne uncovers with Jack one step behind – trying to
prove her speculation right (or wrong!) all while keeping the feisty
investigator out of trouble.

British drama is a class of its own. Time and again I’ve
been reminded of that and it’s no different as viewers get caught up in the
adventures and glamour of Miss Fisher and her 13 revealing cases. Seeing this
was a long time coming, it was one of those that I danced around for a long
time and finally, two trusted recommendations later, I took the plunge and on a
Saturday afternoon both my mother and I found out what all the buzz was about.
Were I to go with the condensed review, this is nothing short of entertaining
albeit featuring certain cases that aren’t always up to snuff. Since I rarely
go with the short story, let’s talk about the glitz and glamour that is Miss

TV SHOW REVIEW | Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries, Series Two (2013)

Miss Fisher

Not since Foyle’s War have
I met a group of crime-fighters that worked so well together while also working
their way into the hearts of fans. This team is far from boring and shares a
fantabulous chemistry; from Miss Fisher to the unlucky cab drivers she recruits
(whose arrival in Miss Fisher’s life came about after they “fell” into one of
her cases), and of course, the lovable Dot, this cast of characters leaves a
lasting impression. For U.S. aficionados, most of the cast are probably
unknowns, just the same that doesn’t keep them from playing each of their
respective roles with class and wit. Davis is quite brilliant as the titular
character being a warm, kind-hearted woman whose household is living proof
of this; further proof of this is found in the adorable Dot (and her crush on Constable
Collins! Can we say cute) to young orphan, Jane, making Phryne easy to like.
The only quibble I do have with her are the lose morals she practices – her
sass isn’t the problem (that’s infectious), it’s her romantic liaisons that are
called into question. Given the time period and the age where being “wild” was
a relative term, I can say that it doesn’t “offend” me, however it doesn’t make
her dalliances “right” either.


What is also fun to watch are the sparks between Jack and
Phryne; their relationship is going to continue to solidify, I suspect, but it’s
also morphing into the never-ending stream of fandoms that’s a
will-they-or-won’t-they potential. This makes for some fun conversations or eye
locks while in equal parts frustrates fans who wish for more. Making up for any
minor personality trivialities is the opulence of the era. From the rush of
motor car rides to the exquisite costumes and of course, the spot-on “mood,”
every set affects just the frame of mind audiences should be put into. This is
really the quintessential “flapper” era – everything about the production
sparkles with personality, constantly transporting to the roaring twenties.
Also not bad are the mystery components. Most of the cases build to a spooky climax even if
the writing doesn’t always mirror that.  

Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries

Miss Fisher’s Murder
is a smart, snazzy, not-to-be-missed production. The 13-episode
span is over all too quickly and though it doesn’t insult us by ending on a
cliffhanger, it still beckons our return for its eventual second series. As the
DVD jacket boasts, it’s both “witty and elegant” same as its darling and feisty
heroine – and that’s what makes it so appealing. Never has sleuthing been this fun.


CONTENT: There are
two or three instances of partial nudity, multiple implications of unmarried
lovers spending the night together [the camera usually cuts away, though not
before some clothed foreplay and a post-scene, sheets appropriately placed] as
well as some coarse [periodically] sexual conversations. Episodes deal with
abortions [off-screen] along with a maid being raped [again, off-camera], drugs and abuse [including flashbacks to one of Phryne’s
prior dalliances]. A book on seducing is given to a young man, complete with illustrations
and a nude painting is passed around. There is some British slang and plenty of
“violence.” Victims are threatened, stabbed, shot and/or poisoned. A TV14 rating would best suit this series.

About Rissi JC

amateur photog. #bookblogger. downton abbey. inspys. internet-photo-shy. writer. the aspiration is to someday write professionally. a girl can dream, right?

Rissi JC

amateur photog. #bookblogger. downton abbey. inspys. internet-photo-shy. writer. the aspiration is to someday write professionally. a girl can dream, right?

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  • Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com October 14, 2013 at 2:28 pm

    Oooooooooooooooooooo I want to see this.

    • Rissi October 15, 2013 at 6:51 pm

      You'd LOVE it, Juju. :)

  • Jamie Lapeyrolerie October 14, 2013 at 4:09 pm

    This looks way fun! I can see myself getting hooked easily!

    • Rissi October 15, 2013 at 6:53 pm

      I think you'd like it, Jamie. It's kind of "infectious" in the best possible way! ;) Let me know if you decide to watch the series.

  • Renee (SteelerGirl83) October 14, 2013 at 6:55 pm

    I think this series was my first experience with Australian TV and I have to say it was such fun! The clothing is to die for and I <3 Jack and Hugh is such a cutie. I'm so glad you and your mum enjoyed this one.

    • Rissi October 15, 2013 at 6:55 pm

      This series was spectacular, Renee. The costuming was gorgeous (my mom constantly remarked on that!) and of course, like you, I am VERY fond of Jack and Hugh both. The only "bad" thing about it is that Phryne and Jack will continue this will-they-or-won't-they pattern indefinitely. Oh, the way writer's tease us!

      Thank you for tweeting/blogging about the show. It was the last "push" I needed to try the series. After that, mom and I were sold. :)

  • Rel October 15, 2013 at 9:43 am

    We make some pretty good shows down under and this is one of them :) There are lots of well known Aussie actors in it! Glad you enjoyed it, Rissi – Renee and I had already talked about it :)

    • Rissi October 15, 2013 at 6:58 pm

      I figured the actors were well-known down under, Rel. They may have been unfamiliar to me but I loved them in these roles! Jack, Phryne and Hugh were wonderful as were ALL of the supporting characters. So fun. :)

      It's thanks to Renee that I finally saw this! She's got me "addicted." :)

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