Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Do we need a “young” Miss Marple? Let’s hear it for the little old ladies out there.



I cant decide if this is brilliant or ghastly. What would Agatha Christie say to hear that CBS is developing a television show with Miss Marple being recast as a young woman. Ms. not Miss Marple, obviously, who inherits her grandmother’s bookstore and goes to work as a P.I. to get to the bottom of things in the California town where ‘things aren’t what they seem’. Clearly she won’t be carrying an umbrella and wearing her trademark hat. Will she even know a good cup of tea from a bad one?! Will she drink some herbal concoction instead? Hmmm. I’m thinking ghastly. Christie’s character threw the trope of the ‘nosy old biddy’ out on its heels; does it really need a reimagining?


But maybe even though it’s set in California —a beachy version of St. Mary Mead?—Ms. Marple would still be a Brit, much like Emily Blunt will still be a Brit in the re-locating of The Girl on the Train from London to New YorkOn the good news side, David Wolstencroft, creator of the long-running British spy series Spooks aka MI-5, is writing and producing. Better news would be if someone like Scott & Baileys Sally Wainwright was scripting.
I’m partial to Joan Hickson who played Miss Marple in the long running British television series that ran from 1984 to 1992 with Julia McKenzie probably being my number two, appearing as the amateur spinster sleuth from  2008-2013. There have been quite a few others, including Margaret Rutherford, Angela Lansbury and the wonderful Helen  Hayes.
Helen Hayes in Murder with Mirrors


Here’s an ad for a restoration of the Miss Marple many fans of the ultimate in cozy British detective stories hold dear. 

Who was your favorite screen version of Agatha Christie’s iconic female detective? Does she really need a make-over?

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