"Child's Play" is the tenth episode of the first season of the Murdoch Mysteries and the tenth episode of the series. It first aired on March 23, 2008.


The police investigate the murder of Howard Rookwood, a well-known Toronto industrialist and philanthropist who was struck on the head just outside of his house. Rookwood was an active supporter of Baker House, a home that specializes in relocating underprivileged children from England to Canada and where his own daughter was adopted from. As Detective Murdoch examines the forensic evidence, he and Doctor Ogden conclude that a child, or children, may be the culprit. The true motivation and solution to the crime however is far darker.

Character Revelations

  • When the murder suspect gets away on the Detective's bicycle, Murdoch curses "Oh, for the love of..." but is thankfully cut off by George's "Lord's name, sir."


  • Murdoch and Ogden enjoy working as a team to solve the case, making good partners in crime solving.

Historical References

  • This episode takes place in Toronto 1895 – Victoria (Alexandrina Victoria 1819 - 1901) is Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, Defender of the Faith, and Empress of India.
  • Exporting child labor from England to the colonies is a plot element.
  • The Barnardo Homes for homeless or destitute English children were set up by Dr. Thomas Barnardo.


  • This episode is unique in that there are no "Guest Star" credits. The supporting cast is only credited at the end of the episode.

Notable Quotes

Inspector to Crabtree: "Let me get this straight: You found the suspects, you couldn't get them to talk, they wounded a constable, nicked a detective's bicycle, and then got away on it?"
Murdoch to Brackenreid:  "If you keep doing things like this, Sir, I might just become a bit of a Brackenreid myself."


  • The telegrapher is using the telegraph key incorrectly. Simply tapping on the key with the index finger would not give the control needed to distinguish between dots and dashes.
  • Murdoch was carrying a large yellow envelope when he stepped out of the carriage, but when he reached the front door of Rookwood House, both of his hands were clearly empty.


Main Cast

Yannick Bisson as William Murdoch
Hélène Joy as Julia Ogden
Thomas Craig as Thomas Brackenreid
Jonny Harris as George Crabtree

Recurring Cast

Lachlan Murdoch as Constable Henry Higgins

Guest Cast

Daniel Fathers as Calvin Baker
Robert Dodds as Howard Rookwood
Catherine Fitch as Flora Rookwood
Richard Waugh as Peter Watt
Zoe Cleland as Eva Rookwood (Polly Dunlap)
Jesse Bostick as Charlie Dunlap
Rick Howland as Miles Gorman



Murdoch Mysteries Season 1
"Power" • "The Glass Ceiling" • "The Knockdown" • "Elementary, My Dear Murdoch" • "'Til Death Do Us Part" • "Let Loose the Dogs" • "Body Double" • "Still Waters" • "Belly Speaker" • "Child's Play" • "Bad Medicine" • "The Prince and the Rebel" • "The Annoying Red Planet"
Season 2Season 3Season 4Season 5Season 6Season 7Season 8Season 9Season 10
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