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|"Kill Thy Neighbour"|
|Air date||January 20, 2020|
|Written by||Mary Pedersen and Noelle Girard|
|Directed by||Craig David Wallace|
"Kill Thy Neighbour" is the thirteenth episode of the thirteenth season of the Murdoch Mysteries and the one hundred ninety-ninth of the series (not including the three stand-alone holiday specials). It first aired January 27, 2020.
Suspicions fall on Detective Murdoch when his unpleasant neighbor is murdered and the team at Station House No. 4 has to prove he is being set up.
The end of the work day at the Station House finds Crabtree leaving to dine with Effie at The Dome and Murdoch off to join Julia at the Toronto Mercy Hospital’s annual fundraising dinner, but not before George secures one of Murdoch’s cufflink for him as the distracted sleep deprived Detective vents about his neighbours who have been curt, rude, and malicious. The Detective’s parting words to the Inspector and George raises eyebrows, “In the morning, I'm going to see Huckabee and I'm going to make him pay.”
As it is too lovely a morning for a dead body, Detective Watts and Constable Crabtree are hoping it isn’t a murder when responding to a Station House call from a paperboy who had reported a door ajar to a residence in Murdoch’s neighbourhood, whereupon he spied a pool of blood on the floor. The policemen discover the lifeless body of Raymond Huckabee and Murdoch’s cufflink.
At the Windsor House Hotel, the Inspector with Crabtree and Watts wake Julia and Murdoch who are guilty of over-sleeping and being thickhead: Has there been a murder? They claim to have been together all night; after returning from charity event, William called room service for warm milk and sherry. There is still liquid in the glasses so Julia can test for sedatives. Murdoch has motive and his cufflink was found at the crime scene — if anyone else were in this position, he’d be arrested.
Upon interviewing Mrs. Huckabee, Brackenreid and Watts learn that Murdoch had lent them his lawnmower then took it back in the middle of the night, loosen the bolts on their carriage wheels and even accused Raymond of killing her. Thus, she had hired a private investigator and presents a damning dossier on William Murdoch. Now, it's the Detective’s word against a grieving widow and her investigator.
At the City Morgue, Miss Hart narrows the time of death to between 8 and 10 o'clock at night, when the good Doctor and Detective were at the dinner. The victim has stab wounds on both sides of his body: three on the front, and three on his back — all made with different weapons and, curiouser still, all the wounds are all at the same angle. She found blood pooled in his feet, suggesting that for a period of time after death, Mr. Huckabee was upright. There were no defensive wounds. Murdoch has an idea and they reconvene to his office where he draws out a murder device on the blackboard: a device that is secured to a structure to support the blades, attached to a trip wire, or a switch, possibly triggered by the door opening. The thrust of the weapons would have required industrial grade springs. Crabtree confesses that the only person he knows who could put together this diabolical machinery would be...Murdoch himself.
Nonetheless, the killer needn't have been present at the time of the murder thus has an alibi — but there was no such device left behind. When they examine the crime scene photos for possible evidence of it, Miss Hart enters with results of the skin samples from the wounds, which revealed finely cut grass clippings.
At the Murdoch home, the lawnmower is brought inside to examine its underside with the UV light in darkness — blood is all over the blade and on Murdoch’s tools on his worktable as well. “Bloody hell, Murdoch,” exclaims the Inspector, “if I didn't know you quite so well…” Admittedly, he would look very very guilty.
The team can’t keep this under their hat much longer as Miss Cherry has been asking questions. Brackenreid will send Parker to Kingston to see if he can dig up anything else on Goldie Huckabee since the crime scene photos had confirmed her theft of the pelican and her criminal persuasion. Though, Julia questions Goldie’s mental capacity could have planned a murder of such ingenuity. Murdoch asks about the private investigator; Mrs. Huckabee gave Brackenreid his card. At the Private Investigations, Inc. office, Brackenreid and Murdoch find Ralph Fellows waiting for them.
- The Huckabees put in a second water line and the Murdoch Home pipes burst, forcing William and Julia to return to the Windsor House Hotel.
- Lacking his usual nightly sleep, William is unusually short-tempered, distracted and arguably a bit paranoid.
- Julia gave William her late father's cufflinks as an anniversary gift.
- When Margaret had heard about Higgins snow skiing (ep.1100), she wanted to try it and made Thomas buy all the gear for her.
- Murdoch has invented a lawnmower that he loaned to the Huckabees.
- Brackenreid has a new nickname for George,'Crabbers'.
- While George Crabtree is a successful self-published author (ep.503), his first literary traditional published novel "A Man Alone" becomes a smash hit which the Globe book reviewer calls, "The deeply moving and skillfully wrought story of a man in search of love in the modern world." Crabtree's publisher wants him to go on a book tour across the country, Halifax to Vancouver.
- When noting Murdoch being late for work, Detective Watts remarks, "Perhaps he dipped into the wine again" (ep.1102).
- Upon discovering Ralph Fellows at the office of Private Investigations, Inc., Inspector Brackenreid arrests him for the murders he tried to set up his own sister with, using Murdoch's police manual, the previous year (ep.1216).
- Toronto Telegraph reporter Cherry eagerly covers the arrest of the Detective with the questionable alibi.
- Upon discovering six different stab wounds on the body, Murdoch asserts to Crabtree "...no, George, I don't believe it was a team of six kung-fu assassins" (ep.716), who counter with "Could have been three of them".
- Because Brackenreid had bought ski gear for Margaret at the only place in Toronto who sells them J. Christianson Sporting Goods, he recognizes the wound made by the "thingy at the end of the ski pole".
- Ralph Fellows returns to pursue his vendetta against Murdoch and to prove that he is the genius, not the Detective.
- Murdoch considers the Huckabees to be curt, rude and – malicious, while Mrs. Huckabee thinks the Detective is a homicidal lunatic with connections.
- Julia discovers that Goldie Huckabee did indeed steal their clay pelican figurine (ep.1307).
- This episode takes place in Toronto 1907 – Edward VII (Albert Edward;1841-1910) is King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and of the British Dominions beyond the Seas.
- In 1907, the original Horticultural Building was constructed by George W. Gouinlock (1861-1932) where The Dome and Toronto Event Center is internationally known today.
- Barbital was marketed in 1904 by the Bayer company as “Veronal”. Barbital was considered to be a great improvement over the existing hypnotics of the time, tasting less bitter than bromides.
- As Peter Mitchell revealed during Parker in the Rye: "we will get almost every character on MM behind bars this year."
- The response to "...across the country, Halifax to Vancouver," is an allusion to Jonny Harris' TV series Still Standing (2015) with wonderful weekly stand-up at small towns across the proud and true Canadiana of Canada.
- Brackenreid makes an allusion to the signature idiom of "The Shadow", a 1930s radio pulp drama, when he says: "...what darkness lurks in the heart of a man". The actual introduction, spoken by actor Frank Readick: "Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? The Shadow knows!"
- Louise Cherry to George Crabtree: "But can you comment on the fact that a disproportionate amount of people close to the Detective end up dead?"
- Brackenreid to George: "There's no telling what darkness lurks in the heart of a man, Crabtree."
- Crabtree to Watts and Brackenreid: "Sir, I know what lurks in the heart of William Murdoch, it is a passion for justice, a respect for science, and a desire to create ingenious automated machines that one day might save us from doing housework. He has more integrity than any man I know, and he would sooner move a house to Mars than kill a vexatious neighbour. And you know what? That's it. I refuse to hear any more on the subject."
Daniel Maslany as Detective Watts
Shanice Banton as Violet Hart
Marc Senior as Robert Parker
Bea Santos as Louise Cherry
Clare McConnell as Effie Newsome
Colin Mochrie as Ralph Fellows
Sebastian Spence as Allen Templeton
Jonelle Gunderson as Goldie Huckabee
Paul Braunstein as Raymond Huckabee