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"Murdoch Takes Manhattan" is the fifth episode of the eighth season of the Murdoch Mysteries and the one hundred-first episode of the series. It first aired on November 10, 2014.


An inebriated man drives over another man, leaving his motorcar and fleeing on foot. Inspector Brackenreid and Dr. Grace investigate the “hit and walk.” The driver confesses to Brackenreid that he was in a drunken stupor at the time so he remembers nothing. Meanwhile, Constables Crabtree, Higgins, and Jackson pool their money to buy a red motorcar of their own for $50 dollars, with driving gloves included.

On their honeymoon in New York, Det. Murdoch and Dr. Ogden discover the Park Embassy room that William booked – the luxury honeymoon suite on the sixth floor – is inexplicable unavailable now, so they accept another room with a view of a brick wall instead, where upon Julia answers an odd phone call saying, "The bear will bleed. The red arrow drops at noon". Brushing the call off as a message for someone else, William surprises Julia with a date at the Museum of Natural History.

Dr. Grace discovers, along with the two different treads left on the man’s body, that the nameless victim was hit on the head with a blunt object, poisoned, and then run over twice. The only piece of identity on him is a Toronto Auto Club pin that leads Brackenreid to question its members who identify the victim as Diderik Hann who owns a rare prototype from the Ransom Olds Company, the only one in the city with a unique tire tread pattern. The Inspector discovers that Haan's wife sold his motorcar to three constables because she thought that her husband was cheating on her; she sold the car as a form of revenge. Bloody hell! Crabtree, Jackson and Higgins are carousing in what is essentially a murder weapon.

Returning to the Park Embassy hotel because of the holiday closure of the museum, William and Julia decide to spend the day in their room. Having gotten the ice for the champagne, Murdoch encounters two armed men in the elevator going up to the sixth floor. Murdoch and Ogden inform the hotel detective Frank Rivers about the suspicious men and the strange phone call, but Rivers tells them a secret: “We have the President of the United States arriving tomorrow”, which explains why the entire sixth floor is unavailable and the armed men.

On the streets of Toronto the Good, the constables’ motorcar breaks down and the passing auto enthusiasts from the Auto Club, Roger Newsome, Frederick Fetherstonhaugh, Perry Doolittle, and Manfred Larkin, offer to help them; the constables refuse at first. Fetherstonhaugh offers to buy their rare automobile for any price, but Crabtree deduces their motorcar belonged to the man found dead on Winchester Street that morning and is evidence in a crime.

A series of loud thuds from the Park Embassy’s sixth floor interrupts the honeymooners and prompts William and Julia to investigate, but the bellhop stops them. By the next morning, Murdoch has built an elongated circumscope to view the room above, first through the windows then through the heating vent. When Julia spies the body of a dead man, they postulate that there is a plan to assassinate the president and the telephone message is a code. Now, they must stop the second assassination of the President of the United States.

After Dr. Grace informs Insp. Brackenreid that Haan was poisoned with carbon monoxide a by-product created by combustion, they arrive at the Doolittle estate where the constables are posed to join the auto rally to Niagara and back. Larkin interrupts Crabtree arresting Newsome, who had stolen the gloves in their earlier encounter, and takes them hostage, revealing his plot to kidnap the son of the Mimico Newsomes for money. A car chase with Brackenreid and Jackson and Dr. Grace at the wheel ensues, leaving Higgins behind.

Back in the Park Embassy lobby, Murdoch tackles the president– twice: the first time to “rescue” him from the two men who turn out to be his security agents who have already thwarted the assassination attempt and, the second time, when William and Julia notice the moving red arrow atop of the elevator doors “The red arrow drops at noon", Murdoch tackles President Roosevelt just as the elevator door opens, revealing the assassin– Frank Rivers.

By the end, Larkin confesses to hitting Haan on the head when his kidnapping plot is discovered, then placing the unconscious Haan in the carriage house with the motorcar engine on, unwittingly killing Haan. Murdoch has his luxury honeymoon suite with Julia, a gift from President Roosevelt. But Emily doesn’t get her automobile ride with George because he has a previous engagement with Edna, as it turns out– their first date on foot in the end.

Character Revelations

  • Together, Constables Crabtree, Jackson and Higgins buy their first motorcar for $50 with driving gloves included.
  • William tells Julia that the honeymoon is his gift to her: a luxury honeymoon suite, a day at the American Museum of Natural History, and dinner at Delmonico's. 
  • Brackenreid to Dr. Grace: “Bloody hell. First you want the vote, and now you want to drive. Women want all the privileges of being a man without any of the pain.”
  • Emily realizes that George is seeing someone else when he says, “I have to pick up…an appointment”, at the end of this episode.   


  • This episode takes place in 1902 during the last Monday in May, an American holiday originally known as Decoration Day; It originated in the years following the Civil War and became an official U.S. federal holiday in 1971, now known as Memorial Day.
  • This is the crime-solving honeymoon episode for William and Julia.
  • William and Julia’s keen interest in the Museum of Natural History goes back to their earlier courting days in Dinosaur Fever, the episode William first has a fantasy of a family with Julia, recognizing her by her walk (established in Season 1, ep.113) in the fantasy; also evidenced here in William's eyeing Julia's posterior.
  • Murdoch builds an elongated version of his Circumscope out of water closet “tubes” and Julia's mirrors; he first built one in Child's Play back in Season 1.
  • Roger Newsome of the Mimico Newsomes makes his second appearance; the first was in The Death of Dr. Ogden.

Historical References

  • Delmonico's is the original and most famous restaurant operated by the Delmonico family at 2 South William Street in Lower Manhattan, during the 19th and early 20th centuries, when it gained a reputation as one of the nation's top fine restaurant, credited with being the first American restaurant to allow patrons to order from a menu à la carte with a separate wine list. 
  • The American Museum of Natural History was originally housed in the Arsenal building in Central Park. President Theodore Roosevelt (1858 - 1919) was one of the founders. The founding of the museum realized the dream of naturalist Dr. Albert S. Bickmore, who lobbied tirelessly to establish a natural history museum in New York. His proposal, backed by his powerful sponsors, won the support of the Governor Hoffman of New York, who signed a bill officially creating the American Museum of Natural History on April 6, 1869.    
  • Dr. Ogden refers to America's Decoration Day as "some sort of memorial holiday," referencing its present name, Memorial Day, currently observed on the last Monday in May.    
  • Perry correctly predicts the future Trans-Canada Highway, as well as the proliferation of gas stations.    
  • Ransom E. Olds was a pioneer of the American automotive industry, for whom both the Oldsmobile and REO brands were named. The modern assembly line and its basic concept are credited to Olds, who used it to build the first mass-produced automobile, the Oldsmobile Curved Dash, beginning in 1901. The constables’ automobile is a “prototype from the Ransom Olds Co.", which will be the REO Runabout released for public purchase in 1905.       
  • Dicky seatdickie seat or dickey seat (British English),or Rumble seat (American English), also called mother-in-law seat, is an upholstered exterior seat for one or two which folds into the rear deck of a two-seat pre-World War II automobile.  When unoccupied, the space under the seat's lid is used for luggage.


  • Crabtree declares that "Ontario is ours for the discovering!" This is a reference to the the Ontario tourism slogan "Yours to discover," which has been printed on every Ontario license plate since 1982.
  • When being interrogated, the drunk driver attributes his hit and run to a "drunken stupor". This is a reference to former Toronto Mayor Rob Ford's explanation for his cocaine use; the character also bears more than a passing resemblance to Ford.
  • The striped dress that Hélène Joy wears is actually an authentic vintage dress made in 1902.
  • Filmed on Melville St. in Dundas. The antique car chase was also filmed in the Dundas area.


Main Cast

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

Recurring Cast

Lachlan Murdoch as Henry Higgins
Kristian Bruun as Slugger Jackson
Tamara Hope as Edna Brooks (née Garrison)
Cyrus Lane as Roger Newsome

Guest Cast

Scott Gibson as Manfred Larkin
Martin Moreau as President Theodore Roosevelt
Bill Lake as Frank Rivers
Paul Beer as Bellboy
Collette Micks as Mrs. Haan
Trevor Hayes as Frederick Fetherstonhaugh
Mathew Oliver as Dr. Perry Doolittle
Sean Arnfinson as Williams
Donal Foley as Desk Clerk
Dov Mickelson as Drunk Driver

Non-Credited Cast

Sean Harraher as Constable Worseley


Murdoch Mysteries Season 8
"On the Waterfront Part 1" • "On the Waterfront Part 2" • "Glory Days" • "Holy Matrimony, Murdoch!" • "Murdoch Takes Manhattan" • "The Murdoch Appreciation Society (episode)" • "What Lies Buried" • "High Voltage" • "The Keystone Constables" • "Murdoch and the Temple of Death" • "All That Glitters" • "The Devil Wears Whalebone" • "The Incurables" • "Shipwreck" • "Crabtree Mania" • "Toronto's Girl Problem" • "Election Day" • "Artful Detective" •
Season 1Season 2Season 3eason 4Season 5Season 6Season 7Season 8Season 9Season 10