"The Spy Who Loved Murdoch" is the fifth episode of the twelfth season of the Murdoch Mysteries and the one hundred seventy-third of the series. It first aired on October 22, 2018.


When Murdoch impersonates a dead diplomat to save a treaty, political and sexual intrigue complicate matters.

Seeking Murdoch’s assistance, Agent Terrence Meyers leads him to a hotel room where they encounter the beautiful French agent Régine Rivière and the dead body of Gaetan Vidal, a diplomat from France, who appears to have been stabbed several times and likely bled to death. Picking up his pipe, Rivière deduces that he knew his attacker was about to strike, “Ceci n'est pas une pipe”. A single shot pistol, she gave to Vidal for protection. They were drinking wine together; the killer had earned his mark's trust, then struck — classic spy craft.

If they don't find who killed the French diplomat, the result will be the greatest war this world has ever known. Gaetan Vidal was to sign a treaty. Canada was chosen as neutral ground for this treaty between Britain, Russia and France to be signed. While France is already an ally with Russia and Britain, Britain and Russia remain enemies. This treaty will mend that bridge and form a Triple Entente — an alliance strong enough to withstand an attack from any nation on the planet. Meyers believes this attack to be forthcoming as the mad Kaiser Wilhelm of Germany lusts for Weltmachtstellung – world power! Without the Triple Entente, the entire world is vulnerable; this treaty cannot fail and now, one of the signatories is dead.

At the Station House, Mrs. Brackenreid complains to Thomas that he should have given her advance notice about dining out with his old army buddy Montague Ainsworth but he didn’t think she’d want to join them. Margaret confesses to him of her soft spot for Monty but, with Murdoch and Meyers’ arrival, the Inspector excuses himself — only to be shutout by Meyers on the grounds of international security.

Meanwhile, with a whole week-end off, George Crabtree is having a stay-at-home vacation — or as he calls it, a "homecation," but old Miss Pratt has him fixing the stoop (not grasping the concept). Soon, George and Mrs. Hall’s young son, Eric, have a mystery to solve of their own.

Character Revelations

  • Meyers and Régine Rivière have histoire – in Prague, for which she slaps him upon meeting again.


  • In the interest of not national security (as Brackenreid guesses) but international security, Terrence Meyers returns seeking help from Murdoch (again) for this time the future of the entire world is at stake.
  • Meyers and Dr. Ogden mention the previous times Murdoch has gone undercover “You've impersonated an anarchist (ep. 504), a workman (ep. 915), and a homosexual (ep.105)."
  • Turn of the century spy gadgets and weapons are revealed and used.
  • Teetotaller William Murdoch drinks a shot of vodka.

Historical References

  • This episode takes place in Toronto 1906 – 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.
  • The Triple Entente (from French entente [ɑ̃tɑ̃t] "friendship, understanding, agreement") between Great Britain, France, and Russia, the nucleus of the Allied Powers in World War I: It developed from the Franco-Russian alliance that gradually developed and was formalized in 1894, the Anglo-French Entente Cordiale of 1904, and an Anglo-Russian agreement of 1907, which brought the Triple Entente into existence.
  • Terrence Meyers's mention of Britain not having a treaty with Russia dates back to the Anglo-Russian War of 1807-1812 in which Britain broke off diplomatic relation with Russia in November 1808, this was followed by the Crimea War of 1853-1856.
  • Russia's defeat against Japan in the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-1905 and the Russo-Japanese War of 1905 in which saw the revival of the Franco-Russian Alliance.
  • The Battle of Tsushima (also known as the Battle of Tsushima Strait and the Naval Battle of the Sea of Japan) was a naval battle fought on 27–28 May 1905 between Russia and Japan during the Russo-Japanese War. Naval history's only decisive sea battle fought by modern steel battleship fleets and the first naval battle in which wireless telegraphy (radio) played a critically important role.
  • About 350 Russian citizens resided within the Shanghai International Settlement in 1905.


  • Filmed at The Scottish Rite in Hamilton.
  • This episode pays homage to the leitmotif made notably distinctive in The Pink Panther, The Princess Bride, Boogie Nights, and James Bond.
  • The episode's title is an homage to the 1977 movie; The Spy Who Loved Me; the 10th film in the James Bond series and the third film to star Roger Moore as James Bond.
  • Besoin de faire le doublage en français pour cet épisode parce que the most French spoken in an episode since Monsieur Murdoch. A deliberate choice of the MM Writers' Room as a nod to MM fans in France and because Yannick Bisson can do it well as an actor and as Murdoch which guided the writers, according to Simon McNabb.
  • Hélène Joy as Sheila Walker (a.k.a Julia Ogden) uses her native Aussie accent (her true voice) for the first time in this episode.
  • The role of Gaetan Vidal is played by Yannick Bisson's stunt double Louis Paquette.
  • A possible allusion to Magritte ’s surrealist painting titled “Ceci n'est pas une pipe” (1929) – this is not a pipe – a tongue-in-cheek nod to the paradox of the treachery of images.

Notable Quote

Régine Rivière to Murdoch: "Ceci n'est pas une pipe."


  • The timeline of the Triple Entente is a year early, but since the agreement wasn't actually signed – perhaps this is the prelude.
  • In the long shot of the Bellboy’s lunch plate, there is a piece of sandwich speared on his fork but in the close-up shot, the fork is missing the piece of food.
  • Moscow is referred to as the capital of Russia, although St. Petersburg was Russia's capital at the time. 


Main Cast

Yannick Bisson as Detective William Murdoch
Hélène Joy as Dr. Julia Ogden
Thomas Craig as Inspector Thomas Brackenreid
Jonny Harris as Constable George Crabtree

Recurring Cast

Peter Keleghan as Terrence Meyers
Arwen Humphreys as Margaret Brackenreid

Guest Cast

Louise Monot as Régine Rivière
Nick Stojanovic as Evgeny Dorokhov
Leo Vernik as Pavel Golovin
Pascal Langdale as Montague Ainsworth
Vincent Rother as Mr. Steel
Jennifer De Lucia as Mrs. Hall
Christian Corrao as Eric
Randal Baumer as Bellboy
Louis Paquette as Gaetan Vidal


Murdoch Mysteries Season 12
Murdoch Mystery MansionOperation: MurderMy Big Fat Mimico WeddingMurdoch Without Borders
The Spy Who Loved MurdochSir. Sir? Sir!!!Brother's KeeperDrowning in MoneySecrets and Lies
Pirates of the Great LakesAnnabella CinderellaSix of the BestMurdoch and the Undetectable Man
Sins of the FatherOne Minute to MurderManual for MurderDarkness Before the Dawn Part 1
Darkness Before the Dawn Part 2
Season 1Season 2Season 3Season 4Season 5Season 6Season 7Season 8Season 9Season 10Season 11Season 12
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