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Violet Hart
1104 The Canadian Patient 1
Actor Shanice Banton
Seen The Canadian Patient
Dr. Osler Regrets
The Talking Dead
Crabtree à la Carte
Game of Kings
Mentioned Biffers and Blockers
Gender Female
Status Living
Relationships TBA
Job Chief Coroner (S12); Morgue assistant and university medical student (S11-12)

Miss Violet Hart is introduced in Season 11 of Murdoch Mysteries, played by Shanice Banton.

Character Arc

Violet Hart is a feisty entrepreneur selling nutrition pills whom George Crabtree and Dr. Julia Ogden first meet while at the Toronto Medical Exposition.

While Miss Hart takes up Dr. Ogden's offer to attend the University and work as her assistant in the City Morgue, she tells the good Doctor, "But I must warn you, I have no intention of being your assistant forever." To which, the good doctor tells her, "Well, I would expect no less."

Violet is somebody who has ambition and isn’t afraid to say what she wants and wants to get out of life. Miss Hart has taken to the morgue exceptionally well, according to both Murdoch and Ogden in Season 11.

Before long, Dr. Ogden can't get an incident in the morgue with Miss Hart out of her mind. She shares her concern with the Detective, "How has she learned so quickly to divorce herself from emotion?" A quality that would make her an excellent clinician, but even an expert can have sympathy for the patient.

Season 11

The Canadian Patient

  • Violet Hart is working at a booth at the medical exposition trying to get a message across about health and vitamins, while making a honest living.
  • She first meets George Crabtree who offers her a handful of trademark names for her vitamins and later points her booth out to Dr. Ogden who is at the exposition to enrol women in medical school.
  • Dr. Ogden wants to encourage Violet for she sees the passion the young woman has for the field and the University of Toronto has opened its doors to women. In addition, the good doctor is in need of an assistant since Dr. James has left Toronto (ep.1102).

Dr. Osler Regrets

  • Working in the City Morgue, Violet questions Dr. Ogden about Dr. Osler whose speech on counselling old people to take their own lives was twisted completely out of context, but Miss Hart thought there was some validity to it. Dr. Ogden asks “How so?” Miss Hart points out that people in their later days can be a drain on a family's resources, allowing the aged to choose their final day is a compassionate act. While Dr. Odgen acknowledges that there may be some truth in that, it is not the role of a doctor, “Our job is to do no harm”.
  • Violet is introduced to William Murdoch and Thomas Brackenreid when they visit the morgue to get the information on the second victim. Brackenreid jokingly mentions to Violet that he taught Murdoch all he knows after she tells Murdoch that she's heard so much about him and is honoured to meet him.

The Talking Dead

Biffers and Blockers (Mention)

Mary Wept

  • Miss Hart's contradictory comments and behaviour has Dr. Ogden bewildered, if not concerned: How has Violet learned so early to divorce herself from all emotions?
  • Is Violet just expressing what she thinks the good Doctor and Detective want to hear – ingratiating herself with them – or is there something deeper at play?

Crabtree à la Carte

Game of Kings

  • Since Violet has taken the initiative to photograph the inventory of all the cases she has been assigned to work on, she is able to provide information on the mysterious crest pin – it was the Kingdom of Poland's coat of arms. Murdoch is impressed with her work, which is Violet's desire and she is not shy in express that to the Detective, adding, "I find this work quite fascinating".
  • After verifying her suspicions that Dr. Ogden is pregnant and directly asking the good doctor for confirmation, Violet proceeds to accelerate her university studies so she will be qualified to replace Dr. Ogden when she goes on maternity leave – something that Julia had not thought through yet. Julia will need to take some time and, "...who knows, maybe I'll fall so in love with the little one I'll never want to come back."
  • Julia recalls that Violet had warned her when taking the job as morgue assistant, "... I have no intention of being your assistant forever."

Shadows Are Falling

  • Violet miscalculates and oversteps the line when she tells Dr. Ogden, "I believe I'm ready to handle a postmortem, Doctor.  If I have any difficulties, I shall consult with you."

Free Falling

  • Violet Hart's goal and scheme is finally revealed. She finds the City Morgue suits her much more than she had ever expected, "the science, the precision, the puzzling out of obscure details."
  • Dr. Ogden's absence has allowed her to realise that she is quite capable of doing it all on her own.
    She tells Inspector McWorthy that Dr. Ogden has been rather distracted as of late, "Erratic, emotional. It's quite sad to see. She does mean so much to me, after all.”
  • McWorthy understands what Hart is getting at, “I'm thinking you want me to do something about it.” Violet can't bring any of these concerns to anyone at Station Four for “They'd all defend the detective's wife no matter the circumstance.” So, Violet wants McWorthy to go around them and pass word of Ogden’s performance to the Chief Constable, insisting that he simply tells the truth, of course. When he asks why would he help her, Violet tells him, “Because you want to. You and I are going to be the best of friends,” whispering in his ear, “or more than friends.” Ruthless ambition or megalomania?

Season 12

Murdoch Mystery Mansion

  • When Miss Hart informs Inspector Brackenreid that she has been doing the day to day business of the Coroner's office while the Murdochs were in South America and even now since Dr. Ogden is studying at the University, he tells her that Dr. Odgen is still the Coroner of Record. When she asks about the position when the good Doctor leaves, the Inspector assures her that she will get his recommendation (along with McWorthy's and others she has) but it will make no difference. Why? Brackenreid lays out the reality, "Have you ever wondered why Murdoch is still only a detective? He's a Catholic, that means he will never be more than he is. The same is in store for you. No matter how competent you are, you will never get the position. You are a woman and you're black. You should consider yourself lucky you are where you are, young lady."
  • In the City Morgue with Ogden and Murdoch, Miss Hart discovers she missed a item in cataloguing the evidence which Dr. Odgen caught – electrical straps. Both the Detective and the Doctor try to assure her that it is not her job and it is a totally understandable oversight but she gives herself no quarter, promising that it will not happen again.
  • Later in the evening back at the Station House, Violet Hart asks Detective Watts for any specific files or manuals relating to investigative techniques. Watts asks if she is planning a career change to which she reveals, "I am planning on mastering whatever needs be mastered - to get to where I want to go." An admirable pursuit in Watts' opinion, she informs him that her "colour makes it a necessary one". He invites her to pull up a chair and begins to hand her books from his desk.

Operation: Murder

  • Violet Hart keeps her focus on the job at hand in the morgue; She assists Dr. Ogden with the post-mortem of Mrs. Quigley.
  • Later when Martin Quigley comes to the morgue looking for the Coroner, Violet skirts informing him that she is not the City Coroner, instead explains, "I'm not at liberty to share the results. The case is still under police investigation", which is a surprise to Mr. Quigley.

Murdoch Without Borders

The Spy Who Loved Murdoch (Mention)

Sir. Sir? Sir!!!

Brother's Keeper

Drowning in Money

Six of the Best

Murdoch and the Undetectable Man

Sins of the Father

Manual for Murder

Darkness Before the Dawn Part 1

  • With Julia Ogden resigning to become a full-time surgeon, Violet sees a chance to take up the position as city coroner. However, the road certainly doesn't seem easy, as the good Doctor knows from her own experience and that of Rebecca's.
  • While admiring Miss Hart's ambition, Ogden advises her, "... perhaps with a few more years' experience and hopefully down the road, when minds are more open, you will earn the position you want" – but Violet does not heed the sensible advice.
  • After asking for McWorthy's help again, Miss Hart, in the dark of night, has a clandestine meeting outside Station House One with the 'Shadowy Man' who gives her the means to get what she desires.
  • Blinded by her ambition, Violet makes a consequential choice.

Darkness Before the Dawn Part 2

  • Miss Violet Hart makes the Toronto Gazette headlines as the new Chief Coroner. Finally, she has what she has desired since starting at the City Morgue two years ago – but at what cost?

Trivia

  • When asked about Violet plotting to take over the City Morgue, Hélène Joy shared that she thought it was great: "I know the audience loves to hate some characters and this character is on that hit list for sure. That’s what’s fun about Murdoch. We try to keep it surprising. You can’t love everyone all of the time. I think it’s great that it’s happening this way and makes it far more interesting for the character and for the actress playing the character. I’m really intrigued to see where it goes. How evil is she going to get? I feel for Shanice because I know what it’s like to be hated. If you remember back to Julia’s first husband, Darcy, there were whole Facebook pages that were just about hating Darcy." (March 2018)
  • Showrunner Peter Mitchell (lived) tweeted (during ep.1201 airing) that "I think Miss Hart is misunderstood".

Gallery


Murdoch Mysteries Recurring Actors and Characters
Daniel Maslany as Detective WattsShanice Banton as Violet HartLachlan Murdoch as Henry HigginsArwen Humphreys as Margaret BrackenreidCharles Vandervaart as John BrackenreidBea Santos as Louise CherrySiobhan Murphy as Ruth NewsomeCyrus Lane as Rupert NewsomeClare McConnell as Effie NewsomeStephanie Belding as Nurse SullivanSebastian Pigott as Dr. DixonPeter Keleghan as Terrence MeyersColin Mochrie as Ralph FellowsJames McGowan as Dr. ForbesDavid Reale as Mr. ClementsCraig Brown as Eddie CrawfordDmitry Chepovetsky as Nikola TeslaPeter Stebbings as James PendrickErin Agostino as Nina BloomMouna Traoré as Rebecca JamesJordan Johnson-Hinds as Nate DesmondDylan Neal as Jasper LinneyKristian Bruun as Constable JacksonPatrick McKenna as Hamish SlorachMatthew Bennett as Allen CleggJohn Tench as Alexander Graham BellMartin Moreau as Theodore RooseveltRichard Clarkin as Chief Constable DavisMichael Seater as James GilliesRothaford Gray as Alderman William Peyton HubbardCyrus Lane as Roger NewsomeGeorgina Reilly as Emily GraceCharlotte Sullivan as Charlotte (formerly Minerva Fairchild)Nigel Bennett as former Chief Constable GilesSean Harraher as Constable WorseleyTamara Hope as Edna Brooks (née Garrison)Giacomo Gianniotti as Leslie GarlandNicole Underhay as Margaret HaileSarah Gadon as Ruby OgdenKate Greenhouse as Sally PendrickStephen McHattie as Harry MurdochGeraint Wyn Davies as Arthur Conan Doyle
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