Tuesday, 3 May 2016

The Man in the Elegant Room

Terry Nation isn't just the creator of Blakes 7 and the Daleks, he is also a great writer of telefantasy detective episodes such as The Avengers, The Persuaders! and, in this case, Department S.

The Manny in the Elegant Room sees Jason King (the real one this time), Stewart Sullivan and Annabelle Hurst investigating a mysterious, fourth wall-breaking room. Of course we all know how good Terry Nation is at writing mysteries, and this one doesn't even have the same solution as Mission to Destiny does!

The main guest star of the week is Stratford Johns, who was in an episode of I Claudius. Unusually for Department S he doesn't turn out to be the main baddy, but his character does die in a manner remarkably similar to that of Gnaeus Calpurnius Piso - killed by his wife.

As though being written by Terry Nation and having Peter Wyngarde and Stratford Johns and Joel Fabiani (purr) weren't reason enough to give this 5 out of 5, the final scene where the set is disassembled around the three main cast members is outstanding and warrants it all by itself.

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