The action in this episode jumps between Boston and Chicago. First, Jessica Fletcher is in Boston when she bumps into a man she thinks is her old neighbour John Winslow. But the man denies knowing her, and when she goes back to Cabot Cove and calls up John’s wife in Chicago, the wife tells Jessica that John died a few weeks ago.
This is a puzzle that Jessica just can’t let go, so she enlists the best private investigator she knows in Boston: Harry McGraw! The last time we saw Harry McGraw on the show was in Season 3’s “Death Takes a Dive“. In the meantime, the character starred in the short-lived spin-off The Law and Harry McGraw, which was cancelled after one season.
Just the facts:
Click on the text below to reveal spoilers.
Click to reveal the victimIt was Jessica’s neighbour John Winslow!
Click to reveal the killerIt was Quinlan, the policeman that has it out for Harry McGraw!
Click to reveal the weaponIt was probably a gun (but it’s not specified).
Click to reveal the locationIt was in the Boston apartment that John Winslow was hiding out in!
Click to reveal the motiveQuinlan was a dirty cop who was working for the people who were trying to silence John Winslow–who was in hiding because he was going to testify against his former company’s shady dealings!
Cast of characters:
It being a Harry McGraw episode, we have:
- Jerry Orbach playing Boston P.I. Harry McGraw. (This is Orbach’s fourth out of six total appearances on MSW.)
- Marty Davis playing Harry’s local bartender Cookie. This was a regular role for Davis on The Law and Harry McGraw.
- Karen Morrow playing Gladys, Harry’s ex girlfriend and bank employee.
Of course, we also have people in Jessica’s neighbour’s personal life:
- John Furlong plays the neighbour, John Winslow (Wilson).
- Christine Belford plays John’s wife Maude Paulson Winslow. (This is Belford’s third of four total appearances on MSW.)
- Andrew Stevens plays Maude’s brother Dr. Adam Paulson. (This is Stevens’ second of two total appearances on MSW.)
- Jon Cypher plays Nathan Swarthmore, an attorney working for John Winslow’s old company. (This is Cypher’s second of three total appearances on MSW.)
- E. Danny Murphy as Sloane, a detective hired by Swarthmore.
And there are lots of characters involved in law enforcement:
- Earl Boen plays Sgt. Howard Sternhagen, a cop who’s friendly towards Harry McGraw. In this episode, Boen is reprising his regular role from The Law and Harry McGraw.
- William Lucking plays Lt. Roy Quinlan, a cop who’s had it out for Harry McGraw. (This is Lucking’s second out of five total appearances on MWS.)
- Robert Alan Browne plays Frank Coyle, Quinlan’s partner. (This is Browne’s first of two total appearances on MSW.)
- Robert Hogan plays FBI Agent Guilfoyle. (This is Hogan’s fourth and final appearance on MSW.)
There are also a number of minor characters who are credited in this episode. The most notable of these are:
- Louis Herthum who plays Wilbur, a billiards player, in his first ever appearance on MSW. Herthum eventually gets a recurring role on the show as Cabot Cove Deputy Andy Broom.
- Wendy Hoffman who plays a hotel clerk. This is Hoffman’s first of four total appearances on MSW. She plays minor characters each time.