A BBC Radio 4 full-cast dramatisation of Simon Brett's entertaining crime novel, starring Bill Nighy.
Charles Paris has been 'resting' for quite a while, so he's relieved when he is cast as Ghost of Hamlet's Father and First Gravedigger in a touring production of Hamlet. But rehearsals are a little tense - the lead roles of Hamlet and Ophelia are played by a reality TV contestant and TV talent show winner respectively, and their opinions on celebrity and the theatre differ somewhat from those of the more experienced members of the cast.
The show is barely on the road before tragedy strikes - just before opening night, part of the set collapses, seriously injuring one of the actors. Then another member of the cast is found dead. It's up to Charles Paris to turn detective and investigate the mystery, but with almost everyone having a motive for murder, will he ever track down the real killer?
Bill Nighy stars as Charles Paris, with Suzanne Burden as Frances, in this dramatisation by Jeremy Front.
Duration: two hours.
©2016 BBC Worldwide Ltd (P)2016 BBC Worldwide Ltd
By now Charles Paris would be 87, and probably pinching care assistant's bottoms, if he hadn't been reborn, like Dr Who, in the person of Bill Nighy. He's much funnier, less sexually predatory, sexist, uncomfortable with LGBT people, (people of colour aren't in his universe) snobbish and suspicious than his original avatar.
This version is self aware humorous and capable of love, even though he's not good at it. His relationship with Frances has two sides; she's not the stooge of the novels, but a fully rounded woman capable of refusing his advances or accepting them on her own terms.
"Another excellent dramatization"
I was really happy to find this as I love all the Simon Brett stories about Charles Paris. Bill Nighy does an excellent job with the rest of the cast to bring these amusing murder mysteries to life. The sounds of London are spot on and the production values excellent.
The cast is superb, the writing is sharp and funny and the production values are the best that you can get. I highly recommend.
"I love this series!!"
Yes!! Great acting from the entire cast and fantastic production values overall. The stories are just the right mix of drama/mystery and humor.
Yes. Another clever plot (and you gotta love the acknowledgement that trouble follows Charles wherever he goes).
You gotta love Charles Paris. Bill Nighy plays the aging alcoholic actor/ladies man turned amateur sleuth just right, in my opinion. He's the poor man's Poirot!!
No extreme reactions. It's a light mystery with just the right mix of drama and humor.
I own every episode of this series. I've listened to each episode multiple times (great for background at work). I hope the series continues!!!
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