Comments: 10
Abandoned by user 8 years ago
I started Clouds of Witness last night.

Have you seen the Mobil Mystery theater productions that aired several years ago?
Don't think I've seen those. I enjoyed the BBC productions in the late 1980s.

The opening chapters of Clouds of Witness are on the Kindle edition of Whose Body.
I like the ones made in the late 80s. The ones from the 70s are hit or miss for me.
Abandoned by user 8 years ago
I think those are probably the ones I'm thinking of - when I watched them the intro was for mobil masterpiece mystery theater with Diana Riggs as the host.
Ian Carmichael played Lord Peter in the early 70s, and Edward Petherbridge in the 80s, when they did Strong Poison/Have His Carcase/Gaudy Night (Harriet Walter was Harriet). Forget which stories they did in the 70s, but I don't think they did Whose Body either time.
No -- Ian Carmichael explained in an interview that is included (in several installments) on the DVDs of the movies they made with him in the 1970s that the producer decided they wouldn't actually lose much character development by skipping "Whose Body?" and by instead introducing Lord Peter, Bunter and the rest of the gang with "Clouds of Witness." However, Carmichael apparently had to break it to them that there really is an ongoing backstory, so it would make absolutely no sense not doing them in order (and fortunately they ended up listening to him for the most part, even if Helen, Lord Peter's sister in law, is not played by the same actress in "Clouds of Witness" and "Murder Must Advertise"). All told, the Ian Carmichael adaptations include most of the "non-Harriet" (Lord Peter solo) novels, except for "Unnatural Death" and, well, "Whose Body?".

Apparently when they did the 3 first "Peter & Harriet" books with Edward Petherbridge and Harriet Walter in the 1980s, they also wanted to do the 4th one, "Busman's Honeymoon," but found that the film studio that had made a movie (loosely) based on the book in the 1940s still owned the rights and wasn't willing to release them, so "Gaudy Night" was the last one they could do.

I love both series, though obviously they're different in style ... both in their own ways are fairly scrupulous in staying true to the books, though, and have great casts and just overall great production values (including lots of original settings, with beautiful views of Oxford, Cornwall, Yorkshire, Scotland and the Fens for the non-London books).
I saw Harriet Walter play Kate in The Taming of the Shrew at the RSC in Stratford. She is a marvellous actress.
Agreed -- and that sounds like a great theatre experience! (Perfect casting, for one thing ...)
I've seen her in several things on TV, and she's always excellent.
Yes, she is. And though she does the "toxic bitch" thing really well, I just love her being cast as Harriet Vane in part because that's NOT entirely this kind of persona. (Harriet certainly doesn't mince words -- nor did Ms. Sayers herself -- but even Lord Peter's love wouldn't have survived a downright toxic personality ...) I think seeing Ms. Walter being cast as a weak, insecure woman would take some getting used to, though.