Agatha Christie's Marple

Season 5 Episode 1

The Pale Horse

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Aug 30, 2010 on ITV
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Episode Summary


A Catholic priest is brutally murdered after taking confession from a dying parishioner. His old friend Miss Marple travels to London, where she discovers that a list of names sent to her by the priest is apparently of those recently deceased or about to die. Miss Marple's investigations lead her to the Pale Horse Inn, where the proprietress claims to be able to kill people using black magic.


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  • Dreadful **may contain spoilers**

    I am sorry to rain on the parade, but this is simply bad. I know they ran out of Marple novels, but to insert her as a character into an adaptation of this is just a move too far. Mark Easterbrook is the central character in the novel. A young sculptor. Although by the time he reaches this adaptation, he has become a curiously colourless, care-worn middle-aged man who does little but drift through his own story looking gormless. In fact, the actor concerned looks very much as though he would prefer to be somewhere else. Anywhere else in fact.

    The witches were a somewhat hysterical joke, all that writhing around provoked a slightly incredulous laugh. And there seemed to be no end to the peculiar comedy turns which characterised this story.

    Julia MacKenzie gives it her all, and to be honest she makes quite a good Miss Marple. But she cannot get past the fact that Miss Marple is not present in this tale and the graft simply has not taken.moreless

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (0)

  • NOTES (2)

    • Murders
      Lady Minerva Hesketh-Dubois - Poisoned with thallium
      Thomasina Tuckerton - Poisoned with thallium
      Mrs Davis - Poisoned with thallium
      Father Patrick Gorman - Bludgeoned
      Captain Rupert Cottam - Poisoned with a lethal overdose of Spanish fly aphrodisiac

    • This episode is based on Agatha Christie's 1961 novel of the same name, which orginally featured novelist Ariadne Oliver, a recurring character in the Poirot novels. The novel had a gothic horror tone, its name taken from a passage in the Book of Revelation.