Jonathan Creek

Season 1 Episode 5

The House of Monkeys

2
Aired Friday 9:00 PM Jun 07, 1997 on BBC
8.0
out of 10
User Rating
26 votes
1

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

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The House of Monkeys
AIRED:
Elliot Strange is found dead in a locked room, impaled on a Samurai sword. The police suspect a bizarre suicide, but his widow suspects foul play and asks Jonathan for help.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • All the elements that make this series what it is – plus monkeys and a gorilla!

    9.5
    This has to be my favourite episode of Jonathan Creek, it ticks all the boxes:



    Unresolved sexual tension? Check. Locked room mystery that seems unsolvable? Check. Quality Maddy and Jonathan banter? Check. Dry, quirky, slightly sarcastic humour? Check. Plus the added delights of Simon Day and the wonderful Annette Crosby – always good value. There are some lovely scenes that make me crack up. The scene where Ingrid (Annette Crosby) quizzes Jonathan on his love life while manhandling his privates is both delightfully written and performed. In fact, the dialogue throughout is top quality. The animatronic gorilla is generally successful, although appears slightly fake at one or two points. The guest stars were well cast, Simon Day was great as the rather stupid and slightly creepy son, Sara Markland was convincingly vacant, and Annette Crosby excelled as the dry, intelligent Ingrid. If you have never seen Jonathan Creek and are thinking of checking out an episode, this is an ideal one to watch.moreless
Charles Kay

Charles Kay

Elliot Strange

Guest Star

Annette Crosbie

Annette Crosbie

Ingrid Strange

Guest Star

Sara Markland

Sara Markland

Cathy Strange

Guest Star

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

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  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (6)

    • Maddy: You know, we came that close when we were at that house… to doing it. And then I got all bitchy and blew up again. Sorry about that.
      Jonathan: 'S all right.
      Maddy: What do you mean?
      Jonathan: Sorry?
      Maddy: You think I was bitchy? Is that what you were thinking – what an utter bitch? What is it with you? You can never say the right thing can you? Never!
      Jonathan: I didn't mea… Can we start again?
      Maddy: No. I've gone right off the boil now.
      (Jonathan puts his hand inside her blouse seductively… then looks at a clock.)
      Jonathan: 110 lying down. You've got to get some exercise!

    • (Talking about Cathy's affair with Jordan's father.)
      Jordan: How did this happen? Where did it happen? Not in this house?
      Cathy: In this very house.
      Jordan: Where?
      Cathy: Can't you guess?
      Jordan: No way, Cathy, you didn't.
      Ingrid: Oh, for God's sake, does it matter?
      Jordan: Not in the swivel chair.
      Cathy: We set it to maximum tilt. The hydraulics were wonderful!

    • Ingrid Strange: Someone you may know actually. Do you remember Dr Sally Creek, who was in practice with me in that grotty old portakabin in Harlow in the early '70s?
      Jordan Strange: I thought she emigrated.
      Ingrid: She did. This is her son. I promised to give him a full MOT every couple of years – make sure he's still ticking over.
      Cathy Strange: Doesn't he get embarrassed stripping off in front of an old friend of his mother's?
      Ingrid [ smiling ]: Oh, yes!

    • Jordan Strange: The Shining – did you ever see that film?
      Jonathan: I'm afraid I did, yeah.
      Jordan: Well I'll tell you something weird about it. The initials S. K. Stanley Kubrick, right, who directed it? Stephen King, who wrote the book… and South Kensington where I went to see it. The whole thing only struck me about a year ago. I kept thinking to myself: S. K. Why? And that night do you know what I discover? The film was being shown on Sky Television. S. K. Y. Can you explain it Jonathan? No-one can explain that.
      Jonathan: Can I go to the toilet now?
      Jordan: In that film, the Overlook Hotel is built on the site of an ancient Cherokee burial ground, which leads to a whole string of unexplained horrific deaths. And I think that's what's happening here in this house.
      Jonathan: Not sure the Cherokees ever got as far as Amersham, actually, Jordan.

    • Cathy Strange: I suppose you did shorthand?
      Maddy [ reading from diary ]: October 15th, at long last 'E' & I had fantastic socks. I imagine that's meant to say 'sex'.
      Cathy: It does say sex.
      Maddy: Actually it says socks, but we won't quibble.
      Cathy: Oh, really? I did two years at secretarial. I think I know the difference between sex and socks. I would… [ notices Ingrid looking at her ]
      Maddy: Afterwards as we lay knackered next to each other…
      Cathy: Naked, it says.
      Maddy: I'm sorry, if we're being accurate it says knackered. For naked your outline'd be completely different.
      Jordan Strange: 'E' & 'I' had sex? Why is this such a crime?
      Maddy: The 'I' doesn't stand for Ingrid, Jordan.
      Jordan: Doesn't stand…? [ realising ] You're making this up.
      Ingrid Strange: I wish she was.
      Cathy: What? You knew? How?
      Ingrid: I may be a wizened old bat in your eyes, Kathy, that doesn't mean I'm as blind as one. Some other time I'll give you a lesson in subliminal bonding gestures. For God's sake, I'd seen it coming for months. I'd almost say he needed it to flush it out of his system. Afterwards when he told me and all the guilt came out, he threw himself on my mercy…
      Cathy: You're lying! Elliot would never tell…
      Ingrid: Kathy, you have the body of a woman and the brain of a sexually-stunted newt.

    • Ingrid Strange: She's a sexually mature adult, God knows we could do with a few around here.

  • NOTES (1)

    • Originally David Renwick wrote in two chimpanzees - there was not supposed to be a silverback gorilla. But two things happened: one, they couldn't find any chimpanzees working in this country; and two, they were offered an animatronic gorilla that had recently been made and used in the film Fierce Creatures at a very reasonable price!

  • ALLUSIONS (3)

    • Maddy: Or one of those other two: Dumb and Dumber.
      Maddy is referring to Jordan and Cathy Strange, but the allusion is to the very successful Farrelly Brothers' film, made in 1994, which starred Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels as two very well-meaning but incredibly stupid roommates, who cause havoc in their search for romance.

    • Jordan: Can I say two words here […] Amityille Horror
      An allusion to the famous story of the Lutz family's stay at 112 Ocean Avenue, Amityville, which was described in a book by Jay Anson and made into a film in 1979 starring James Brolin and Margot Kidder. A supposedly true story, the Lutzes moved into the house, where thirteen months before a man had killed six members of his family with a shotgun. The Lutzes moved out after 28 days, claiming to have been plagued by paranormal phenomena.

    • Jordan Strange: The Shining – did you ever see that film?
      A reference to the film directed by Stanley Kubrick and (very loosely) based on the Stephen King novel. It starred Jack Nicholson and Shelley Duvall who agree to be caretakers at a remote hotel, along with their telepathic son. It is notable for completely changing the ending of the novel and is in the Guinness Book of Records for the most retakes of a single dialogue scene – 127 takes.

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