Northern Exposure

Season 5 Episode 2

The Mystery of the Old Curio Shop

Aired Monday 10:00 PM Sep 27, 1993 on CBS



  • Trivia

    • Marylin states that she had read the "entire" Nancy Drew series. Considering new titles to the series were still being added to the original run of Nancy Drew books at the time of this episode's airing and ten years beyond that, her claim is doubtful.

    • Obviously, the writers did not do their Nancy Drew research.

      Maggie: Did you ever read Nancy Drew?
      Ruth-Anne: Thanks for the compliment, Maggie, but she was a little after my time.

      Nancy Drew first appeared with "The Secret in the Old Clock" in 1930

      The actress playing Ruth-Anne would have been twelve years old at the time, the target age for the Nancy Drew series, which was not only the most popular girls' series at the time, but the most popular juvenile series ever up to that date. The books were most certainly "during her time"


    • Goof: Joel insists he can't breach doctor-patient confidentiality and tell Maggie what's wrong with the owner of the curio shop. However, when Mike moved to town he had no problem telling her he had MCS, explaining his symptoms, and publicly expressing his professional opinion about them!

  • Quotes

    • Marilyn: Stop talking like that.
      Joel: You mean the Yiddish words? Why?
      Marilyn: You're no Paul Burman.

    • Maggie: I've wanted to brain my father all week.

    • Maurice: You're sticking pins in my doll!

    • Maurice: I don't want Social Security! I don't need Social Security! I don't even believe in it!

    • Maurice: I have a check here from the Social Security Admini-damn-stration.

    • Joel: In real life mysteries aren't exciting. Like why do we always hurt the ones we love? Why can't the Russians find a way to rule themselves and let the rest of us stop worrying? The beauty of a detective story is that "it's him, he did it." It's all over. Sure, the natural order is disturbed, but the beautiful thing is that it is restored.

    • Joel: Everyone loves a good mystery.

    • (on being informed he's had "a minor coronary event")
      Maurice: Would you quit the double-talk? You make it sound like I went to a damn pancake breakfast!

    • Ed: (after he has to wake Joel up to help Maurice) As someone who's thinking of becoming a shaman, this has been a real eye-opener for me, commitment-wise.

    • Joel: (a patient who was reluctant to pay has finally done so) Really? There were no hysterics? No threats to sue?
      Marilyn: For a while.

    • Maggie: Did you ever read Nancy Drew?
      Ruth-Anne: Thanks for the compliment, Maggie, but she was a little after my time.

    • (about Nancy Drew)
      Marilyn: I read the whole series
      Maggie: Really?
      Marilyn: Yeah. She was competent.

    • Ed: That wine looks good, Maurice. Wish I drank.

    • Ed: Sure it was violent, but I think that was the point.

    • Maggie: Go ahead, Fleischman, just say it.
      Joel: What?
      Maggie: I can go to her operetta but not her wedding.
      Joel: I was not going to say that.

    • Joel: Excuse me, would you ladies mind postponing your trenchant literary critique so we can continue with our little medical practice here?

  • Notes

    • Music:
      - "Terrible Thing" by Booker T. and the MGs
      - "Riding The Gravy Train" by Jo Stafford
      - "Mo Onions" by Booker T and the MGs
      - "D.W. Suite" by Lindsey Buckingham

  • Allusions

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