Author of Alex Rider, Foyle's War, Sherlock Holmes, TV and film writer, occasional journalist.

television

Poirot

Poirot

Agatha Christie's Poirot is a British television drama based on the acclaimed stories by Christie. A meticulous and methodical detective, Hercule Poirot is often thought of as Christie's greatest creation. Examining footprints, collecting cigarette ash, searching for clues with a magnifying glass, or taking fingerprints, he says any crime can be solved by simply placing the puzzle pieces correctly.

A fan of the Poirot novels himself, Anthony dramatised 11 of the 70 stories which aired over 25 years. When the final episode aired in November 2013, every story Christie wrote featuring the character has been adapted for the show. The following episodes are those written by Anthony:

The Million Dollar Bond Robbery
The London and Scottish Bank is sending a huge shipment of Liberty Bonds to New York on the transatlantic passenger liner Queen Mary. Poirot, who suffers terribly from sea-sickness, is asked to see the bonds safely across the Atlantic

The Double Clue
Japp (who is really worried that failure could cost him his job) seeks Poirot's help in investigating a series of jewel thefts, and two remarkable things happen. Poirot falls in love (with the beautiful and clever Countess Vera Rossakoff) and he also meets a criminal intellect which he finds worthy of him. As the countess is his main suspect, Poirot spends most of his time with her - which for once leaves Hastings and Miss Lemon to do most of the actual detective work. In the end, this case may have to be put down as the one that got away.

The Mystery of the Spanish Chest
Poirot is called in to help a woman who lives in fear of her husband, and he is invited to a dinner party which goes horribly wrong. Then Colonel Curtiss, the scar-faced prime murder suspect, even unwisely calls Poirot "a detective." The detective finds that the murder mystery hinges on a duel fought ten years before. He soon proves Curtiss to be the killer who pushed a stiletto blade into a trunk, straight into the head of a man hiding in the trunk. As the police take the Colonel away, he adds insult to injury by sneering at "that bloody little Frog"... but it was by getting such details wrong that he got himself caught.

The Theft of the Royal Ruby
Poirot prepares to spend a quiet Christmas on his own with a box of chocolates, but he has to give up his plans when the British government asks for his urgent help. Prince Farouk, a young member of the Egyptian royal family visiting London, has lost a famous ruby, and this is deemed to be a matter of national security. The Prince unwisely lent his jewel to a strange young lady who promptly vanished with it, and Poirot forms a complicated plan to catch the thieves, harnessing misdirected romantic urges.

Yellow Iris
Poirot is caught up in a coup d'etat in Argentina and arrested as a spy, which hinders him from solving the murder of Iris Russell at a French restaurant owned by an Italian in Buenos Aires. Two years later, in London, a dinner-party at a restaurant of the same name marks the second anniversary of Iris's death. The atmosphere is so charged that we almost expect the victim to come back from the dead. And, of course, Poirot traps a killer.

Dead Man's Mirror
At an auction, Hercule Poirot wants to buy an old looking glass. An art dealer called Gervase Chevenix outbids him for it, but the dealer then offers Poirot the mirror if he will investigate a mystery for him.
Chevenix believes he is being cheated by an architect, John Lake... and Mrs Chevenix claims that her spirit guide, an ancient Egyptian called Saphra, has warned her of an imminent death. There is a disputed will, a second unsigned will, the sound of shots behind locked doors, an apparent suicide which Poirot suspects is murder. Whatever you do, do not go out of the room during Dead Man's Mirror, or you will lose the plot!

Jewel Robbery at the Grand Metropolitan
Mrs Opalsen's famous pearls are stolen, and Poirot is happily on hand to investigate. A complex theft calls for a sophisticated solution. Unfortunately, Poirot is hindered everywhere he goes by being mistaken for 'Lucky Len'.

Hickory Dickory Dock
A string of thefts at a student hostel run by Miss Lemon's sister ends in death, and Poirot has a number of plots and sub-plots to untangle, including smuggling and political manipulations. A certain mouse is the only witness to a string of murders and it also features at the climax. Meanwhile, Poirot invites Japp to stay with him while Mrs Japp is away. Hastings is also off on his travels, and the dim police inspector vies with Poirot over the cooking.

Murder on the Links
Poirot and Hastings are on holiday in Deauville and receive a visit from Paul Renauld, who believes he's being cheated by Chileans. Renauld is kidnapped and his body is later found buried in a new golf bunker. French detective Giraud unwisely challenges Poirot to catch the killer before he can. Meanwhile, Hastings is diverted by love - he has fallen heavily for an actress called Dulcie Duveen. Dulcie has a twin sister called Bella. And one of them appears to be mixed up in the killing of Renault.

Lord Edgware Dies
Jane Wilkinson, a famous actress whose married name is Lady Edgeware, was in a hurry to trade in her moderately rich husband for an even richer model, so when Lord Edgeware is killed, there is an obvious suspect. However, Edgeware had just agreed to a divorce - with Poirot acting on his wife's behalf. Under suspicion, Jane seeks Poirot's help again, having previously wanted his help in ridding her of the same unwanted husband. So was Lady Edgeware the killer, or has she been framed? Her husband also had an unhappy daughter and a nephew who badly needed money. Poirot soon finds that nothing is at all as it seems in the remarkable world where the theatre collides with high society.

Evil Under the Sun
Poirot is ordered by his doctor to spend a few weeks at a health resort in Devon, on the grounds that he is too fat and out of condition, and Hastings comes along for a holiday. In Devon they meet an old acquaintance, the fashion designer Rosamund Darnley. Before too long another guest (the rich, troublesome and flirtatious Arlena Stuart) is found strangled on the beach, and Poirot begins an investigation which proves to be one of the most challenging of his career, with suspects abounding. However, the detective is greatly helped by the parallels between Arlena's murder and the unsolved killing of another rich young woman a few years before.