History Main / FairPlayWhodunnit

7th Jul '17 1:00:34 AM infernape612
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# No [[AppliedPhlebotinum hitherto undiscovered poisons may be used, nor any appliance]] which will need [[{{Technobabble}} a long scientific explanation at the end]]. [[note]]Like the supernatural rule, this is somewhat relaxed in the modern interpretation, but again the Phlebotinum must be [[ChekhovsClassroom introduced and clearly explained beforehand]].[[/note]]

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# No [[AppliedPhlebotinum hitherto undiscovered poisons may be used, nor any appliance]] which will need [[{{Technobabble}} a long scientific explanation at the end]]. [[note]]Like the supernatural rule, this is somewhat relaxed in the modern interpretation, but again the Phlebotinum must be [[ChekhovsClassroom introduced and clearly explained beforehand]].[[/note]]
6th Jun '17 7:21:05 PM nombretomado
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* ''The Big Idea'' of the WhateleyUniverse is a FairPlayWhodunnit, even though the superpowers of the characters add complications over the usual detective story. The reader even has more information than Reach, the character who plays the detective in the story.

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* ''The Big Idea'' of the WhateleyUniverse Literature/WhateleyUniverse is a FairPlayWhodunnit, even though the superpowers of the characters add complications over the usual detective story. The reader even has more information than Reach, the character who plays the detective in the story.
3rd Jun '17 11:25:05 AM infernape612
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* VideoGame/{{Borderlands2}} has one of these. A man is murdered in Sanctuary and there is a confirmed description of the killer... only he's one of four quadruplets. Interviewing everyone will reveal vital clues, however.

to:

* VideoGame/{{Borderlands2}} ''VideoGame/{{Borderlands 2}}'' has one of these. A man is murdered in Sanctuary and there is a confirmed description of the killer... only he's one of four quadruplets. Interviewing everyone will reveal vital clues, however.
28th May '17 2:05:48 PM Madrugada
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* Creator/AgathaChristie was a member of the Detection Club, the members of which promised to write their stories like this. However, that didn't stop her from having the narrator lead the reader down the garden path to the wrong answer. For example: in "Hercule Poirot's Christmas", Poirot asks the butler what the date was three days ago; the butler walks over to a wall calendar and reads off 'the 22nd'; and the reader is led to conclude that there is something important about the date. However, during TheSummation, Poirot says that the whole point was to find out if the butler had ''bad eyesight''. She also plays fast and loose with the [[spoiler: no doubles or hitherto unknown twins]] rules, by dropping [[spoiler:''two'' hitherto unknown illegitimate sons of the victim]] into the pot (though, to be fair, [[spoiler: the possibility of their existence was explicitly stated by their father himself]]).

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* Creator/AgathaChristie was a member of the Detection Club, the members of which promised to write their stories like this. However, the rules don't say that didn't stop her from the author has to be blatant about it, and she wasn't, having no qualms at all about having the narrator lead the reader down the garden path to the wrong answer. For example: in answer by implication or misdirection.
** In
"Hercule Poirot's Christmas", Poirot asks the butler what the date was three days ago; the butler walks over to a wall calendar and reads off 'the 22nd'; and the reader is led to conclude that there is something important about the date. However, during TheSummation, Poirot says that the whole point was to find out if the butler had ''bad eyesight''. She also plays fast and loose with the [[spoiler: no doubles or hitherto unknown twins]] rules, by dropping [[spoiler:''two'' hitherto unknown illegitimate sons of the victim]] into the pot (though, to be fair, although [[spoiler: the possibility of their existence was explicitly stated by their father himself]]).himself]]).
** ''Hercule Poirot's Christmas'' is also the subject of controversy as to whether having [[spoiler:a member of the police investigative team that Poirot helps]] being the killer is a violation of the commandments.



** ''Literature/TheMurderOfRogerAckroyd'' was intensely controversial at the time (which helped cement Christie's fame) but is now generally recognised as extremely fair. The way Poirot ultimately solves the crime is by reading what Dr. Sheppard wrote down which is ''exactly what the reader is reading''. Which means that an acute reader could actually pick up most of the important clues before Poirot does. The controversy occurs because the novel does violate two of Knox's Commandments ([[spoiler: the First and the Ninth; the Watson-figure of the novel is also the murderer, and he does not write down every thought he had in the journal - he does not actively lie to the reader, but fails to describe what he was doing at the time of the murder in a way that is blatant on a second reading but is easily passed over on the first]]). This does not keep it from being fair, serving as reminder that rigid adherence to Knox's rules is not what makes a good Fairplay Whodunnit.
** ''Hercule Poirot's Christmas'' is also the subject of controversy as to whether having [[spoiler:a member of the police investigative team that Poirot helps]] being the killer is a violation of the [[spoiler:Seventh]] commandment.

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** ''Literature/TheMurderOfRogerAckroyd'' was intensely controversial at the time (which helped cement Christie's fame) but is now generally recognised as extremely fair. The way Poirot ultimately solves the crime is by reading what Dr. Sheppard wrote down which is ''exactly what the reader is reading''. Which means that an acute reader could actually pick up most of the important clues before Poirot does. The controversy occurs because the novel does violate two of Knox's Commandments ([[spoiler: the First and the Ninth; the Watson-figure of the novel is also the murderer, and he does not write down every thought he had in the journal - he does not actively lie to the reader, but fails to describe what he was doing at the time of the murder in a way that is blatant on a second reading but is easily passed over on the first]]). This does not keep it from being fair, serving as reminder that rigid adherence to Knox's rules is not what makes a good Fairplay Whodunnit.
** ''Hercule Poirot's Christmas'' is also the subject of controversy as to whether having [[spoiler:a member of the police investigative team that Poirot helps]] being the killer is a violation of the [[spoiler:Seventh]] commandment.
Fair-play Whodunnit.



* There's a Literature/LordPeterWimsey mystery where a particular missing item from a painter's setup is an important clue that the painter had been murdered, rather than died accidentally, and the page revealing what it is before TheSummation, in a vaguely clever twist, is removed for "the entertainment of the reader".
** [[Creator/DorothyLSayers Sayers]] still plays fair, though. There are three or four other scenes between the missing page and the summation which, taken together, can be used to work out what the object was and what happened to it.
*** In fact you can deduce what's missing in the same way that Lord Peter does, from the description of the scene alone, although a (very) basic knowledge of oil painting may be needed.

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* There's a Literature/LordPeterWimsey mystery where a particular missing item from a painter's setup is an important clue that the painter had been murdered, rather than died accidentally, and the page revealing what it is before TheSummation, in a vaguely clever twist, is removed for "the entertainment of the reader". \n** [[Creator/DorothyLSayers Sayers]] still plays fair, though. There are three or four other scenes between the missing page and the summation which, taken together, can be used to work out what the object was and what happened to it.
***
it. In fact you can deduce what's missing in the same way that Lord Peter does, from the description of the scene alone, although a (very) basic knowledge of oil painting may be needed.



* Most ''Literature/SherlockHolmes'' mysteries are not really fair, if only because Dr. Watson (the narrator) is not as observant as his colleague, but "The Lion's Mane" gives the reader enough information to draw a conclusion even before Holmes does (given that "The Lion's Mane" was one of the few stories narrated by Holmes himself, this may or may not be intentional).
** It bears mentioning that [[LiteraryAgentHypothesis Watson is usually writing these up after the fact]]. He ''could'' give the reader the clues--Holmes himself professed a preference for a didactic style of write-up that would be something like this trope--but arguably intentionally averts the trope in order to play up Holmes's brilliance, as well as for the continuity of the narrative. If Watson's powers of observation had been greater, it might be true that his normal narrative flow might well play the trope straight.

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* Most ''Literature/SherlockHolmes'' mysteries are not really fair, if only because Dr. Watson (the narrator) is not as observant as his colleague, but "The Lion's Mane" gives the reader enough information to draw a conclusion even before Holmes does (given that "The Lion's Mane" was one of the few stories narrated by Holmes himself, this may or may not be intentional).
**
colleague. It bears mentioning that [[LiteraryAgentHypothesis Watson is usually writing these up after the fact]]. He ''could'' give the reader the clues--Holmes himself professed a preference for a didactic style of write-up that would be something like this trope--but arguably intentionally averts the trope in order to play up Holmes's brilliance, as well as for the continuity of the narrative. If Watson's powers of observation had been greater, it might be true that his normal narrative flow might well play the trope straight.straight.
** "The Lion's Mane" gives the reader enough information to draw a conclusion even before Holmes does (given that "The Lion's Mane" was one of the few stories narrated by Holmes himself, this may or may not be intentional).



* Creator/IsaacAsimov deliberately wrote his ''Literature/BlackWidowers'' mystery stories in this fashion.

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* Creator/IsaacAsimov Creator/IsaacAsimov:
** He
deliberately wrote his ''Literature/BlackWidowers'' mystery stories in this fashion.



* The Literature/NeroWolfe stories by Rex Stout may or may not be Fair Play, since they're all narrated by Archie Goodwin, Wolfe's dogsbody and legman. Archie reports everything he finds to Wolfe, but Wolfe often doesn't return the favor, leaving both Archie and the readers in the dark. As a result, Archie and the reader usually have about the same chance of solving the mystery. If it ''is'' a Fair-play story, Archie will tell the readers at some point that ''he'' figured it out, and that they can too.

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* The Literature/NeroWolfe stories by Rex Stout may or may not be sometimes are and sometimes aren't Fair Play, since they're all narrated by Archie Goodwin, Wolfe's dogsbody and legman. Archie reports everything he finds to Wolfe, but Wolfe often doesn't return the favor, leaving both Archie and the readers in the dark. As a result, Archie and the reader usually have about the same chance of solving the mystery. If it ''is'' a Fair-play story, Archie will tell the readers at some point that ''he'' figured it out, and that they can too.



* The Literature/LordDarcy mysteries are an interesting case, in that they violate Rule #2 (since some of the characters have magical powers) and still manage to play fair with the reader. However, since the universe the stories are set in [[MagicAIsMagicA has consistent magical rules]], Rule #2 could be said to be broken in letter but not in spirit. In some of the stories the whole point is that everyone assumes an impossible murder was done by magic, and Lord Darcy explains how it could have been committed in a perfectly mundane way. Magic is mostly used for forensics.
** Rule #1 is violated in at least one story, where a character whose point-of-view is followed later turns out to be the murderer.
* The ''Literature/HarryPotter'' books are like this; the mystery plot is deliberately littered with {{Red Herring}}s to lead Harry (and the reader, by extension) down the wrong path at first, but an acute reader can pick up on the actual clues and determine the true culprit before Harry does. For example, ''Literature/HarryPotterAndTheChamberOfSecrets'' drops several easily-missable clues about [[spoiler:Ginny Weasley]] being the opener of the Chamber of Secrets, the most notable being [[spoiler:Ginny crying out about having to go back and get her diary]] long before it becomes a major plot point.
** In fact, many readers who had become used to Rowling's extensive use of ChekhovsGun and ChekhovsGunman were able to figure out a couple of things the sixth book set up before the seventh book confirmed them: the identity of "R.A.B." and that [[spoiler:Harry himself]] is a Horcrux.
*** And even smaller ones, like [[spoiler:the barman of the Hog's Head in [[Literature/HarryPotterAndTheOrderofthePhoenix book 5]] being Dumbledore's brother, Aberforth]].

to:

* The Literature/LordDarcy mysteries are an interesting case, in that they violate Rule #2 (since some of the characters have magical powers) and still manage to play fair with the reader. However, since the universe the stories are set in [[MagicAIsMagicA has consistent magical rules]], Rule #2 could be said to be broken in letter but not in spirit. In some of the stories the whole point is that everyone assumes an impossible murder was done by magic, and Lord Darcy explains how it could have been committed in a perfectly mundane way. Magic is mostly used for forensics.
**
forensics. Rule #1 is violated in at least one story, where a character whose point-of-view is followed later turns out to be the murderer.
* The ''Literature/HarryPotter'' books are like this; the mystery plot is deliberately littered with {{Red Herring}}s to lead Harry (and the reader, by extension) down the wrong path at first, but an acute reader can pick up on the actual clues and determine the true culprit before Harry does. For example, ''Literature/HarryPotterAndTheChamberOfSecrets'' drops several easily-missable clues about [[spoiler:Ginny Weasley]] being who is the opener of the Chamber of Secrets, the most notable being [[spoiler:Ginny crying out about having to go back and get her diary]] diary long before it becomes a major plot point.
point.]]
** In fact, many readers who had become used to Rowling's extensive use of ChekhovsGun and ChekhovsGunman were able to figure out a couple of things the sixth book set up before the seventh book confirmed them: the identity of "R.A.B." and that [[spoiler:Harry himself]] is a Horcrux.
***
Horcrux. And even smaller ones, like [[spoiler:the barman of the Hog's Head in [[Literature/HarryPotterAndTheOrderofthePhoenix book 5]] being Dumbledore's brother, Aberforth]].



* The ''[[TabletopGame/{{Clue}} Cluedo]]'' TV series.
* The early episodes of ''Series/TheMentalist''.
* Japanese live action series ''Furuhata Ninzaburou'', in addition to being a ReverseWhodunnit, also provides additional clues to show the viewer how Furuhata ends up on the trail of the suspect. Like the Ellery Queen example, he would pause just before the final act to address the viewer and give them hints as to why he believes that the chief suspect did it, and what evidence there is to force a confession.
** The episode guest starring baseball player Ichiro goes even further than usual, as [[NoCelebritiesWereHarmed Not-Really-Ichiro]] goes out of his way to ''leave'' a clue at the scene because he believes in fair play.
* ''Sleuth 101''
* "A Study in Pink" on BBC's ''Series/{{Sherlock}}'' was fair play for the "who" part if not the "how" and "why." The audience knows what all five victims had in common - [[spoiler: taking a taxi]] - and they are also aware of at least some of Sherlock's thought processes ("Who do we trust, even though we don't know them? Who passes unnoticed wherever they go? Who hunts in the middle of a crowd?"). Sherlock said that the murderer must have [[spoiler: driven the victim somewhere]] and when John texts the murderer, a [[spoiler: taxi]] shows up at the crime scene - Sherlock and John initially assume it must be the [[spoiler: passenger]], not realizing that it's actually the [[spoiler: driver.]] Viewers had enough information to figure it out before the climax.
** For the more genre-savvy or [[GeniusBonus genius]] watchers, many minor clues, or even the whole plot, can be guessed before the episode's end.

to:

* %%* The ''[[TabletopGame/{{Clue}} Cluedo]]'' TV series.
* %%* The early episodes of ''Series/TheMentalist''.
* Japanese live action series ''Furuhata Ninzaburou'', in addition to being a ReverseWhodunnit, also provides additional clues to show the viewer how Furuhata ends up on the trail of the suspect. Like the Ellery Queen example, he would pause just before the final act to address the viewer and give them hints as to why he believes that the chief suspect did it, and what evidence there is to force a confession.
**
confession. The episode guest starring guest-starring baseball player Ichiro goes even further than usual, as [[NoCelebritiesWereHarmed Not-Really-Ichiro]] goes out of his way to ''leave'' a clue at the scene because he believes in fair play.
* %%* ''Sleuth 101''
* "A Study in Pink" on BBC's ''Series/{{Sherlock}}'' was fair play for the "who" part if not the "how" and "why." The audience knows what all five victims had in common - [[spoiler: taking a taxi]] - and they are also aware of at least some of Sherlock's thought processes ("Who do we trust, even though we don't know them? Who passes unnoticed wherever they go? Who hunts in the middle of a crowd?"). Sherlock said that the murderer must have [[spoiler: driven the victim somewhere]] and when John texts the murderer, a [[spoiler: taxi]] shows up at the crime scene - Sherlock and John initially assume it must be the [[spoiler: passenger]], not realizing that it's actually the [[spoiler: driver.]] Viewers had enough information to figure it out before the climax.
** For the more genre-savvy or [[GeniusBonus genius]] watchers, many minor clues, or even the whole plot, can be guessed before the episode's end.
climax.



* The two mystery subquests in ''VideoGame/KnightsOfTheOldRepublic'' play completely fair, given that it's up to you to solve them. (Admittedly, one isn't much of a mystery, though.)
** There are a LOT of [[RedHerring Red Herrings]] to make it look more difficult than it is--especially given the black and white morality of the rest of the game.

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* The two mystery subquests in ''VideoGame/KnightsOfTheOldRepublic'' play completely fair, given that it's up to you to solve them. (Admittedly, one isn't much of a mystery, though.)
**
There are a LOT of [[RedHerring Red Herrings]] to make it look more difficult than it is--especially given the black and white morality of the rest of the game.



** Luckily, [[spoiler: the culprit has a scene shortly before the player must make their choice, where a sharp player will notice that character saying something they can't possibly know about the kidnappings unless they were either responsible or in the party. And obviously it's not the second one.]]



*** There is still one vital clue that the player needs to remember. [[spoiler: The killer left the player a threatening note in their own house while they weren't there, and they didn't break in. The killer must be someone that Dojima and Nanako trust.]]

to:

*** ** There is still one vital clue that the player needs to remember. [[spoiler: The killer left the player a threatening note in their own house while they weren't there, and they didn't break in. The killer must be someone that Dojima and Nanako trust.]]



* Of all things, VideoGame/{{Borderlands2}} has one of these. A man is murdered in Sanctuary and there is a confirmed description of the killer... only he's one of four quadruplets. Interviewing everyone will reveal vital clues, however:
** [[spoiler: The victim was killed with a bullet, so only those with a weapon that fires bullets could've killed him.]]
** [[spoiler: The killer barged into Moxxi's bar demanding safety which Moxxi couldn't guarantee. He [[BerserkButton threatened her]] so Moxxi pulled out her gun and shot him a couple of time which broke through his shield as he fled.]]
** Finally, [[spoiler: Zed patched the one who Moxxi shot after he came to his clinic while injured. All of the brothers have visible health bars but the killer's is the only one that's full.]]

to:

* Of all things, VideoGame/{{Borderlands2}} has one of these. A man is murdered in Sanctuary and there is a confirmed description of the killer... only he's one of four quadruplets. Interviewing everyone will reveal vital clues, however:
** [[spoiler: The victim was killed with a bullet, so only those with a weapon that fires bullets could've killed him.]]
** [[spoiler: The killer barged into Moxxi's bar demanding safety which Moxxi couldn't guarantee. He [[BerserkButton threatened her]] so Moxxi pulled out her gun and shot him a couple of time which broke through his shield as he fled.]]
** Finally, [[spoiler: Zed patched the one who Moxxi shot after he came to his clinic while injured. All of the brothers have visible health bars but the killer's is the only one that's full.]]
however.



* Discussed in ''VisualNovel/VirtuesLastReward'', but also immediately dismissed by [[spoiler:Sigma, who due to his more or less RippleEffectProofMemory is able to bypass Rule 6]]. Even though the game violently smashes every rule, it still manages to emcompess the SPIRIT of the rules, unlike most examples of this, by having the very spirit of why every rule exists being intact, while still breaking the fundamental rules themselves. This is done through a mixture of ways:

to:

* Discussed in ''VisualNovel/VirtuesLastReward'', but also immediately dismissed by [[spoiler:Sigma, who due to his more or less RippleEffectProofMemory is able to bypass Rule 6]]. Even though the game violently smashes every rule, it still manages to emcompess encompass the SPIRIT of the rules, unlike most examples of this, by having the very spirit of why every rule exists being intact, while still breaking the fundamental rules themselves. This is done through a mixture of ways:



** Rule 8 is broken by [[spoiler: Sigma revealing information that he shouldn't yet know, confusing other characters and having the timelines you go done have moments of Sigma sporadically pulling information from timelines the player most likely hasn't gone down yet. However, the player never once knows more then Sigma. In fact, in many occasions, it's the OTHER WAY AROUND. The game also makes you play down a timeline that Sigma has pulled information from first, before you can see the moment in the other timeline where Sigma states the info' he pulled [this is achieved by using "path blocks" that cuts the scene whenever Sigma is about to say something the player shouldn't yet know].]]

to:

** Rule 8 is broken by [[spoiler: Sigma revealing information that he shouldn't yet know, confusing other characters and having the timelines you go done down have moments of Sigma sporadically pulling information from timelines the player most likely hasn't gone down yet. However, the player never once knows more then Sigma. In fact, in many occasions, it's the OTHER WAY AROUND. The game also makes you play down a timeline that Sigma has pulled information from first, before you can see the moment in the other timeline where Sigma states the info' he pulled [this is achieved by using "path blocks" that cuts the scene whenever Sigma is about to say something the player shouldn't yet know].]]



* ''Webcomic/TheLettersoftheDevil'' is structured as a fair-play whodunit, and WordOfGod it will be entirely solvable prior to the big reveal.

to:

* ''Webcomic/TheLettersoftheDevil'' is structured as a fair-play whodunit, and WordOfGod is that it will be entirely solvable prior to the big reveal.



* {{Lampshaded}} in the theme song to ''APupNamedScoobyDoo'', which was quite a bit more fair than the CluelessMystery-type escapades of the previous series.
** A lot of later series became more fair when it came to mysteries, though some would return to the CluelessMystery route (but they would usually at least try to lampshade it).
* The first few Sideshow Bob episodes of ''TheSimpsons'' were this kind of story. Later on, the writers abandoned the mystery angle because coming up with them proved too difficult.
** And of course special mention must go to the 2-part Season 6 closer/Season 7 opener "Who Shot Mr. Burns?" Even though the culprit did seem to come out of the blue, the clues were indeed all there, with the mystery even being drummed up as a contest to see who could figure it out. In fact, the culprit was actually properly identified by a fan of the show, legitimately using the clues presented, in the summer between the two episodes. Sadly, he didn't actually win anything.
*** The writers lampshade this by ending the first part with Dr. Hibbert turning to the viewer and saying "Well, I couldn't possibly solve this mystery...can YOU?" Then the camera pans back and we realize he's actually talking to Chief Wiggum.
*** The reason the fan didn't win was because the contest was so poorly designed. The way it worked was that of all the entries, the producers would choose a thousand, out of which they would pick whoever sent in the correct answer. Unfortunately, from the thousand that they picked, no one actually had the correct answer. You would assume that they would just start again with another thousand, but the rules specifically stated that the winner had to be out of the ''first'' thousand picked. So, they just chose someone randomly. Of course, this meant that any number of people could have sent in the correct culprit, just were unlucky to not wind up in the final thousand.

to:

* {{Lampshaded}} in the theme song to ''APupNamedScoobyDoo'', ''WesternAnimation/APupNamedScoobyDoo'', which was was, at least in the beginning of its run, quite a bit more fair than the CluelessMystery-type escapades of the previous series.
**
series. A lot of later series episodes became more fair when it came to mysteries, though some would return to the CluelessMystery route (but they would usually at least try to lampshade it).
* ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'':
**
The first few Sideshow Bob episodes of ''TheSimpsons'' were this kind of story. Later on, the writers abandoned the mystery angle because coming up with them proved too difficult.
** And of course special mention must go to the The 2-part Season 6 closer/Season 7 opener "Who Shot Mr. Burns?" Even though the culprit did seem to come out of the blue, the clues were indeed all there, with the mystery even being drummed up as a contest to see who could figure it out. In fact, the culprit was actually properly identified by a fan of the show, legitimately using the clues presented, in the summer between the two episodes. Sadly, he didn't actually win anything.
*** The writers lampshade this by ending the first part with Dr. Hibbert turning to the viewer and saying "Well, I couldn't possibly solve this mystery...can YOU?" Then the camera pans back and we realize he's actually talking to Chief Wiggum.
*** The
anything. [[note:The reason the fan didn't win was because the contest was so poorly designed. The way it worked was that of all the entries, the producers would choose a thousand, out of which they would pick whoever sent in the correct answer. Unfortunately, from the thousand that they picked, no one actually had the correct answer. You would assume that they would just start again with another thousand, but the rules specifically stated that the winner had to be out of the ''first'' thousand picked. So, they just chose someone randomly. Of course, this meant that any number of people could have sent in the correct culprit, just were unlucky to not wind up in the final thousand.]] The writers lampshade this by ending the first part with Dr. Hibbert turning to the viewer and saying "Well, I couldn't possibly solve this mystery...can YOU?" Then the camera pans back and we realize he's actually talking to Chief Wiggum.



*** [[spoiler: The Mare Do Well is established as being stronger than Rainbow Dash, particularly in her hind legs. [[Recap/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagicS1E13FallWeatherFriends "Fall Weather Friends"]] established that Applejack's hind legs are stronger than Rainbow Dash's.]]
*** [[spoiler: During the construction scene, Mare Do Well proves to be very agile, dodging every piece of debris as they fell. Rainbow Dash muses to herself that she is fast as well as strong, but she also muses that she's able to [[Recap/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagicS1E15FeelingPinkieKeen predict things before they can happen]].]]
*** [[spoiler: While Twilight's magical aura color is seen in many episodes, one could point to [[Recap/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagicS1E6BoastBusters "Boast Busters"]] as an episode that established her as one of the only unicorns capable of the large-scale magic necessary to move the rocks and repair the dam.]]
*** [[spoiler: From the same scene, the Mare Do Well is seen with a unicorn horn, and then a moment later with pegasus wings. Outside of Celestia, Luna, and Cadence (who are ruled out for size considerations), no pony has both a horn and wings, indicating that more than one pony is posing as the Mare Do Well.]]
*** This, of course, is assuming the viewer even realizes that Mare Do Well's identity is supposed to be deducible, as opposed to her being an [[LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters entirely new character]].



*** When Pinkie chases the culprit down to the caboose, [[spoiler:the silhouette seen in the windows has Rainbow Dash's mane.]]
*** Next, in the engine car, [[spoiler: the "conductor" uses a female pony model (the conductor is conclusively established to be male in a later scene) and a yellow ear is seen. These put together mean Fluttershy.]]
*** Finally, the easiest to spot is after the blinds are shut: [[spoiler: the portrait on the wall gains an eyelash and Rarity starts wearing her mane to cover one eye.]]
*** The ponies investigating, Twilight and Pinkie, can't be the culprits; that would violate Rule 7.
--->'''Pinkie:''' ''[shocked]'' You're not accusing ''me'', are you?!



*** Rarity finds a lock of Rainbow Dash's mane at the scene of the crime. [[spoiler:It has flat ends, an obvious sign that the culprit cut and planted it there to frame her]].
*** She sniffs an envelope allegedly sent by Rainbow Dash. [[spoiler:Earlier in the episode, she notices the culprit wearing a distinct cologne, which matches the scent she finds on the envelope]].
*** She swoons over a set of curtains tied with velvet rope. [[spoiler:One of the curtains is untied, meaning the culprit was hiding behind them]].
*** She asks a witness if she saw anyone famous acting suspiciously. [[spoiler:The culprit is in fact a celebrity introduced in the first act, which could be pieced together with the evidence on hand]].
*** Earlier in the episode, Rarity remarks on how difficult it is to remove silk stains. [[spoiler:The culprit wears a silk scarf in a different style after the crime to hide the stains of a chocolate cake he used to distract the castle guards]].

to:

*** Rarity finds a lock of Rainbow Dash's mane at the scene of the crime. [[spoiler:It has flat ends, an obvious sign that the culprit cut and planted it there to frame her]].
*** She sniffs an envelope allegedly sent by Rainbow Dash. [[spoiler:Earlier in the episode, she notices the culprit wearing a distinct cologne, which matches the scent she finds on the envelope]].
*** She swoons over a set of curtains tied with velvet rope. [[spoiler:One of the curtains is untied, meaning the culprit was hiding behind them]].
*** She asks a witness if she saw anyone famous acting suspiciously. [[spoiler:The culprit is in fact a celebrity introduced in the first act, which could be pieced together with the evidence on hand]].
*** Earlier in the episode, Rarity remarks on how difficult it is to remove silk stains. [[spoiler:The culprit wears a silk scarf in a different style after the crime to hide the stains of a chocolate cake he used to distract the castle guards]].
12th May '17 11:58:21 AM BWHComics
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* ''TheLettersoftheDevil'' is structured as a fair-play whodunit, and WordOfGod it will be entirely solvable prior to the big reveal.

to:

* ''TheLettersoftheDevil'' ''Webcomic/TheLettersoftheDevil'' is structured as a fair-play whodunit, and WordOfGod it will be entirely solvable prior to the big reveal.
12th May '17 11:56:56 AM BWHComics
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* ''The LettersoftheDevil'' is structured as a fair-play whodunit, and WordOfGod it will be entirely solvable prior to the big reveal.

to:

* ''The LettersoftheDevil'' ''TheLettersoftheDevil'' is structured as a fair-play whodunit, and WordOfGod it will be entirely solvable prior to the big reveal.
12th May '17 11:56:34 AM BWHComics
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* ''TheLettersoftheDevil'' is structured as a fair-play whodunit, and WordOfGod it will be entirely solvable prior to the big reveal.

to:

* ''TheLettersoftheDevil'' ''The LettersoftheDevil'' is structured as a fair-play whodunit, and WordOfGod it will be entirely solvable prior to the big reveal.
12th May '17 11:55:53 AM BWHComics
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12th May '17 11:54:40 AM BWHComics
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12th May '17 11:53:05 AM BWHComics
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* ''TheLettersoftheDevil'' is structured as a fair-play whodunit, and it will be entirely solvable prior to the big reveal.

to:

* ''TheLettersoftheDevil'' is structured as a fair-play whodunit, and WordOfGod it will be entirely solvable prior to the big reveal.
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http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=Main.FairPlayWhodunnit