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Recap / Murder She Wrote S 4 E 15 Mourning Among The Wisterias

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Jessica spends time on the estate of her friend, playwright Eugene McClenden to listen to his new play — and receives a shock when he proposes marriage. Citing his failing health, Eugene explains that he wants her to act as the legal guardian of his work. Shortly afterwards, Jonathan Keeler, Eugene's crooked lawyer, dies of a gunshot wound and the people of the house find Eugene standing by his bedside with a drawn gun. The homicide chief considers Eugene the obvious suspect in the murder, but Jessica has a suspicion Jonathan's death has more to it than it appears.

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This episode includes examples of the following tropes:

  • Chekhov's Gun: Ola Mae asks Jessica about a comforter that had been on the bed before the murder, which she assumed the police had taken as evidence. It turns out the killer used it as a silencer.
  • Deadly Deferred Conversation: The night Jonathan died, he came into Eugene's room, wanting to talk to him about something. Thinking he just wanted a chance to sweet-talk his way out of trouble for the money he'd stolen, Eugene turned him away. It turned out he wanted to tell Eugene what he'd just discovered about his declining health.
  • Foreshadowing: Jessica comes into the kitchen to fetch some bicarbonate of soda and finds Jonathan with his hand around Crystal's wrist and a broken glass on the floor. This hints at the killer's identity.
  • He Knows Too Much: The killer shot Jonathan to make sure he couldn't tell Eugene who'd been poisoning him.
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  • Inheritance Murder: Crystal had been sneaking arsenic-based pest killer into Eugene's drinks a little at a time for a long while, knowing that her husband was his heir. Everyone, including Eugene, assumed he'd simply ruined his health with wild living. Notably, she decides to administer the lethal dose right after Eugene announces he and Jessica plan to get married the next day and he wants to speak to his lawyer son about the will in the morning.
  • White-Dwarf Starlet: Older actress Deidre French insists she can still play a 25-year-old and tells Mr. Goldman that she thinks the lead of Eugene's latest play is an older, more worldly woman than the script portrays anyway.
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