RogerBW's Blog

Paul Temple and the Margo Mystery 04 March 2022

1961 audio thriller by Francis Durbridge, in 8 parts. While Paul's away on a lecture tour, his wife Steve is briefly kidnapped as a warning about… something… and left in her car is a coat with the unusual label "Margo".

It's very much the formula as usual: sinister foreigners are Sinister even if they are female (though at least not sexualised in their villainy, because nobody is sexual except by implication), everyone involved in any way with Drugs is Bad, and everything Temple says is right, even when he has only the flimsiest of evidence. Various bad people come to a bad end, often through the actions of their fellow villains, generally with cryptic dying words.

I mean, one doesn't expect much from these things, and one doesn't get much. A death-trap, or at least things that Bode, at the end of each episode; criminals who waste their effort on trying to mislead Temple rather than simply ignoring him, and thereby dig their own graves; and a cast practically all of whom seem to be in on the plot at one level or another. There's a little more complexity to the background situation than one has seen before, but it doesn't make it more difficult to solve.

Not one of the high points of the series.

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