miss fisher with pistol

Movie Review: Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries

I have been a fan of Agatha Christie’s murder mystery novels since I was twelve tears old. I am also a great fan of period dramas. Hence Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries, a Netflix original series, seems tailor made for me.

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The detective is a fashionable young lady, unmarried, independent, and possessing independent means. She seems far, far ahead of her time.

The only other onscreen female detectives that I know are Jessica Fletcher (Murder She Wrote) and Miss Marple (in Agatha Christie mysteries). Female detectives in film and TV are somewhat rare. You see them assisting male detectives in the series “Castle” and “Monk”. You might see them as partners in crime (investigation) “Remington Steele” or the Tommy and Tuppence series (another one by Agatha Christie). But you hardly ever see them leading from the front.

phryne fisher as pilot

Coming back to Phryne Fisher, the female lead of Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries, she is an expert in many fields. She possesses eyes as keen and a brain as analytical as Sherlock Holmes. She is an expert driver and dancer, an ace pilot and pistol shot. You name it, and Phryne does it.

Phryne’s talent for judging human nature and human psychology matches that of Hercule Poirot. But she is by no means an armchair detective. Always game for a challenge, she is ready to run any risk, whether in disguise or as herself.

phryne fisher on train

She possesses a very kind heart. In the very first episode we see her we see her tsking in a street urchin and adopting her. Her assistant and constant companion Dorothy is also someone she found in difficult circumstances. Phryne retained her as assistant and constant companion., and then made her a permanent member of her household.

There is a fly in this ointment, however. Phryne Fisher is a bit of a nymphomaniac, readily indulging in casual love affairs. Always attractively turned out, she is a female version of James Bond, since nearly every episode sees her in a new liasion.

There is a constellation of supporting characters that helps Miss Fisher solve crimes. Inspector Jack Robinson is good looking, dependable, and given to quoting Shakespeare. He frequently, mostly unwillingly, accompanies Phryne when she is catching murderers.

miss fisher and jack robinson

Dr. MacMillan, Phryne’s friend, provides  medical knowledge and forensic analysis. A butler, called Mr. Butler, also forms part of her household. Bert and Cec, drivers of a taxi cab, do the footwork in many of her investigations.

Although set in 1920’s Melbourne, the show is very modern in the way it deals with societal issues. Problems of the LGBT community, child abuse, human trafficking, exploitation of the mentally handicapped; all these are highlighted alongside the murder mysteries.

The show is highly watchable for crime fiction buffs and Downton Abbey fans alike.

Don’t forget to catch it on Netflix.

Created by
Theme music composer Greg J Walker
Country of origin Australia
Original language(s) English
No. of series 3
No. of episodes 34 (list of episodes)
Executive producer(s)
  • Deb Cox
  • Fiona Eagger
  • Christopher Gist
  • Carole Sklan
  • Deb Cox
  • Fiona Eagger
Production location(s) Melbourne
Cinematography Roger Lanser
Running time 60 minutes
Production company(s) Every Cloud Productions
Original network ABC
Picture format 576i (SDTV)
Original release 24 February 2012 –
26 June 2015

Infographic courtesy: Wikipedia

12 thoughts on “Movie Review: Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries

  1. I love Murder She Wrote. I’ve watched each episode at least a hundred time. I’m not exaggerating. I will check this series on Netflix. I just finished watching 3 seasons of Designated Survivor. I enjoyed it. On Netflix, I loved The OA the most.

    Liked by 1 person


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