#868: Spoiler Warning – Coming in April, July, and October…

In January, alongside the spoiler-heavy podcast discussion of After the Funeral (1953) by Agatha Christie, I put up a poll for you, the readers/listeners, to select the Christie novels that would be the subject of future spoiler-heavy discussion. Today, we learn the results of that poll.

The options were:

Peril at End House (1932)
Death on the Nile (1937)
Murder is Easy, a.k.a. Easy to Kill (1939)
The Body in the Library (1942)
The Moving Finger (1942)
Five Little Pigs, a.k.a. Murder in Retrospect (1942)
Towards Zero (1944)
The Hollow (1946)
Mrs. McGinty’s Dead (1952)

…and after over 400 votes and a plea on my part not to subject me to Death on the Nile again, here’s how things turned out:

Thanks, guys.

I jest, of course; here are the actual results, with the top three titles becoming the subjects of the next three Spoiler Warning discussions:

As before, we’ll tackle these chronologically, which also happens to be the order the first three came out: Five Little Pigs, a.k.a. Murder in Retrospect (1942) in April, Towards Zero (1944) in July, and Mrs. McGinty’s Dead (1952) — about which I remember nothing — in October.

And that’s…that’s about it for today. Er, I suppose I could also mention that next Saturday’s post will be the next episode of my In GAD We Trust podcast, and one I’m very excited about. So the brevity of this one is more than made up for by the amount of work that goes into editing that one. If, y’know, you were worried about such things.

Have a lovely weekend!

24 thoughts on “#868: Spoiler Warning – Coming in April, July, and October…

  1. Hardy . . . har . . . har . . .

    I suppose we’ll actually do FOUR Spoiler Warnings then, eh? The one where we compare the book of DotN to the three adaptations???? Just say when!


    • I’ll watch the Branagh version — eventually, my anxiety around crowds needs to abate somewhat before I’m going to a cinema — but I’m not sitting through three adaptations of a book I don’t like in the first place. You…you have fun doing that on your own podcast.


  2. Sigh this is why democracy doesn’t work. Sometimes you need a strong willed individual acting in the best interests of the masses to rise up, seize power and autocratically declare “Death on the Nile” as the subject of the next podcast. Do it, do it, DO IT.


  3. Happy to see Five Little Pigs as one of the selections. Whilst the 30s produced some of Christie’s greatest puzzles, the 40s saw Christie create mysteries revolving around characters and their emotions. 5LP is one of those highlights.


    • I agree it’s a great character piece. I also remember the middle section simply being a repeat of the first section, which I’m not looking forward to, but the puzzle and the people are brilliant.


  4. I do think DOTN the novel deserves its own podcast separate from any discussion of the movie, especially as the movie looks likely to change the characters that are not involved in the love triangle quite substantially.

    Apart from that I think the voters made decent choices, they saved the best ones for later.


    • I really, really do not understand the fascination DotN holds for people — it’s an overlong, under-plotted, meandering, weird mish-mash of a book with very little in the way of surprise or interest. The last page is good, I’ll give it that, but I’ve read it twice now and I…don’t see it.

      So, I’m sorry to disappoint, but the only way I’m going to discuss DotN is in contrast with something — movie, He Who Whispers, a wet paper bag…whatever. There’s practically nothing I have to say about that book that won’t set steam pouring from Brad’s ears, so we’ll just have to find some middle ground.


  5. A great top 3. Not least because I haven’t actually read Towards Zero and will now have an extra incentive. I have vague memories of seeing it on TV, so that must have been the ITV’s Marple adaptation.
    Anyway – Five Little Pigs! Looking forward to this. To my mind, in addition to having well written and interesting characters, this book contains one of the most airtight puzzles Christie wrote. (Well, apart from one reasonably sized flaw. Wait, isn’t that like saying “The car was in excellent condition apart from a wheel falling off”? Forget I said anything.) Anyway, you lot always pick up on stuff I never noticed so I will enjoy you knocking the rest of the wheels off the car.
    And the third… well, that got one of my votes. I think Mrs McGinty’s Dead is just a fun enjoyable read. It’s not the best but I always put the fun ones near the top so I love it anyway!


    • As I say, I remember nothing about MMD, so I’m interested to see what returns to me when I re-encounter it later in the year.

      Towards Zero I was always disappointed in because I loved Battle and was hoping he’d be in it more…but memory tells me that the plot is awesome and I missed the killer completely, so I’m intrigued to go in with my expectations altered somewhat.

      5LP is an overlong novella, but a brilliant, heartbreaking puzzle, and I hope it’ll improve on second reading. Context might have played a part in my non-enjoyment of that when I read it, but I’ll get into that when we record in April.

      All told, I’m happy people seemt o be happy. Except those wiseguys who voted for DotN and made it come in fourth. Jeez, I get no respect…


  6. Glad you’re not being subjected to DotN. I was intensely bored by it and found Christie’s clothing of her times in the garb of Ancient Egypt to be eye rollingly (that’s not even a real word!) bad.

    Good luck on all the work you have to do.


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