No, the BBC adaptation of Agatha Christie’s Partners In Crime wasn’t the success everyone hoped it would be, but the Beeb’s deal with the Christie estate has spawned another adaptation for 2015, from her 1939 novel, And Then There Were None (which had an, ahem, interesting
original title), which many believe to be her masterpiece. No pressure, then, BBC. With the release of the Christmas schedules, the corporation has now confirmed its transmission date.
Let’s remind ourselves of the plot:
It’s 1939. As civilization teeters on the brink of war, ten strangers are persuaded to retreat from their troubled lives to Soldier Island, an isolated rock off the Devon coast: A reckless playboy, a decrepit judge, a nervous businessman, an unhinged Harley Street doctor, a god-fearing spinster, a secretive governess, a guilt-ridden general, a remorseless mercenary and two anxious servants find themselves cut off from the mainland by appalling weather. Their hosts Mr and Mrs U.N. Owen mysteriously absent, the guests are each accused of a unique and terrible crime by a gramophone recording, timed perfectly to deliver its indictments after dinner.
As the assembled guests begin to realise that not one of them has set eyes on the missing Owens, the true reason for their presence on the island becomes horribly clear: they are to be executed, one by one.
But where is the killer hiding? Could it be true that the group harbours a murderer among their number?
Sounds like classic Christie, but just take a look at the cast, too: Aidan Turner, Anna Maxwell Martin, Toby Stephens, Charles Dance, Miranda Richardson… the list goes on. And that photograph… straight out of swoonsville. Please let it be good.
And Then There Were None: Saturday 26th December, 9pm
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