I found out just a couple weeks ago, and completely by accident, that a colleague of my husband’s was that cornet player in the garden fête scene of Dead Man’s Folly, the last Poirot episode ever filmed. My reaction: “What the actual freaking what??!!”
But indeed, David Jackson went to the same little seminary in St. Catharines, Ontario as my husband (an LCC pastor), subsequently serving in a sister church body of ours in England. Here he briefly recounts to me his experiences (as an ELCE pastor way back in 2013) waxing musical in the final days of Poirot filming.
David’s the gentleman in clear profile in this shot.
“My performance as an extra in Dead Man’s Folly took place before I joined the military. At the time I was a pastor of St Paul’s Lutheran Church, Borehamwood, England and I also played cornet with the Borehamwood Brass. The Borehamwood Brass were invited to perform in the film, so that is how I ended up in a Poirot film. It was good fun! I even got to meet David Suchet and had a lovely conversation with him regarding his St. Paul documentary. He remained in character accent during our chat. I could not stop looking at his waxed mustache. He is a charming and very intelligent man.”
Zoë Wanamaker cuts a dashing figure as Ariadne Oliver in the Poirot series. Everything from the voice to the love of apples to the delightful, eccentric absent-mindedness is portrayed to perfection. I put Mrs. Oliver on half of the six Poirot novels in which she features, and I consider them some of my best covers. She seems to actually make Poirot look more like himself; perhaps that’s true of the acted roles as well. 🙂
So accurate is the episode’s detail to the character of Mrs. Oliver that even the particular hairstyle that she’s experimenting with in the book– the “fringe”– is portrayed. I say nothing about the accuracy of the script in general, but that’s a post for another day. 😉
I’ll say it again– the costumes for this character were AMAZING. And for the Dead Man’s Folly cover, it seems to have affected the Poirot painting, too– that is probably the best overcoat I have ever painted (even if it is an inch long).
The Elephants Can Remember cover is one of my absolute favorites. The clothes and the faces came together so well. I was really delighted with Poirot’s left sleeve and the glints of bling, and the lady’s clothes and accessories.
Mrs. Oliver is magic, that’s all there is to it.