Review: Republic of Doyle’s great frame-up

Last week Murdoch Mysteries offered up a bottle episode–a mystery contained within the station house–that was stellar in its drama and storytelling. This week Republic of Doyle kept things locked up tight in the constabulary as the Doyles, Des and Leslie were all called to the carpet by Inspector Picard (guest star John Kapelos at his dickish best) who suspected them all in the death of Barbara Warrick, who’d hired the Doyles to test her mansion’s security system.

Picard’s rapid-fire questions rattled off the darkened walls of offices and interrogation rooms between midnight and 8 a.m., making for sparse surroundings and a focus on everyone’s answers. Stripped down like that–there was no GTO and even Des’ usual manic state was more muted than usual–you couldn’t help but focus on the characters, their faces and their words. Marcus Robinson’s script of “Body of Evidence” painted a picture of folks in disarray. A cop who may bend the rules for the man she loves. A guy desperate to get his hands on money and escape town before his bumped-up court date arrives. A couple eager to get their hands on cash to pay off mounting debts. Even Tinny and Des looked like they were good for at least part of the crime.

Of course, we knew it was all going to work out in the end–Barbara Warrick accidentally killed herself while hiding her late husband’s money in a wall and herself in the attic–but none of that came out until very late in the episode when Jake, Leslie, Rose and Malachy met up and put the pieces together. With Doyle’s series finale coming up next week, this week’s penultimate tale was the perfect lead-in to what promises to be one heck of a ride.

Notes and quotes

  • “Are you trying to say I’m ugly? I was born like this.”–Des
  • “I don’t know how to help him and it’s killing me. He’s my best friend. My son.”–Malachy
  • “I love you, that’s all. I want to spend the rest of my life with you.”–Leslie
  • “Jake, I can’t do any hard time. Not even any easy time.”–Des
  • Tinny needing time away from Des hit me out of nowhere. Did anyone else see that coming? And can they turn things around by next week?
  • And just what evidence does Picard have that proves Leslie is a dirty cop?

The two-hour Republic of Doyle series finale airs next Wednesday at 8 p.m. on CBC.