(Image from Agatha Christie Twitter/Facebook account)
A reader e-mailed me recently with some suggestions for further "investigations" on the blog. He suggested I should discuss the work of prominent script writers, directors and actors on the show, and comment on their approaches to the stories, characters and series as a whole. In fact, this is an idea I've had at the back of my mind for some time, but I've dismissed it so far on the account that a) I don't consider myself a Christie expert, let alone a good reviewer of books and adaptations, and b) I cannot even begin to claim that I have any in-depth knowledge of directing, script writing or any other aspect of film work. Also, so many people on line have done such an excellent job with reviews and comments already, so why should I do anything other than refer to these? However, since receiving this e-mail, I've done some research into the information available on line. What strikes me is that while all the blog entries and reviews I can find are excellent in their own right, very few (if any) offer a broad overview of all aspects of each episode. So, in the end, that is what I have decided to do.
In the coming weeks and months I will attempt to discuss the series episode-by-episode, comparing Christie's originals and the adaptations, comment on directing in some limited way, offer behind-the-scenes information in the cases where I have been able to find some, refer to interviews and character development and offer a location guide where that information is available. In short, I'm attempting to offer the closest thing to a complete introduction to each episode, with (hopefully) thorough references to other blogs, web sites and literature on offer on line and elsewhere. I was going to discuss the episodes in the order of my chronology, but I have later decided that it makes more sense to study them in broadcasting order, both in terms of script writing, directing and character development.
My main references are likely to be the ones listed below, sites that are all excellent resources in their own right (in no particular order - and I don't necessarily always agree with them):
1) Re-reading Agatha Christie (stylesofdying.wordpress.com) This one I only discovered a couple of months ago. The blog seems to be a work in progress, but the work so far is so good that I think it's probably the most thorough analysis of both Christie's stories and the adaptations that I've seen on line. Highly recommended.
2) The Agatha Christie Reader (agathachristiereader.wordpress.com) Again, a very thorough and knowledgeable review blog, with posts on all of Christie's books and the adaptations. Very well done.
3) Sound Insights (dougpayne.blogspot.com) Offers insightful reviews of all the episodes so far, with comments on actors, directors and script writers.
4) Chris Chan's adaptation reviews (agathachristie.com/insight/papers/). Brilliant reviews!
5) IMdB "Agatha Christie's Poirot" (www.imdb.com/title/tt0094525/reviews) The IMdB series reviews (and individual episode reviews) are usually not as insightful, but some of them demonstrate important views and concerns with each episode.
6) On Location with Poirot (www.tvlocations.net) Absolutely brilliant site with pictures and information on nearly all locations of the series. Invaluable.
7) More Man than Philosopher (generalthinker.blogspot.com) Several in-depth reviews of the adaptations, like the one this link refers to.
8) Felice's Log (felicelog.blogspot.com) Several in-depth discussions of adaptations.
9) The Passing Tramp (thepassingtramp.blogspot.com) Brief reviews of series 1-5 (the short story series).
10) Poirot Style (poirotfan.blogspot.com/) Definitely not my area of expertise, but this blog offers in-depth discussions of the costumes of the series. I think this will become an excellent addition to the Poirot fandom blog sites.
(...and then we have the countless "regular" DVD/Blu-Ray reviews that I might refer to from time to time, for instance the excellent reviews of the new Blu-ray releases over at blu-ray.com