Murdoch Mysteries (2008–…): Season 6, Episode 8 - Murdoch in Ladies Wear - full transcript
Detective Murdoch investigates the murder of Preston Monk, manager of the ladies-wear department at Eaton's department store. He's found dead on top of the store's elevator cage and Dr. Grace's autopsy reveals that he had been likely struck on the head. Monk had been hired from Harrod's in London and was a difficult task master as far as the young women who worked for him are concerned. One in particular, Eva Pearce, seemed to meet his exacting standards and is named acting manager after his death. A burly man with a large mustache was seen speaking to him around the time he died. Murdoch realizes he is being manipulated by one of the suspects.
you are prepared for another day
serving at Eaton and Company,
Canada's Greatest Store.
And remember, you are
ladies serving ladies.
Which means, Miss Richardson,
no loafing behind the counter,
no engaging in idle
chatter. Isn't that right?
Yes, Mr. Monk.
Miss Richardson, the ladies of Rosedale
do not want to be served
by a cow chewing her cud.
And as for the rest of you,
I implore you to refrain
from using common familiarities.
Our esteemed customers
do not wish to be referred
to as 'dearie.' And, please,
no "heaven help me" looks
exchanged while serving.
- What do I expect at all times?
- Decorum, Mr. Monk.
We are Mr. Timothy's ambassadors.
Decor-um. Thank you, Miss Redmond.
Your services will no longer be required.
Sir... I can't afford not to
work. Why are you firing me?
You know perfectly well.
I do not make the rules,
I merely follow them.
Collect your wages on your way out.
What are you staring at?
- Flo, I'm very sorry...
- Save your sympathies, Helen.
Monk'll get his one of these days.
I can't fathom how Flo thought she
could pull one over on Mr. Monk.
She was foolish to waste
the chance she was given.
Good morning, ladies.
- Oh, that looks beautiful, doesn't it?
- What do you think of this one?
Oh, no. For you, Miss, these.
You came back for the cream,
didn't you? I just knew you would.
Did you see that Mrs. eyeing the hat
pins? She was about to help herself.
Till Eva closed the case right smartly.
She almost took off her finger!
What are you doing here?
Mr. Preston Monk, sir.
He was the manager of The Eaton
Company's Ladies Wear Department.
The stock boy found him
first thing this morning.
- George, was this open like this?
That's unusual. The safety
mechanism should have prevented that.
- It was jammed.
- Also unusual.
- Awful business, Inspector.
- Had Preston Monk worked here long, Mr. Eaton?
About a year. My father brought
him over from Harrods in London.
He was helping to train the shop
girls, give them a bit of polish.
Not an easy task, though they're
working hard to be more genteel.
- What sort of man was Monk?
- An exemplary employee.
- Always had the best interests of Eaton's at heart.
- A hard taskmaster?
When he had to be. Most of
these girls came in lacking
even basic social graces.
Ladies, ladies, attention, please.
- This is Inspector Blackenreid...
Brackenreid... he and his men
will be conducting an investigation
into Mr. Monk's tragic death.
You are to give him your full cooperation.
- In the meantime,
Ladies Wear will conduct business as usual.
Miss Pearce, can I ask you
to act as interim manager?
- Of course, Mr. Eaton.
- What a surprise.
- I won't disappoint you, sir.
- Thank you, Miss Pearce.
I know I can rely on your
discretion in this matter.
Our customers need not know
the details of Mr. Monk's sudden departure.
- Mr. Eaton.
A moment, Miss...
You don't think much of
Miss Pearce's promotion?
Pearl should've been made manager.
She's been here the longest.
Why did Mr. Eaton choose Miss Pearce?
Whatever Eva wants, Eva gets,
- Dr. Grace.
- Yes, Detective Murdoch.
I'm finished here.
- Can the body be taken to the morgue?
Thank you, Doctor. Can I help you?
- You operate this elevator.
And you also care for its maintenance?
Yes. Every night.
Curious then. Perhaps you can tell me why
I found the safety mechanism to be jammed.
He could never leave the thing alone.
Complained it made a racket,
disturbed his precious customers.
I told him not to go messing with it.
So you believe Mr. Monk opened the gate?
He always thought that he
knew better than all of us.
Does anyone else operate this elevator?
No sir. Just me.
I can't believe Mr. Monk's dead.
It's so very, very horrible.
So Mr. Monk was in the habit of
checking the department before he left?
It seems he's turned out
the lights for the last time.
You are taking his untimely
death rather calmly, Miss...
I don't cry easily, sir.
But when I do, it's private.
Certainly Mr. Monk wouldn't
approve of the public displays.
Nevertheless, Miss Pearce,
you may need this.
You must have a quite a
collection of handkerchiefs,
handing them to every woman in distress.
Thank you anyway.
Are you sure you don't want to read
these before they go to Darcy's lawyer?
I'm quite sure.
It's not every day
you're named co-respondent
in a divorce proceeding.
It's your last chance.
- Dr. Ogden!
- Dr. Grace.
How fortuitous. I was about to share
my results with Detective Murdoch.
- Why don't you join us?
- I'd be delighted.
Multiple contusions, largely
to the left side of his torso,
which received the brunt of the impact.
His left arm was broken in two places,
his hip and left ankle badly fractured.
- May I, Dr. Grace?
A most unusual wound.
- I noted that.
- Whatever he came into contact with
had a very specific shape.
Hm. Have you a time of death, Doctor?
Considering rigor mortis,
somewhere between 6 and 8 PM.
This has been an illuminating visit,
- but I must go.
- Do you miss the morgue,
I can't honestly say that I do.
And I'm so happy to see
it in such capable hands.
I'll leave you both to your corpse.
You said Mr. Monk hit
something very specific?
I did, Detective.
Right then, George.
We're looking for something
five-sixteenths of an inch
by one-and-an-eighth inch.
Well, sir, there are all
sorts of nuts and bolts
and this's and that's he could hit on
the way down, but not much blood evidence.
With a head injury, as you know,
sir, you bleed like a stuck pig.
That's a very good point, George.
Perhaps we should expand our search.
Monk was killed here,
by a blow to the head.
Then thrown down the elevator shaft.
An attempt to make it
look like an accident.
- Seal off the area.
I'm just a working girl
trying to hold down a job,
I don't know anything about any murder.
How long have you worked for Mr. Monk?
Four months. Four long months.
What do you mean?
He has these ways.
He wanted us to become 'ladies'.
And I tried as hard as I could,
but he always found fault.
And did he treat all of
the girls the same way?
- All except Eva.
- I'm sorry?
Eva Pearce. I'd never be
like Miss Perfect Pearce.
Her flaunting herself the way she does.
Well then, you must be relieved
that Mr. Monk is no longer
alive to torment you.
I lived in fear that he'd let
me go, but I didn't kill him.
I wouldn't go near that elevator.
Scares me to death, that thing.
I see. Where were you
last night between 6 and 8?
I went home. There's 6 of us there.
I look after the youngsters
when Mam works the night shift.
Between 6 and 8? I was out with the girls.
I understand Mr. Monk was demanding,
sometimes even demeaning.
Did you find him to be so?
I appreciated what he
was trying to do for us.
Mr. Monk was raising us up.
Teaching us better ways of
talking, manners and such.
He told me I had potential if I was
more like Eva. But no one's like Eva.
- Oh, Miss Pearce?
I met Inspector Brackenreid.
Your superior, I assume.
Yes. Yes, he is.
He seems an affable sort.
I don't know how we
can help you, Detective.
None of us would kill Mr. Monk.
If you're looking for a suspect,
Mr. Eaton can supply you with a
list of employees Mr. Monk dismissed.
And may I ask where you were
last evening between 6 and 8?
Do I need an alibi?
It's just a routine question.
I've watched you, Detective.
You seem anything but routine.
If you could please answer the question.
I was with Pearl and the other girls.
We arranged to have a consoling gin
with Florence Sykes.
And what was her mood last night?
I don't know. She never showed up.
- Who's asking?
- Detective William Murdoch,
You were let go from the
Eaton's Department Store, yes?
- When did that become a crime?
- It's not.
But murder is.
Mr. Monk was killed last night.
Miss Sykes, why were you dismissed?
I tried to stop him. Really I did...
- Stop whom?
- My husband, Jim.
It's against Eaton company policy
to hire married women, so he fired me.
And your husband found out about it.
He stormed off to give Monk a piece
of his mind. I tried to stop him.
Where might I find Mr. Sykes?
- Mr. Sykes.
What business did you have
with Preston Monk last night?
- Who the blazes are you?
- Detective Murdoch.
Toronto Constabulary. Answer me.
Yes, I went there. So what?
That bastard treated my
Flo like a piece of dirt.
He dismissed your wife, so you killed him.
What do you mean?
Preston Monk was murdered last night.
I didn't do anything.
You deny being there?
No. I went there all
right, ready to do him harm,
when I saw another man with him, a big man.
- I couldn't take on both of them.
- What time was this?
Between 6 and 7, I can't be right sure.
Right, Mr. Sykes, come with me.
- I didn't do anything.
- Then you have nothing to worry about, do you?
- He had a moustache.
- This sort of a moustache?
More of a moustache.
More of a moustache.
I can assure you, Mr. Eaton, I've
got my best men working on this.
I appreciate your efforts,
I don't want this morbid affair
to affect morale at the store.
And you've got a reputation to protect.
Eaton's is one of the biggest
department stores in the world,
but that doesn't mean our competition
isn't nipping at our heels.
We're investigating this
as discretely as possible.
My father hopes to pass
on the store one day.
He'd prefer I inherited an asset,
not a liability. Good day.
What have you got, Murdoch? I've just
had my ear bent by Eaton the Younger,
- so it better be good.
- Well, sir, we have the Identikit.
Is that all he could come up with?
That could be any one of a hundred men.
Hardly worth the effort.
Keep at it, George.
- Are you quite ready?
- Yes, Eva.
I am to be referred to as Miss Pearce.
Ladies, we can improve our sales
by following a few simple tips.
Remember to flatter your customers.
They want to hear how
fetching they will look
in their new tea gown.
And touch the dress as you talk...
the garment will seem more alluring.
- Detective Murdoch.
- Good day, Miss Pearce. Ladies.
- How can we help the Constabulary today?
- I wonder if any of you
has seen this man before?
What is a stock boy doing,
presuming to be on the floor?
Pearl, send him away.
Customers are about to arrive.
Come on, Mr. Barker. Let's go.
How about you?
I've never seen him.
We'll talk about this later.
- Hello, Julia.
Am I interrupting?
I received these from my lawyer.
It's all very... thorough.
I'm sorry it's such a tawdry business,
Darcy. I know this isn't easy for you.
Our outing last week...
- I really enjoyed being with you again.
I'm pleased that we can be friends.
In the past I may not have expressed
the affection I have for you,
but I... I really do feel it,
and if you could give me another chance...
Well... we've decided, Darcy.
I'm not ready to let you go, Julia.
That's how you really feel about me.
You walk arm in arm with him.
You're seen kissing him in public.
- What are you doing?
- If I can't have you for my wife, neither can he.
Julia, is everything all right?
I'm perfectly fine.
I thoroughly enjoy being
stifled in this cocoon.
What do you mean?
Darcy ripped up the divorce papers.
Oh. Why did he do that?
I rejected his advances
and wounded his male pride.
I'm sure he'll come around in time.
No, he won't.
He's determined to punish me.
What do we do?
We live together.
And suffer the scandal.
No, we won't suffer.
We'll shock everyone and
revel in the outrageousness!
- What do you think, William?
Can we really be that bold?
I... I have to go.
Sir, I collected the
pinch bars you requested.
You may want to begin with this one, sir.
It's from the Ladies' Wear stock room.
Right. Can you fetch my
ultraviolet light, please?
Could you switch off the lights, please?
- Even better
- I hope this will wash off, Constable.
- It's just printing ink,
- Miss Redmond.
- But how will printing ink help find the murderer?
Well, Detective Murdoch, and
myself, have devised a way
to raise fingermarks
from surfaces or objects
connected to a crime scene.
- You don't say.
- It's irrefutable evidence.
A silent witness, if you will.
Well, we're all done. Thank you.
You're very knowledgeable, Constable.
Well, I am the Detective's right-hand man.
He's very lucky to have you.
This idea of a store that sells
everything you need under one roof
is quite clever, isn't it, sir?
I mean, you could buy a
ham, a hammock and a hammer,
all without getting wet.
If it was raining, I suppose.
Although if it were raining, you would
probably be disinclined to buy a hammock.
You'd be better...
- What is it, George?
- A match.
The fingermark on the weapon
is the stock boy,
Toronto Constabulary! Open up.
All right, George. Have at it.
We're too late.
So it would appear Barker
shot himself, then, sir.
Not so fast, George. Have a look around.
Tell me what you see.
There are two glasses on this table,
which would suggest Mr.
Barker had a visitor.
One of the glasses has his fingermarks,
and the other has been wiped clean.
Take a look at the stove.
Ash. It's been used recently.
And yet the last two nights were quite hot.
Sir, it would appear he shot himself.
I can see that, Crabtree.
So Barker kills Monk and then offs himself.
I'll go and tell Mr.
Eaton the case is closed.
Inspector, I said
'it would appear he shot himself'.
- What are you talking about?
- Notice the two glasses on the table, sir.
One covered in Barker's fingermarks.
The other, none at all,
which would suggest that
somebody else was here.
Somebody who did not want
their identity revealed.
- He still shot himself. He's holding the bloody gun.
- Actually, sir,
I believe someone else shot
Barker and placed the gun
in his hand. My thinking
as well, Detective.
- In fact, it is my thinking...
- That's enough thinking from you, Crabtree. Don't push it.
So what's the connection
between Barker and Monk? Who's
got a grievance with both of them?
Perhaps our mystery man who was with Monk
also paid Mr. Barker a visit.
Unfortunately, Mr. Sykes
doesn't seem to remember him.
Well, let's go and see if we can't
awaken Mr. Sykes' senses, shall we?
It's a bit early for a drink.
How can I help Toronto's fine Constabulary?
- Is this the man you saw with Monk?
He was older than that. And what else?
I described him as best I could.
- Describe him better.
- I told you all I know.
He was in the office spouting off,
pointing at Monk with his big fat cigar.
Get yourself a job
and stop having the missus do your duty.
It's not a very good likeness,
but it could be a chap who shops here.
- What's his name?
- Oh, I don't know. He just buys cigars from me.
from the Vuelta Abajo region to be exact.
It's an expensive cigar
but worth every penny.
- I bring them in specially.
- I don't suppose you know where he lives.
- If he comes by again, would you let us know?
I didn't know Jake Barker very well.
When was this photograph taken?
Last year at the Cabbagetown street fair.
We were at the photograph
booth at the same time.
At the exact same time?
That's quite a coincidence.
What do you mean?
Miss Redmond, I believe you
knew Jake Barker quite well.
I saw the way you spoke
to him in the store.
I was helping him keep his job.
Miss Redmond, if you are
that's obstruction of
a murder investigation.
Now, was he your beau?
He wasn't interested in me.
There are two girls in the photograph.
Yes, I knew Jake Barker.
Why did you not tell me?
I didn't think it relevant
to your investigation.
It was quite pertinent, Miss Pearce.
Jake Barker murdered Preston Monk.
No... that can't be.
The evidence is conclusive.
I didn't think he'd go that far.
Do you know why he killed Monk?
It was my fault.
What do you mean?
Jake and I were together for a brief time
before I joined the Eaton company.
But it wasn't easy, Detective Murdoch.
If another man so much as glanced at me,
Jake would fly into a fit of jealousy.
He saw rivals for my attention
wherever we went. In the end,
I had no choice but to run away from him.
what does this have to
do with Preston Monk?
Mr. Monk changed my life.
He opened up new worlds
I didn't think possible.
Do you know what that feels like
to a girl like me, Detective?
A chance to make a new
start? A chance to be someone?
And then Jake found me.
- When was this?
- Two months ago.
He saw how much time and attention
Mr. Monk was spending on me.
It drove him mad with jealousy.
He hounded me, begging
me to come back to him.
I pleaded with him to let me go,
but he was relentless.
Did you know Jake was going to kill Monk?
I never thought him a violent man.
I didn't realize how far he'd go.
Now two men are dead because of me.
Miss Pearce, you now hold
Mr. Monk's position in the Ladies
Wear Department, do you not?
I am the interim manager.
So it would seem that you benefited
greatly from Mr. Monk's demise.
I suppose I did.
I hadn't thought of it that way.
That's all I have for
the moment, Miss Pearce.
Detective, if I were to kill,
it wouldn't be for a job at Eaton's.
I just don't see her as a murderer.
I'm not sure she is, sir.
You have an opinion, Doctor?
Gentlemen, you are proof positive.
Miss Pearce is a classic manipulator.
A somewhat hasty conclusion.
She controlled the entire interview.
She uses provocative, distracting gestures.
Her smile. The smoothing of her dress.
Her choked tears.
Would you like a more detailed analysis?
Yes, I would.
Miss Pearce was at her most vulnerable
when you produced the
photograph of her with Barker.
But she quickly used this to her advantage.
From the moment she said
the murder was her fault,
she was driving the interview.
But I was asking the questions.
Which she used to cleverly
portray herself as the victim,
changing the rhythm of the interview,
holding you in her gaze.
That's how she disarmed you.
I was hardly disarmed.
Dr. Ogden has got a point, Murdoch.
I felt it myself when I met Miss Pearce.
She looked at me as she said...
Like I was someone she wanted to remember.
As though you were special to her.
Oh, it would appear you
aren't the only one, sir.
John Craig Eaton.
Heir to the Eaton family fortune.
I understand you've
been courting Mr. Eaton.
For now. He finds me quite charming.
That's certainly a step up
from stock boy, Miss Pearce.
I don't need a job at Eaton's.
I have other plans.
Plans that could involve you, Detective.
Did you desire her?
Yes, I did.
What do you think?
you may never feel the same
way about shopping again.
Julia, be serious.
Your dream confirms my instincts.
Miss Pearce uses her
erotic power to seduce men.
- I wasn't seduced.
- Consciously, you were impervious.
But Miss Pearce invaded your subconscious
and emerged in your dreams.
What do you mean, she's
a siren of some sort?
But Dr. Freud suggests we are all ruled
by our sexual urges,
consciously or unconsciously.
What does this have to do
with the deaths of Barker and Monk?
Well, given her power over you,
imagine her hold on a
man already in her thrall.
Are you saying she enticed
Barker into killing Monk?
She told me that she
wouldn't kill for Monk's job.
So why would Eva Pearce
want Preston Monk dead?
Mr. Bennett, we got your message.
Oh, you missed your man. He picked
up his cigars not 5 minutes ago.
- Did you see which way he went?
- Towards the Queen's Hotel.
Sir. Toronto Constabulary.
What in God's name are you doing?
- The Detective has a couple of questions for you, sir.
- You're making a mistake.
I'm a private investigator. I'm
working on a matter of some delicacy.
Thank you for calling attention to me.
What is your name?
Biskind. Mr. Biskind,
did you have a meeting with
a Preston Monk on Monday last?
Yes, I did.
He had me looking into one of the
shop girls. She had quite the past...
soliciting, procuring of other young women.
I gave Monk a file full
of unsavoury details.
Which girl was it?
Quite the looker, isn't she?
Eva knew that Monk made it his business
to check the backgrounds of the shop girls.
And if Monk knew about her past,
Eva Pearce had to silence him.
Right. He would ruin her chances
of marrying into the Eaton family.
- She had the motive.
- And a patsy to do it for her.
So when she saw Biskind arrive
that evening with a file in hand,
she put two and two together.
He was working for Monk.
But then, sir, we didn't find
anything in Monk's office.
Barker burned the file.
- The ashes in the fireplace.
So Murdoch, how are you going
to prove she was involved?
Dr. Grace, have you toxicology
results on Jake Barker's post mortem?
- I did discover something.
- Let me guess.
- Large amounts of a sedative.
- Exactly, Detective.
Laudanum to be precise. He was so
sedated at the time of his death,
he couldn't have held a gun,
let alone pulled the trigger.
He was definitely murdered.
We meet again, Detective.
I now believe that you know
far more about this matter
- than you've been saying.
- I do?
Let's go back to the night
that Preston Monk was murdered.
As you were leaving
for home, you saw a man,
a private investigator,
arrive at the store.
I don't know any Gerald Biskind.
Oh, that's odd. Because he remembered you.
Men have a habit of noticing me.
You were no doubt worried
that Mr. Monk was going to
find out about your past.
- My past?
- Come now, Miss Pearce,
we both know what you were.
And you didn't want
anyone finding that out,
certainly not Mr. Eaton.
That's quite an insinuation, Detective.
So you devised a plan.
You turned to Jake Barker,
your former beau.
Jake was besotted.
He would do anything to earn your...
You told him that Monk
was out to destroy you
and had to be stopped.
I don't know what to do. I need help.
- Oh, it's going to be okay.
- Will you help me?
Jake was in your thrall...
until the Constabulary proved that Monk
had indeed been murdered. Jake got nervous.
He came looking for you.
That's when you realized...
that he was becoming a liability.
And you had to kill him.
I did no such thing.
The two of you met at Barker's room.
You had drinks.
Like old times.
You poured a powerful
sedative in his drink.
He didn't feel a thing, did he?
You put the gun to his head
and pulled the trigger...
Then wiped everything
that you had touched clean.
As if you'd never been there.
You knew about fingermark evidence
because you had overheard Constable
Crabtree's helpful information.
You killed Jake Barker, Miss Pearce.
You have no evidence. Not one piece.
I fully intend to prove your guilt.
Take your time, Detective.
Miss Pearce will wait for me in the cells.
You have no right.
In the cells.
That's where we put your kind.
I thought you couldn't get a fingermark
- from such a small casing.
- I didn't get a whole fingermark, sir,
just part of the outer rim.
That's not a part,
that's a piece of a part.
Even if I can match just a part of one...
Then we've got her.
I don't say this enough, Murdoch,
but you do have some brilliant ideas.
Thank you, sir. Except
that this isn't a match.
- It's not her.
- Bloody hell.
So if it wasn't Eva who shot
Barker, who the hell did?
He was your beau, Miss Redmond.
She stole him from you.
Eva has a way of getting
everything she wants.
But you figured it out.
You realized that Eva
persuaded Jake to kill Monk.
She seduced him.
Promising they'd be together again.
He was a fool to believe her.
She had her sights set
higher than a stock boy.
I gave him a chance.
I told him I wouldn't tell a soul
what he'd done if he came back to me.
He just laughed at me.
And that's when you decided to kill him
and to frame Eva for the murder.
It was just desserts for
what they did to Mr. Monk.
And to you, Miss Redmond.
You are free to go, Miss Pearce.
I told the Detective everything Jake said.
How you put him up to killing Mr. Monk.
Words from a dead man
carry very little weight.
Am I right, Detective?
You won't get away with it, Eva.
I don't know what you're talking about.
I'm very happy to see the
end of this sordid affair.
The Eaton family is very grateful
for your discretion, Inspector.
A word of advice, son.
Don't dip your pen in the company ink.
So she gets to walk away, Murdoch?
Even though she was the cause of all this?
- I'm afraid so.
- You've got to give it to her,
she's a survivor.
Eva Pearce has enormous power.
Even you were attracted to her.
It was a fleeting moment, Julia.
A man throws away his life for
a woman. Even kills for her.
He wants her that much.
What about me, William...
have I asked too much of you
with my immodest proposal?
You are so lovely to me, Julia,
but we can only truly be together
if we are married.
I won't compromise you.
Probably not the answer you wanted to hear.
But you have principles.
Yes, I do.
And if you went against them, you
wouldn't be the man I want to marry.
Don't be silly.
If anything, this makes me love you more.
So what happens now?
In time Darcy will give in.
In the meantime,
let's enjoy this beautiful day.
have any other heavenly creatures
entered your dreams of late?
Oh, no, no. Not at all. Just you.
Excuse me, Miss.
- You dropped this.
- Oh, thank you.
- Is everything all right?
- Yes... no.
My sweetheart left me.
I would say that man's a fool.
Oh, you are too kind, sir.
May I interest you in a cup of tea?
That would be lovely.
Next Monday, on Murdoch...
I have someone who witnessed a murder,
she appears to be paralysed by fear.
You think I'm making this up?
Tatiana Jones guest-stars
on Murdoch Mysteries,
next Monday at 9:00 on CBC.