|Edward Petherbridge as Lord Peter.|
Running Time: 52 minutes.
Status: Lord Peter Wimsey: A Dorothy L. Sayers Mystery only lasted for one season of ten episodes. There are three cases, with two of them spanning three episodes and one lasting for four. The series is available on DVD in the U.S. until the title of Dorothy L. Sayers Mysteries: Harriet Vane Collection.
Production Notes: This is the second British television series about Dorothy L. Sayers' beloved sleuth. The first appeared in the 1970s and starred Ian Carmichael as Lord Peter and Glyn Houston as Bunter. Although immensely popular, the series received minor criticism from Sayers' hardcore fans who complained that Carmichael, then in his 50s, was too old to play the thirtyish Lord Peter. At 51, Edward Petherbridge wasn't much younger than Carmichael when he first appeared as Wimsey in the 1987 TV series--however, he looked younger. Petherbridge, who is best known for his stage work, also appeared as Lord Peter in the 1988 play Busman's Honeymoon, which co-starred his real-life wife, Emily Richard, as Harriet Vane.
Our Review: The Ian Carmichael Wimsey mysteries were our introduction to British TV detectives. Thus, we approached this 1987 version with much trepidation. To our surprise, we enjoyed it immensely. Although a different Lord Peter, Petherbridge is delightful and shares great rapport with Harriet Walter as his love interest. Our only quibbles are minor: the emphasis on Peter and Harriet means less Bunter (who was a great sidekick in the earlier series) and, at times, Peter comes across a bit of a lovesick puppy in his quest to earn Harriet's love. As for the rest of the show, the mysteries are first-rate and the production is handsome.