Murder, She Wrote: Lovers and Other Killers   Rewatch 
September 2, 2014 7:32 AM - Season 1, Episode 7 - Subscribe

Jessica flies to Seattle to be a guest lecturer in a university course, where the young, charming and self-assured David Tolliver applies (and is accepted) as her secretary for her stay. Tolliver is soon a suspect in the murder of a quite well-to-do elderly lady, and that's just the beginning of the convoluted tale of "Lovers and Other Killers."

Well, not that convoluted. The most contorted connection is between the still-married Lila Schroeder and the various key men in the episode, followed by David Tolliver's relationships to the two deceased women in the episode.
posted by filthy light thief (8 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Oh, I love this one! David Tolliver's good 1980s looks (he looks like he should be sold in a slender cardboard box next to Barbie) just makes him all that much creepier.
posted by mochapickle at 8:24 AM on September 2, 2014 [3 favorites]

Oh, he's so charming though! And confident! Who wouldn't want his collectable figure? Until you threaten to cast him as the murderer in your next book, then watch out, he'll set his steely gaze upon you.

Other thoughts on this episode:
  • Unknown burgler: Anything under the clothes? Nope. Oh, the safe, of course! What's the combination again?
  • Allison Brevard: Hmm, looks like my room has been ransacked. Oh good, my music box still works
  • Jessica: I couldn't bring my editor, so I brought a Chinese baby instead! j/k LOL!
  • And Jessica can speak Chinese.
  • Guest lecturer at ... Seattle University?
  • Wait, Amelia pays dean Edmund Gerard's personal bills? As part of her job for the university?
  • Was Amelia trying to get back at Jessica for her possible relationship to Edmund by sending the secretary applicants to Jessica's hotel?
  • David you cocky, dreamy bastard. A self-taught secretary and everything.
  • Jessica to David: You're hired, come back tomorrow morning at 10 am, now leave me the hell alone.
  • Oh, silly accents, and a "bang" gun! Hey, it's from the introduction to the show!
  • What is she lecturing? Deductive reasoning? Writing? Crime-solving?
  • Best-selling author of 6 books, but only remembered for the first, or someone got lazy and only listed the first one on the chalkboard
  • Dean Edmund Gerard: the most oblivious man when it comes to female interests
  • David, you corny cad. You and your disdain for your "bubble-headed female contemporaries"
  • David: "I never claimed to be starving" - what are you saying?
  • Seattle PD Lt. Andrews: you cut right to the meat - none of that "do you know a Ms. Brevard," straight to "Allison Brevard was killed, and we think you did it."
  • Jessica's nod to David could have meant "kick the cop's ass" or "go with the police officer, I have your back."
  • Seattle PD: most obvious tail
  • Don't worry, David, Jessica is on the case. (And this time, murder came to her!)
  • As Lt. Andrews pulls away, Jessica thinks "And I thought he'd give me a ride to my car," or, "look at me playing weird modern art statue, bent over with my hand extended"
  • David: Mrs. Brovard was a frightened and lonely woman, she was drunk and charming when sober. (You're not helping your case, kid.)
  • David is something of a conman and maybe a liar, but he's no murderer
  • Lila Schroeder to Jessica: "Hey lady, shut up and listen, meet me at the abandoned docks" - what a sassy blonde, with an angry almost ex husband, and then with a new guy in a suit
  • Oh, but Jess did come to the abandoned warehouse! Does she trust the unnamed woman in the bar, or was Jess simply being bold, or looking for a thrill, something to make her feel alive, while surrounded by idiots?
  • Jessica: hey, the lights are on in this abandoned warehouse full of empty boxes. Oh, and there's an injured woman, falling to the ground.
  • So it seems David likes older ladies, and slightly married women
  • Why was Jessica visiting Mr. Schroeder, he of the dead wife, at the gym pool?
  • Mr. Schroeder re: David - "Pretty guy, smiles a lot"
  • Jessica's next class: Murder for profit, or murder for passion? Which lecture is this? Someone should correct the sign on the chalkboard.
  • Jessica, utilizing her position of power to publicly questioning of a possible suspect
  • Is the 9pm office meeting any safer than the 10pm warehouse meeting?
  • Jessica is a wise woman, pulling out her mace. Hey, I know those stairs. Oh no, not those stairs!
  • Oh David, always at the right/wrong place?
  • Lila Schroeder, what a plot twist you are, and a trouble magnet. Dean Edmund about Lila: "she was young, very vital"
  • Sitting in an outdoor restaurant, with the Space Needle in the background: oh hey, they are in Seattle
  • Jessica utilizes the Colombo-like almost forgotten "one last thing"
  • Lt. Andrews: Yaah, we solved one murder! Jessica: But what about Lila? Lt. Andrews: Oh...
  • David to Jessica: I left you a message, from a whispering, forced voice, telling you to meet on campus, at night. What's strange about that?
  • Amelia: Alabi...?
  • Jessica: Yes, why would you lie?
  • Poor Amelia, the frightener.
  • You know, David, who so often dresses in black.
  • Why is it so natural to meet in the warehouse? Why does no one question this?
  • Who knows what a longshoreman's hook looks like?
  • David: "Can I interest you in a slightly overstuffed bear?" Oh, he's funny, too!
  • And then he gets angry, so angry with love.
  • David: "What might I be? A victim, a suspect, a killer?" Jessica: "I don't know, I haven't made up my mind yet." David - Madface, and FREEZE!
That's a wrap.
posted by filthy light thief at 9:42 AM on September 2, 2014

Wait, Amelia pays dean Edmund Gerard's personal bills? As part of her job for the university?

Eh, I've seen worse abuses of power at a university.
posted by Monochrome at 10:59 AM on September 2, 2014

I remember this one for nothing else but (A) The Mission:Impossible casting, and (B) No Jessica laughing at the end of the episode, because we all know solving yet another murder is the best way to get the giggles going...
posted by Alexandra Kitty at 1:24 PM on September 2, 2014 [1 favorite]

Creepy David. Lets himself in Jessica's place, then promises not to do it again. The next time Jessica is home, she has a phone message tacked up on her fridge. David was there! When he finds her hurt, he apologizes for not staying in her hotel room to protect her. Later, Jessica returns to her hotel and finds David waiting for her in her room!

I don't care if he's not a murderer; he's still a stalker.
posted by Monochrome at 2:37 PM on September 2, 2014 [2 favorites]

Oh goodness no, he just cares for old, lonely, wealthy, frightened ladies in their (final) hours of need. Nothing creepy or stalkerish about him.

Going back to a previous discussion, I really do think some part of this show features Jessica losing her mind, what with all the death around her, and people re-appearing under different identities. Case in point: David returns in season 5, but as Dr. Adam Paulson, in an episode where Jessica encounters a man in Boston whom she is convinced is her neighbor from years back, but the man denies it and his wife claims the man is dead. He's not the possible former neighbor, but still, it makes you wonder about poor Jessica.
posted by filthy light thief at 7:13 AM on September 3, 2014 [2 favorites]

Not only was this filmed on the University of Washington campus, many of the interior shots are from UW as well. Edmund's office reception area has a commendation on the wall about Charles Odegaard, namesake of the undergraduate library.
posted by squid patrol at 10:26 PM on June 17, 2015

The open with Peter Graves in an airport was the BEST visual joke. Made my weekend.
posted by bibliogrrl at 2:36 PM on November 26, 2016

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