Murder, She Wrote: Capitol Offense   Rewatch 
September 21, 2014 7:02 AM - Season 1, Episode 12 - Subscribe

When her Congressman suffers a fatal heart attack, Jessica finds herself named as a temporary replacement until the Governor of Maine makes permanent arrangements. She works with police Lt. Avery Mendelsohn when it's determined that the dead Congressman did not die where he was found and the body had been moved post-mortem. When Congressman Dan Kepper falls under suspicion, Jessica is fairly certain he's innocent.

There also appears to be a blackmail ring at work. Meanwhile, Jessica is lobbied by a company wishing to build a new fish processing plant in Maine.
posted by filthy light thief (4 comments total)
This was the wish fulfilment episode for me where Jessica finds her Washington groove and ends up President of the WORLD a season later.

Her clothes in this episode are just beautiful and she sweeps through rooms and locks eyes with people in total confidence. It's an episode that should belong a couple of seasons on, given that twelve episodes earlier she'd been an unknown widowed housewife, but it's still Jessica out to solve the world.
posted by viggorlijah at 9:29 AM on September 21, 2014

I'm about 1/3 of the way into S2 now, but I think it was somewhere around this episode that it dawned on me that the show's writers must be digging through slush piles of random mystery manuscripts, picking a plot, and finding some way to wedge Jess in there. There are several so far where it feels that way: Sudden Death, Murder Takes The Bus (which is one of my favorites so far), Death Casts a Spell.... Netflix doesn't have all the S1 episodes.

Don't get me wrong: There's no doubt in my mind that Jessica could be a novelist-congresswoman-brainsurgeon-astronaut-saxophonist any time she likes (and look great doing it!). I just think the seams show a bit more in this episode.
posted by mochapickle at 1:05 PM on September 22, 2014

Now I want the alternate universe where Barbie is outsold by the Jessica Fletcher action figure.... an outfit for every crime!
posted by viggorlijah at 1:39 AM on September 23, 2014 [2 favorites]

Maybe it's just me, but I could totally see Jessica getting picked for as the stand-in for a government official, especially as someone who is not controversial but well-enough known to not be considered a straight-up lackey for the governor. Here's a Wikipedia list of people from Maine, who from that time period would have been better? :)

Good news: Jessica is in no way a harbinger of death in this episode, though her presence does bring about a threatening letter.

I liked how Jessica was proclaiming her appreciation for government and democracy with the phone conversation in the beginning of the episode. "Voter registration is a lot more important than my lunch."

If there was a Jessica Fletcher action figure, she'd have a whole array of supporting actors to cast as her action figure friends, like the already fake looking Harold DeWitt (who was tossed aside after a brief introduction as an aide to the governor in the beginning) and Joe Blinn, with removable driving gloves. Oh, and who could forget Thor Danziger? Seriously, that's an action figure name if I ever heard one.

I was really hoping Jess would have some sort of Maine remedy for Det. Lt. Avery Mendelsohn's aches and pains, though that might take away from his intuitive abilities if his gut no longer rumbled and his feet stopped aching.
posted by filthy light thief at 12:09 PM on October 1, 2014

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