Hickson Vs all the other Jane Marples



  • I think that the best miss Marple is Joan Hickson. Next goes Mckenzie and Lansberry.
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom

    SeaSnap, Why Not sell your DVD o ebay and do yourself a favour and with the Money buy an Adaptation you DO Want, A version of ATTWN perhaps or the  Warwick/Annis adaptations or the Warwick/Cheryl Campbell version of Seven Dials Mystery.

    Although I don't like what ITV did with the Character or the Portrayals of McKewen and McKenzie who are both Brilliant Actresses and have both been in Brilliant sit-coms, I do like SOME of the Episdes, I like the ITV versions of Murder At The Vicarage, 4.50 From Paddington, The Blue Gerraneum, Greenshawes Folly and Caribbean Mystery   

  • MoonrakerMoonraker Wiltshire, United Kingdom
    I always thought Thelma Barlow (Coronation Street's Mavis Riley/Wilton) would have made a brilliant Jane Marple. Joan Hickson will always be my definitive Miss Marple.
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom
    I agree with you Monraker but she would also make a good Dane Calthorpe and Anthea Nemesis 
  • Joan Hickson is the only Miss Marple for me.

    I tried watching the more modern versions but hated them. Too many changes.

    What they did to my favourite, Sleeping Murder, was criminal! At least I have my Joan Hickson version on DVD.

  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom
    I agree Anne and Nemesis and not having Bunch in A Murder Is Announced was wrong
  • I agree Anne and Nemesis and not having Bunch in A Murder Is Announced was wrong

    I haven't seen the new version of Nemesis, after the horror of Sleeping Murder I stopped watching the adaptations.

    I think I saw the latest A Murder is Announced. Did the actress, Zoe (Whatever her name is), who plays Mrs Oliver in Poirot, take the part of Letita Blacklock? I have a vague memory of her clutching her pearls to her throat and breaking them.

    I did see the new Body in the Library. I hated the way they changed the murderer.

    There was another modern one I saw before giving up and it had Miss Marple confessing to having been in love with a married man when she was younger. I can't remember which one it was. I think I saw one with Tuppence in, too, and Tommy was a horrible, uncaring husband.

    It was after these, and the horrible Sleeping Murder that was the final straw to me ever watching one again. I will stick with the Joan Hickson episodes. I love these, except for Nemesis, I find it the worst of the her adaptations.

  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom
    You are right about A Murder Is Announced, It did have Zoe Wanamaker as Miss Blacklock, I have blocked out of my mind the silly and Hurtful admission about loving a Married Man, I say hurtful because it doesn't allow readers to imagine why she is still a Spinster, It is one Loose thread which should never have been tied up in my view., I too will stick to my Joan Hicksons, my least favourite Adaptation of these is either Sleeping Murder or Caribbean Mystery, I like the Character who accompanies Miss Marple in The Joan Hickson version, whenever I finish reading a Miss Marple book I watch the Joan Hickson version, a couple of weeks ago I watched 4.50 From Paddington and am in the middle of listening to the Audio Cassette with Ian Lavender as Craddock, Unfortunately it is abridged but still enjoyable. 
  • I don't know why they decided to give Miss Marple a married man for an old love. It was probably so she could have something in common and relate to a person in the story.

    I can't remember which adaptation it was so I have no idea who it could be.

    Why didn't they give her an old boyfriend who died young before they could marry? That would have been more in character with the Jane Marple Agatha wrote in her books.

  • Julia McKenzie is my favourite by far - has that twinkle in her eye and very intelligent......so sad they aren't going ahead with any more of her stories
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom

    I agree with you Anne, I think it was Body In The Library

  • Joan Hickson is the only Miss Marple for me.

    I tried watching the more modern versions but hated them. Too many changes.

    What they did to my favourite, Sleeping Murder, was criminal! At least I have my Joan Hickson version on DVD.

    I feel exactly the same. I often wonder what Dame Agatha herself would think of the changes.
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom
    I thought what they did with Sleeping Murder and Nemesis was an Outrage, like you I have my |Joan Hickson's and watch one when I have read the book, I watched 4.50 From Paddington a while ago.
  • I hated the McEwan adaptation of The Body in the Library for that reason as well. I wish they could more faithful to the plot.
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom
    It is better than some, I hate what they did to Nemesis and Sleeping Murder more, Body In The Library has good bits but Nemesis and Sleeping Murder don't and I hate what ITV did to Cards On The Table more than ITVs Body In The Library, David Walliams is Brilliantly Cast, he and the man who played the |Character in the Hickson version are the only two people who can do that Character Justice (Sorry forgotten his name).
  • FrankFrank Queensland, Australia
    Joan Hickson has been my favourite Miss Marple to date and I also enjoyed Geraldine McEwan time as Miss Marple despite the scripts being a bit of a departure from the Novels.
  • Joan Hickson for me, especially when she's the one AC liked. 
    Maggie Smith would probably add a sterness to the character, that Marple has - but which is only seen on rare occassions. So I'm not sure how it'd work.
    Judi Dench is a brilliant actress, and very twinkly, but possibly has too much presence. I see Marple as quiet, subdued, unsure of herself, until suddenly she's very sure and quite determined to have justice.
    Angela Lansbury - would be very good, just needs to act a bit older, not so energetic. Marple has arthritis, after all, and eventually can't even bend in her garden.
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom
    Judi Dench like Geraldine McKewan would be good as Lavinia Glynn and one part in Sparkling Cyanide, Angela Landesbury like Julia McKenzie would be good as Clothilde Bradbury Scott as would Maggie Smith but I DO think she would make a Good Miss Marple, I think Penelope Wilton would make a good Anthea Bradbury Scott.
  • I own all of the Joan Hickson, Geraldine McEwan and Julia McKenzie DVD's that have so far been released.  I have not seen the last episodes with Julia McKenzie (2014).  I watch and re-watch them.  I enjoyed Joan Hickson's portrayals.  I enjoyed those films because a) they were stylishly suited to the period of time (mid 1950's) post-wwII England; b) the characterizations were close to what I envisioned when I read Christie's novels; c) the plots were close to Christie's novels.  Not exact but very close.  I thought Hickson was credible, subtle, and elegantly understated.  I loved the recurring characters -- Horowitz as Slack, and Sergeant Lake, for example.  I thought the casting for each episode was of a very high calibre with one or two exceptions.  
    I didn't mind that McEwan played the character differently.  What would you expect of a fine actress?  Each one puts her or his stamp on any character.  I found her different from my picturing of Miss Marple -- not quite ladylike and subtle enough -- but generally, I liked McEwan's character as I got used to it.  What I cannot condone under any circumstances, is the butchery of Dame Christie's fine mysteries by various screen writers in the McEwan series.  Especially egregious are the adaptations of At Bertram's Hotel, Sleeping Murder, and Nemesis.  I can tolerate The 4:50 from Paddington, The Body in the Library, and The Moving Finger.  I actually like The Murder at the Vicarage and A Murder is Announced.  I do not mind that other McEwan Marple films were not originally Marple stories and cannot comment because I don't know the original stories.  I like Ordeal by Innocence best of that group.  
    Julie McKenzie seems to settle into the role as she goes along.  I like A Pocketful of Rye, The Mirror Crack'd from Side to Side, and They Do it with Mirrors -- although I miss Inspector Slack and his magician-wannabe character.  
    Generally I agree with the casting in the later versions but in some cases, I glaringly disagree with the casting -- I think some roles are MIScast in fact.  But that may also be part of the fact that the miscast roles I most dislike are also in those screenplays that I really dislike intensely.  Thanks for reading!
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom
    I can't tolerate The Non-Miss Marple stories having her in the Adaptations.
  • Does anyone remember a flashback where a young woman poses for a photograph with a soldier about to go to war. It turns out to be Miss Marple? I think it was a Joan Hickson version but I cannot find it . Thanks!
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom
    It was in a Geraldine McKewan Episode, I think it was Body In The Library or Murder At The Vicarage
  • Joan Hickson's the best, absolutely. McEwan appears too shrewd and forward. When she was knitting or gardening she didn't really look the part- too much nervous energy in the eyes. When she was nosing about, she was too openly inquisitive. McKenzie was too tall and imposing, although she did manage to look kinder than McEwan. Lansbury was too Gemini, if that makes any sense? Both of the latter two were too forward and energetic, with too much presence. Hickson portrayed AC's Marple; she didn't re-write the character. Common sense and wisdom, feet planted firmly in the ground but not in-your-face confidence, soft and kind blue eyes and fluffy white hair, appearing generally "doolally" with the intelligent glint flashing just at the right moment. One should read from "Nemesis" AC's description of her (in her dead friend's message) wandering the garden in her pink woolen scarf to get a better picture. Few people in real life can refrain from showing off their intelligence, and I think Hickson had that gift because how, otherwise, would she have been able to weave it into her Marple?
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom
    There are traces of Geraldine McKewan's Miss Marple in the Book Murder At The Vicarage but after that Agatha Christie changed Miss Marple which Geraldine McKewan obviously couldn't do as it would look odd, she looked as yesim said she was too openmy inquisitive, I wouldn't say Julia McKenzie was too tall but in one scene she is ear-wigging buy a Book case in Pocketfull of Rye (I think) when really she should have been Knitting and talking to someone in a Settee with her back to the Conversation she was obviously listening to, I thought Angela Landesbury was great except for the wig and the smoking.
  • I too think Joan Hickson is the best Miss Marple so far. Also, her movies are not only the closest to the books, but the few changes make the story warmer and more dramatic - e.g. in Caribbean, Victoria befriends Miss Marple and invites her to her Aunt's, thus creating interest in Victoria in the reader, and more shock and sadness at her death; in Nemesis, Michael Rafiel, instead of being a shadowy figure in the background, and finally a weak and barely interesting young man, is given a complex character - kind and helpful to anybody weak and "outside", and at the same time abrasive to anyone in the mainstream  - again making the reader care about what happens to him (though the end, when he is all cleaned up and polite, is rather weak). and there are other examples. I keep on replaying these movies!
  • LadybushrangerLadybushranger New South Wales, Australia
    Agatha Christie.herself wanted Joan Hickson to play Miss Marple,which is good enough for me
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom
    Rather than Jason Raphiel coming over as a shadowy figure in Caribbran Mystery I think there are traces of Colonel Melchett in him, he finds Miss Marple annoying but respects her. and the BBC made Mchael a Brute at first who was an unsung hero who helped others, I could see him using Raphiel House as a Rehabilitation Centre for Ex-Criminals which would not go bad like in the case of the one in They Do It With Mirrors.

    I agree with you Ladybushranger.
  • I am in a dilemma. Just this morning, I received a late Christmas gift from a dear friend who knows I like detective stories and, especially, Agatha Christie.

    She bought me a DVD of the "new" series of Miss Marple starring Geraldine McEwan with "4.50 From Paddington", "Body in the Library","Murder at the Vicarage", and "A Murder is Announced".

    I watched all these on TV when they came out and disliked them because of all the changes made.

    I have all of these on DVD with Joan Hickson ( the only Miss Marple for me).

    What do I do? I cannot bear to watch them, but I know she will eventually ask me if I enjoyed them so what will I say?

  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom
    You could either say Thankyou for your Present, Yes I have watched them (Which wouldn't be a lie as you have seen them) and say that you don't like the Adaptations, If your Friend doesn't want the truth she shouldn't ask you what you thought of them, Don't tell her unless she raises the subject as there is no point telling her unless she asks, I had a similar situation when someone bought me a book of short stories with a Different sleuth as they knew I love the Genre, eventually she asked and I had to say I didn't really like the book, she said she had guessed that was the case as I hadn't mentioned it apart from thanking her for the present when I received it before reading the book. I hope this helps
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom
    You could also say to her you had already seen them on Television and didn't like them when you first saw the series. It is up to you.
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