1/5: The Eye of Apollo

What could possibly be suspicious about a papal outfit and bad acrylic paintings?

I didn’t really understand the ominous opening. Susie is having a nightmare … then there’s a fire in her bedroom. Meanwhile, some kind of Masonic order are moving into a castle by moonlight (in the velvet darkness of the blackest night). It’s ever so foreshadow-y.

With last episode a hop, skip and jump to The Body, we have to wait rather longer this time. I didn’t count the minutes (I was crocheting a rosette; Mrs McCarthy would approve), but the suspense is more who’s-gonna-get-it than whodunnit.

Partly, this is because we already know whodunnit (or, anticipate who probably will). And the likely candidate isn’t even foreign. It’s clearly Kalon: he dresses in papal robes, is a cult leader and is mean to Father Brown. Obviously a bad ‘un. Plus, we learn early that the sun spirits poured down wisdom upon him when he was shot in the head during the war … so we know that his picnic is sans sandwiches.

Kalon has an astral partner (or something like that), who is helpfully bankrolling his church. He also has various disciples who loll about in skimpy Greek tunics, and an eye for Susie. Since she’s vulnerable after losing her parents in the war, and is not exactly living the dream in a resettlement camp, she’s soon under his spell of sunshine and spirit communion.

Frankly, it’s all a bit farcical and annoying, and hardly an advertisement for the subtleties of the scriptwriter’s art. I may be biased, but surely the Susie-kidnapped-by-a-cult situation wouldn’t have limped on as it did given a few shrewd words from Lady Felicia – but she was Lady Not Appearing In This Episode. Not even a shriek.

Anyway, astral partner in the bedroom with the sun god. Confrontation in the chapel, Susie rescued, blah blah. Here endeth an episode about as painful as a head wound.

Though I did like that Kalon’s real name turned out to be Gerald.

Things learnt this episode:

  • It’s just better with Lady Felicia
  • The secret to successful cult leadership is marrying a millionaire
  • Cult leaders prefer blondes
  • Crocheting a rosette helps lacklustre TV go faster
  • Um … I’ve got nothing else