2/2: The Maddest of All

Mad, bad and pyjama-clad.

It’s the last episode. Not the last episode, but mine – or at least of those that I’m going to write about. I don’t know that I have the will to limp on once the carnival holiday is over. Plus, come tomorrow I’ll be living in a vicarage and – literally – heaven knows if there’s internet.

It would, then, have been nice if this episode had been yesterday’s. The ghostly romp was entertainingly mysterious; intrigue in an asylum less so.

The plot begins with an asylum inmate collapsing in the middle of the village. “Murder,” is his last word – and then he’s dead. Or, not so much because he later sits up in his coffin in the middle of the funeral. There’s surprisingly little screaming.

To the asylum goes Father Brown, shamelessly investigating. He’s trailed by New Inspector, Inspector Trenchcoat having departed last episode. Just as we were getting beyond the ‘Inspector won’t take Father Brown seriously’ trope, a new cardboard cut-out heads to square one. Te-di-um.

In the asylum there are some mad people who are mad. There is a mean nurse who is mean. There is a suspicious psychiatrist who is suspicious. There is a body in the well.

Father Brown goes undercover, getting himself admitted by throwing tomato soup. (That is not madness; tomato soup is a sin. And, Heinz is pretty obviously foreign, innit?) Now we’re just waiting it out for his snooping to be interrupted by mean nurse being mean and the psychiatrist turning out to be the maddest of all. There’s practically a glass ring left by the cheeky pint the scriptwriter had to celebrate the stuff just writing itself.

Ending: much as predicted.

Things learnt this episode:

  • It’s so easy to get yourself sectioned. And, they provide pyjamas.
  • Mrs McCarthy is a rubbish sleuthing assistant.
  • It is possible to run a whole asylum with just one nurse.
  • People will probably leave you alone if you take to communicating entirely in Biblical verses.
  • I’m all out.