|Original broadcast date:||(UK) 24 May 1997 on BBC1|
Kika Myralees as Zola Zbzewski
Philip McGough as Sam Brickman
Ron Berglas as David Curchin
Rebecca Johnson as Victoria
Nigel Planer as Shelford
Hilary Lyon as Cleo Paterson
Geoffrey McGiven as Barry Opper
Michael Mellinger as Mr. Schmitz
Ralf Beck as Rudi
Shona Morris as Shelford's wife
Nick Maloney as Stage Doorman
Leo Dorlan as Delivery man
View guest cast
Zola Zbzewski is being interviewed for television as a promotional exercise to help sell her book, "Finding My Form". Zola is a self confessed plastic beauty, who has had ten years of cosmetic surgery to turn her into a beauty. At 19 her first boyfriend got her pregnant and walked away leaving her emotionally scared. She knew then that she had to be beautiful in order to be noticed (etc. etc.!).
During the interview it's revealed that Zola had an affair with her plastic surgeon, David Curchin. Zola claims that he became obsessed with making her perfect, and insisted on performing operations. However when Curchin makes a surprise appearance on the show he tells the interviewer that,
".... having ploughed through the record of our so called relationship, I was some what surprised to find it classified as biography. I would have thought fantasy fiction came nearer the mark."
He then goes on to say the operations he performed were at her insistence not his. He then tells her that he is going to sue Zola for defamation. Zola's manager then comes on and stops the interview. Back at her home, Zola gets sympathy from her daughter, her manager, and her latest lover Rudi.
Meanwhile Jonathan Creek is phoning Adam Klaus to see how his latest illusion is going - an elephant levitation. The rehearsal is not going well, the elephant is clearly distressed, and more than one can of air freshener is going to be needed before the next performance can take place!
Back at Zola's house her daughter, Victoria, is getting ready to go out when she notices a peeping tom outside. Rudi has gone out leaving Zola alone in the house. Before she leaves Victoria warns Zola about the peeping tom who has been going around with a video camera.
Jonathan then appears at the theatre to see how things are going and is informed that the elephant died due to heart failure.
Curchin is then seen at home and turns on the TV to see Zola's interview being broadcast. When the door bell rings he turns off the TV and goes to answer the door. As he peers through the spy hole in the door, he is shot. The killer placing the gun over their side of the spy hole.
Maddy then turns off the sound on her telly as her publicist Barry phones. Talking about her latest book, he confirms their lunch date for tomorrow. Turning the sound back on she hears of Zola's fat being sucked out and placed elsewhere. Totally off her food now, she channel hops and sees the end of Summer Holiday, Porridge, and Newsnight. Seeing nothing of interest, she turns off the TV, and looks again at a picture of a man who she is going to meet for a blind date.
By now Curchin's body has been found, along with an earring left at the scene.
Maddy meets Barry for lunch, and across the road spies a wardrobe that will go perfectly in her spare room. She nips across the road and buys it immediately! While she's there Barry's mobile phone rings and he takes a message for Maddy. Zola's daughter has been on to him to see if she will investigate Curchin's murder and clear the obvious suspect - her mother. Zola has been arrested for his murder.
Zola has been granted bail, but as she has only her word that she was home alone on the night of Curchin's death things aren't looking good! There are two main problems. She has no-one to confirm her alibi, and the earring found at the scene has Zola's skin cells on it! An earring that Zola denies having and Maddy throws open the suggestion that someone may have placed Zola's skin cells on it from the samples that Curchin had.
Maddy leaves to go and meet her blind date at a pub. Which just happens to be next door to the theatre that Adam is playing at! So when Jonathan shows up and says hi to Maddy and her date, she isn't really surprised. Shelford introduces himself to Jonathan and proceeds to explain that he placed an advert in a newspaper column, and Maddy replied to it. Needless to say the picture Shelford sent Maddy was taken a good few years ago! Jonathan suggests they all go for a meal. While Shelford is in the loo, Jonathan asks how Zola's case is going, and she fills him in so far. Jonathan then guesses correctly that Maddy was trying to make him insanely jealous. Unfortunately as Shelford doesn't quite match up to his picture the plan failed miserably!
Whilst back at Zola's house, Maddy and Zola stumble upon a video camera in the garden. They proceed to play back the tape on it, and it shows Zola at home on the night Curchin was killed. Maddy realises it when Zola goes channel hopping (like she herself did) and recognises all the programmes she sees (Summer Holiday etc!). Thus Zola now has an alibi! The police take the tape, and in case they lose them, Zola and Maddy have their own copies as backup. Maddy then phones Jonathan to gloat down the phone that the case has been solved without him.
A while later Maddy is unpacking her shopping when the phone rings. Not in the mood for talking she lets the answer phone pick it up, but the caller doesn't leave a message. Maddy then gets buzzed from the front door, the wardrobe she bought is being delivered. Unfortunately it's too big to go in the lift, and she lives on the 4th floor. As she checks the wardrobe (by opening the doors etc.) the delivery men quickly do a runner! Luckily for Maddy Shelford decides to pay an unexpected visit, and offers to help her with the wardrobe.
Eventually and with a few stops along the way, Shelford puts the wardrobe in Maddy's spare room and then excuses himself. After he leaves, Maddy checks the wardrobe again, and is shocked when Zola's body falls out of the wardrobe, dead. Somewhere between the ground floor and Maddy's flat someone has deposited Zola's dead body into the wardrobe....but how? Needless to say Maddy calls Jonathan to get his help! Zola has been hit on the back of the head with a blunt instrument.
Jonathan visits the flat, and checks out all the evidence. The wardrobe has no trap doors or lose panels, and the only thing bugging him is a geranium head which he found on the floor outside near the bins at the back of the block of flats (which are underneath the spare bedroom window). There is also a bent pipe just below Maddy's window.
Back at Zola's house Victoria is told of her mother's death, and a police woman finds a piece of iron piping.
While discussing the situation in Maddy's flat Jonathan asks if anything strange had happened before hand. Maddy mentions the strange phone call that didn't leave a message. Jonathan tries dialling 1471 (to find out the phone number of the person who called - nice little BT service we have in the UK!) but no number has been recorded. The caller could have withheld their number or it could have been a mobile phone.
Maddy then receives another call informing her that a piece of iron piping which has blood stains on matching Zola's has been found at Zola's house. The police have also matched the iron filings in Zola's head to the pipe. This means either someone went back to the house to dump the murder weapon, or they killed Zola at her home and then brought her 5 miles to Maddy's flat!
Jonathan then takes another look at the video footage of Zola that the peeping tom took. As the peeping tom used a pan shot instead of a tracking shot, Jonathan deduces that the man was under six feet tall and standing on a box (the fence they filmed over is about 6 feet tall). Jonathan then goes off to investigate the geranium by looking through the rubbish bins.
Maddy then receives a visit from Shelford bearing gifts of underwear! Maddy invites him in and tells him point blank that it won't work,
"Look, it's not that I don't find you attractive. No that's not true, it is that I don't find you attractive. This has no effect on you as a person, you're very warm and kind and generous. It's just that I can't find it in myself to want to spend another second of my life in your company! Do you understand? It could never work - not even as science fiction! You and me are a total no no."
Sadly Shelford still doesn't get the message, and Maddy despairs! However Jonathan chooses this moment to return from his bin enquiries, and Maddy decides to lie and says she's sleeping with Jonathan! She then kisses Jonathan in front of Shelford, who promptly leaves. If you look closely you see the kiss go through 3 stages. First Jonathan's shock, then his understanding and going along with it, and then....well it seems like they are both enjoying it and forget about Shelford altogether!
After Shelford leaves, Maddy stops the kiss and demands to know what the hell Jonathan smells of. "Two week old halibut" he replies. Jonathan then shows Maddy a video tape he found in the bins. When they watch it they realise who killed Curchin. They then proceed to Zola's house and explain all to Victoria, Zola's manager and Rudi.
To start with they ask Mr. Brickman (Zola's manager) what his mobile phone number is. He is shifty about it, and Victoria grabs his phone and tells them. Maddy then asks why he called her flat just before the wardrobe arrived, to make sure she wasn't in. Jumping to the wrong conclusion Victoria accuses him of killing her mother! He then admits that he loved her. And that was why (Maddy explains) he filmed her.
Maddy then shows them the peeping tom video again, and Jonathan explains his thinking behind the height of the man (the pan or tracking shot thing!). They then show them a second video which is just clips of the end of Summer Holiday, Porridge etc. So Zola wasn't watching the TV, but playing a video.... In other words, the alibi was a fake, and she did in fact kill Curchin.
Brickman then explains that Zola called him as soon as she realised about the earring. He came up with the idea of the peeping tom, and filmed her the following evening. Unfortunately when Maddy was given her copy of the tape, Victoria accidentally picked up the wrong one! She gave Maddy the specially edited one of Summer Holiday etc. Zola and Brickman knew that if Maddy watched the tape the game would be up, and so they set about getting it back.
Brickman called Maddy's flat to make sure no-one was in, as he got the answer phone he wrongly assumed she wasn't in. Brickman then waited in the car and Zola went round the back to find a way in. She then got the lift to the 4th floor and climbed into Maddy's flat via the window (on the way bending the pipe which Jonathan noted later). Brickman waited for ages outside, and then he heard sirens, so knew something was wrong, in a panic he drove away. He doesn't know what happened to Zola, but Jonathan makes an educated guess.
Zola gets into the flat, finds the tape and swaps it for the one Maddy should have taken. As she's leaving Maddy and Shelford enter the flat with the wardrobe. Instinctively Zola heads for the room she thinks Maddy is least likely to go to (i.e. the spare room) and throws the tape out the window decapitating the geranium on the way. Alas it's the one room they do head for, so panicking Zola hides behind the door.
However when Zola's body was discovered she had received a blow to the back of the head, everyone assumed she'd be bludgeoned to death. However that wasn't the case. Brickman explains when he went to pick her up, as she walked out the door a piece of piping fell off the scaffolding and hit her on the head (Zola was having a new front to her house being built). She was knocked for six, but after a few minutes said she felt fine and that they couldn't waste any time getting the tape back. So they left for Maddy's flat.
So, Zola is stuck behind the door of the spare room, and her concussion is now serious. Thinking that there is still a chance she can escape she climbs into the wardrobe as it's being pushed into the room. She hopes that the wardrobe won't be opened immediately and she can wait until it's quiet and then leave. A few moments after she steps into the wardrobe the concussion is fatal, so when Maddy opens it, voila a dead body.
We then see Jonathan and Maddy outside her flat getting out of a taxi after attending the elephant's funeral. Maddy is then accosted by Shelford's wife who takes off her shoe, and sticks the heel up Maddy's nose. She tells Maddy to keep away from her husband. Jonathan laughs slightly and admits he had noticed a pale line around Shelford's finger as if he wore a wedding ring. This doesn't go down well with Maddy and she promptly shuts the door to the building in Jonathan's face!