This is a job for Holmes... Sherlock Holmes!

A commotion outside; the dining hall doors fly open; Lord John staggers in. Guests have barely a moment to put down their drinks before he lies dead on the floor. That foul play was responsible is in no doubt. This is a job for Holmes... Sherlock Holmes.

Who Killed His Lordship Murder Mystery Event

It's a strange job - but somebody's got to do it! Last week was no exception at the very beautiful Tynley Hall Hotel in Hampshire. The Murder Mystery Company team arrived with magnifying glass in hand and created quite the commotion running our popular Who Killed His Lordship? event - leaving even the venue staff wondering 'who dunnit?'.

One of our resident actors, Mark Flitton, seen in recent BBC One dramas Hidden and Silk, donned the famous cape and pipe and burst into the room as the one and only Sherlock Holmes, whipping the lovely clients into an absolute frenzy!

Who Killed his Lordship Team Building Murder Mystery

Event Manager Zoe Taylor who was running the evening commented:

'It was one of those fantastic events where the clients were running around screaming for help before the starters had even been served! Mark is a fantastic comedic actor and his improvisational skills are second to none - that teamed with a brilliant plot line and fancy dress costumes for all the teams, made the night so much fun for everyone'

Our client wrote afterwards:

'Just to say a big thank you to you, Zoe and the rest of the team for last night. We had a super time – Sherlock and PC World were superb and we all had a really enjoyable evening.'

Well isn't that lovely to hear? It seems murder can be fun...

If your team thinks they can solve our devious plot and catch the murderer in time for coffee and truffles, why not give us a call on 0845 006 06 06 or check out our other fantastic murder mystery events at - We're dying to entertain you!

Murder Mystery Days: CSI Team Building in London

Last week, The Murder Mystery Company put our clients' investigative skills to the test with a brilliant CSI:City event. Teams were tasked with training as CSI agents and solving a baffling murder case - a quest which found them meeting up with mysterious contacts all over London, analysing clues and exploring evidence. CSI: City Briefing

Armed with their team iPads, radios and suspect case files, teams examined fingerprints, studied forensic clues and dissected witness statements in order to catch the killer. After plenty of teamwork and deliberation, the killer (and winning team) was announced, to the excitement of all!

Event Manager Katrina commented;

"CSI:City is a fabulous daytime Murder Mystery event because it gets the teams out and about, working together and having fun. Plus, who hasn't wanted to be an awesome crime-fighting detective, if only for one day?!"

Are you interested in making a Murder Mystery Day your team building event of the year? Visit our website or call 0845 006 06 06 to speak to a member of our lovely team.

Murder Mystery Parties Receive Royal Pardon

According to this article from Now Magazine's website (we read well and widely here at the Murder Mystery Company), the Duchess of Cambridge is planning a murder mystery party for Prince William's 30th birthday party.

Far be it for us to mistrust such a fine journalistic source - it has long been our go-to destination for horoscopes and online bingo opportunities.

That said, it seems murder mysteries are about to be launched back to the front of the public consciousness- which is just where they belong! While we would certainly recommend our own One Fatal Knight for the Duchess (long live the king...), the news made us consider another question entirely.

What is it about the macabre and mysterious that keeps captivating audiences year after year? What draws us away from the light and into the night?

From the Brother's Grimm to Doctor Who, evil and those that cause it have haunted our imagination and waited patiently for us underneath our beds since we had beds (before beds, evil had to wait in another room).  But it's not just the bad guys that get our attention - it's really the hero we're routing for, the quiet avenger, whether he comes with a deerstalker or a crumpled mac, a typewriter or a pair of sunglasses.

And perhaps that's part of the great appeal of a good murder mystery. The participants are the hero. They stand on the line between good and evil, the lone voices of justice in a world where the lights are dim.

A well executed participative murder mystery is like a great novel or movie, with the immersion jacked up to eleven. It is an opportunity to suspend disbelief for a few short hours, to imagine another world, another set of rules, and flit around the coat tails of danger from the comfort of your own home, venue, or, indeed, palace.

Like a roller coaster we know we are safe, and that all the peril is an illusion, all the danger merely smoke and mirrors...

But that doesn't stop us from screaming.

TV Detective World Series Result - Caine vs Batman

Well, the results are in on the latest round of the The Murder Mystery Company's TV Detective World Series. Who will be joining such legends as Jessica Fletcher, Miss Marple and Thomas Magnum in the Winner's Circle? This contest was the most popular yet, and votes came in thick and fast. Horatio Caine Vs Batman

It gives us great pleasure to announce the winner is...Batman

The caped crusader trounced Miami Dade's finest in the greatest landslide victory yet! With 90% of the vote, Batman has made it clear that he remains a force to be reckoned with.

The judges felt that voters just believed more in Batman on the day, and compared to Caine found him a down to earth, normal character in a world too often populated with over the top eccentrics.

"No thanks are REQUIRED", the caped crusader said in his usual humble yet odd tones. "It is... enough to know that I SERVE the ... people of Gotham".

Caine on the other hand looked crestfallen, and spent twelve minutes putting on and removing his sunglasses, before finally stepping forward and making this statement:

"Well, I guess the vote is in", he said, putting his sunglasses back on. "But the jury's out".

The following silence was awkward, and the following five minutes spent waiting for Caine's Hummer to turn up to collect him couldn't have passed soon enough.

So Batman joins Fletcher, Marple and Magnum in the winner's enclosure and begins the wait for round two.

Not had enough murder mystery yet? Join us for more...

A Guide To Booking A Successful Murder Mystery - Step Five

Bloody rosette and photo of horse raceSo you've looked through the proposal and found the murder mystery you want. Hopefully you'll be feeling excited by now as you should have an idea of the theme surrounding the murder mystery and what it entails! As the organiser it's important for you to know the timings and logistics of the event. This means you can relax on the night, have fun, and let the event company take over. Make sure you ask your event coordinator any questions you have so you understand exactly how the events going to run.

Booking the event:

  • Call or e-mail the company to book your murder mystery.
  • Confirm your chosen event, date and venue with your dedicated event coordinator.
  • They will finalise the arrangements, answer any questions and liaise with the venue you've chosen.
  • Closer to the date, you will be introduced to your event manager for the day (or evening).

Final Planning:

Once you have confirmed the event and venue, you can begin to let the team know the plan (unless you’re planning on surprising them) and tick off your final check list.

  • Catering - does anyone attending have dietary requirements? Vegetarian, vegan, halal, lactose intolerant, nut allergies
  • Prizes - usually the company will supply a prize for the winning team. Think about whether you would like any additional for individuals.
  • Teams - split the confirmed guests into teams/tables. Mix up the departments, seniority and put people together that maybe don’t know each other. Think about your key aims for the murder mystery, this should help.
  • Invitations - make sure they include all (or as much of) the information you want the guests to know:
          • Date and Time (pretty important, I would recommend including this one!)
          • Location and Directions (as above)
          • Programme (if tied in with a meeting or conference etc..)
          • Transport information (if applicable)
          • What teams people are in/table plan (this is up to you if you want to let people know prior to the event)
          • Dress Code (this is particularly important if the murder mystery is a surprise)

    Cork hat with blood spat and bugs

    Remember that your event coordinator will help with the final planning. They will advise if any particular footwear is required, check whether you need additional prizes and even put guests into teams if you'd prefer it was completely random. However it's always good to have a think about the above beforehand; preparation is the key to success after all!

    Well, we're almost done. The guide is nearly complete. Next time we'll be discussing 'on the day and post event'. In the meantime, take a look at our website or give us a call on 0845 006 06 06.

TV Detective World Series Round 1 - Knight vs Buchannon

It's that time again! Here at The Murder Mystery Company we are working tirelessly around the clock to work out once and for all who is the greatest television detective to ever grace our screens, and the fifth match of the first round starts now!

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As ever the result is up to you!

Pre Match Introduction

On paper this round looks like a whitewash before it begins - one man was a crime fighting dark avenger, the other one was a lifeguard!

But no - Buchannon was able to enter the World Series on the back of his two series spin-off show Baywatch Nights, that saw slow motion lifeguard Mitch Buchannon become a private detective... at night!

Round One - Pursuing Villains

One of the things that made Knight such a fearsome crime fighter was his car. The Knight Industries Two Thousand, or KITT, is not an ordinary car. It talks, it drives itself, it has an arsenal of inbuilt weaponry, it can hit 300mph and it can make wise cracks in combat situations.

Buchannon, on the other hand, likes running. His preferred method of getting from A to B is running barefoot along the beach in slow motion. The slow motion itself doesn't help, but Buchannon's problems don't end there. Due to his firm ethical code he always showers and towel dries his feet before putting his socks and shoes back on, because he's against 'taking the beach with him' when he leaves. This severely limits him in a high speed pursuit environment should his target leave the main beach area.

Round Two - Being Even The Slightest Bit Realistic

Knight looks sheepish coming into this round - there's no denying his car with its artificial intelligence and all was a little bit far fetched back in 1982. But what has the intervening thirty years shown us? Well, it's not quite the same thing, but the Judges decide Knight gets a couple of points for Satellite Navigation. As children the Judges watched in wonder, but now as adults they too can experience what it is like to have heated arguments with a patronising, computerised voice as to which exit is the correct one and whether or not to turn around at the next opportunity.

Buchanan is all bluster coming into this round, talking about his investigations into corporate embezzlement, escaped prisoners, missing persons and kidnapping. True, most of these were quite beach-heavy crimes, but not necessarily unrealistic.

But what's this? On closer examination, Judges reveal that in the second series of the show an element of the paranormal should be introduced. Buchannon is left red faced and mumbling explanations in the face of mummies, werewolves, reanimated 900 year old Vikings and the occult. The below episode summary from sums up the mood perfectly:

"While letting go on their day off, Ryan drags a reluctant Mitch into the fortune-telling booth at the pier. An Indian guide sends them into an eerie tunnel from which Mitch and Ryan emerge to watch helplessly [as] their future unfolds"

 A poor show from Buchannon, and he looks ashamed. He should.

Round Three - Having A Drinking Problem

Every good TV Detective should have character flaws, and the most common is alcoholism. But a quick look at Knight makes it obvious he doesn't have a problem - being behind the wheel so often it would be impractical to drink to excess, and Knight would rather have full use of his faculties when hitting the booster switch and accelerating from zero to 60 in 0.2 seconds, thank you very much.

Buchannon laughs at the very idea of a drinking problem! He spends his days saving lives on a busy beach full of attractive members of the public, and then when the sun goes down he has to immediately get changed and begin investigating whatever crazy notion his writers have come up with for this week. Would that he had the time! This round ends a draw.

Final Round - Being Responsible For The Collapse Of The Berlin Wall Through The Gift Of Music

Knight starts this round with confidence, claiming that this round 'rings a bell'. But Judges discover Knight works in various locations around the USA, without finding the time to visit Europe. What is even more telling though is that Knight stopped making his own shows in 1986 whereas the Berlin Wall was still going strong until 1989! Knight has to face facts - he wasn't involved.

Buchannon also claims that he thinks he might have had something to do with this, and the dates make a little more sense for him - but no, on closer examination it seems that during the fall of the Berlin Wall Buchannon was working as a lifeguard in Los Angeles County, California. Further scheduling clashes (many involving montages) rule Buchannon out of having any involvement in the reunification of Germany.

And there you have it - a strange selection of rounds for these two icons, but now it's over to you. After all, only one can win.

Voting closes in one month, and in the meantime, if you think you can do better than Baywatch Nights (you can), then prove it!

Next Time...

TV Detective World Series Result - McNulty vs Marple

The results are in for the third heat in the opening round of this year's flagship event - the TV Detective World Series. McNulty Vs Marple

It was a closely fought battle, but we can now announce that the winner is...

In the closest contest so far Miss Marple just edged into the lead in the closing moments of the round.

Judges commented that this battle split the audience down the middle, with the elderly sleuth just having a better turn out on the day.

McNulty took his defeat in his stride, saying "it's all the game, and the game is the game is the game and the game is played by the players of the game who play the game and the game is played and played and played".

To be fair, he had been drinking.

Marple joins other winners Jessica Fletcher and Magnum in the Winner's Circle, and can enjoy a nice cup of tea while watching the rest of this opening round play out.

For more information on the opening round take a look around the blog, or for more information about us, take a look at our site.

TV Detective World Series Round 1 - Mulder vs Sloan

Here at The Murder Mystery Company we have been tasked with the momentous task of organising the TV Detective World Series - and now it's time for the fifth heat of the first round. Fox Mulder vs Dr Mark Sloan

Another week, another battle. This one has been tipped by critics to go the distance, as two icons of television, one daytime and one evening, meet in the theatre of conflict for the first time. Who wins? You decide...

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Round One - Size of Torch

Mulder confidently strides to the back of his FBI issue Lexus and pops the trunk.  From inside he just manages to pick up a torch so big it doesn't even fit in the main part of the car. Honestly, this thing looks like seven 1990 era mobile phones taped together. He fires it up, and the resulting beam is so powerful it cuts a hole in the wooden wall of the Judges' portakabin, before running out of massive batteries in about three seconds - a confident start from this supernatural sleuth.

Sloan doesn't feel comfortable in this round, and the judges soon see why - he produces a small, thin torch from the front pocket of his white doctor's coat that is about the same size of a pen. He clicks it on and the resulting beam is just pathetic. Sloan tries to explain that it is fit for purpose, and enormous torches can make patients nervous about opening their mouths and saying 'ahhh', but there's no getting around it - a poor opener from the silver-haired detective.

Round Two - Sidekick Arriving Just In time

This is a bone of contention with Mulder and he doesn't mind letting the judges know it - his sidekick, FBI Special Agent Dana Scully, never arrives just in time. In fact she is absolutely brilliant at arriving just after just in time. Whether Mulder has just experienced a UFO taking off, or a Vampire turning to dust in the first rays of sunlight, or the government doing something shifty, Scully is always looking at something else, off at her godson's birthday or unconscious! Mulder has lost track of the times he has turned to Scully saying "See! There's your proof!" only to see Scully over on the other side of the secret research facility wrestling with a vending machine.

A good recovery here from Sloan - after following up on his initial suspicions of a potential murderer, he likes nothing more than to track the killer down in a deserted theatre or disused subway station for a revealing dénouement, safe in the knowledge that when the killer admits his crime and says "and all that remains is to kill you, you meddling doctor of medicine!" Sloan's son, Detective Steve Sloan, will arrive with some other law enforcement professionals to disarm and arrest the villain.

Round Three - Whether or not The Truth Is Out There

Mulder's ears prick up when this round is announced, as the truth being out there are the very words he lives by. But his hope of a strong performance in this round are dashed as the judges demonstrate, via 202 TV episodes and two movies, that the truth is not out there. Mulder's search for the truth is an ever changing web of contradictory conspiracy theories, bright lights in the sky, unreliable narrators and being knocked unconscious.

Sloan finds himself presented with a mysterious web of lies and deceit almost every week, but by the end of the episode has the truth in the form of a confession that is overheard by several members of the police department. Flimsy circumstantial evidence notwithstanding, the sheer fact that murderers are willing to give a full account of their guilt means that Sloan excels in proving the truth is indeed out there.

Round Four - Keeping Track Of Own Family Members

Mulder was hoping not to draw this round, and his frustration is palpable. He launches straight away into a diatribe about how he knows exactly where both of his parents are, thank you very much, and has come to see Scully as family as the years have progressed. But there's an elephant in the room, and the judges have to patiently remind an irate Mulder that it was the mysterious disappearance of his sister when he was young that became the inspiration for his entire detective career. A poor showing in this round.

Sloan, on the other hand, keeps excellent track of his family members. Not only does his son live with him in his Malibu beach house, they work together constantly - despite the fact that one is a doctor and the other a police officer! They don't let that simple fact stop them, and in fact find more and more elaborate ways to spend time with each other. Sloan also has a sister and a brother - and last time he checked, neither of them were abducted by aliens when he was young! A strong, confident performance from Sloan.

So there you have it. Another tough battle, and you tell us who should win. Voting closes Monday 25th June.

In the meantime, why not have a crack at solving your very own murder mystery?

Next Time:

It's Hasselhoff vs Hasselhoff with:

Mike Horner

TV Detective World Series Result - Fitz vs Magnum

Well, it's been a month - the votes have been counted and checked in the second heat of the first round of the TV Detective World Series! It gives us great pleasure to announce that the winner is...

With just over two thirds of the vote it was a clear victory for everybody's favourite moustachioed PI.

Fitz put up a strong fight and can leave the contest with his pride intact.

Judges remarked that the detection skills of each combatant were high, and in the end it came down to a popularity contest. Fitz, while brilliant, is a difficult man to love. Magnum PI on the other hand has a nice smile and an amazing moustache.

But Magnum's contest is not sealed. A nice moustache can be relied upon for getting through the first round, but he will need to bring more to the table against some of the icons that are still in the competition.

We have already seen Fletcher meddle her way into the second round - this reporter is concerned that Magnum's moustache alone will not be enough should he be drawn against her in the coming rounds.

If the excitement of the competition is getting too much for you, relax a while in our main website for further murder mystery shenanigans. 

TV Detective World Series Round 1 - Caine Vs Batman

Another week, another battle between two of TV's greatest detectives! That's right, it's not just award winning events from The Murder Mystery Company - we like to discuss the important issues of the day! This time...

Caine Vs Batman

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This match pits a man who uses hi-tech gadgets and cheesy dialogue to solve a series of far fetched crimes perpetrated by ridiculous villains... against Batman.

That's right - CSI:Miami's finest Horatio Caine has drawn the Caped Crusader himself in the first round. Who wins? You decide...

Round One - Realism

Caine takes off his sunglasses, says a few words, puts them on again, says some more, then sits down with what could possibly be described as a smile. He is, after all, a scientist. Part of his job is to use modern forensic skills to bring murderers to book. He would never be guilty of overstepping the - oh hang on, what's this? A security tape of the victim, with the killer just out of shot? What are you going to do about that, Horatio? What? You're going to... zoom in on the victim and then enhance so much you can identify the killer by the reflection in the victim's eyeball? Oh, Horatio...

Batman predominantly targets Supervillains and their goons. While at first glance it may appear that this is not realistic, they are clearly defined as Supervillains. Who are we to judge how realistic or not those portrayals are? Exactly. We're no one. He's Batman.

Round Two - Way Of Speaking

Caine does a good job here. As the father of 'Sunglasses Punctuation', he likes to begin a sentence, pause while he puts on his sunglasses, and then deliver those last crucial words. The only drawback here is that he relies heavily on being set up by a good feeder line, usually supplied by Frank.

For example, at the aftermath of a shooting from a passing boat that targetted a series of Miami party goers, Frank opines that it looks like a drive-by. Caine's response?

"A drive-by", (puts on sunglasses), "Miami style".

Batman, on the other hand... puts in PAUSES at... random stages OF EACH sentence and... emphasises RANDOM WORDS for no discernible reason. He also uses the word 'criminal' as if it is a swear word. He is... LOVELY.

Round Three - Car

Caine is proud of his gas-guzzling General Motors Hummer, based on the military Humvee and capable of performing in excess of half a mile to the gallon. It is the perfect vehicle to transport him, his sunglasses and his fingerprint dusting kit from crime scene to crime scene.

Batman has the Batmobile. This round actually defaults to the caped crusader.

Final Round - Sidekick(s)

Caine surrounds himself with assistants, each bringing their own skills and abilities to the crime lab. Whether it is beautiful Calleigh Duquesne with her gun fetish, beautiful Dr Alexx Woods with her prepensity to talk to dead bodies and call them 'sweetie' or beautiful Tim Speedle with his inability to clean his gun properly leading to it jamming on him and him being shot dead, Caine has the team to do the job.

Oh dear, oh dear. After such a strong showing in the previous rounds, Batman has to face facts - no matter how he tries to dress it up, his sidekick is Robin. The judges clear their throats awkwardly and try to overstate the role played by Alfred the Butler, but the massive drag factor Robin puts on proceedings is evident and Batman accepts crushing defeat in this round.

So there you have it. Two extravagant figures of TV Detection, but which is the best? As ever, you decide. Voting closes in one month, on Friday 15th June.

In case you were concerned when reading the judges report that the author has predetermined which combatant is best, let us remind you of our fondness for and close relationship with CSI based television shows!

Add your votes above, your comments below, and as ever, feel free to check out what we do when we're not doing this.

Next Time...

Fox Mulder Vs Dr Mark Sloan

TV Detective World Series Result - Fletcher vs Lewis

Fletcher vs Lewis Well it was a cracking first round fight and started the TV Detective World Series off with a bang.

The voting is now closed, and it gives us great pleasure to announce the winner is...


Of course it was! With just more than three quarters of the vote, Fletcher goes through to the second round in comfort.

Lewis shouldn't be disheartened by this, and a quarter of the vote against such a contender as Fletcher is a very strong showing indeed.

On the day though, judges felt he was a little too functional, too obvious. A policeman doing his job is never going to compare with being a kindly old lady who writes mystery novels and solves murders in her spare time.

Some of the judges commented that before the next World Series Lewis would do well to flesh out his character, maybe take up hang gliding or move to Jersey and develop a drink problem. Or get an exotic pet. Or a pipe.

Or become a magician.

Fletcher on the other hand can now take a breather and study the results for the other first round matches as they come in. She may even have time to visit a friend and find one of their relatives mysteriously dies, the police are out of their depth and it really is down to her...

A big thank you to everyone who voted, and don't forget that our own love of Jessica Fletcher inspired us to create a brand new corporate event!

'Ello 'Ello 'Ello...what's all this then?

  Event Manager Zoe Goode gets ready to help solve the mystery behind Who Killed His Lordship?

Event Manager Zoe Goode dressed as a police woman, ready to for a murder mystery night!

Event Manager Tamara said "I love Zoe playing PC Whirl, she looks like butter wouldn't melt but in reality she's a real tough cop, not to be messed with! Teams always think they can charm information out of her, but not our Zoe, she always stays true to her role till the bitter end."

Check out Who Killed His Lordship? and our other murder mysteries at our main website!

A Guide To Booking A Successful Murder Mystery - Step Four

Step Four – Contacting Companies Next step you need to talk to a murder mystery company. You may want to talk to several to compare - hopefully if you talk to us you may not need to spend more time looking!

Whether you’re inviting 15 or 150, you are likely to know many of the guests; meaning the events success will reflect on you - making the buying decision pretty important. However with hundreds of companies out there all promising to deliver the murder mystery you want, how do you decide who will work best for you?

Chocolate, poison and blood; the ultimate murder mystery party ingredients

You need to have confidence in the company you are buying from, feel like you are in capable hands and most importantly, that you are getting value for money. Here are our top tips to watch out for:


  • Are they a specialist murder mystery company?
  • Is their focus corporate events, hen parties or private events and does this match your needs?
  • Does it look professional?
  • Is it up to date?


  • Do their event ideas make you want to participate or find out more?
  • Do the events work for your group size?

Track record

  • Do they have an extensive client list?
  • Are there lots of testimonials to browse?
  • How long have they been going?
  • Any awards?

Oscar and bloody popcornOn the phone?

  • Do they sound like they know what they’re talking about?
  • Did they ask about your guests and specific requirements?
  • Any tailoring offered?
  • How was their venue knowledge? Will they help source one?
  • You should expect nothing less than experienced professional and friendly event coordinators.

What if it all goes wrong?

  • Murder mysteries should be risk assessed and method statements in place where required.
  • The company should hold public and products liability insurance policy.
  • If you don’t get the above by return it’s a big red flag!
  • Event managers and/or staff should be First Aid Qualified. Amazingly not all event companies have a first aider on every event.

To talk to us about your next murder mystery party, give us a call on 0845 006 06 06 or if you'd rather, complete a quick enquiry form and we'll get back to you.

Next step - booking the event and final planning!

Murder at Bracket Hall - Sherlock Prepares

Our very own Terry Bird practices his 'Sherlock' face behind the scenes of Murder at Bracket Hall.

Event Manager Zoe says "Terry completely throws himself into the role of Sherlock. He is one of the best at audience participation - getting everyone up, out of their seats and giggling into their napkins from his very first entrance. He once did a spectacular forward roll entrance to add to the drama - let's just say it left an impression!"

Learn more about Murder at Bracket Hall and our other evening murder mysteries at our main website!

TV Detective World Series Round 1 - McNulty Vs Marple

At The Murder Mystery Company we continue to answer the important questions; what are our most popular murder mysteries? Have we won any awards recently? And, of course, which TV Detective is best. McNulty Vs Marple

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The third battle of the opening round of the TV Detective World Series pits one of England's most treasured icons against The Wire's most celebrated Baltimore PD Detective. Can gritty realism and bad language beat knowing one's airs and graces and being in the right place at the right time? Can being a functioning alcoholic trying to stay afloat in a sea of human villainy compare with the ability to remember a seemingly innocuous remark made during the opening five minutes, only to reveal it with a flourish at the climax?

You decide!

Round One - Cleaning Up The Streets Of West Baltimore

Drawing this round seems to be a stroke of luck for McNulty, who for years was employed to do just that. Over the years he had some successes, and ensured that several criminals were locked away. It’s not a perfect round for McNulty though - he would be the first to admit the streets are no cleaner, the cycle of crime and desperation continues and the game keeps on being played.

Despite her high scoring in a series of pre-tournament friendlies, Marple starts this match poorly. She has never even been to West Baltimore, preferring to spend the majority of her time in the quaint English village of St. Mary Mead. A poor start for the elderly detective.

Round Two - At The Dinner Table

McNulty looks shaky from the start of this round. Before even sitting down at the table he’s sheepishly tucked a shiny paper napkin into his unfastened shirt collar, causing eyebrows to rise throughout the arena. When he finally does sit down, he looks at the selection of cutlery available with fear.

Marple, on the other hand, knows exactly what to do in this situation. She expertly navigates her way from soup spoon to fish fork to salad fork without missing a single step.

Round Three - World Weary Cynicism

Whether he’s lamenting “they can’t do the right thing - it ain’t in em”, or simply remarking “they can chew you up, but they gotta spit you back out”, McNulty epitomises cynicism. And who can blame him? The drug and death riddled streets of West Baltimore are no place for a cheery outlook on life. In fact McNulty is SO cynical he doesn’t expect to win this round - it’s probably rigged.

Marple may appear every bit the kindly elderly woman from rural England, but don’t let that fool you. She has dealt with enough murderers in her time to give her a realistic outlook on the world around her. Afflicted with the curse of the amateur sleuth, it is impossible to coincidentally find oneself involved in so many murders without thinking fate is conspiring against you.

Final Round - Being A Kindly Old Lady

Disaster! McNulty can't believe his misfortune in drawing this round. Ever aware that it could have come up, as it has always been a staple of TV Detection, McNulty sinks back into his chair. After a brief exploration from the judges his worst fears are confirmed - McNulty is not, nor ever has been, a kindly old lady. He's not even a woman. A terrible performance on this round.

Marple on the other hand is one of the kindliest old ladies the judges have ever seen. From empathising with the most despicable of murderers to offering the vicar more tea when his cup is empty, Marple can only be fairly described as 'lovely'. But what's this? It appears that Miss Marple is getting a make over and is becoming 39 year old Jennifer Garner! The judges don't know where to look and Marple herself flushes with indignation as she prepares to move to New York and acquire some quirky singleton friends.

So there you have it. A strangely balanced battle between these two TV Detectives from different ends of the spectrum. Who wins? It's up to you. Vote above, comment below, and decide! As ever, voting closes in one month, on Saturday 26th May.

In the meantime, feel free to explore what we get up to when not adjudicating hypothetical face offs, from murder mystery parties to, well, even more murder mysteries!

Next time...

Caine Vs Batman

A Guide To Booking A Successful Murder Mystery - Step Three

We're onto the third step and making good progress! Step Three - Setting the Budget

We understand that often at the initial planning stages budgets have not been set, however it’s worth considering what you will need to budget for.

Event Costs

This is our part in the process. Event costs will include:

  • Actors
  • Live event writers
  • Props
  • Costumes
  • Theming (if required)

Venue Costs

All murder mysteries will require a venue. Costs could include:

  • Room hire
  • Syndicate rooms or ground hire (some murder mysteries may require break out rooms or outdoor space)
  • Overnight accommodation costs (if required for your guests)

Catering & Refreshments

Whatever the type and timings of the murder mystery, food is likely to be required at some point during the day and/or evening (typically a three course meal). Think about the amount you want to spend per head.

It's also worth considering if you will have an open bar or if guests will purchase their own drinks.


Will guests arrive individually or will you be organising transport?


  • Consider combining with another department as the price/head goes down with more guests - you'll get more bang for your buck!
  • Consider incorporating with an upcoming meeting or conference
  • If you are contacting the venue directly, ask for free room hire!
  • Be flexible on dates

Knowing what you need to pay for will hopefully help set a realistic budget for your murder mystery. It's important not just to spend, but to invest - in your staff and your clients. For example, if you're rewarding staff or entertaining clients you need to exceed their expectations to make the event memorable. Would it be beneficial to do less events, but make the ones you do have an impact?!

The Bottom Line

Be realistic about the budget and what you get for your money!

£20/head = Cinema, Pop corn and a Drink £30/head = Meal with half bottle of wine £50/head = Venue with private dining, meal and half bottle of wine/head £80-£150+/head = Popular murder, meal, drinks and more!

Once your budget is set, we'll work hard to fit within it. We'll provide you with the best event options for your group and requirements. We also have over 22 years experience as a recognised venue booking agent and offer a Free Venue Finding Service - take advantage of it!

Next we'll be looking at one of the most important steps - calling us!

TV Detective World Series Round 1 - Fitz Vs Magnum

Here at The Murder Mystery Company we have been keeping track of the TV Detective World Series - it keeps us out of trouble when we are not running award winning murder mysteries! Round 1 continues in the tradition started by the face off between Jessica Fletcher and Inspector Lewis, so without further ado it's time to introduce the combatants:

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This match has been subject to massive speculation. Two heavyweights from different sides of the Atlantic meeting competitively for the first time...

Round One - Car

Fitz looks beaten from the outset of this round - and turning his head can just make out Magnum’s Ferrari parked outside; tactical parking from his opponent or just coincidence? Regardless, Fitz doesn’t drive, as he is almost permanently drunk, so prepares for defeat.

But what’s this? Despite Magnum driving around Hawaii in his iconic Ferrari 308GTS, closer examination of the registration documents shows that Magnum is not the owner - the car belongs to Robin Masters, Magnum’s ‘friend’, and he simply lends Magnum his car whenever he needs it. And his house. This means Fitz isn’t quite as beaten as he had feared, and Magnum is left blushing behind his perfectly sculpted moustache.

Round Two - Character Flaws

Everyone knows TV Detectives need character flaws to make them interesting, and Manchester based Fitz has them in spades; the obese, chain-smoking, adulterous alcoholic with a gambling addiction relaxes into a dominant position.

Magnum is a fair bit more clean living than Fitz. True, he once killed a chinese man for blinking, but on the whole his military background and frequent shows of friendship, loyalty and morality mean he is struggling to make headway in this round. Round Three - Being First Choice To Play Indiana Jones

A turn in fortune for Fitz sees him struggle in this round. Despite double checking, at Fitz’s insistance, with both George Lucas and Steven Spielberg, it turns out he was never first choice to play the iconic professor of archeology. He wasn’t even in the top five!

Magnum does quite well in this round, as he was Lucas's first choice to play Indiana Jones. In a wonderful display of commitment to being Magnum, Magnum refused! He even went on to create an Indy parody episode called Legend of the Lost Art to show how much better Indy would have been with a moustache (no better).

Final Round - Neatness of moustache

Fitz can’t believe his bad luck at drawing this as the final round, and turns to the bottle in dismay. Judges gather around and make sympathetic noises, but there’s no getting away from the simple facts; no matter how drunk Fitz is, or to what hour he was in back street casinos the night before, he is always clean shaven.

Magnum flashes his signature smile and basks in the glory of an easy win. Whether he is infiltrating a boat filled with hired goons, or pretending to be a butler to help Higgins out of a pickle, Magnum’s facial topiary is never called into question.


They have different styles, different skill sets, different girths and different amounts of facial hair. But who wins this round of the TV Detective World Series? It's over to you. As ever, voting is open for one month so will close on Monday 22nd May 2012.

It is statistically unlikely that your life depends on the outcome of this vote, but just in case it does... get voting!

Next Time...

Can't wait a week before your next hit? Take a look at our main site for all your murder mystery needs!

White... Kitchen... Rope

Part 3 in our series looking at the actual effectiveness of the 6 traditional Cluedo weapons focuses on... The Rope

In Cluedo, the rope is represented by a small piece of yellow string, backed up with an ominous photograph of a noose on the corresponding card.

At first glance, a rope doesn't seem to be a good choice for a murder weapon, particularly when you are in a house so filled with other potential tools of terror, like guns and knives. But don't let that fool you - in our exhaustive research we found that in the world of Cluedo the rope is used as a murder weapon exactly one sixth of the time.


The hangman's noose has been scientifically proven to be the most unsettling knot to tie in a piece of rope. Turn up at a loved one's house with a length of rope and tie a few reef knots or sheep shanks, at best you might pique their curiosity. But turn up and sit quietly in the corner tying a noose, perhaps while humming a lullaby and crying - well, you have yourself a situation.

But despite the macabre nature of the noose, is it believable as a murder weapon? Not as a form of suicide, or execution, but one-on-one kill-or-be-killed murder? Just how would one go about committing murder armed with a rope?

Option 1 - Wrap it around their neck and then squeeze until they stopped breathing. This is something the intended victim would be most disinclined to do. If you felt that you didn't have the strength or bucking bronco skills to hang on for the requisite amount of time then you have a couple of other options.

Option 2 - Build a gallows. This is quite labour intensive and difficult to conceal, but with enough lengths of two by four, a hammer and some nails, a hinge for the trapdoor and a basic grasp of carpentry this is possible. Then of course you would have to persuade your intended victim to put his or her head through the noose long enough for you to trigger the trapdoor. You may also halt construction in the early stages as soon as you realise that the hammer, the nails or even the bits of wood would all make much more effective murder weapons.

Option 3 - use a convenient beam or tree branch to hoist the victim into the air, using their own body weight to kill them. This option relies upon you both having the strength to lift your victim off the ground while simultaneously being heavier. Admittedly you could set up a pulley system to make the lifting easier, and hook your feet under a heavy piece of furniture, but you still have to get the noose around the victim's neck - good luck with that.


So is the rope a practical murder weapon? Well no, it's rubbish isn't it. There are many household objects that have basically the same killing power as a rope, the same kind of 'wrap around neck and squeeze really tight' functionality; bedsheets, trousers, snake themed draught excluders, your own arm, small but flexible children/animals, curtains, Peter Storm cagoules, his or hers towels - the list is practically endless.

Another list practically endless is the list of household items that would make far more effective murder weapons than a rope; knives, bottles, ornaments (including candlesticks), tools, most small items of furniture, windows (either shattered fragments thereof or means of exit from upper story), frying pans, irons, toasters, bathtubs, doors and bleach.

Pros: Has historical creepiness to it; with element of surprise and luck can be effective.

Cons: Requires more elaborate scheming than most murderers have time for; rope also haven for DNA, should you actually be successful - which you won't.

TV Detective World Series Round 1 - Fletcher vs Lewis

What with all the fuss about the Olympics, we at The Murder Mystery Company almost forgot one other significant tournament was playing out this year (has it really been twelve years?!) It's the TV Detective World Series! Obviously we are going to be watching this one closely - we even designed an event that celebrates this most wonderful of genres.

We need YOU to vote on the outcome. The TV Detective World Series is a democracy, with the viewing public deciding the victor in each round.

Round One - Match One

Vote Now!

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The 'Murder, She Wrote' star enters this first round the clear favourite; with 244 solved murders under her belt she is hoping to make short work of Morse’s sidekick.

Of course Lewis was hoping for an easier first round. In fact talk around the dressing rooms suggested he fancied cutting his teeth against a Bergerac, or maybe even whoever was in Taggart after Taggart died. Of course Fletcher is one of the favourites coming in, but he knows that he was always going to have to face her eventually if he wants to get anywhere in this competition.

Lewis is hoping that after 33 episodes under his old boss Morse, and 20 with his own show, he has enough procedural experience to win the day.

Opening Round - Not Having A First Name

Fletcher takes an early knock with this one - everyone knows the name Jessica Fletcher, whether it's in the way her friends talk to her while she investigates a mysterious death, or on the cover of her countless mystery novels.

Lewis fares better, having been called ‘Lewis’ since primary school. However this is not a whitewash for him, as closer examination does show that he occasionally mentions his first name, which is Robert.

Round Two - Interfering

Fletcher comes back from the break fighting - nobody sticks their oar in where it is (initially) not wanted more than her. True, she invariably goes on to solve the murder, but that’s not before rubbing local law enforcement up the wrong way with her constant meddling.

Lewis, who is employed by Oxford Police Force as a Detective Sergeant and later Inspector, only interferes in an official capacity, so it’s a poor show for him this round.

Round Three - Uniqueness

Fletcher has no trouble dominating this round. She is an elderly woman who writes mystery novels, while in real life people in her extended social circle are being murdered by the dozen, forcing this fiction writer to flex her problem solving mind and catch the culprit... more than 200 times.

Lewis starts this round strongly, claiming an interest in the classics, real ale and opera. Then he remembers that was actually Morse. Flustered, he makes an amateur's mistake and falls back on ‘being a policeman’. This is lost under the undeniable uniqueness of Fletcher.

Round Four - The Show Title Just Being Your Surname

Fletcher takes a significant knock in this round, as not a single one of her 244 episodes was called 'Fletcher' - in fact each were called 'Murder, She Wrote'. Although Fletcher is the 'she' referred to in the title, there is no getting away from a poor showing on the day.

Lewis on the other hand plays a blinder. Even his former boss had to share title card space with the word 'Inspector', but Lewis goes title free and goes straight to surname. Not since Peter Falk stepped up to defend his title in 1988 has a contestant entered this round with the same confidence. But is it a case of too little too late for the Oxford crime solver?

The Result

It's too close to call. What the pundits predicted would be a whitewash for the 'elderly stateswoman' of TV Detection turned into an all-out battle for sleuthing supremacy. It's gone to the judges table, so now it's time for you to decide. Add your cheer-leading cries to the comments below, and get voting!

Voting closes one month from today, Monday 14th May 2012. In the meantime check out our main website for murder mystery evenings, days and other resources.

Next Time: 

Behind The Scenes Of A Murder Mystery - Who Killed His Lordship?

Event Manager Dave Hall as Lord John

Event Manager Dave Hall gets ready for his 'big scene' as Lord John in Who Killed His Lordship?

"I prefer it when the event is a complete surprise to the guests", Dave said. "That way, we get the greatest shock value from the opening scene! Soon enough I'm lying dead in the middle of dinner, and Sherlock takes over for his big intro. The hardest part is staying 'dead' throughout that section, and I have taken to falling on my front so that guests can't see me laughing!"

Learn more about Who Killed His Lordship? and our other murder mystery events at our main website!