Goodbye to the splendid 1930s world of Poirot
And goodbye to the man himself!
I trust those of you who were able to tune in and watch Wednesday's episode have recovered - as much as anyone can recover! - from seeing the final adventure of the great Hercule Poirot? What do we do now?! No more M. Poirot. No more Captain Hastings! No more beautiful 1930s splendiferousness to jealously drool over.
The last in particular is the subject of this nicely-written article on the B.B.C. Magazine website (jolly sporting of them, considering Poirot was an ITV production), which focusses on two (of many) aspects that made this series a cut above the rest and possibly the best adaptation there's ever likely to be of Agatha Christie's work - the sets and the locations!
|Florin Court, aka Whitehaven Mansions|
The stunning Art Deco buildings that featured throughout Poirot added wonderfully to the period feel, as well they might, and certainly helped the stories along on many an occasion. That lovely feeling of being right there back there in the 1930s was in no small part due to the locations used and it's a testament to the producers that they were able to find and use so much period architecture (thanks also in no small part to the likes of English Heritage and the many volunteers and enthusiasts who helped ensure these gems were saved from ignominy). I've always marvelled at how it was possible to create such an authentic look on location - but I suppose that's the beauty of London where many examples of Art Deco design still exist, plus our ongoing love affair with stately country houses.
|Midland Hotel, Morecambe|
Then there were the sets! Oh, I think we all would like to live inside Poirot's flat wouldn't we? (Could we all fit though? We'd have to draw up a rota and stay at Burgh Island, or the Midland Hotel in between times. You can tell I've seriously thought about this...) Once again the quality of the set decoration is second to none and again I'm delighted but not surprised to see that so many props and other pieces were obtained from various sources including David Suchet himself!
There it is, then. The end of an era for British television. I've said it before and I'll say it again - I think we've just been witness to a generation-defining portrayal not just of a character but also the world he inhabits. Thank goodness for DVDs is all I can say, where we can relive the wonderful world of Poirot again and again to our hearts content. On that subject, Captain Hastings posts will continue to appear here for some time to come (I'm only up to Series 1 Episode 8, after all!) with maybe another special diversion to Curtain, which features far more Hastings than The Big Four did. It's been a bit Poirot-centric around here lately, I know, but with good reason. I shan't let this turn into a Poirot-only blog (although it wouldn't be the end of the world!) if only because there already is one and I don't want to tread on the chap's toes. But I can't let it pass without saying this. Thank you, ITV, for sticking with it for 25 years. Thank you, David Suchet, for such a stellar performance. Au revoir.