Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries

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Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries is an Australian television drama series. It was first broadcast on ABC on 24 February 2012. The series is based on author Kerry Greenwood's novels and was created by Deb Cox and Fiona Eagger. Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries revolves around the personal and professional life of Phryne Fisher (Essie Davis), a glamorous private detective in 1920s Melbourne.

Series One[edit]

Cocaine Blues [1.1][edit]

[Phryne reads an invitation.]
Phryne Fisher: A luncheon. Today. With Lydia Andrews. How lovely! …oh. And Aunt Prudence.
Dr. Elizabeth "Mac" McMillan: Shame I have to perform an urgent bowel operation.

[Phryne has snuck into the crime scene, a bathroom. Jack knocks on the door.]
Phryne: This lavatory’s fully occupied.
Jack Robinson: Police, open up.
[Phryne takes the time to reapply her lipstick before opening the door.]
Phryne: You must be the inspector. Apologies for my urgent call of nature.
Jack: This is the scene of a crime.
Phryne: Well, lucky for you, I’m wearing gloves. Miss Phryne Fisher.
Jack: I assume you weren’t close to the deceased.
Phryne: Never had the pleasure, but by all accounts he was charming. [To Hugh.] Do you think it was poison?
Hugh Collins: Most likely—
Jack: [Talking over the top of Hugh.] We are yet to determine the cause of death. Miss Fisher, I appreciate your curiosity for crime. [He starts to walk her backwards towards the door.]
Phryne: Well, every lady needs a hobby.
Jack: But please…
[Phryne ducks under Jack’s arm back into the bathroom.]
Phryne: Given the lack of bloodstains, I assume it wasn’t a violent death, unless, of course, it was strangulation. But the foetal position of the victim, although not terribly well executed, indicated a degree of pain rather than the flailing limbs one might associate with a struggle. And then, of course, there’s the fact that death occurred after breakfast, according to Mrs Andrews, which suggests something ingested? All wild surmise, of course.
Jack: Of course. Now—
Phryne: Do you have a card? In case I need to call the police. Because I’m a woman alone, newly arrived in a dangerous town.
Jack: I plan to make this town less dangerous, Miss Fisher. [He hands over a card.]
Phryne: Good. I do like a man with a plan…Detective Inspector Jack Robinson. [She looks him up and down before smiling and walking out.]

Jack: I wish I could change the laws for you, Miss Fisher.
Phryne: You can’t? Fine. I’ll just have to find a way around them. Good day, Inspector.

[Off to solve the case, Phryne bids her aunt goodnight.]
Phryne: Good night, Aunt Prudence.
Prudence Stanley: At this hour? It's not safe! Why do you think you can just run off on your own?
Phryne: Because I’m carrying a gun. [She pulls out her pistol.]
Prudence: Phryne!

Phryne: Get away from that girl, both of you. Hands toward heaven!
[The man stares at her blankly.]
Phryne: Up, you idiot.

Bert Johnson: [Bursting into Jack’s office.] Miss Fisher needs you down at the Turkish baths on Little Lonsdale.
Jack: I hope she’s comfortable. She could be waiting a long time.

Dorothy "Dot" Williams: Miss, about the job? I don't know what my priest will think of your…guns and knives and…dancing.
Phryne: Considering your last employers were a drug baroness and a rapist? Surely he'd find me a modest improvement.

Phryne: Now, raise a glass to my new business.
Jack: What kind of business?
Mac: To my oldest friend’s newest enterprise: the Honourable Miss Fisher, lady detective.
[Jack chokes on his champagne.]

Murder on the Ballarat Train [1.2][edit]

[Phryne spots a young man on the platform.]
Phryne: The scenery has vastly improved, Dot, and we haven’t even left the station.

Mr Butler: I haven’t worked for a spinster before.
Bert: Spinster? Have you met Miss Fisher?
Mr Butler: I understand she’s related to the king. Mrs Butler would have loved that.
Bert: She’s certainly a toff.
Mr Butler: Well, it will be a pleasure to serve a respectable lady with a strict routine who appreciates the quiet life.
[Cec spits out his drink.]

Phryne: Constable Collins, how lovely. Tell the inspector I’ll be right with him.
Hugh: Uh, the inspector’s not here, Miss.
Phryne: But he thought it important enough to send you?
Hugh: Only to tell you, in his words, “to stay in your compartment, to please resist the temptation to interfere, and to not bandy about his name for your own convenience.”
Phryne: Well, you can assure the inspector that none of this is very convenient.

Jack: So, if the compartment was locked, how did you get in?
Phryne: I hit the lock with me shoe.
Jack: Your shoe seems to have the ballistic capabilities of a .38 revolver.
Phryne: Fancy that.
Jack: Hmm. [He opens the compartment door and indicates for Phryne to enter.]
Phryne: So you’re letting me in?
Jack: It’s either that or watch you hound me through the door.

Phryne: They say the top speed’s 85 miles an hour, but I’m sure we can do better than that! [She drives off.]
Jack: Constable, is it possible Miss Fisher has just kidnapped the victim’s daughter and one of our suspects?
Hugh: It is now, sir.

Phryne: And you must be Mr Butler!
Mr Butler: Pleased to meet you, Miss Fisher.
Phryne: Oh, sorry, I forgot to telephone ahead about my extra guests. We’ve all been somewhat distracted by Eunice’s mother’s murder.
Mr Butler: A murder, miss?
Phryne: I do hope they chloroformed her first, but hanging’s never pleasant. [Jane walks past.] Keep your eye on this one. She’s a stowaway, a thief, and probably needs delousing. I expect the police will come looking for her, but you can just refer them to me. [She starts to walk inside, before turning back.] Oh, and while I remember, careful with the hand luggage. My pistol’s in there somewhere and it may still be loaded.
Mr Butler: Of course, Miss. [He looks up at Bert and Cec who are on the balcony.] Appreciate the warning.

Hugh: The inspector is expecting you at the station in the morning to explain why you abducted a juvenile.
Phryne: Well, I’m sure I’ll have a very good answer by then.

Phryne: Can I offer you a drink?
Jack: Perhaps... just the one.
Phryne: What about babes of your own?
Jack: Er, no. No, we were never blessed.
Phryne: To all the kids who’ve been through the wringer then, Inspector Robinson.
Jack: You might as well call me Jack. Everyone else does.
Phryne: Very well, Jack. And you may call me Phryne, although hardly anyone else does.

The Green Mill Murder [1.3][edit]

[Jack has made Hugh search the women.]
Phryne: Can’t you take pity on him? Make me an honorary constable.
Jack: Uh, no thanks. Collins could do with the practice. Has he asked Miss Williams to the Fireman and Policeman’s Ball yet?
Phryne: Not that I’m aware of. Dotty wouldn’t keep that to herself.
Jack: He tells me he’s working on it.

Phryne: [Holding out some potato on a fork to Jack.] Try this gratin, Jack.
Jack: You’re not taking the situation seriously.
Phryne: I haven’t taken anything seriously since 1918.
[Jack eventually leans forward and eats the potato off the fork. He leans back and smiles.]
Phryne: Shouldn’t you be clapping me in irons?
Jack: Too much paperwork.
Phryne: If I feed you some more, may I see what’s in that folder?
[She holds out another forkful to Jack. He takes the fork and the dish and Phryne takes the file.]

Hugh: I…I was wondering if…I mean, would you… [He laughs nervously.] I suppose what I’m trying to ask is would you…
Dot: Oh, for goodness sake, Hugh Collins, would you do me the honour of accompanying me to the Fireman and Policeman’s Ball?
Hugh: No. I mean, yes! Yes, but no, I’m supposed to ask you.
Dot: Well, we could all die waiting for that to happen.

Jack: I don’t know who has the more fanciful imagination; Rogers for coming up with it, or you for working it out.
Phryne: Jack! Me, obviously.

[Two of the suspects are homosexual, which is a crime in 1928 Australia, and Jack must enforce the law.]
Jack: I am a servant of the law, not its master.
Phryne: Well in this case, the law is an ass!
. . .
[Later, Jack presents Phryne with the evidence of her friend Charlie's homosexuality.]
Jack: I found these plates under the floorboards of Leonard Stevens' apartment.
Phryne: What do you want me to do with them?
Jack: Have them incinerated.
Phryne: I thought you said your hands were tied.
Jack: [with a wry smile] Yes. But yours are not.

Death at Victoria Dock [1.4][edit]

Jack: How many shots were fired?
Hugh: Uh, three. Three shots were fired in total, sir. Two in the victim and one hit Miss Fisher’s car when she was drawn outside by the gunfire.
Jack: How very unlike her.

Jack: At this stage, the only benefit of your helping hand is that I might have a walk-up start when it comes to investigating your eventual murder.

Jack: I’m not convinced my heroic constable deserves all the credit. But as I’ve forbidden him to do your bidding, I may need to escort you home myself.
Phryne: Thank you.

Jack: I’ve had my fair share of strike action.
Phryne: What, the police strike of ’23?
Jack: Mmm. Shoulder to shoulder. A lot of good men lost their jobs. I was one of the lucky ones.
Phryne: I would have picked you as more of a fence sitter.
Jack: It’d be a tactical error to think you had me pegged just yet, Miss Fisher.
Phryne: I’m very glad to hear it.

Raisins and Almonds [1.5][edit]

Phryne: It was poison. I’d bet my hat on it.
Jack: [Watching Phryne put her hat on.] I’m not sure it’d suit me.

Phryne: What evidence do you have that it was me who broke into the bookshop?
Jack: An Hispano-Suiza parked outside at the time.
Phryne: If a tree falls in a forest...
Jack: You were very likely somewhere close by wielding the axe.
Phryne: Well... I didn’t break the window. That was done by a man in a black trench coat with a hat – the same man who attacked me when I tried to stop him stealing a book.
Jack: He attacked you?
Phryne: Well, I disturbed him. And he ran off with the book. I gave chase, and he took a shot at me, so I did the only thing I could in the circumstances.
Jack: You called for help?
Phryne: I stabbed him in the shoulder.
Jack: Oh.

Mac: Impatience is your middle name.
Phryne: Virtue was already taken.

Ruddy Gore [1.6][edit]

Jack: Sorry I’m late. Constable Collins asked me to send his apologies. His football game ended in a brawl. He ended up arresting half the opposing team.

Jack: Ah, I wondered when you'd be back.
Phryne: Did you miss me?
Jack: I never get a chance to miss you. It feels as if you're in my office every second day. To what do I owe the pleasure?
Phryne: A development in our case.
Jack: Our case?
Phryne: I expect the actors let slip about the ghost.
Jack: They did. Don’t tell me you suspect the ghost. Might be a little difficult to clap an apparition in iron.

[last lines of the episode]
Jack: There is one thing you didn't figure out.
Phryne: And that is?
Jack: My aversion to operetta.
Phryne: You know I like a mystery. Let me see. [She takes a moment to think.] A bad experience on the stage?
Jack: The Pirates of Penzance. [Phryne can't help but laugh.] The reviewer thought my performance as the Major General was…underwhelming.
Phryne: Why don't you let me judge for myself?
Jack: I can't remember a word of it.
Phryne: Oh what rot! Once you learn one of those patter songs, it's in there for good.
Jack: Ah, I'm more of a Shakespeare man.
Phryne: The stage is yours.
[Jack takes a moment to recall some lines.]
Jack: "Age cannot wither her, nor custom stale/ Her infinite variety: other women cloy/ The appetites they feed; but she makes hungry/ Where most she satisfies."
Phryne: [impressed] Perhaps a career in the theatre beckons after all, Inspector.
Jack: [smiling wryly] Think I'll stick to crime.

Murder in Montparnasse [1.7][edit]

Jack: [At a French restaurant.] To think I managed to avoid snails the entire time I was posted in France. [He tries one and pulls a face.] Not bad. Like buttered pieces of India rubber.

Jack: This is certainly a well travelled work of art.
Phryne: A little like me. Thank you for helping to retrieve it. [She unwraps the painting.] You’re blushing.
Jack: I’m a grown man, Miss Fisher. I’m not likely to blush at the sight of a little bare flesh.
Phryne: That’s what surprises me, Detective Inspector. In fact lately you’re full of surprises.
Jack: It’s all part of the job.

Away with the Fairies [1.8][edit]

[Phryne arrives at the magazine's offices, to Hugh's surprise.]
Hugh: Miss Fisher! We tried to keep any suspicious circumstances away from the press.
Phryne: And you did a first-rate job, Constable. I wasn't suspicious at all until I saw you.

Phryne: Now tell me Jack, does that new furrow in your brow have anything to do with kissing me the other night?
Jack: I didn't kiss you, I was trying to protect you.
Phryne: All in the line of duty?
Jack: You were looking a gunman in the eye and I had to distract you. I'm sorry if you think I took a liberty.
Phryne: Jack. You kissed me. Let's call a spade a spade.
Jack: You kissed me back.
Phryne: And I'm not here to apologize.

Queen of the Flowers [1.9][edit]

[Tasked with interviewing Phryne's young charges, DI Robinson makes a request.]
Jack: Do you think you could sit in on my interviews?
Phryne: [genuinely surprised] Are you actually inviting me?
Jack: I'm happy to deal with angry wharfies and trigger-happy thugs. But I'll bow to your expertise when it comes to wayward teenage girls.

[DI Robinson and Constable Collins find Phryne conducting a self-defense lesson for the flower girls.]
Hugh: Miss Fisher knows judo, sir?
Jack: Of course.

Death by Miss Adventure [1.10][edit]

Jack: Any reason to think it's not an accident?
Phryne: The owner was very eager to get us out of there.
Jack: That wouldn't have anything to do with you barging in like a freight train, would it?
Phryne: I was a charming freight train.

[Mac has been treating the owner of the factory where the murder took place.]
Phryne: What's his ailment?
Mac: Bad heart. In every sense of the word.

[Phryne comes to see Mac after figuring out her relationship with the first victim.]
Phryne: You loved her. And you suffered in silence while I showed you those photos of the blood on the machine.
Mac: What could I have said?
Phryne: The truth would have given me a running start.
Mac: I went to Daisy's funeral service. Her mother came and thanked me for being a good doctor…I was so much more to her than that.
Phryne: Oh, Mac.
Mac: I didn't kill him.
Phryne: How long have we known each other?
Mac: Too bloody long.
Phryne: Then you know there are some things that don't need to be said.

[Last lines: Phryne shows Jack a letter from Murdoch Foyle, with an offer of the location of her sister's remains if she allows Foyle to go free on parole.]
Jack: I hope you're not asking for my help.
Phryne: [in desperation] But I am. Tell me not to place myself above the law, not to let a killer loose because I want the truth…tell me there's a greater good than my need to know.
Jack: You never listen to me anyway.
Phryne: Humor me.
Jack: You know what to do.

Blood and Circuses [1.11][edit]

Murder in the Dark [1.12][edit]

King Memses' Curse [1.13][edit]

Phryne: Foyle can have me if he lets Jane go.
Jack: You can't go and offer yourself!
Phryne: Rhodes is the last one on Foyle's list, and he has the ring. I need to go back there.
[Jack blocks Phryne's path.]
Jack: I won't let you.
[Phryne tries to barrel past him, but Jack holds his ground.]
Jack: You're under arrest!
Phryne: What?!
Jack: For your own safety.
Phryne: Don't be absurd! You have no grounds for holding me.
[Phryne tries to push past Jack again, but he wrestles her back. She kicks him in relation, to Hugh's horror.]
Jack: That's it! [Jack grabs Phryne and pulls her arms behind her back.] You're officially charged with assaulting a police officer. And withholding evidence! [to Hugh] Constable, remove Miss Fisher's gun from her handbag and escort her to the lockup.
[Though bewildered, Hugh takes Phryne from Jack and, probably out of fear of her escaping, pins her arms to her side and lifts her. As he carries her, kicking and yelling to the cell, he apologizes profusely.]
Hugh: I'm sorry, Miss. I'm sorry, Miss. I'm sorry, Miss. I'm-
Phryne: You can't do this!
Hugh: -sorry, Miss.

Series Two[edit]

Murder Most Scandalous [2.1][edit]

Death Comes Knocking [2.2][edit]

Dead Man's Chest [2.3][edit]

Deadweight [2.4][edit]

Murder A La Mode [2.5][edit]

Phryne: Dot, a woman should dress first and foremost for her own pleasure. Having grown up in second-hand flannels, there is nothing quite so divine as the feel of silk underwear.

Jack: I'll never again dismiss the fashion world as frivolous. It all looks harmless enough, but you never know what lurks beneath.
Phryne: Usually lingerie.
Jack: Equally dangerous.
Phryne: And just one dress can be lethal. Night cap?
Jack: Perhaps some other time. At a less dangerous hour, in a less...lethal dress.

Marked For Murder [2.6][edit]

Blood At The Wheel [2.7][edit]

The Blood of Juana the Mad [2.8][edit]

Framed For Murder [2.9][edit]

Death On The Vine [2.10][edit]

Dead Air [2.11][edit]

Unnatural Habits [2.12][edit]

Phryne: I really am very sorry, Jack, that you're in so much hot water because of me.
Jack: Don't be remorseful. It only confuses me.

[Mary screams in pain as the contractions set in.]
Prudence: The doctor says it's too late to go to the Lying-in Home. He'll get here as soon as he can.
Mary: [shakes her head] No, I don't need a doctor! It's not my time!
Prudence: [grabs Mary's arm and moves her towards the sofa] Hold on to me. Come on, to the sofa.
Mr Butler: Oh dear. I'll boil up some water and get the scissors sterilized.
Prudence: [positioning Mary on the sofa] And bring some towels, Mr. Butler. Loads of towels.
Mary: No, no, no, no, don't bring anything! IT'S NOT MY TIME! [She screams in pain.] Oh, bless me, Father, for I have sinned. I've been bad and wicked, and God is gonna let the nuns take my baby away!
Prudence: God will do nothing of the kind or He will be answerable to ME! Now pull yourself together, girl, you've got work to do. It's not called labor for nothing!

Murder Under the Mistletoe [2.13][edit]

[At City South station, Hugh hangs up the phone after a call from Dottie.]
Jack: What's that all about?
Hugh: Miss Fisher's gone on holiday again, sir.
Jack: Huh. Anyone dead yet?
Hugh: Only one so far, sir.

[Phryne and Jack are searching for Nicholas Mortimer in the tunnels.]
Jack: Stay close.
Phryne: Is that an order, Inspector, or are you just scared?
Jack: Only of you.

[Jane raises the mistletoe above Phryne and Jack.]
Jane: Miss Fisher and the Inspector!
[Except for Aunt Prudence, the gathered crowd lets out a loud collective "Ooh!"]
Phryne: I'm not sure that my kisses can be compelled by sprigs of parasitic greenery.
Jack: Hemi-parasitic. Of the genus Viscum.
Phryne: I'll take your word for it.

Series Three[edit]

Death Defying Feats [3.1][edit]

Phryne: You know, I saw the original Cavalcade of Mysteries as a child.
Jack: I can't imagine you small and harmless.
Phryne: Well I was definitely small…

[DI Robinson has left the autopsy room in a huff.]
Mac: What have you done to him?
Phryne: [technically telling the truth] Stood him up for another man.
Mac: [skeptical] Oh come on. Cough up.
Phryne: Men. Can't live without them, you can't hit them with an axe.

Henry: I have nowhere to lay my head tonight.
Phryne: I'm entertaining.
Henry: And you'll barely know i'm here. Unless you'd like some male company, Prudence.
Prudence: I'm redecorating!

Phryne: Jack! I was going to explain last night, but you were in no fit state.
Jack: You assaulted me.
Phryne: My father assaulted you. Well, his nerve tonic assaulted you first, but none of it was planned.
Jack: Who put me in pyjamas?
Phryne: Mr Butler, of course. After I undressed you.

Murder and the Maiden [3.2][edit]

Murder and Mozzarella [3.3][edit]

Blood and Money [3.4][edit]

Death and Hysteria [3.5][edit]

Mac: You have any idea what this appliance was?
Phryne: I have a fast developing theory. Given what Dot reported on the victim’s neurosis, Doctor Samuels’ controversial reputation, and the victim’s lack of underwear, I’d say an electrical massager.
Jack: A what?
Phryne: A... vibrating machine with a range of applications. [Jack still looks confused.] To various, sometimes delicate parts of the body.
Jack: Oh! Oh, that sort of electrical massager.
Phryne: Oh? Do you know what we’re looking for? Have you seen one before?
Jack: [He nods and then shakes his head slightly.] I was once ordered to raid a brothel in Chinatown that employed all manner of interesting devices.
Phryne: Now that’s a tale I haven’t heard.
Jack: I confess I failed to understand the point of most of them.
Mac: I have a friend who can enlighten you. [She nods towards Phryne and smiles.]
Jack: It was during my cadetship. The whole establishment made a lasting impression.
Mac: Mr Freud would be terrible interested in that.
Phryne: I’m quite interested myself.
Martin: So, what exactly are we looking for, sir?
Jack: We’ll discuss that later, Constable.

Death at the Grand [3.6][edit]

Game, Set and Murder [3.7][edit]

Death Do Us Part [3.8][edit]

Jack: Oh, good. Brilliant scientist, talented musician, dashingly handsome and an Ottoman prince.


  • Essie Davis as The Honorable Phryne Fisher
  • Nathan Page as Detective Inspector Jack Robinson
  • Ashleigh Cummings as Dorothy "Dot" Williams
  • Hugo Johnstone-Burt as Constable Hugh Collins
  • Richard Bligh as Mr Tobias Butler, Phryne's butler
  • Travis McMahon as Bert Johnson
  • Anthony Sharpe as Cecil "Cec" Yates
  • Tammy MacIntosh as Dr. Elizabeth "Mac" Macmillan
  • Miriam Margolyes as Prudence Stanley

External links[edit]