From Page to Screen: The Murder on the Links by Agatha Christie

Here’s another From Page to Screen entry! Don’t worry, I don’t plan on doing every Hercule Poirot book and show this way, but after I watched the episode for this book I realized I was going to be a bit more wordy than I planned on this one. So, here we are, one more addition to From Page to Screen!

  • The Page: The Murder on the Links (Hercule Poirot #2) by Agatha Christie:  This is the second book in the Hercule Poirot mysteries, and I did not enjoy this one as much as the first book, The Mysterious Affair at Styles. This one started out strong, as it has Poirot and Hastings going to France in response to a letter requesting help. When they arrive in France, they learn that the man who requested Poirot’s help has been murdered. What follows is an intricate tale involving past crimes, mistaken identity, blackmail, and love. The Murder on the Links was overly complicated for me. Towards the end I started getting everyone confused, as there were too many characters with similar attributes, and even though I use a book journal to help keep everything straight, I had to refer to it far too many times to truly enjoy the book. I did enjoy Poirot’s dealings with the popular, younger Giraud, a famous French detective. Those scenes were very humorous. All in all, it was solid, but I had to concentrate too much on keeping all of the characters straight to truly relax and enjoy the mystery.
  • The Screen: Agatha Christie’s Poirot Season 6, Episode 3 titled “Murder on the Links”: The episode is less confusing and is easier to follow due to several characters being merged and/or completely omitted. As in the first book’s adaptation, most of the mystery that I loved was dropped entirely from the show (really not making me excited about watching any other episodes!). The backstory of several characters is mentioned right at the beginning, instead of slowly coming out as in the novel, which practically is a giant flashing arrow indicating whodunit (or at least whydunit). And don’t even get me started on the ending. Because they merge two female characters, the ending does not fit. At all.      SPOILERS: To have a woman willingly go to jail, to possible death, to protect a man she loves just to decide right at the end, after a conversation with Poirot, that she loves Hastings instead? What? That just doesn’t make any sense. I was really into the ending, with Hastings moping by the sea, until that happened. And Hastings … get it together. Please stop falling in love with every pretty woman that you see. END SPOILERS.    Positives: the scenery was gorgeous.

Bottom Line: Slight edge to the book because there were parts I truly enjoyed that weren’t in the show. But the show brought a whole new aspect of beauty to the book.

Have you read any Agatha Christie or watched the show?  What is your favorite book/episode?  I’m slowly working my way through the third book, Poirot Investigates, which is comprised of fourteen short stories.  It is taking me awhile to get through due to watching the episodes that correspond to the stories.


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