When a young woman is dressed like a bride and drowned in a bath, it triggers a spate of ghoulish wedding-themed murders in Great Worthy. The case takes Barnaby and Jones to a donkey sanctuary, a heritage steam railway, and a pub run by an ex-copper and former brothel madam. With the serial killer still at large, could history be repeating itself?

 

Echoes of the Dead is the third episode from series 14 starring Neil Dudgeon and DCI John Barnaby must be feeling pretty smug as fifty minutes into this episode and there's only been one murder in Great Worthy. Admittedly it's a typically gruesome Midsomer Murder with a young "bride" wrapped in net curtains and drowned in her bath, but that's a massive improvement on his cousin's record - there would have been several deaths by the second ad break when Tom was in charge!

 

However once the murderer gets going, dead brides pop up everywhere, usually arranged in a way that reminds Barnaby of old murder cases. "Ah, the bride at Brighton railway station case, 1934," he mutters in between giving sidekick Jones an unnecessarily rough time.

 

Perhaps he's just frustrated that there are so many suspects, including a peeping tom, a former madam at an S&M brothel, a bitter retired wedding registrar and a dopey middle-aged son bullied by his boorish parents.

 

Great Worthy's a pretty village, but the residents aren't an attractive bunch. Pam Ferris, Kacey Ainsworth and Adrian Rawlins go through the motions but Sarah Smart is convincing as the murder victim's shocked and grieving flatmate.

 

Midsomer Murders Echoes of the Dead is to be aired Wednesday April 20 and you can get your copy exclusively early from Acorn with stock expected mid May.