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Zodiac: Death Of A Crab (ITV 25 Feb 1974, with Peter Childs)

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In Death of a Crab, the opening episode of the series, laid back ex-Harrovian Detective Inspector David Gradley meets astrologer Esther Jones when he investigates the death of a businessman found in an apartment belonging to a man called Rex Aikman. The case gets murkier when the dead turns out to be Esther’s estranged husband.

Interestingly, because Esther was seeing Aikman in a professional capacity and her husband was found dead in his bath, she is naturally enough high on Gradley’s suspect list for much of the episode.

The TV Times of the week featured the gorgeous Anouska on the cover and there was an interview with producer Jackie Davis. She helped develop the series with writer Roger Marshall with the idea of recreating the stylish escapism of the Avengers, a series that Marshall worked extensively on. Like the Avengers this series isn’t heavy on the realism side of things as far as police work is concerned.

classic quote
Esther: Close friends and clients only on a Sunday.
David: Which am I?
Esther: Neither.

production details
UK / ITV – Thames / 1×50 minute episode / Broadcast Monday 25 February 1974 at 9.00pm

Writer: Roger Marshall / Production Design: Bill Palmer / Director: Raymond Menmuir

Series: Zodiac Season 1 Episode 1

cast
Anton Rodgers as David Gradley
Anouska Hempel as Esther Jones
John Rhys Davies as Rex Aikman
Peter Childs as Parker
Maggie Flint as Maid
Michael Lees as Shelby
Frances Cuka as Mrs Letts
John Hughes as George

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