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Vanity Dies Hard (ITV 1995, Jane Gurnett, Leslie Phillips)

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Vanity Dies Hard was an intriguing thriller serial entry into The Ruth Rendell Mysteries series starts off with pretty Alice Fielding announcing her engagement to handsome Andrew Fielding, several people in the small village she lives in are none too happy about the arrangement, not least local florist Nesta Drage. When Nesta then disappears under strange circumstances Alice investigates. Becoming convinced that Nesta has been murdered Alice begins to fear for her own life.

Complexities of plot make this an enjoyable entry, you are never quite sure of where people’s loyalties lay. The cast is good with a role for the iconic Leslie Phillips whose kindly Uncle J may not be all he seems.

production details
UK / ITV – Meridian – Blue Heavan / 3×60 minute episodes / Broadcast 7 – 21 April 1995

Music: Brian Bennett / Costumes: Rita Angell / Executive Producer: Colin Rogers / Production Design: Mark Ward / Director: Alan Grint

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cast
JANE GURNETT as Nesta Drage
LESLIE PHILLIPS as Justin Whittaker
LEONARD PRESTON as Hugo Whittaker
ARTHUR WHITE as Mr Snow
DAVID HARGREAVES as Mr Feast
REBECCA LACEY as Daphne Feast
ELEANOR DAVID as Alice Fielding
MELANIE KILBURN as Jackie Whittaker
DAMIAN HUNT as Mark Whittaker
WILLIAM HOLMES as Chris Whiitaker
SHIRLEY CAIN as Doctor’s Receptionist
MARK FRANKEL as Andrew Fielding
ANNE JAMESON as Mrs Johnson
MICHAEL PARKHOUSE as Vicar
JOANNA KANSKA as Pernille Madsen
JOHN GILL as Old Man
ANOUSHKA LE GALLOIS as Florist Assistant
JAMES BOWERS as Postman


Alastair James is the editor in chief for Memorable TV. He has been involved in media since his university days. Alastair is passionate about television, and some of his favourite shows include Line of Duty, Luther and Traitors. He is always on the lookout for hot new shows, and is always keen to share his knowledge with others.

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