Reviewed by Ceri Horner
On a dark and foggy night, Michael Starkwedder’s car runs off the road near the Warwick’s home. Failing to rouse anyone, he enters the home and finds the lifeless body of Richard Warwick in a wheelchair and his wife is standing over him with a gun. There appears to be no mystery at all but as with all Agatha Christie plots, things are not always as they seem.
Christie is well known for creating intriguing mysteries. Therry’s current production of The Unexpected Guest Directed by Norm Caddick is brimming with interesting characters that leave the audience pondering their guilt or innocence until the very end.
Saxon Cordeaux is marvellous as the dark, handsome and mysterious Michael Starkwedder, ably matched with Fiona Fulwood who is credible as Laura Warwick. There is a lovely chemistry between the two and Fulwood’s costumes are simply beautiful.
Peter Davies is thoroughly enjoyable as Inspector Thomas trying to piece together the facts. Davies works well with Simon Lancione who adds excellent comic relief as Sergeant Cadwallader. Lancione has a pretty good Welsh accent but the rest of the cast do not attempt one, which is surprising given the action is set in Southern Wales.
Stephen Bills is appropriately distasteful as the personal nurse Henry Angell, while Shane Deery is a standout as Jan Warwick the simple younger sibling. Good performances also from Joy Bishop, Miriam Keane and Brad Martin complete a well-rounded and talented cast.
The pace is occasionally a little slow but Caddick’s direction makes the most of the well written and complex Christie characters, leaving the audience guessing who did it until the very end.