2. Mrs. Bradley – It is a great sorrow to Squeamish Kate the Mrs. Bradley Mysteries series never quite took off. “I blame the Freudian theory she kept spouting, but it brought context, and she wore hats!” This detective doesn’t even pretend to play by the rules. A finishing school expellee Mrs. Bradley has discarded as many men as she has gained degrees. Psychology, cigarettes and her chauffeur’s vocabulary is her game. Adela Bradley’s probably a contemporary of Miss. Marple but don’t let her hear you say that.
3. Jonathan Creek – This is another detective who requires a special someone to bring them to life, but it isn't Alan Davies. Julia Sawalha we love you but you’re bringing Creek DOWN. Sheridan Smith, you can’t understand the Creek. Caroline Quentin’s Maddy McGellan made Jonathan Creek the tousle haired, duffle coat wearing crime fighter he became, causing late '90s teens to nurse a lifelong attraction to shuffling figures in sensible coats. Which can only lead to trouble and is not using your logic like a laser.
4. Poirot – Oh, Poirot. The little grey cells, the delicate ego, the waxed moustache! Something about Poirot is forever a little tragic. His on/off companion (not in that way) Captain Hastings only knows the half of Poirot’s genius, fortunately Miss Lemon is aware of the other half. A high maintenance Belgian who has a fondness for pudding, who wouldn’t identify? If you love Poirot but are a little new to the books here’s a tip… don’t read Curtain.
5. Jack Spratt – ok he is employed by the police, but only in the Nursery Crimes division and he is as fictional as his employer so it balances out. Whether he’s discussing the right to arm bears or avoiding bacon rind this Jasper Fforde character manages to maintain classic detective traits, stubble, an old car (that falls under the ‘classic’ umbrella, ok?) on top of a decidedly uncharacteristic happy family. There’s only one mystery he’s never solved: was Humpty wearing a cummerbund, or a cravat?