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Episode guide > Season 4 > The Coonskin Cap

Season 4, Episode 1
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corner imageSummary info
Writer: David Renwick
Director: Christine Gernon
Original broadcast date: (UK) 1 March 2003 on BBC1
Filmed in: 16:9 aspect ratio
Guest stars
Adrian Edmondson as Brendan Baxter
Stuart Milligan as Adam Klaus
Terence Hillyer as Inspector Ted Parnevik
Anna Wilson Jones as Sgt Heather Davey
Veronica Leer as Moira Jane Rowe
Andrew Clover as Gary Basco
Tina Martin as Velda
Anna Francolini as Coral
Joan Oliver as Janet Blaydon
Toby Walton as Reporter
Stepphanie Carey as Nurse
Yasmin Wilde as WPC

View guest cast

The Davey Crockett hat shadow is cast on the wallIt's a dark night and a nurse is walking home after finishing her shift at the hospital. As she goes to get in her car a shadow falls on the wall behind her. It's an image of a man wearing a Jimmy Crockett style hat, a coonskin cap. As she drives home a car behind her starts to flash their lights at her. Scared, she turns sharply and after a short pursuit comes to rest in a forest narrowly missing a tree. The man from the car jumps out of his car and walks towards her. She rifles through her glove box and finds only a screwdriver to defend herself with. The man soon dispenses with the screwdriver, and drags the nurse to the rear of her car saying, "Didn't you see me flash my lights?". She screams as she sees there is a body attached to the rear bumper of her car by rope - she's been dragging them for miles. The man checks for a pulse but there isn't one and there is a nasty cut around her throat. She's clearly been strangled.

"She blinked!" says Brendan Baxter, a TV Director who is looking at the footage they've shot as a reconstruction of the murder. He's referring to the actress playing the dead body that was dragged behind the car. He tells the VT man to skip ahead a few frames - no one will see it.

In the studio of Eyes and Ears, a new television show that reports crimes in the hopes that the public can help solve them (a bit like Crime Watch), Carla Boreggo is looking into the camera as she talks about the murders of two young woman who've both been strangled. The latest victim being the nurse. Carla turns to Inspector Ted Parnevik, who she interviews in the studio about the murders. The interview takes a nasty turn however when the Inspector makes known his views about bringing back hanging, or introducing the lethal injection. In his view, slapping people's wrists and locking them in jail isn't help clean up the streets of the country.

"Talk about baptism of fire!" Carla exclaims to Brendan after the show is over. Brendan says she handled the situation well, but adds that the Inspector will probably get them another five points in the ratings. He asks his assistant to enquiry whether they can book the Inspector for next weeks show.

Meanwhile Jonathan is looking for Adam. He enters a pub, and is directed by the landlord to the downstairs eating area. He finds Adam dining with a woman who is definitely not his usual type. Adam is wearing dark glasses, and the other tables are all empty - he clearly doesn't want to be seen in public with this woman.

Jonathan comments that he thought Adam was going to be in the Ivy restaurant (a very posh restaurant), not this pub. Adam lies and says the Ivy was fully booked. He then introduces his dinner companion as Velda. Adam reminds Jonathan that he took part in a charity auction a few months back. "Ah and first prize was a magical night out with Adam Klaus," Jonathan says.

"Actually it was second prize. First prize was a tumble dryer," replies Velda

Adam invites Jonathan to join them for dinner. Jonathan then suddenly remembers what he came to find Adam for. There's a problem with the backdrop to the dream twister set. They can't get clearance for an image they wanted to use, so design has come up with a few alternatives. "The Masturbator" by Dali, or "The Scream" by Eduard Munch. Adam says to go with the Scream.

Jonathan then enquires as to where Adam is talking Velda after dinner? Stringfellows? he suggests (For those abroad - Stringfellows is a famous club in London that has scantly clad women in). Velda jumps at this, "Can we?" she says. Adam simply looks at Jonathan and then at Velda - he's not a happy chap.

That night the police and Eyes and Ears are working on another reconstruction. This time of the murder of Ivy West, a woman who was out walking her dog when she was strangled and killed. A man interviews Sergeant Heather Davey who is playing the part of Ivy in the reconstruction. He asks how it feels to walk in a dead woman's steps, especially it being only a few yards from wear she was killed. Davey replies, that if they can jog just one person's memory, then it will be worth it.

Davey walks along wearing a blond wig and pretending to walk a dog. She's closely followed by a camera crew and policeman. As she passes a building two gun shots are heard, and some glass shatters behind her. Davey ducks, but isn't hurt they missed completely. Parnevik spots a gun from a nearby window and sends officers to investigate. He runs over to Davey, and asks if she's okay. She's fine she says, as Parnevik holds her hand in comfort. But is there more going on between them than just concern for a colleague?

The police storm into the room where the gun was seen. The shooter is long gone, but the gun remains by the open window. Looking at the door it had been locked from the inside. How did the shooter escape? He couldn't have got out via the window, it's two-storeys up and besides there are police outside who would have seen them.

In the theatre of Adam's latest magic show, Jonathan is overseeing the hanging of the Scream backdrop. He's on the phone, and agrees to meet someone tomorrow at a TV studio. Adam then walks in looking like death. Jonathan asks if the unit nurse is in yet, better still he corrects himself, is there a unit pusher?

Adam explains that his night out with Velda ended in disaster. At 2am they go to Stringfellows. Velda insisted on showing her tattoo of Mr. Bean on her stomach to everyone, he's combing his hair with her appendectomy scar! Adam then introduces her to Bryan Ferry. Velda just stood there giggling and picking her nose, and then she picks Bryan's nose! After that she turns a bit green and dashes off to the loo. Ten minutes later Adam gets a message that she's chocked to death on her own vomit. "Kind of brings it home to you I guess," Adam says, "How important it is to chew your food."

The following day, Jonathan arrives at the TV studio and asks for directions to the office he's got a meeting in. Carla and Brendan walk through the door, where Carla spots Jonathan at reception and immediately steers Brendan over to a display cabinet with a BAFTA award in. After Jonathan gets into the lift, she breaths a sigh of relief and explains to Brendan as they walk up the stairs that a bit of her past life appeared, and she's not keen to revisit it.

Carla and Brendan walk into his office, where Jonathan is waiting for them. Carla is amazed. Brendan explains that Jonathan is an expert who will hopefully help them investigate the mystery deaths. He then introduces Carla, and says rather un-tactfully that six months ago she was a theatrical agent. Jonathan tells him that they've already met. But Carla cuts him off before he can say too much.

Down to business. Brendan has brought in Jonathan to help them solve the crimes of the two murdered women, and the shooting against Davey. Jonathan supposes that the policemen didn't touch the gun when they found it? Obviously, says Carla no policeman is going to touch a suspect weapon until it's been dusted for prints. "Then that's probably where they made their big mistake," says Jonathan cryptically.

Brendan's phone rings, and as he goes back to his desk to answer it, Jonathan quietly asks Carla why she never returned his calls? Carla replies that she's fine thanks, and actually she's now a happily married woman. She's married to Brendan. She then says she'll see Jonathan tomorrow, at the scene of the shooting. Jonathan leaves, a look of shock on his face.

In bed that night, Carla is talking to Brendan about Jonathan while he works on his laptop. Perhaps she should have said something before. Actually the relationship with Jonathan was going quite well until she took him home to meet her parents. Jonathan just came out with a really offensive remark about her father and she suddenly saw him in a whole different light. She will of course put it all behind her for the sake of the show. "Is that a promise?" he asks. "Yes," she replies. "Great, thanks Jim," Brendan says and removes the hands free earphone from his mobile phone and turns to Carla, "Sorry sweetheart did you...?" Never mind, she tells him and turns over to go to sleep.

The following day, Jonathan meets Carla at the scene of the shooting. A policeman lets them through and Jonathan starts his examination of the scene. He points out the drainpipe next to the window where the gun was seen. Wouldn't have to be spider man to climb down that, he says. No, just invisible Carla says, as there were over a dozen officers around all watching. He didn't have to come here, Jonathan says dryly. It was her husband's idea to get him involved. Carla should hope so he certainly wouldn't be involved because of her! She tells Jonathan to stop giving her the cynical looks that say "since when did she become a presenter!?" She actually studied Media Studies and did three years on a regional TV programme. After a few more exchanges of snappy remarks, Jonathan suggests they just get on with it.

Carla assumes he'll want to inspect the room where the gun was found. "Not especially," he replies. So she goes to investigate on her own. Meanwhile, Jonathan investigate the room with the shattered glass where the bullets hit. He notices some residue around the bullet holes.

After looking around the upstairs room, Carla grudgingly admits she's none the wiser. Jonathan says it's because she was looking in the wrong room. It's easy enough to rig a gun in a locked room and leave via the drain pipe hours before anyone got there. He suggests that someone rigged up a couple of charges and stuck them to the window and set them off remotely as Davey was walking by. While all the focus was on the room with the gun, our man goes into the warehouse and removes the evidence and plants a couple of spent bullets where they'll be easily found.

Carla then twigs to Jonathan's earlier comment. So if the police had touched the gun, they would have found it cold as it didn't fire a shot at Davey. So they were trying to scare the police off, rather than kill Davey? There must be simpler ways of doing that says Jonathan. He's actually got a queasy feeling that this is all part of something much more sinister, and they won't find out what until it's all too late.

Later we see Carla and Jonathan shown into Parnevik's office while they wait for him. Carla tells Jonathan that she should do all the talking as the Inspector isn't exactly cuddly. Jonathan agrees, saying he saw the interview she did with him. He looks out the window and sees Davey sitting on some steps. A man behind her comes with a mop to clean them. A police van blocks his view, and as it leaves so does Davey. The man with the mop watches her go with a look of longing.

Carla discovers the airbag hidden in the Inspector's deskJonathan then turns to Carla who is in the process of rifling through the Inspector's desk for clues. He warns her that the Inspector won't take too kindly to her rummaging through his things, but Carla tells him it's the perfect opportunity to find out more, as the police won't tell them everything, and to stand guard at the door. As she tells Jonathan to stop being such a wimp, a huge air bag suddenly springs up pinning her against the wall of the office!

The Inspector walks in and is glad to see his compression value is working again. Security is a bit lacks around the station, and he's fond of gadgets to help boost security. Carla is very embarrassed and quickly changes the subject and says they have some ideas about the shooting they thought he might be interested in.

At the theatre that night Adam is doing his latest trick to a packed audience. He's dressed as a therapist and has a woman on a couch which he pretends to put to sleep in a hypnotic trance. No words are spoken, there is just music (Bolero) in the background. The set changes from books to reveal the picture of The Scream and the woman and the couch begins to levitate. It then spins vertically end over end, but the woman remains firmly on the couch.

The streaker runs across the stageHalfway through the trick a male streaker runs onto the stage. He avaides the security guards for a few moments, before getting frog marched off the stage.

At the police station, the Inspector gets a phone call from a student at the nearby college. She's just spotted a man wearing a Davey Crockett hat behind the PE block (Physical Education block). Parnevik orders three armed units to attend the scene. Parnevik walks into the locker room as Davey is getting geared up and says she doesn't have to go if she doesn't want to - after what happened last time. Davey says of course she's going, could mean a jump up the ladder for her if she nails public enemy number one. She could be out of the uniform in weeks, and she knows how he likes her out of uniform!

Parnevik then says it's probably not the time or the place, but well... He pulls out a small box and hands it to her. She opens the box and looks up at him, a smile on her face.

At the college, Parnevik orders men to seal off the walkways and fan out to look for the killer. He orders Davey to check out the gym. She enters a door leading to gym with a gun in her hand. Davey goes into the gym cautiously, but there is no-one there. In the middle of the gym there is a vaulting horse. She approaches the horse carefully, but before she gets there the lights go out suddenly. She rushes back to the door but it's locked. She radios to base to tell them what's going on, and Parnevik rushes to the door. He can't open the door from the outside either.

Parnevik starts to shout through the door, telling Davey to stay against the walls, not to let the killer get behind her. He's anxious as he can't do anything until the key arrives. As the officer with the key finally rushes to open the door, we hear Davey from inside struggling for breath:

"Oh my god! No!.... you bastard, you'll never....get away....

They rush into the gym, but alas they find Davey lying on the floor. Parnevik rushes to her and unzips her jacket and tries to feel for a pulse. In the background two officers turn the vaulting horse over, but there is no-one inside. Parnevik can't find a pulse, and when he loosens her shirt, he sees a thin red mark on her neck - she's been strangled.

Later Parnevik is going over what happened with Carla in the gym. The outline of Davey's body is on the floor but her body has been removed. He can't believe the killer is even human, seeing how he has just disappeared. Jonathan is in the background up a ladder having a look at a basket ball hoop on the wall. Parnevik doesn't seem to have much confidence in this, "Mop-haired magic geek". Carla says to lose a colleague in such a way is terrible, but would she be wrong in saying that Davey was more than just a colleague?

They move to the cafe within the college. Parnevik tells them that it's not something that was widely known in the force, that he and Davey were an item. Mainly because people could question how she got her promotions. Jonathan asks to listen to the recording of Davey's last words again, and an officer comes in to speak with Parnevik who leaves the table.

Carla looks at Jonathan and asks what's wrong. Jonathan isn't sure and asks her if she can hear a kind of bumblebee noise? Before she can answer Parnevik returns to the table. They have found some tiny traces of blood around the collar of Davey's flack jacket. Carla assumes it must be from where the wire cut into her neck, but Parnevik says the blood doesn't belong to Heather (Davey).

Carla's eyes light up. Heather Davey, Rose McCleary, Iris West - they are all flowers! Later we see a woman watching Carla on television as she explains the floural connection. The woman makes a drink and swallows it in one go, before turning off the TV in disgust. Meanwhile Jonathan is also watching Carla's report on the killings. He puts his face in his hands when he sees a huge picture of himself, as someone who could solve the mystery.

The following day Jonathan is walking backstage at the theatre where Adam is performing when he walks passed a door that gives him pause for thought. It has "Gary Basco - Streaker" on it. Jonathan goes in search of Adam, who is just finishing a chat with Gary. As Gary leaves Jonathan asks what he's doing here. According to Coral, it turns out Gary's little streak the other day polled quite well with the audience, it also acted as great misdirection and fewer people noticed the hidden mechanism behind the couch.

Jonathan is clearly unhappy about Adam now hiring the Gary to streak every night, but Adam tells him his views are redundant. He also tells him he expects to see Jonathan at his side on Sunday at the Crematorium to say goodbye to Velda, the unfortunate winner of a dinner date with him, and hands Jonathan a newspaper with a story about Velda's death. Jonathan watches Adam walk away perplexed. Coral then asks Jonathan if he has any news on this killer. After last nights report she's been really worried. Jonathan looks at her, and finally twigs, "I think you'll find Coral is actually an animal, so...". Coral runs off to her friend in the wings shouting, "Emily, did you hear that, I'm not a plant I'm an animal!"

Jonathan is having dinner with Carla and Brendan. Brendan is going on about how this killer is putting their ratings through the roof. He tells them that they'll be running Jonathan's solution to the killing on Monday. Jonathan says it's not a solution, at this stage it can only be a useful hypothesis. Actually he's getting very uncomfortable about what's going on with the show. He feels they are in danger of trivialising a very serious crime. Brendan tries to reassure him, and says that Jonathan gives it a grounding, he's the academic side of things. No pressure there then, Jonathan says, as the waiter arrives to take their orders.

Brendan asks about the Mackrel, is it low sodium? He turns to Jonathan and says, it's a pain always having to watch the old blood pressure, but at his age... Carla notices the look on Jonathan's face. Something about blood pressure Jonathan says - just leapt across his brain for a second there.

As they leave the restaurant Brendan gets a call on his mobile. He has to go back to the office, so he leaves Jonathan and Carla alone. Carla says he'll probably be needing a lift then? Before he can answer the woman who was watching the telly earlier jumps out at Carla. She tells her to come to her flat, alone, tonight, if she wants some information about the case.

In the car, Jonathan and Carla are having a heated discussion. Jonathan is accusing her of scaring every woman who's named after a flower so much that they won't leave their homes. Carla says they are performing a public service, and this woman is the proof of that. She obviously has something to say that she's too scared to tell the police. She then accuses Jonathan of still being cheesed off that she dumped him. To think she even introduced him to her parents! After what he said about her father she's amazed she's even speaking to him. Jonathan protests saying he was on his best behaviour that night. He remember he got hiccups before they left but...

Carla parks the car outside a block of flats, and wonders what this woman has to tell her. Perhaps she knows someone with a Davey Crockett hat? Jonathan wonders about all this Coonskin hat stuff, is that actually what they saw? Carla gets out of the car and walks up to the flats, and takes the lift up. At the flat of the woman, she notices the front door is already open. She calls out Hello, but no-one answers.

Jonathan suddenly realises that Carla's in dangerMeanwhile Jonathan is still in the car, and something is clearly not right. He's thinking about the woman Carla has gone to see. She had very curly hair and when she fished in her bag to get a piece of paper with her address on it a lot of stuff fell out of her bag - including a hair band. Jonathan quickly gets out of the car and runs up to the flat.

As Carla enters the living room a shadow falls on the wall to her left, the Davey Crockett shaped hat! But it's the woman with her hair tied back. She approaches Carla and wraps a cord around her neck. Carla manages to elbow her in the face, and then grabs her and bangs her head against the wall, knocking her out. Carla is visibly distressed as Jonathan runs in and he puts his arms around her as she cries.

At the police station Carla, Jonathan and Parnevik are watching a TV monitor of the woman being questioned. The interviewer leaves looking dejected and walks into the room with Carla and co. Sadly Moira Jane Rowe has defeated her - she clearly a disturbed woman, but she can't find a way in to get more from her. Parnevik asks if she managed to find out how she killed Davey and got out of the gym without anyone seeing her. Moira was strangely evasive on that one, saying only, "You'll have to fit it together."

Well they now have the killer even if she is being unhelpful. But there is still the mystery of how she got out of the gym to solve. Jonathan says he's tempted to keep coming back to the vaulting horse, but he's probably watched too many prisoner of war films. So they have to rely on the recording of Davey's last words, "You bastard, you'll never get away..." Why does he think it seems like a strange choice of words?

Jonathan throws out Gary after he talks so badly to the stage handBack at the theatre Jonathan is working on a prop as he walks passed Gary's dressing room. Gary is complaining to a stage hand that his sandwiches are stale, that the dressing room isn't big enough etc. etc. The stage hand leaves and gives Jonathan a worried look. Gary asks what he can do for Jonathan, and decides to ignore his answer of putting his head in a toilet while Jonathan flushes it. Jonathan then snaps and gives Gary a wedgy and marches him out of the theatre. Saying he can not talk to people like that. People do not come to the Adam Klaus magic show to see a dick on stage (he rephrases that to full frontal nudity!). Gary says he can make trouble for Adam and Jonathan, he's an integral part of that trick. Jonathan says they'll re-cast! And anyway, why does a streaker need a dressing room - surely that's an oxymoron!

As Gary leaves, Carla arrives, apologising for interrupting one of Jonathan's slagging matches. She knows how much he likes to use corse words. Is he ever going to be forgiven for saying something to her father, Jonathan wonders. Why doesn't she just tell him what he's supposed to have said? He remembers saying he was a bit of a "prick-ly gentlemen" and he did have the hiccups, so she may have mis-heard him. Carla takes this in and can't believe it - has she thrown it all in just because she thought he called her father a prick? "You've had weeks to think of that, is that the best you could come up with?" she says.

"It's not my fault you only heard the first half..." Jonathan says, and tails off mid sentence. Carla asks what he's thinking. Eventually Jonathan asks her to look at the painting on the stage behind him. What does she see? A person screaming, she replies. Well, yes, it is a painting called "The Scream", but if you look at it another way, it could also be a person hearing a scream, which is what a lot of art historian's now believe given the painting's original title of "Despair" and the fact the location was said to have a lunatic asylum in it. So? If you just look at things for the other side, it gives a whole different slant on things.

We assume that Davey's last words were to her killer as she was being strangled in the gym. "As opposed to?" Carla asks. Something that doesn't bear thinking about. And the specks of blood on the collar - why didn't he see that before! What's the most common reason blood gets on a collar....?

At the gym, we see a film crew gathered with Brendan talking to people saying this is future footage, they won't be able to broadcast until after the trial. Parnevik is in a chair getting makeup done, and Jonathan receives a bag from a policeman and nods.

They begin filming a report for "Eyes and Ears" about the murder, and Carla does a introduction as she walks into the gym. Standing by the vaulting horse is Parnevik and Jonathan. Parnevik is there to comment on Jonathan's findings. Carla comments that there was very little to go on in this case, and Jonathan replies that it's a fortress of a room, with a single door which was under constant observation at the time. There was only one witness - the victim herself. He then plays Davey's final words. Carla says there were two things that struck him about them. Yes, one was a slight buzzing in the background, and the actual choice of words. "You bastard, you'll never get away."

Okay so in some cases a woman might refer to another woman as a bastard, but if you turn it on it's head, and say the super intendment isn't over hearing a conversation with an unknown killer. In fact Davey was talking to him. In which case, it's easy to see how she would have finished the sentence had she not died, "You'll never get away with this."

Parnevik is obviously not happy with this, but Carla shuts him up saying that he will have a chance to have his say. She turns back to Jonathan and says that there was also something about the shootings that bothered him? Yes, he had to ask, why someone who always strangled their victims, wanted them to believe they were suddenly totting a gun around. "Unless of course it was the work of someone else - who had a different agenda entirely."

The more Jonathan thought about it, he could only think of one reason why someone would want to introduce a gun into the scheme of things. He then picks up a flack jacket from behind the vault. Carla comments that the jacket was recovered from the boot of Parnevik's car this morning. Parnevik's passion for gadetry was already well known, except the jacket is a bit more lethal than an air bag in a desk, she says as she straps on the jacket.

Jonathan takes out a home blood pressure testing kit and straps it round his wrist. He turns it on, and it makes a familiar buzzing sound as it tighends up to take the blood pressure reading. He comments, that they think everyone can imagine what this would feel like when applied to someone's chest. He points to the inside of the jacket which Carla is now wearing. There are a couple of hidden panels in it. He then does up the jacket and flicks a switch and the jacket inflates. Carla starts to have trouble breathing let alone deliver her lines, and Jonathan turns it off and undoes the jacket.

With Davey unable to breath, for all intents purposes, she's been strangled. You obviously can't risk a customised jacket lying around, so there has to be a switch. The few specks of blood on the collar told Jonathan that the jacket had been worn by a man, who had probably cut himself while shaving.

Heather clearly played the field and is seen by Parnevik feeling up the cleanerAll eyes turn to Parnevik. He realises he's been caught and confesses. Davey used him, he was just a tool to her. Before they went out to the college gym, he gave her a present of a necklace. She asked why he didn't wait until later to give it to her as he puts it on around her neck. He said she might not come home, she didn't always. Sometimes he only saw her one night out of seven. Davey told him not to be greedy, he gives her aGary streaks at Velda's funeral helping hand, and she gives him a helping hand (she says feeling him up a little). They kissed and in the heat of the moment he pulled the necklace, leaving a red mark around her neck. She jumps away, and rips the necklace off her neck calling it cheap tat.

Parnevik says it's always hard isn't it. Who do you blame, the prostitute or her client? He than tells Jonathan, "fine work Mr Creek," puts his hat on, and walks towards awaiting officers.

As they leave Brendan comments that when the show goes out on air, it will be sensational. Jonathan and Carla also have great screen chemistry - this could be the start of a great working relationship!

At Velda's funeral Adam is giving a moving speach. He's interrupted by Gary streaking!

corner imageGuest cast
Brendan Baxter
Brendan Baxter
Adam Klaus
Adam Klaus
Inspector Ted Parnevik
Inspector Ted Parnevik
Sgt Heather Davey
Sgt Heather Davey
Sgt Heather Davey
Moira Jane Rowe
Gary Basco
Gary Basco
Janet Blaydon
Janet Blaydon
Season 4, Episode 1
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