In what would make a fantastic musical in the vein of Million Dollar Quartet, Edgar Allan Poe once threw a dinner party for Emily Dickinson, Mary Shelley, Charlotte Brontë, Oscar Wilde, George Eliot, Louisa May Alcott, Ernest Hemingway, HG Wells, Fyodor Dostoevsky, and Agatha Christie as an excuse to flirt with Annabel Lee. If you don’t remember hearing about it in your history/literature classes, it’s probably because it was an Invite Only, For Friends Potluck. Also, someone died.*
Honestly, if anyone thought this particular group of writers could get together for a Murder Mystery party without someone actually dying, they were mistaken.
We knew this night was coming. Poe and Lenore sent invitations last year. They crowdfunded their party games six months ago (I bought my internet invite, because I’m classy). They showed us all the people who were not invited.
Ralph Waldo Emerson’s FOMO was my favorite.
Now the ravens have been (semi-) trained, the soup cooked, and the place settings laid. Lenore the Lady Ghost can carry plates and vodka, so it’s time to party and make no jokes.
Lauren Lopez as George Eliot is my favorite part of this first episode. “The name’s Eliot. George Eliot. Likes: beer, sporting, talking about sporting,” she says as she carries what looks like a single rib for the potluck.**
Who killed Eddie? Was it a jealous Edgar Allan? Was it an uninvited writer? Was it the uncast, unmentioned Alexandre Dumas, angry because this banker guy shares a name with his character? Was it John Proctor? Was it the bass from the barbershop quartet? Was it Lenore???
Time will tell. And so will Mondays.
*Half these people are probably ghosts or in possession of time turners, since Poe definitely died decades before Hemingway and HG Wells were born. But whatever, we’re dealing with an alternate reality here. Or magic.
**None of these people actually brought enough food to share. Or eat. They should not be invited back.