East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai

Houdini & Doyle


A TV series canceled by Fox after a brief first season of ten episodes. Hadn’t we just left this party?

I have come to discover Houdini & Doyle, the 2016 series killed by Fox after ten episodes, through a circuitous way: I am currently watching, and enjoying, the 1920s whodonnit series Frankie Drake Mysteries, and I was trawling the web in search of details about the series leads.
I am particularly fond of the Mary Shaw character, as portrayed by Rebecca Liddiard, and through her IMDB profile I found a few series that looked promising.

Because after all, an intriguing premise and a star I like are enough for me to give a series a try.

HOUDINI & DOYLE: L-R: Michael Weston as Harry Houdini and Stephen Mangan as Arthur Conan Doyle. © 2016 FOX Broadcasting Co. Cr: Joseph Scanlon / FOX.

Houdini & Doyle is a mix of paranormal detective and straight procedural show. Illusionist Harry Houdini (Michael Weston) and medicine doctor Arthur Conan Doyle (Stephen Mangan) team up to solve uncanny crimes, and the banter between the leads and the historical reconstruction are part of the fun just as much as the mysteries, that usually have an unusual, possibly supernatural angle. Debunker Houdini and true believer Doyle are of course just the men for the job.

The show is rather tongue in cheek, but that’s OK. The mix of ghosts, vampires (Bram Stoker makes an appearance), period concerns and assorted shenanigans is perfect for the season, and a nice break through writing sessions. Pity they cancelled it, but doesn’t Fox always do like that? 

Author: Davide Mana

Paleontologist. By day, researcher, teacher and ecological statistics guru. By night, pulp fantasy author-publisher, translator and blogger. In the spare time, Orientalist Anonymous, guerilla cook.

5 thoughts on “Houdini & Doyle

  1. It’s Mulder and Scully in the early 1900s, but with two blokes!


  2. I was kind of bummed out when they cancelled it myself. Then again I’m a sucker for most late 19th & early 20th century period stories.


  3. I thought this series had some worth as well.


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