Murder, She Wrote (1984–1996)
5 user

The Days Dwindle Down 

Jessica investigates the possibility that a recent parolee went to jail for a crime he didn't commit.


Michael J. Lynch (as Michael Lynch)


Peter S. Fischer (created by), Richard Levinson (created by) | 5 more credits »

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Angela Lansbury ... Jessica Fletcher
Richard Beymer ... Sydney Jarvis
June Havoc ... Thelma Vantay
Art Hindle ... Rod Wilson
Jeffrey Lynn ... Sam Wilson
Harry Morgan ... Retired Lt. Richard Webb
Martha Scott ... Georgia Wilson
Susan Strasberg ... Dorothy Hearn Davis
Debbie Zipp ... Terry
Tom Dreesen ... Peabody
Emory Bass Emory Bass ... Manager
Gloria Stuart ... Edna Jarvis
Russ Marin ... Lt. Sharp
Mark Pilon Mark Pilon ... Male Secretary
Cynthia Leighton Cynthia Leighton ... Secretary


When Jessica is pampered in the luxury suite of a hotel, she's approached by restaurant employee Georgia Wilson, whose husband, accountant Sam, was recently released after 30 years jail, assuring he was framed for the shooting of his boss, Richard Jarvis, who actually offered Sam his last $10,000 for help when his firm went bust, to make his suicide look like armed robbery so the insurance would pay the Jarvis family a fortune, only someone else really killed him. Their son, Rod Wilson, became a cop hoping to help his father, now puts all his experience at her disposal. While she, Rob and the now retired police Lt. Webb re-examine the forensics as well as the means, opportunities and motives of surviving members of both families, someone in the know shoots at Jessica with a matching bullet. At last she puzzles the pieces of both shootings together and traps the perpetrators. Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Mystery


TV-PG | See all certifications »






Release Date:

19 April 1987 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Television See more »
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Technical Specs



Sound Mix:



Color | Black and White (flashbacks)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Richard Beymer, who played Sydney Jarvis, was actually 14 years younger than Raymond Roe, who played the same character in the Strange Bargain (1949) footage. Roe had long since retired from acting, and was by now, a Los Angeles County Sheriff's Deputy. See more »


[first lines]
Peabody: Let me tell ya, Mrs. Fletcher. You can have this town at your feet.
Jessica Fletcher: Well, actually, Mr. Peabody, eye-level will be just fine.
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Edited from Strange Bargain (1949) See more »


Murder She Wrote Theme
Written by John Addison
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User Reviews

No signs of dwindling here
15 August 2017 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Have always been quite fond of 'Murder She Wrote'. It is a fun and relaxing watch that makes you think as you try to unwind in the evening. If one wants more complex, twisty mysteries with lots of tension and suspense 'Murder She Wrote' may not be for you, but if you want something light-hearted and entertaining but still provide good mysteries 'Murder She Wrote' fits the bill just fine.

Season 3, and 'Murder She Wrote' in general, showS no signs of dwindling in "The Days Dwindle Down", one of the most interesting episodeS of Season 3 and of all 'Murder She Wrote' episodes put together. Not just for the archival footage of 'Strange Bargain' for the flashbacks, but also being one of few episodes with Jessica investigating a case so old in a quest to prove the innocence of a convicted man.

The flashbacks serve a crucial purpose and add hugely to the story in revealing as much about the past as possible. The mystery is hugely intriguing from start to finish with some tense conflict and some well executed surprises, the ending is one that one doesn't see coming at all.

Production values are slick and stylish as ever with 'Murder She Wrote'. The music has energy and has presence but also not making the mistake of over-scoring, while it is hard to forget or resist the theme tune.

Writing is thought-provoking, light-hearted and amiable and one really cares about the case being solved and for the right person to be found out.

Angela Lansbury is spot-on, and the supporting cast is one of Season 3's strongest with standout turns from Harry Morgan and June Havoc.

In conclusion, terrific episode, one of my favourite Season 3 episodes. 10/10 Bethany Cox

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