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“Murdoch Mysteries” Based On Actual Figure

Hit CBC series draws inspiration from Canadian detective John Wilson Murray.

One of the most popular dramas on the CBC network, "Murdoch Mysteries," was inspired by an Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) detective named John Wilson Murray, whom many Canadians don't know much about.

Murray was a major force in author Maureen Jennings' books, which are what the series is based on. She is the creative mind who created the lead character, William Murdoch, who was an unconventional detective in the late 19th century.

"[Murray] had to rely on being shrewd, very observant, hardworking, following things up and I liked that whole idea – that was the Sherlock Holmes model. He just couldn't go to his computer," Jennings told CBC News.

"Murdoch Mysteries" follows a handsome young detective who is using radical forensic techniques for the time, including fingerprinting and trace evidence, to solve some of the city's most gruesome murders. Though his unconventional approach often elicits scepticism from others, particularly his boss, it is Murdoch himself who is often the only one who can crack the toughest cases.

The show debuted in 2008 and was renewed for a fifth season in May 2011, although Rogers Media announced four months later that it would not be going through with the series. Last November, the CBC network picked it up and ordered a sixth season.

"It's amazing and I love the fact that it's Canadian," Jennings said. "I love that people will say to me 'Oh, you mentioned Yonge Street,' or something like that, which is significant to them."

Photo: cbc.ca

Resources:

http://www.tv-eh.com/2012/10/17/murdoch-mysteries-real-life-inspiration/

http://www.cbc.ca/news/arts/story/2012/10/15/murdoch-mysteries-real-life-sleuth-murray.html

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1091909/

http://www.thestar.com/article/1087437–cbc-picks-up-murdoch-mysterie