Murder, She Wrote (1984–1996)
3 user

The Taxman Cometh 

An IRS-plagued woman may have killed her informer husband.


Anthony Pullen Shaw (as Anthony Shaw)


Peter S. Fischer (created by), Richard Levinson (created by) | 2 more credits »


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Episode cast overview:
Angela Lansbury ... Jessica Fletcher
Robin Dearden ... Gail Manning
Gregg Henry ... Richard Wellstood
Macon McCalman ... Nolan Hayes
Kent McCord ... George Harris
Phyllis Newman ... Edna Hayes
Roy Thinnes ... J. K. Davern
Fred Willard ... Lt. Phillips
Max Wright ... Gerald Yelverton
Joan Crosby Joan Crosby ... Maid
Dominic Oliver ... Pizza Man
Greg Allan Martin ... Officer #1
Annie O'Donnell ... Mrs. Leeman (as Annie O' Donnell)
Larry Eisenberg Larry Eisenberg ... Clerk
John Christopher John Christopher ... Officer #2


Jessica's college dorm friend, Edna Hayes, asks for her help when her firm, Aunt Edna's Pies that she founded in Missouri, and her ex, Nolan, are pressured by IRS St. Louis director Gerald Yelverton. After Nolan is found murdered, Edna is arrested, but Jessica convinces police Lieutenant Philips to let her go and gets to the bottom of the embezzlement which, like the murder, is traced to an elusive employee, or is that a phantom? Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

embezzlement | See All (1) »


Crime | Drama | Mystery


TV-PG | See all certifications »






Release Date:

17 February 1991 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Television See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


In this story of corporate malfeasance, the nearest business and banking hub is St. Louis. Yet some of the employees pronounce it as "Lewis" and others "Louie". See more »


[first lines]
Nolan Hayes: You must believe me, sir, I don't know how the mistake was made. Give me time, I'll get to the bottom of it. I- I've never cheated on my income tax. Never.
Gerald Yelverton: Before now.
See more »


References The Iceman Cometh (1973) See more »

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User Reviews

Embezzlement and murder
16 October 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.

"The Taxman Cometh" is a very good episode of both Season 7 and the show in general, if not quite a high-point for either. The ending is surprising and satisfying but pace-wise it felt a little rushed, feeling that a further crime had just been committed and then suddenly everything had been solved. The mystery is very interesting and springs many surprises, without coming over as confused.

Really liked that one gets the sense that the killer could be anybody and still has no idea half-way who it is and why and the truth about the embezzlement one doesn't see coming either.

Angela Lansbury is terrific as usual, and of the supporting cast Phyllis Newman's potently honest performance takes centre stage. Roy Thinnes' calm exterior and Fred Willard's authority stand out too.

Production values as always are slick and stylish with some nostalgia induced. The cosy, homey atmosphere that scaled things down was used to full and excellent advantage, one of those episodes where one likes not having big, exotic locations and instead having a smaller atmosphere that helps contribute to the mystery doing all the talking.

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. The writing is thoughtful and amiable.

Overall, very solid. 8/10 Bethany Cox

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