Ovation TV, America’s premier arts network, announced today that it will begin airing the hit Australian whodunit series The Doctor Blake Mysteries next month.
For folks who might not be familiar with The Doctor Blake Mysteries, the series is a period mystery drama that stars Craig McLachlan (Deep Water, Packed to the Rafters, Rescue Special Ops) as Dr. Lucien Blake, a maverick town doctor and impulsive risk-taker who’s not afraid to upset the status quo.
Ovation TV will kick things off with Season 1 of The Doctor Blake Mysteries on Thursday, July 7 — airing four feature-length episodes back-to-back starting at 8 AM ET. With the first season’s ten episodes, Season 2 will then begin airing on Thursday, July 21, at 11 AM ET. Episodes will also be available on demand and on the Ovation NOW app. (See below for the complete schedule.)
After a 33-year absence, Dr. Blake returns to his hometown of Ballarat in 1959 to take over his late father’s medical practice and serve as the town’s GP. Everything seems peaceful on the surface, but seething underneath are the age-old passions of a regional town clashing head-on with the tension and fears of the decade to come.
Haunted by the horrors of war and his own personal loss, and changed by his experiences as a POW, the wry, dry, yet very human Dr. Blake undertakes his other role as Police Surgeon with precision and gusto — although many find his unpredictable and unconventional manner unnerving. A man ahead of his time, Blake looks to the science of forensics and his own understanding of the human heart and mind to help solve the mysteries that inevitably come his way.
Beside Blake, helping and at times hindering the process of solving crimes in Ballarat, are his housekeeper Jean Beazley (Nadine Garner, City Homicide); her nephew Constable Danny Parks (Rick Donald, 800 Words); District Nurse Mattie O’Brien (Cate Wolfe, Offspring); and Chief Superintendent Matthew Lawson (Joel Tobeck, One Lane Bridge).
Thursday, July 7
- Episode 1 “Still Waters” — July 7, 8 AM ET — When a wayward girl from the local reform school is found dead in Lake Wendouree, Dr. Blake is immediately suspicious. He shocks the police with his unconventional investigative methods.
- Episode 2 “The Greater Good” — July 7, 9:30 AM ET — On the eve of Anzac Day, Dr. Blake is called to the morgue where the attendant has been murdered. With the autopsy tools and a body missing, Dr. Blake smells a rat.
- Episode 3 “Death of a Traveling Salesman” — July 7, 11 AM ET — When a traveling salesman dies in a car accident, police blame alcohol. Dr. Blake concludes that the victim was not drunk and died before the crash of very unusual causes.
- Episode 4 “Brotherly Love” — July 7, 12:30 PM ET — A delirious prisoner on death row tells Dr. Blake he is innocent of the police shooting for which he is soon to hang. Dr. Blake pulls out all stops to uncover the truth.
Thursday, July 14
- Episode 5 “Hearts and Flowers” — July 14, 8 AM ET — Things get very ugly in Ballarat when the Begonia Festival’s head judge is found incinerated in his own glasshouse, and all eyes turn to two feuding contestants.
- Episode 6 “If the Shoe Fits” — July 14, 9:30 AM ET — The death of a migrant factory foreman initially looks like an industrial accident. Dr. Blake digs deeper, revealing a hideous string of crimes and the ugly side of post-war Australia. Meanwhile, Jean receives a marriage proposal.
- Episode 7 “Bedlam” — July 14, 11 AM ET — A psychiatric inmate is found with the murder weapon in hand at the scene of a brutal homicide. The inmate also confesses, but Dr. Blake doubts the case is quite as neat as it appears.
- Episode 8 “Game of Champions” — July 14, 12:30 PM ET — Doctor Blake is drawn into the new world of TV when contestants of a successful TV quiz show start dying.
Thursday, July 21
- Episode 9 “All That Glitters” — July 21, 8 AM ET — A prospector announces to a crowded pub that he has struck gold and shows off the nugget. Later that night he is found dead at the bottom of his mine shaft. The location of the murder triggers distressing war memories for Dr. Blake.
- Episode 10 “Someone’s Son, Someone’s Daughter” — July 21, 9:30 AM ET — The suicide of Ballarat Hospital’s first female doctor shocks the community. Dr. Blake suspects foul play and sets out to find the murderer amongst the staff and board of the hospital.
- Episode 1 “The Heart of the Matter” — July 21, 11 AM ET — Dr. Blake returns to Ballarat to find the newly-elected Mayor lying dead at the bottom of the Town Hall steps.
- Episode 2 “The Food of Love” — July 21, 12:30 PM ET — Dr. Blake investigates the death of an up-and-coming rock-and-roll star after the latter collapsed in an alleyway behind the hall after a show.
Thursday, July 28
- Episode 3 “A Foreign Field” — July 28, 8 AM ET — Dr. Blake struggles to discover the identity of an unknown victim and to uncover the mystery of who may have killed him.
- Episode 4 “Smoke and Mirrors” — July 28, 9:30 AM ET — When a body plunges from the Colonists’ Club onto the street below, Dr. Blake is thrown into a case that takes him far beyond an accident or even a possible suicide.
- Episode 5 “Crossing the Line” — July 28, 11 AM ET — Cinema patrons are shocked when a fire breaks out in the projection booth during a packed screening of Hitchcock’s Vertigo.
- Episode 6 “Mortal Coil” — July 28, 12:30 PM ET — When a second body is found in a coffin, Dr. Blake must work out how it got there and who killed this unwanted guest. And that’s just the start of things…
Thursday, August 4
- Episode 7 “The Silence” — August 4, 8 AM ET — When a Ballarat school principal is found dead, Dr. Blake and Chief Superintendent Lawson find themselves back at the school where they first met as boys.
- Episode 8 “The Ties of the Past” — August 4, 9:30 AM ET — The murder of an artist’s model draws Dr. Blake into the art world, taking him on a journey of self-discovery as he uncovers a secret about his beloved mother.
- Episode 9 “The Sky is Empty” — August 4, 11 AM ET — When the old parish priest is found dead, Dr. Blake needs to unravel the secrets and lies of parishioners to get to the truth.
- Episode 10 “An Invincible Summer” — August 4, 12:30 PM ET — When members of a wealthy, much respected Ballarat family are discovered brutally murdered in their own home, the town demands justice.
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