Rain, sheets of it and steady. Fog, mist, a damp chill in the air. We need a nice little fire. Let's have the kettle on, and biscuits. An armchair, the smell of coal, a good book---a classic mystery with pages that have the musty, sweet smell of pepper--you found it in a used bookshop in London, one of the original Penguin paperbacks.What could be better on a day like this? Only one thing. Being in the theatre and seeing this book come alive on a small old fashioned stage with red curtains and boxes and footlights, and, of course, mist, rain, some sheep, and more fog. The wind is up, the game's afoot, and the chase is on. And it's all managed by four genius actors, the hardest working quartet in show biz. And why you might ask? I myself have asked this question, idly prodding a lazy coal with a brass poker in my left hand---a hand, I might add, that still has all its digits intact, unlike one sinister character in the Scottish Highlands. Why only four actors when the book and then the movie have dozens of them? And in a blinding flash the answer came to me. Four no good reason! Four because that's six less than the barely imaginable minimum and three dozen fewer than you actually need. Four to prove this ridiculous thing can be done with extra thrills-- the real derring do required to pull an absurd caper off with charm, flair, and grace (mostly). Go ahead, stay by your fire with your plaid blanket, doze into the evening. A perfectly sensible thing to do on a dark wet night. But if you want something a little more trivial and useless and diverting, hie thee to the theatre where you will find more mist, fog, and a comfy chair to snooze in, while there just in front of you a small fire blazes up, trains race across the moors, a young woman is impertinately kissed by a wanted man, and only Mr. Memory knows the secret which will save the civilized world. I cannot promise you will find yourself handcuffed to a woman with a fine pair of legs in damp stockings. But there will be a pair of lovely legs in damp Scotland. And there will be tea.