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A Nero Wolfe Mystery is a television series adapted from Rex Stout's classic series of detective stories that aired for two seasons (2001–2002) on the A&E Network. Set in New York City in the early 1950s, the stylized period drama stars Maury Chaykin as Nero Wolfe and Timothy Hutton as Archie Goodwin. A Nero Wolfe Mystery was one of the Top 10 Basic Cable Dramas for 2002.

A Nero Wolfe Mystery creates the world of the brownstone on Manhattan's West 35th Street through high production values and a jazzy score by Michael Small. The language and spirit of the Stout originals are preserved in the teleplays, most of them written by consulting producer Sharon Elizabeth Doyle and the team of William Rabkin and Lee Goldberg (whose "Prisoner's Base" was nominated for an Edgar Award by the Mystery Writers of America).

The Golden Spiders: A Nero Wolfe Mystery

The series was preceded by the original film The Golden Spiders: A Nero Wolfe Mystery, a Jaffe/Braunstein Films production that aired on the A&E Network March 5, 2000. Veteran screenwriter Paul Monash adapted Rex Stout's 1953 novel, and Bill Duke directed. A&E initially planned that The Golden Spiders would be the first in a series of two-hour mystery movies featuring Nero Wolfe. The high ratings (3.2 million households) and critical praise garnered by The Golden Spiders prompted A&E to consider a one-hour drama series.

"We were so pleased with the reception of the movie that we said, 'Maybe there's a one-hour show (here),'" said Allen Sabinson, A&E's senior vice president for programming, in June 2000. "I don't believe we were thinking, or Maury Chaykin and Timothy Hutton were thinking, there's a series here. These are not people who do series. What happened was they had such a good time, I think they fell in love with their characters. And I think they saw there was a level of respect and care about the filmmaking that they were open when we approached them and asked them, 'Would you be willing to do this as a one-hour show?'"


Maury Chaykin is the brilliant, eccentric detective Nero Wolfe, a man with little patience for people who come between him and his insatiable passions for food, books and orchids. Timothy Hutton is Wolfe's hardworking and cheeky assistant Archie Goodwin, whose voice narrates the stories. In addition to starring in the series, Hutton directed four episodes and served as an executive producer.

Other members of the principal cast are Colin Fox as Fritz Brenner, Wolfe's master chef; Conrad Dunn (Saul Panzer), Fulvio Cecere (Fred Durkin) and Trent McMullen (Orrie Cather) as the 'Teers, three freelance detectives who frequently assist Wolfe; Bill Smitrovich as Inspector Cramer, head of Manhattan's Homicide Bureau; and R.D. Reid as Sergeant Purley Stebbins. Saul Rubinek, who portrayed Saul Panzer in The Golden Spiders, took the role of reporter Lon Cohen in the series.

A distinguishing feature of the series is its use of a repertory cast — Nicky Guadagni, Kari Matchett [180380], Debra Monk, Boyd Banks, George Plimpton, Ron Rifkin, Francie Swift, James Tolkan and many other accomplished Canadian and American actors — to play non-recurring roles.

"If a stylized, period series based solely on books wasn't enough to separate Nero Wolfe from other TV shows," reported Scarlet Street magazine, "[executive producer Michael] Jaffe decided to employ a returning repertory cast in the guest roles for each episode. He felt that it was necessary to find actors who understood and fit in with the show's unique approach. 'Every other show agonizes about casting,' Jaffe says. 'We don't. We have 20, 30 people in our repertory company and we get great actors to play bit roles. ... We found an enormous number of very talented actors in Canada.'"

Kari Matchett has the distinction of playing a recurring role (Archie Goodwin's sometime girlfriend Lily Rowan) and a non-recurring role (nightclub singer Julie Jaquette) in the same episode, "Death of a Doxy." Nicky Guadagni has the distinction of playing two non-recurring characters (a secretary and Mrs. Cramer) in the same episode, "The Silent Speaker." Its ensemble cast gives A Nero Wolfe Mystery the effect of a series of plays put on by a repertory theatre company.


The Manhattan Brownstone used for exteriors in A Nero Wolfe Mystery
A Nero Wolfe Mystery is a production of A&E Television Networks and Jaffe/Braunstein Films, Ltd., in association with Pearson Television International. The series was shot in Toronto, with select Manhattan exteriors filmed for the series premiere, "The Doorbell Rang," and seen in subsequent episodes including "Prisoner's Base."

When the series was announced in June 2000, Variety reported that A&E had been licensed to own Nero Wolfe in the U.S. and Canada for an undisclosed fee. Jaffe/Braunstein Films, which retained ownership of the series in the rest of the world, licensed distribution outside the U.S. to Pearson International Television (now FremantleMedia, Ltd.). Producer Michael Jaffe told Variety that the Nero Wolfe episodes would cost $1 million each; sources said the full production cost would be covered by A&E's and Pearson's licensing fees.

"Jaffe/Braunstein was one of the first to experiment with HD for television," reported the industry publication HiDef Magazine. "Their landmark series 100 Centre Street ... was one of the first hour dramas to use HDCam as the capture medium. ... Jaffe/Braunstein was also producing the A&E series Nero Wolfe with Timothy Hutton in 35mm film. After the success with HD, Michael [Jaffe] decided that he'd like to try it on the single camera hour drama. At first Hutton was a little nervous about it, but after Jaffe brought experienced DP John Berrie to the program, Hutton was convinced. The entire second season was shot in HD, with 15 one hour programs and three two hours. Jaffe says that in addition to saving money, HD also allowed fewer lens changes, no magazine changes, smaller lighting instruments and near instant re-loading of stock. All this added to increased time working with the actors."

A Nero Wolfe Mystery features production design by Lindsey Hermer-Bell [180381], and costume design by Christopher Hargadon. Illustrator Aurore Giscard d'Estaing designed title sequences unique to each episode.


Title Season Director Teleplay First Airdate
The Golden Spiders Pilot Bill Duke Paul Monash March 5, 2000
The Doorbell Rang 1.1 Timothy Hutton Michael Jaffe April 22, 2001
Champagne for One 1.2 Timothy Hutton William Rabkin + Lee Goldberg April 29 + May 6, 2001
Prisoner's Base 1.3 Neill Fearnley William Rabkin + Lee Goldberg May 13 + 20, 2001
Eeny Meeny Murder Moe 1.4 John L'Ecuyer Sharon Elizabeth Doyle June 3, 2001
Disguise for Murder 1.5 John L'Ecuyer Sharon Elizabeth Doyle June 17, 2001
Door to Death 1.6 Holly Dale Sharon Elizabeth Doyle June 24, 2001
Christmas Party 1.7 Holly Dale Sharon Elizabeth Doyle July 1, 2001
Over My Dead Body 1.8 Timothy Hutton S.E. Doyle + Janet Roach July 8 + 15, 2001
Death of a Doxy 2.1 Timothy Hutton Sharon Elizabeth Doyle April 14, 2002
The Next Witness 2.2 James Tolkan Sharon Elizabeth Doyle April 21, 2002
Die Like a Dog 2.3 James Tolkan Sharon Elizabeth Doyle April 28, 2002
Murder is Corny 2.4 George Bloomfield William Rabkin + Lee Goldberg May 5, 2002
Motherhunt 2.5 Alan Smithee Sharon Elizabeth Doyle May 12 +19, 2002
Poison à la Carte 2.6 George Bloomfield William Rabkin + Lee Goldberg May 26, 2002
Too Many Clients 2.7 John L'Ecuyer Sharon Elizabeth Doyle June 2 + 9, 2002
Before I Die 2.8 John L'Ecuyer Sharon Elizabeth Doyle June 16, 2002
Help Wanted, Male 2.9 John L'Ecuyer Mark Stein June 23, 2002
The Silent Speaker 2.10 Michael Jaffe Michael Jaffe July 14 + 21, 2002
Cop Killer 2.11 John R. Pepper Jennifer Salt August 11, 2002
Immune to Murder 2.12 John R. Pepper Stuart Kaminsky August 18, 2002


Home video releases

A&E Home Video

"Nero Wolfe is a beautifully shot series, and its release on DVD is frequently stunning," wrote DVD Talk's Adam Tyner in his comprehensive review [180382] of "Nero Wolfe: The Complete Classic Whodunit Series":

Boxed sets of TV series take up quite a bit of space on my DVD shelves, but the majority of them — even series I deeply enjoy — have been watched once and only once. Nero Wolfe is certainly an exception. Not only did I feel compelled to rewatch these episodes, I started to feel that urge as soon as the end credits would flash on the screen. There were several cases where I'd read the original Rex Stout novel and then immediately rewatch the episode while the story was still fresh in my mind. I didn't watch Nero Wolfe so much as devour it, and that this is such a rewatchable series makes it especially worth owning on DVD.

It's rare for any form of entertainment — be it a television series, a film, or a novel — to so immediately and unrelentingly seize my attention, and I'm left fumbling for the right adjectives to fully describe how much I've enjoyed Nero Wolfe. ... It's worth mentioning that these DVDs present the episodes as they appeared on A&E, and although longer versions aired overseas (several were literally twice as long), none of that additional footage is offered here. ...

Expertly crafted, masterfully acted, and unlike much of anything else on television, this collection of the entire two season run of Nero Wolfe is very highly recommended.

The feature-length series pilot, The Golden Spiders, is included on two of A&E's DVD box sets — "Nero Wolfe: The Complete Classic Whodunit Series" and "Nero Wolfe: The Complete Second Season." These two box sets also include a 22-minute behind-the-scenes film, "The Making of Nero Wolfe," as well as a bonus 16:9 letterbox version [180383] of "The Silent Speaker," written and directed by Michael Jaffe. All of the other episodes are offered in full frame format.

"The episodes look excellent — clear and colorful — in their broadcast full-frame presentation," wrote Scarlet Street magazine. "The extras are skimpy to the point of frustration, however. ... For that matter, why is "The Silent Speaker" the only episode presented in widescreen format?"

Title Media Type Release Date Approximate Length ISBN
Nero Wolfe:
The Complete Classic
Whodunit Series

Region 1 DVD
Eight-disc box set
April 25, 2006 24 hours,
56 minutes
+ extras

ISBN 076708893X
The Doorbell Rang:
A Nero Wolfe Mystery
Region 1 DVD+R
(A&E Store exclusive)
October 2004 100 minutes ISBN 0767067215
The Golden Spiders:
A Nero Wolfe Mystery
Region 1 DVD+R
(A&E Store exclusive)
October 2004 94 minutes ISBN 0767067193
Nero Wolfe:
The Complete Second Season
Region 1 DVD
Five-disc box set
June 28, 2005 13 hours,
20 minutes
ISBN 076705508X
Nero Wolfe:
The Complete First Season
Region 1 DVD
Three-disc box set
July 27, 2004 10 hours ISBN 0767054997
The Doorbell Rang:
A Nero Wolfe Mystery
VHS videotape
August 20, 2001 100 minutes ISBN 0767037669
The Golden Spiders:
A Nero Wolfe Mystery
VHS videotape
May 30, 2000 94 minutes ISBN 0767025512

FremantleMedia Enterprises

As DVD Talk's 2006 review of Nero Wolfe reported, "longer versions aired overseas (several were literally twice as long)." Nero Wolfe saw its first international DVD release in August 2008, when "Nero Wolfe – Collection One" was offered for sale in Australia by FremantleMedia Enterprises. "Nero Wolfe — Collection Two" (December 2008) was the first Fremantle release of an episode containing scenes not available on the A&E Home Video release. The Pearson Television International version of "Prisoner's Base" on disc one of the DVD set includes three scenes (3.5 minutes) found on pp. 3–5, 21 and 27–28 of the script written by Lee Goldberg and William Rabkin.

Title Media Type Release Date Approximate Length ISBN
Nero Wolfe — Collection One Region 4 DVD
Three-disc set
August 13, 2008 276 minutes ISBN 9316797427038
Nero Wolfe — Collection Two Region 4 DVD
Two-disc set
December 5, 2008 178 minutes ISBN 9315842036140

Adapting the stories for the A&E series

"It was a screenwriting assignment unlike any other that my writing partner, William Rabkin, and I had ever been involved with," wrote screenwriter Lee Goldberg in the November 2002 issue of Mystery Scene magazine. "Because Nero Wolfe, starring Maury Chaykin as Wolfe and Timothy Hutton as Archie, was unlike any other series on television. It was, as far as I know, the first TV series without a single original script — each and every episode was based on a Rex Stout novel, novella, or short story. That's not to say there wasn't original writing involved, but it was Stout who did all the hard work."

Goldberg and Rabkin adapted four Nero Wolfe stories — Champagne for One, Prisoner's Base, "Murder Is Corny" and "Poison à la Carte" — for A Nero Wolfe Mystery. In his article "Writing Nero Wolfe," Goldberg provides a unique inside look at the process of adapting Rex Stout for the A&E TV series:

Everyone who wrote for Nero Wolfe was collaborating with Rex Stout. The mandate from executive producers Michael Jaffe and Timothy Hutton (who also directed episodes) was to "do the books," even if that meant violating some of the hard-and-fast rules of screenwriting. Your typical hour-long teleplay follows what's known as a four-act structure. ... But Nero Wolfe ignored the formula, forgoing the traditional mini-cliffhangers and plot-reversals that precede the commercial breaks. Instead, we stuck to the structure of the book, replicating as closely as possible the experience of reading a Rex Stout novel...

"It's amazing how many writers got it wrong," says Sharon Elizabeth Doyle, who was head writer for Nero Wolfe. "I mean very good writers, too. Either you get it or you don't. It's so important to have the relationships right, and the tone of the relationships right, to get that it's about the language and not the story. The characters in these books aren't modern human beings. You have to believe in the characters and respect the formality of the way they are characterized. ... There is a pleasure in Wolfe's speeches, what we call the arias," says Doyle. "Wolfe has lots of them, the trick is isolating that one aria you can't live without."

"There's something so dynamic and wonderful about Wolfe and Archie, Fritz and their whole world," Sharon Elizabeth Doyle told Scarlet Street magazine in 2002. Consulting producer for A Nero Wolfe Mystery, Doyle was the show's only full-time writer — overseeing the work of freelance screenwriters, and writing 11 of the teleplays herself:

"I do the most work on the dialogue," she says. "What Stout writes actually sounds good when you say it out loud, but the stuff that makes you laugh out loud and fall on the floor in the books doesn't work most of the time when you transpose it directly into actors' mouths. Frequently I end up moving words — tenderly and respectfully — but retaining as much of the language as possible. I feel a great belief in Rex Stout. I see the script process as writing his second draft."

Relationship to literary source

In the preface to the second edition of his book At Wolfe's Door: The Nero Wolfe Novels of Rex Stout, J. Kenneth Van Dover assessed the fidelity of A Nero Wolfe Mystery to its literary source:

A quarter century after his death, the Nero Wolfe books remain in print (on, it is reported, "a rotating basis") and, as a result of a very popular A&E television series which premiered in 2000, their continuing presence seems assured. ... The success of the series is significant especially because the scripts remained remarkably faithful to the novels. The programs are set in the period, and much of the dialogue is lifted directly from the novel. Effective novelistic dialogue is not usually effective screen dialogue, as Raymond Chandler discovered when he worked on the script for the 1944 film of James M. Cain's Double Indemnity. The A&E series was able to adopt verbatim both the sharp exchanges between Wolfe and Archie, and as well Archie's narration in voiceover. Credit certainly goes to the skills of the repertory actors who played the roles, and especially to Maury Chaykin and Timothy Hutton; but it was Stout who supplied the language and the characters who speak it. And it was Stout who created in words the real pleasures of the novels: the voices and ideas, the rooms and the routines. Producer Michael Jaffe realized this, and with great care recreated those pleasures on film.

"That Nero Wolfe should be so pleasing has at least as much to do with the casting as the scripts," wrote cultural critic Terry Teachout in the National Review:

Timothy Hutton plays Archie Goodwin, and I can't see how anyone could do a better job. Not only does he catch Archie's snap-brim Thirties tone with sharp-eared precision, but he also bears an uncanny physical resemblance to the dapper detective-narrator I've been envisioning all these years. No sooner did Hutton make his first entrance in The Golden Spiders than he melded completely with the Archie of my mind's eye. I can no longer read a Stout novel without seeing him, or hearing his voice.

Still, Archie could have wandered out of any number of screwball comedies; Nero Wolfe is a far more complicated proposition. ... Maury Chaykin has doubtless immersed himself in the Wolfe novels, for he brings to his interpretation of the part both a detailed knowledge of what Stout wrote and an unexpectedly personal touch of insight. He plays Wolfe as a fearful genius, an aesthete turned hermit who has withdrawn from the world (and from the opposite sex) in order to shield himself — against what? Stout never answers that question, giving Chaykin plenty of room to maneuver, which he uses with enviable skill. — a web-search service that reports the most-sought out-of-print titles — documents that the production of A Nero Wolfe Mystery coincides with Rex Stout's becoming a top-selling author some 30 years after his death. In March 2003, the top four most-wanted mysteries listed by were all Nero Wolfe novels: Where There's a Will (1940), The Rubber Band (1936), The Red Box (1937) and The League of Frightened Men (1935). The Red Box was the most-searched mystery title in August 2003, and the novel remained as number two on the list in 2004. In 2006, Too Many Women (1947) was fifth on's list of most-sought out-of-print thrillers, whodunits, classics and modern mystery titles. In 2007, The Black Mountain was in the number five position.

Most of the Nero Wolfe stories adapted for A Nero Wolfe Mystery are available through Bantam's Rex Stout Library, a series of paperbacks featuring new introductions by today's best writers and never-before published Rex Stout memorabilia. Some Bantam volumes, like Prisoner's Base, are emblazoned with the words, "as seen on TV." The Audio Partners Publishing Corporation promoted its bestselling line of Rex Stout audiobooks, unabridged on CD and audiocassette, "as seen on A&E TV."

Broadcast history

United States and Canada

Distributed by the A&E Television Networks in the United States and Canada, A Nero Wolfe Mystery first aired on the A&E Network April 22, 2001. The series ran Sundays at 8 p.m. ET and was rebroadcast at midnight. The last original broadcast was Sunday, August 18, 2002. Nero Wolfe continued to air regularly in repeat through 2002 and sporadically in early 2003 before leaving the A&E schedule altogether.

From March 2004 to May 2006, Nero Wolfe appeared Saturdays at 8 p.m. ET on another of the A&E Networks, The Biography Channel.


FremantleMedia, Ltd., distributes A Nero Wolfe Mystery outside the U.S. and Canada. The series has been broadcast on public and commercial networks, cable television and satellite systems throughout the world, and was presented throughout Europe and Africa on the Hallmark Channel.


In its debut season on A&E, A Nero Wolfe Mystery averaged a 1.9 rating. The first three weeks (April 14–28, 2002) of the second season of Nero Wolfe averaged a solid 1.9 rating in cable homes, Variety reported. Broadcasting and Cable reported that Nero Wolfe had averaged a 1.7 rating for the month of May 2002, while viewing levels for the A&E Network overall were 1.1. In mid-June 2002 Multichannel News wrote, "Nero Wolfe, in its second cycle of episodes, is drawing solid ratings in the 1.5 to 2.0 Nielsen Media Research range."

A Nero Wolfe Mystery was one of the Top 10 Basic Cable Dramas for 2002.

Reviews and commentary

  • John Leonard, New York Magazine (April 16, 2001) — Imperious and mysterious, Rex Stout's Nero Wolfe was always a natural for television. Finally, A&E got him right.
  • Diane Holloway, Cox News Service (April 20, 2001) — The music is big-band smooth, the cars are shiny with tail fins and the dialogue is snappy, almost musical. At times conversations sound like fingers rhythmically popping. ... The antithesis of today's gritty cop dramas, A&E's new Nero Wolfe series is slick and classy. Nobody spinning the dial will mistake the lavish sets, fabulous period costumes and moody lighting for NYPD Blue. The camera doesn't jiggle; it glides.
  • John Levesque, Seattle Post-Intelligencer (April 20, 2001) — Like so many characters in noir-ish films of the 1940s and 1950s, Wolfe and Goodwin are ebulliently over the top: loud, proud and full of themselves. It's a bit much for anyone expecting the less theatrical performances of today. And yet it fits remarkably well with today's reality programming. Wolfe, after all, is ruder than anyone on Survivor.
  • Howard Rosenberg, Los Angeles Times (April 20, 2001) — Style is exactly what drives Nero Wolfe. That and deft acting by Chaykin and executive producer Hutton — who also grandly directs the first two episodes — make it the greatest of fun.
  • Julie Salamon, The New York Times (April 20, 2001) — The charming A&E series is an expansion of last year's Nero Wolfe movie special, starring Maury Chaykin as the massive Wolfe and Timothy Hutton as skinny Archie Goodwin, his investigator and sidekick. ... This actor has retained his lanky boyishness. Sometimes his big-shouldered, baggy suits seem to be gliding along by themselves.
  • Alan Johnson, The Columbus Dispatch (April 22, 2001) — The series is actually better than the movie — stylish, well-acted and backed by a compelling retro-jazz theme ... What it lacks in shoot'em-up action, Nero Wolfe makes up for in style.
  • David Kronke, The Daily News of Los Angeles (April 22, 2001) — Nero Wolfe, alas, is undone by uneven performances and a sense that it's more witty and urbane than it really is. Hutton is too antic — he seems to be playing the sassy newsroom copy boy in a '30s B-picture — and his narration tries far too hard to push jokes that just aren't funny. Maury Chaykin, a normally reliable character actor, is alternately flat or rudderlessly blustery as Wolfe.
  • Laura Urbani, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review (April 22, 2001) — Hutton has found a series of which he can be proud. Most actors would kill to be a part of such a witty and classy production.
  • James Vance, Tulsa World (April 22, 2001) — Stout's books are mysteries, but they're invariably more about the people involved than the mysteries themselves. Hutton, an Academy Award–winning actor (for 1980's Ordinary People), is ideal casting for Archie, and the lesser-known Chaykin is a surprisingly satisfactory choice to flesh out the combination of growls and tics that make up Nero Wolfe. To that mix Hutton and his partners in production have added the concept of repertory casting that will see the same nucleus of performers returning in different roles each week.
  • Frazier Moore, Associated Press (May 3, 2001) — Fast-paced and stylish, there's no mystery why it's so much fun to watch. ... The series' look is bright and plushly appointed. The music swings like a night at the Stork Club.
  • Gene Amole, Rocky Mountain News (May 11, 2001) — Maury Chaykin is perfect as Wolfe, and Timothy Hutton, who also produces and directs the series, is the ideal Archie. Somehow, they have reproduced with unerring accuracy Wolfe's four-story brownstone mansion ... What wonderful, campy scripts!
  • Don Dale, Style Weekly (May 21, 2001) — Maury Chaykin makes an excellent Nero Wolfe in A&E’s new series based on Stout’s books. And Timothy Hutton is nicely cast as Goodwin. ... The soundtrack of the series gets an A+: It’s full of hot '30s and '40s club jazz. So do the writers, especially for capturing the exquisite subtleties of the complex relationship between Wolfe and Goodwin, most often expressed in the conversational games they’re so fond of — and so good at.
  • Martin Sieff, United Press International (December 25, 2001) — The great veteran actor Maury Chaykin was born to play Nero. And Timothy Hutton is equally perfect as his leg-man and always squabbling employee/amanuensis/Dr. Watson/Captain Hastings sidekick, Archie Goodwin. ... Hutton, an Oscar winner, and Chaykin are at the heart of it all. They have done many prestigious things in their careers and no doubt will do many more. But it is clear they know they will never have more fun than doing this.
  • Robert Bianco, USA Today (April 12, 2002) — For reasons I can't explain, A&E is dedicated to preserving Nero Wolfe, its thuddingly mediocre series starring Timothy Hutton and Maury Chaykin as Rex Stout's famed detective team. The stars are miscast, the production is chintzy and the books defy adaptation, but A&E keeps plugging.
  • S. T. Karnick, National Review (May 10, 2002) — Timothy Hutton, who also serves as executive producer for the show, is just brilliant as Archie Goodwin, managing to express the gumshoe's toughness (which I had been rather skeptical of his ability to do) as effectively as he shows his moral strength and emotional complexity. ... Chaykin quite simply is Nero Wolfe, playing the role with impressive confidence and subtlety.
  • Jonathan Storm, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (June 11, 2002) — One of TV's most stylish shows.
  • Terry Teachout, National Review (August 12, 2002) — Chaykin and Hutton are as good in tandem as they are separately, for they understand that the Wolfe books are less mystery stories than domestic comedies, the continuing saga of two iron-willed codependents engaged in an endless game of one-upmanship. ... At least half the fun of the Wolfe books comes from the way in which Stout plays this struggle for laughs, and Chaykin and Hutton make the most of it, sniping at each other with naughty glee.
  • Carey Henderson, Speakeasy (November 5, 2002) — Timothy Hutton, along with the ever pompous Maury Chaykin, stars in — and directs — this amazing weekly 'who done it' on A&E. ... Wolfe takes us back to a time (or maybe just transports us to a new one) where television could be good. The bad guys lose, the good guys win, and the suits are sharper than a razor.
  • Robert Fidgeon, Herald Sun (November 12, 2003) — For those who enjoy stylish, well-written and superbly performed television, you won't get much better than this series.
  • Stephen Lackey, Cinegeek (2004) — Take one part Crime Story, one part Sherlock Holmes, and a lot of smart quick-witted and sarcastic humor and you have A&E's gone-before-its-time television adaptation of Nero Wolfe. I can't recommend this series enough.
  • Michael Rogers, Library Journal (December 2004) — A&E’s Nero Wolfe is so good, it’s criminal. Highly recommended.
  • Stuart Kaminsky, Publishers Weekly (December 19, 2005) — I ended up writing the last episode, "Immune to Murder," based on one of Rex Stout's short stories. I thought it was a terrific series, by the way. I don't know for sure why it didn't continue.
  • Steve Lewis, Mystery*File (February 5, 2009) — The finest TV series ever based on the works of an American mystery writer.


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