Star Jill Wagner fills us in on the latest installment of the whodunnit series

By Rebecca Angel Baer
June 21, 2019
©2019 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Ricardo Hubbs

Jill Wagner and Kristoffer Polaha are reprising their roles as Professor Amy and Detective Travis in Mystery 101: Playing Dead. Wagner returns as a professor, specializing in teaching murder mystery fiction and Polaha is the new to town detective who receives unsolicited assistance from Wagner’s character, Amy, in solving a few real-life murder mysteries. Hallmark’s official description for this new original film is as follows:

In a recent phone call with Southern Living, Wagner shared her excitement over this new story.

“I love this one so much because I love the backdrop for the episode which is theater. And maybe that’s just because I’m an actor. It’s very colorful. It’s very fun. We have an amazing, amazing ensemble cast,” she said, noting that it reminded her of the board game Clue. “I think it’s really hard to figure out whodunnit. And I know. I have the script,” she said with a laugh.

The series hints of a sweet nod to another famous tv sleuth whose character doesn’t exactly seem like an eagle-eyed detective. With Wagner playing a mystery fiction professor turned amateur detective, one can’t help but recall Angela Lansbury’s Jessica Fletcher. “I loved Murder She Wrote. That was always on in my grandmother’s house. That and Gunsmoke. So, it’s great to play something like this…and I think they’re really entertaining,” Wagner said.

Unlike JB Fletcher, Wagner’s character Amy has the added bonus of a possible romance with Travis. Will they, or won’t they? Well, Wagner wouldn’t exactly say. “Do I believe there’s something between them? Absolutely. There’s a bit of a Moonlighting vibe between those two. I don’t know. I can tell you that there’s always going to be that romantic tension in the air. Now, whether they act on it, that remains to be seen. But there will always be the tension. And I think the audience, I hope they’re always going to cheer for them and want them to be together.”

WATCH: Hallmark Just Debuted An Amazing New Mystery Series

That was just enough of a tease to make us wonder what will happen next? Will Amy and Travis find love whilst solving this murder? Tune in to find out. Mystery 101: Playing Dead premieres on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries Sunday at 9pm/8pm CST.

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