Agatha Christie Wiki

In the novel Ordeal by Innocence, Jack “Jacko” Argyle was an adopted son of Leo and Rachel. He died in prison of pneumonia, convicted of killing his mother. He had been both an amusing person and one of fierce anger, and already had a police record.

The police caught him in Drymouth.


In the 2007 ITV adaptation which was episode 2 of series 3 of Agatha Christie's Marple, Jacko Argyle is portrayed by Burn Gorman. He is slightly more desperate for the money here than in the original. In the scene where he argues with his mother for more money, he says that the bookmaker whom he owes is threatening to kill him if he does not pay up. Hester Argyle who walked with him as he was leaving the house felt that he was genuinely fearful for his life. There is also a scene not in the original where, just before departing, Jacko attacks Rachel. She is on the ground being strangled but other members of the family arrive and pull Jacko off in time. Later in the night Rachel would be found murdered.

Jacko is arrested for the murder and like in other adaptations, he does not die of pneumonia in prison while serving a life sentence. Here he is hanged. Just before his execution, he tells his twin brother Bobby Argyle (a non-canonical additional character) that perhaps getting hanged is the best thing he has ever done. To Miss Marple, this is significant because it suggests that Jacko was covering up or protecting someone else.