We began four killings and five months into Maigret’s failure to catch a serial enemy of tall ladies with dark hair in Montmartre. He and his reputation were going under weight from his bosses, from his implausibly obnoxious companions, the press and from Paris at large. They all appeared to have mistaken him for Batman. Take a deep breath and relax.
Eventually – about four hours into this as far as anyone knows 120-minute film Maigret has the brilliant idea of sending 20 tall brunette policewomen (“I want every one of them trained in self-protection”) to wander round Montmartre after dark to check whether they can entice the executioner to murder one of them. Above and past the call, I call it, however this is the 50s and ladies did as they were told. So they walk tall-ly and brunettely around the place for another eight hours and the killer attacks one of them. She manages to grab a fistful of his suit before he makes his escape. Four hundred hours later, this leads to a suspect, Marcel Moncin.