Cold Case -  Kathryn Morris by Joel Warren/Warner Bros. Cold Case - Kathryn Morris by Joel Warren/Warner Bros.

On tonight's Cold Case, renewed interest in an aspiring writer's suspicious hanging death in 1962 allows a trio of formidable guest stars to shine, in a tale loosely based on the 1944 movie classic Gaslight. Flashbacks feature Brothers & Sisters and John From Cincinnati vixen Emily Rose as Nancy Patterson, a Sylvia Plath type whose apparent suicide is reinvestigated after Lilly learns she didn't pen the note found on her body.

"It's the story of a woman who thinks she's going insane," says executive producer Veena Sud. "The question is 'Who is [making her think that]?'"

Lilly's search for the answer leads her to fiery Frances Fisher, ideally cast as Nancy's ultra-repressed daughter Rachel. Apart from being the last person to see her mother alive, Rachel also nurses a grudge against the stepfather who abandoned her, played by authority-figure specialist and weasel-virtuoso Ronny Cox. The Fisher-Cox combination gives this Case's dramatic twists an added payload, setting the stage for a knockout resolution. - G J Donnelly