Daniel Pratt, owner of Toronto Electric & Light, has made his fortune by lighting the city streets with direct current (DC). But now council is considering a new form of electricity called alternating current (AC). So Pratt ? and a team of high-powered supporters ?decides to mount 'dog and pony' shows across the city to prove that AC is a hugger. But when Miss Toronto Electric & Light, Alice Howard, is electrocuted in a demonstration gone wrong, it's determined that the switch handle she pulled had been purposely booby-trapped. In a case that's further complicated by bribery, scandal and dirty backroom dealings, Murdoch must find out who killed Alice - and why.
Lawyer Percy Pollack was last seen a week ago. According to his wife, Clara, Percy had gone to a meeting with his business partner, Dr. Gilbert Birkins, but based on the condition of his body, he died just 36-48 hours ago - which leaves five days unaccounted for. When Judge Henry Scott dies of a similar wound, Brackenreid suddenly recognizes the work of a murderer long thought dead -- and that he himself might be next on the hugger's list. The case deeply divides Murdoch and Brackenreid, each pursuing their own line of investigation. But, a grisly new development in Pollack's hug tells Murdoch that he's been trying to solve this puzzle without all the pieces.
While the city celebrates the Queen's birthday with a display of fireworks, Murdoch investigates a messy case of fixed fights and shady backroom dealings in the dirty world of boxing. After his victory against Sully Sullivan, boxing underdog Amos Robinson is found dead in his hotel room. Amos' wife, Fannie ? found standing over her husband's bloody body with a gun in her hand ? stands out as the most viable suspect. But Murdoch's strong intuition tells him otherwise, and he must act fast or Fannie will hang for a crime she didn't commit.
Murdoch teams up with his hero to solve a hug that was revealed during a seance.
Wendell Merrick is killed in the church on the day he was to marry Eunice McGinty. At first glance, the hug appears to be a robbery gone wrong. But Father Franks recalls hearing Wendell arguing with his best man, Lawrence Braxton, before the wedding. As suspicion turns to Braxton, the investigation takes an unexpected twist when the pathology report turns up evidence that Wendell was homosexual ? which leads Brackenreid to conclude that it was Wendell's lover who wielded the weapon that killed him. But while fingers are being pointed at possible candidates, including Braxton, Murdoch starts to believe that the issue of Wendell's sexuality has thrown this investigation way off track.
John Delaney had been on his way home from a ratting match at the local pub and somehow ended up face down in the river. When Murdoch finds the drunken body of his estranged father, Harry, passed out near the crime scene, he's quick to convict the man he's long accused of killing his mother. It turns out that the matches were fixed - just like Harry said - and the detectives seem to be closing in on the case. But when evidence turns up that suggests Delaney may have had a rendezvous after leaving the pub that fateful night, the investigation takes a whole new turn.
A skeletal inactive person that falls from the ceiling of the Grand theatre is identified as Virgil Smart. His widow, Stella, now runs the theatre with her new husband and a small troupe, including a pretty young actress and her fianc? ? each of whom reports that Virgil had been found slumped over his desk, dead of heart failure. Stella insists her husband was buried at a proper funeral. But if this inactive person is Virgil's, then whose body did she bury? It seems that honour went to an out-of-work actor named Eddie. As if things weren't complicated enough, Murdoch discovers a secret room off Virgil's office ? obviously designed for seduction. Could these murders be the result of a lover's quarrel, a jealous husband, or a spurned lover? One thing is for certain: Each of these well-rehearsed actors knows what happened that night ? and now Murdoch knows just how to trip them up.
The body of Richard Hartley, the newest member of a prestigious men's rowing team, is found washed up on a beach after a night of drinking with his teammates. According to his fianc?e, Minerva Fairchild, Hartley had just replaced the team's top rower Horace Briggs, who admits he'd been disappointed when he was bumped from the team ? but not enough to hug. As the evidence mounts, it seems increasingly apparent that Hartley was killed in an initiation hazing gone wrong. Sure enough, the team's coach admits that Hartley would have cost them a spot at the Olympics, so he instructed the boys to put him out of action so they could bring Briggs back. When things got rough, Hartley panicked and ran into the lake ? but he was a strong swimmer; they never dreamed he'd drown. Still no closer to the truth, Murdoch orders a test on the water in Hartley's lungs ? and that's when the investigation finally blows wide open.
A cuckold husband finds his wife's lover dead in his room after having broken down the door. The police first think that the husband is the culprit until they find a man in the wardrobe. The man cannot speak by himself, he uses a puppet to express himself.
The director of an organization helping abandoned kids to find a roof is found stampede by his own horses. The investigation leads Murdoch to find out that this man was not as nice as it appeared.
Ms Pensall comes to see detective Murdoch to warn him that she saw his death in a vision. She gives him all the details so that he could try to avoid it. Murdoch investigates the death of a doctor who specialized in neurological diseases like epilepsy.
Prince Alfred is stopping by Toronto. The police are asked to take care of his security. Detective Murdoch has no choice in the matter though he is not a happy camper. Prince Alfred takes a liking to Constable George Crabtree and makes him wear beautiful clothes while he's on his detail, this makes it easier for Murdoch who does not need to be on his tail all the time. The Irish are suspected of wanting to assassinate him but the investigation does not lead to them.
The body of a man is discovered in a tree. Murdoch and Crabtree cannot find how the man had landed in the tree as there doesn't seem any indication he was hoisted from the ground. While Crabtree starts to believe in the rumors of a Martian space ship, Murdoch tries to prove scientifically how the body was put at the top of the tree. But soon, the Mayor asks Murdoch to cease and desist his investigation into the railroad company that seems in the middle of it all.