Murder was committed on the Orient Express because the criminal had escaped justice and everyone felt that this was a necessary evil. The passengers on the train seemed like strangers, but they all had something in common, a connection to the Armstrong family and they were there to take their revenge out on the man who kidnapped and murdered an American toddler named Daisy Armstrong. The widow was actually Daisy’s grandmother. The countess was her aunt. The doctor worked with her father. The car salesman was the family chauffeur. All 12 of them coordinated getting onboard the same train so they could murder Cassetti and frame it on a mysterious man they’ll claim they heard sneaking aboard the train. An airtight alibi for all of them, until by sheer coincidence, the world’s most famous detective Agatha Christie’s fictional Hercule Poirot happens to be on the very same train.
It was probably not a big surprise when Poirot figured out the ridiculous and implausible plot, where everyone of them got to stab the man who escaped justice. Daisy’s mother, who was pregnant at the time, miscarried and died due to complications, her father died by suicide, and Cassetti got off scot free and they were not going to stand for that, so his death became a necessary evil. Necessary evil is always justified by the greater good.
Written for Fandango’s Provocative Question #115 which asks, “Is there really such a thing as a necessary evil, or is it just a way for us to rationalize or justify doing something bad?”