Often considered a sub-genre of the crime and mystery genres, the whodunit play is a thrilling plot-driven detective story. Suspenseful throughout, the aim of a whodunit is to discover who committed the murder? The audience normally witnesses the perfect crime, while suspects are then wrongly accused. Agatha Christie’s whodunit The Mousetrap ran continuously on London’s West End from 1952 to 2020, making it the longest first run of any play in history. J. B . Priestley’s play An Inspector Calls (1945) is another fine example of the genre. – Justin Cash

Whodunit Resources

A comprehensive ranking of 250 of the world’s best whodunit movies, from the deadly serious to the outright humorous.

Concise definition of the whodunit genre, including its key components.

Interesting article explaining the “reverse whodunit” genre.


Wikipedia entry on the whodunit genre outlining the concept, history of the genre, and a long list of literary and artistic works belonging to this form.

Useful article examining “5 Masters of the Whodunit”: Edgar Allan Poe, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (Sherlock Holmes), Agatha Christie, Raymond Chandler and Erle Stanley Gardner.

An entire day’s worth of activities around the whodunit theme for primary students of various ages. Over 100 pages of worksheets including Science, English, Visual Arts, and more, that could easily extend to the Drama classroom.

Definition of the genre with a useful list of 25 classic literary whodunit examples.