Homecoming Murder Mystery Guide

posted on 8/12/13

Murder mystery parties are an interesting way to entertain your friends and stir up some excitement by doing something out of the ordinary. Usually people will charge you money for the elaborate instructions and scripts for these events, but we have created a school dance themed murder mystery for you to enjoy free of charge! Below you will find instructions, character descriptions, and a murder solution to use for your very own murder mystery party. Be advised, this party planning guide is for the host to see and no one else. If you are serious about throwing a Homecoming Murder Mystery, do not share this information with any of your intended guests!

THE INVITATION
You are formally invited to the Murder High School Homecoming Dance. Jealousy and secrets are pouring out of every corner of this decked out gymnasium as the crowd awaits the announcement of the Homecoming King and Queen. Finally the names are called and the lucky winners take the stage. But just as these popular students are being crowned, the Homecoming Queen begins to gag. She coughs up blood and collapses on the floor. Applause turns to gasps as the Homecoming King checks her pulse and announces that she is dead. The gym doors slam shut and everyone at the dance is now a suspect.
Your help will be needed to catch the murderer. Throughout the evening you can talk to any of the other guests to figure out who they are and what clues they might have.
*Your character is:
You will receive an additional clue when you arrive at the event. Keep your identity concealed until the night of the party to maintain the veil of mystery. Please costume yourself appropriately for this Homecoming Murder Mystery.

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You can choose to act out the death scene or not. In order to do so, you will need a volunteer to play the Homecoming Queen who dies. This person can then switch roles and be a generic “Student Investigator” or “Chaperone Investigator” as they will also be unaware of who the murderer is. In order to solve the mystery, your guests must tell you:
WHO killed the Homecoming Queen
HOW they committed the murder
WHY they committed the murder

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The only way to answer these questions is to work as a group and combine the clues that people have been provided. If people are having trouble on their own, you can take the lead and ask them what clues they have and who that might rule out. As the host, you can take on the role of someone attending the dance, or you can pretend to be a police detective called to the scene after the Homecoming Queen was killed.

THE CHARACTERS
These 10 characters will create a good basic structure for your Homecoming Murder Mystery. Some are more important than others. You are always free to use your imagination to create even more characters with back stories to add to this list. Otherwise, guests who have not been assigned a character can be given a generic role of “Student Investigator” or “Chaperone Investigator”. They can still create back stories, dress to fit the theme, and interact with clue-holding characters to help put the pieces together. The only thing they cannot do is invent clues that would derail the carefully constructed plot of the mystery. Make it clear to your guests that if they are not a clue-holding participant they are definitely not the murderer. Please note that some of these clues are not critical to solving the murder mystery, but are only there to provide back story or lead investigators in the wrong direction.

The Jock: You are at the gym for basketball practice after school everyday. You pride yourself on your Ladies’ Man Status and would never want to be known as a guy who couldn’t score (on or off the court).
Clue: The Homecoming Queen once asked the Jock to accompany her to another school dance. The Jock tried to hook up with the Homecoming Queen afterward but she was not interested.

The Janitor: You have the job of cleaning up after all the snot-nosed teenagers and smug teachers in the high school. Your daughter is a student at this school and she was beat by the Homecoming Queen for the lead role in the school play. You have been dealing with a rat problem in the gymnasium this week.
Clue: You lost your poison at the gym the day before the prom.

The School Gossip: You are the high school busybody and have earned a reputation for using any underhanded methods necessary to get the latest gossip. Of course, your methods aren’t always ethical, but in order to get attention from your peers you must have a scandal to report on.
Clue: You have been sneaking into the Homecoming Queen’s purse and reading her texts while she is at play rehearsals . You know that she was hooking up with an unnamed person who was already in a committed relationship.

The Drama Teacher: You are directing the school play. Because of electrical problems in the auditorium, you have been conducting rehearsals on the school’s gymnasium stage after school. Your husband is the Basketball Coach and you resent that the school’s budget goes mostly towards sports instead of the drama department.
Clue: You caught the School Gossip going through The Homecoming Queen’s purse and threatened to report her to the Principal for theft.

The Understudy Actress: You and the Homecoming Queen used to be close friends before she became too popular to associate with you (being that you are The Janitor’s daughter). You wanted nothing more than to get the lead role in the school play until the Homecoming Queen beat you for the part. One night at a party, you drunkenly told the Homecoming King that you were going to get back at the Homecoming Queen for taking your role in the play.
Clue: You heard the Drama Teacher arguing with the Basketball Coach about having to share the gym space for basketball practice and play rehearsals.

The Homecoming King: You are the most popular guy in school because you are known to throw raging parties at your parent’s lake house. Getting alcohol is never a problem for you because you have a fake I.D. that can get you whatever you want. You are best friends with the Jock and you are dating the Head Cheerleader.
Clue: The Understudy Actress was drunk at one of your parties and told you that she was going to kill the Homecoming Queen for stealing her part in the school play.

The Head Cheerleader: Coming to the dance with your boyfriend, the Homecoming King, you thought for sure you would be the girl to win the title of Queen. But when you counted the ballot boxes after the votes had been collected, you were sorely disappointed.
Clue: You invited the Homecoming Queen to come to your boyfriend’s party after the dance, but she told you she couldn’t go because she had to meet someone to tell them something important.

The Mystery Date: You are an out and proud teenager who is here as the date for the Understudy Actress. The two of you are friends who met while volunteering at a local soup kitchen. You attend another high school in the town over.
Clue: You once saw the Homecoming Queen at a meeting for LGBT youth. You did not know that the Homecoming Queen was the same person who the Understudy Actress was bitching about until she pointed her out at the dance tonight.

The Basketball Coach: You are married to the Drama Teacher. She has told you to keep an eye on the School Gossip, who was caught going through the Homecoming Queen’s purse during play rehearsals. You are upset that you are being forced to chaperone the school dance when you would rather be watching the big game that is on television tonight.
Clue: You were watching the School Gossip the entire time she was at the dance. She is not the murderer.

The Principal: You are the principal of this high school and are going through a rough divorce that has left you penniless. You have been living out of the back of your minivan for several weeks and have visited the soup kitchen.
Clue: You were talking with the Understudy Actress when she arrived at the dance just before the King and Queen announcements were made. She is not the murderer.

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Prepare for this murder mystery party by sending each confirmed guest their character description in advance so they may prepare their costume. Be sure to instruct your guests not to share any information about their character with other guests before the event. On the night of the party, have your clues printed out and distribute them to each individual guest. This secrecy will keep things exciting and prevent people from starting to solve the mystery in advance.

The following is an explanation of events which will solve the murder by combining important clues. This conclusion is for your eyes only! Do not share it with guests until they have answered the who, why, and how on their own.

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THE MYSTERY SOLUTION

The Drama Teacher has been married to the Basketball Coach for 10 years and has an excellent reputation in the high school for putting on amazing school plays. She has been teaching the Homecoming Queen, an aspiring actress, for the last few months. During that time, the Drama Teacher and the Homecoming Queen began having an affair. The Homecoming Queen was asking the Drama Teacher to leave her husband and then wait until graduation to have a full-fledged relationship. The Drama Teacher promised the Homecoming Queen she would, but in reality she never intended to leave the Basketball Coach. The day before the Homecoming dance, the Homecoming Queen threatened to expose their love affair, which would cause the Drama Teacher to lose her husband and her job. That night after rehearsals the Drama Teacher sees the Janitor has forgotten his rat poison next to the bleachers. She takes the poison and leaves. The next night at the Homecoming dance, the Drama Teacher slips some of the rat poison into the Homecoming Queen’s drink right before she is crowned.

In order for your murder mystery guests to figure out who killed the Homecoming Queen, they must follow these three most important clues:

The Mystery Date’s clue: The Homecoming Queen was once seen at a meeting for LGBT youth. This clue is meant to imply the Homecoming Queen is a lesbian.

The Janitor’s clue: The Janitor lost his rat poison in the gymnasium yesterday. This clue is meant to imply any gym regular could have the poison. Guests that have not been to the gymnasium in the last 24 hours will not have been able to grab the poison.

The School Gossip’s clue: The School Gossip has been spying on Homecoming Queen and she found out that the Homecoming Queen was secretly dating someone who was already in a relationship. This clue implies that guests who are not in relationships would not have murdered the Homecoming Queen.

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With these helpful instructions, you should have everything you need to throw a scandalous Homecoming Murder Mystery! Just remember to keep the secret revelation to yourself and have fun watching your friends work their way to the truth.

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