1 9 5 4 (USA)
39 x 30 minute episodes
This syndicated anthology series of creepy tales originally began on radio in 1941 and held millions of listeners spellbound for over 11 years.
Its trademark, on radio and television, was a squeaking door, the entrance to the “inner sanctum.”
Paul McGrath, who had hosted the show for several years on the radio, was heard (but not seen) as the host. He was replaced later in the season by House Jameson.
Stories usually involved murder, grand larceny or other acts of deception – sometimes all three – usually with an unexpected twist.
In “The Yellow Parakeet” (with Ernest Truex and Jack Grimes), a lonely old employee with a 25-year record of honest and faithful service to his shipping firm involved himself in grand larceny in his search for a friend; “Lost in the Dark” starred Everett Sloane as a wealthy man losing his sight and trying to regain it through someone else; in “Reward for Janie” a waitress pulled a slick deal to make some fast money but did not expect the reward she received; while in “Face of the Dead” a gangster who killed an old rival and had his face altered by a plastic surgeon (who he then also murdered to silence him) discovered when the bandages were removed, that he had the face (and slowly, the personality) of his dead rival.
Because the series was filmed in New York, it was able to make use of the fine array of stage talent available there. Amongst the actors appearing in the 39 episodes were Jack Klugman, Harry Dean Stanton, Martin Balsam, Constance Ford, and Jack Warden.
Dead Level | The Stranger | Port of Regrets | The Hermit | Guilty Secret | The Perfect Kill | The Face of Fear | Never Die Again | The Yellow Parakeet | A Second Life | Lost in the Dark | The Sound of Birds | Cat Calls | Man of Iron | The Sisters | The Good Luck Charm | The Hands | Killer’s Choice | Watcher by the Dead | Identity Unknown | Queen of Spades | Handle with Care | The Silent Bride | Ghost Mail | Tomorrow Never Comes | Nobody Laughs at Lou | Family Skeleton | Dark of the Night | Burial at High Point | Hour of Darkness | Reward for Janie | Face of the Dead | The Lonely One | Dream of Murder | Pattern of Fear | The Third Fate | The Landslide | The Skull Beneath | The Fatal Hour | Blind Luck