Suspense was a radio series from 1942 to 1962, claiming to be "radio's outstanding theater of thrills." I have a fondness for "Old Time Radio" as we call it now, and Suspense is my favorite show. It sets up weird, dark, scary, or intriguing stories with a plot twist in the end, and all in half an hour. I love the old-fashion story-telling and I thought it would be fun to give a short review of an episode every Sunday.
Air date: November 9, 1943
Starring Margo and Philip Dorn
>>Episodes here<<Ann and Richard Brewster board an ocean liner for their honeymoon trip to Europe. Since they have $10,000 in cash for their three month trip, Richard takes it to the ship's purser for safekeeping while Ann goes on deck to watch the departure. While talking to a nice Austrian Doctor she discovers that the ship has no cabin number 13 for superstitious reasons. But that is her room number! And no one believes her. And no one has heard of Richard Brewster.
That is a brilliant plot set-up for a mystery. Ann mentions the urban legend of the Vanishing Lady to her husband in the beginning which sets up the basis of this mystery. In short, The Vanishing Lady is about a mother and daughter who visit the World's Fair in Paris in 1889. The mother is ill, and the daughter is sent out by the hotel doctor to get some medicine. When she returns her room is different, her mother is missing, and no one knows what she is talking about. The answer given in the show is that her mother died of the bubonic plague, and there was a huge cover-up so other tourists wouldn't get scared off. That's not exactly what's happening in this story, and I don't want to give anything away. It is pretty easy to figure out, but because the scenario is so chilling, this episode gets high marks.