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Sunday, September 6, 2015

Suspense Sundays (163) Deadline at Dawn

Posted by Charlene // Tags: ,
Suspense was a radio series from 1942 to 1962.  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.  For Suspense Sundays I'll give a short review of an episode.

"Deadline at Dawn"
Air date: May 15, 1948
Starring Helen Walker and John Beal
>>Episodes here<<

'Bricky' Coleman comes home to her crummy apartment in the middle of the night to find a man who desperately asks for shelter for the night.  Although reluctant, Bricky takes a liking to him and through conversation they discover they are from the same small town, and are both jaded from moving to the big city.  Bricky wants to go home and is eager for the man, Quinn, to go with her, but Quinn confesses that he has just robbed a man, and can't go back because the police will find him.  Bricky convinces Quinn that he can just go back to the man's house before the robbery is discovered and put back the money.  When they get to the house though, they find the man dead.  They decide to try and figure out who murdered him before dawn, which is when their bus leaves to take them back home.

Suspense experimented with format a bit I think, as this is an hour long episode, instead of the usual half hour.  And for this story, I thought it was a very successful experiment!  They story explores the characters more thoroughly, and even though Quinn and Bricky say "I love you" way too fast, I loved the suspense in the mystery, and especially when Quinn and Bricky have to split up.  The mystery was able to get much more complex than a normal Suspense story, and it was perfectly plotted for the hour.  The story has a very defined 'noir' feel too which was interesting for me to listen to.  I liked the feeling of listening to what felt like an old black and white movie.  And indeed this story was made into a film, although I've read that it differs somewhat from this radio episode.

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