I now blog over at The Eyre Guide! This blog is an archive of my past posts.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Suspense Sundays (105) The Pit and the Pendulum

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.

"The Pit and the Pendulum"
Air date: June 7, 1959
Starring Raymond Burr
>>Episodes here<<

Based on the famous Edgar Allan Poe short story, a French man is captured by the Spanish Inquisition and made to go through some interesting, yet brutal torture techniques.  While he hallucinates and is often overcome with horror, he perseveres with ingenuity.

The radio episode was expanded a little to fit the time slot, so there was more background with the character of the prisoner - John - who tries to argue reasonably with the judges and then later when he is locked up, he sees and talks to his beloved who is most assuredly not there.  The suspense is greater in Poe's story I think, though Raymond Burr does an excellent job fighting his fear and struggling for lucidity as he first avoids the dangerous pit and then ingeniously gets away from the pendulum.  I think the story was a little toned down as well when it came to the details - probably it was not thought proper family listening, at that time, to exactly hear what was in store for John.  

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  1. I just love listening to these! And when they adapt a classic story it is even better - it makes it even more fitting for my blog. :) Poe is perfect for this radio show!

  2. These sound absolutely amazing! I'll have to listen to some of them, especially since I'm a huge fan of Poe. :D

  3. Yes, these are perfect to listen to while cleaning or doing mundane chores! And I love that they are only half and hour too so they are great when I don't feel like investing a lot of time like for audiobooks! I hope you enjoy the episodes!

  4. Oh great! I think they did more Poe adaptations - I have to look them up though. Poe's works really fit well with this format!

  5. I didn't even know this existed. I love me some Poe, though.