Hammer House of Mystery and Suspense: Season 1, Episode 5

The Late Nancy Irving (2 Mar. 1985)

TV Episode  -   -  Drama | Horror | Mystery
6.1
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Ratings: 6.1/10 from 43 users  
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Nancy Irving is an American Professional golfer on tour in England. She is also sought out by a millionaire because she has a rare blood type and he needs a transfusion or he'll die. So his... See full summary »

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Title: The Late Nancy Irving (02 Mar 1985)

The Late Nancy Irving (02 Mar 1985) on IMDb 6.1/10

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
...
Nancy Irving (as Christina Raines)
Marius Goring ...
Angus Aragon
...
Bob Appleyard
Tony Anholt ...
Dr. Marquis
Zienia Merton ...
Nurse Lee Parquet
Mick Ford ...
Tony Graham
...
Young Doctor
Lewis Fiander ...
Hoffman
...
Peter Norton
Ben Robertson ...
Nurse Baines
Derek Benfield ...
Undertaker
Christopher Banks ...
Vicar
Tony Millan ...
Caddy
David Rose ...
Policeman
Monique de Sain ...
Anne
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Storyline

Nancy Irving is an American Professional golfer on tour in England. She is also sought out by a millionaire because she has a rare blood type and he needs a transfusion or he'll die. So his henchmen drug Nancy and stage her death. Now Nancy must find a way to escape his mansion and tell the world she is alive rather than being "The Late Nancy Irving". Written by Pat McCurry <ccgrad97@aol.com>

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2 March 1985 (USA)  »

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User Reviews

 
Great concept but a dull execution!
20 February 2010 | by (Manchester, England, UK) – See all my reviews

In a strange turn of events, I actually agree with the other reviewer - Paul English - on this one. This is indeed anemic.

THE LATE NANCY IRVING is one of the lesser episodes of the HAMMER HOUSE OF MYSTERY AND SUSPENSE series.

The TV series in question was a combination of hits and misses. Some episodes had wonderful concepts but became bogged down in very boring 1980s drama styles, with upper middle-class characters exchanging boring dialogue with each other. Most 1980s drama in Britain was executed along these lines. On the other hand, some episodes of this TV series were genuine exercises in suspense, tension and genuine horror. Sadly, THE LATE NANCY IRVING is an example of the former. Examples of the latter include IN POSSESSION (by far the best), THE CORVINI INHERITANCE and A DISTANT SCREAM.

The plot is as follows - a professional American golfer is on tour in England. Following a car crash, she wakes up in a strange hospital. All is not what it seems. She finds herself restricted and it soon becomes apparent something strange is happening. It later transpires that she has been declared dead.

The plot is certainly compelling and highly unique.

Whilst the story does much to focus on sinister characters and situations, it is also cluttered with incredibly dull conversations. The build-up to the crash is particularly dull and lacks anything of interest.

Some moments of suspense are finally unleashed. Unfortunately, they come too late into the story and fail to save the viewing experience of the whole product from being a waste of time.

The ending is very predictable, with no surprises in store.

In an unusual turn of events for this series, the acting in this episode is incredibly uninspired. The lead actress - Cristina Raines - gives a particularly dull performance that is light years away from those of Carol Lynley, Jan Francis and Stephanie Beacham in other episodes.

The character played by Marius Goring is certainly one of the lamest committed to celluloid and whilst his intentions were just about believable, his way of bringing them about just defied any logic whatsoever.

Ironically, the director of this particular atrocity has done much better work. Indeed, Peter Sasdy directed the VISITOR FROM THE GRAVE episode of the other Hammer TV series, HAMMER HOUSE OF HORROR. Now that story was truly scary and his direction there was on top form.

All I can assume where THE LATE NANCY IRVING is concerned is that Mr. Sasdy signed on the dotted line with the best of intentions but sadly found himself restricted by the dire screenplay.

Overall, THE LATE NANCY IRVING is not the worst episode of the series. It showed some promise of a good story but the atrocious script and slow pacing held it back. I do not recommend this episode. Instead, watch IN POSSESSION and see something that is truly scary and suspenseful.


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