The Alfred Hitchcock Hour: Season 1, Episode 13

Bonfire (13 Dec. 1962)

TV Episode  |  TV-PG  |   |  Crime, Drama, Mystery
6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 83 users  
Reviews: 2 user

A lonely young woman moves into her newly-deceased aunt's home in a small town. A way-too-helpful next-door neighbor becomes her guardian angel. He's a lay preacher, who's determined not to... See full summary »

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Cast

Episode cast overview:
...
Himself - Host
...
Robert Evans
...
Laura
Patricia Collinge ...
Naomi Freshwater
Paul von Schreiber ...
The Youth
Anthony Spinelli ...
The Taxi Driver (as Sam Weston)
Craig Curtis ...
The Young Man
Craig Duncan ...
The Officer
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Storyline

A lonely young woman moves into her newly-deceased aunt's home in a small town. A way-too-helpful next-door neighbor becomes her guardian angel. He's a lay preacher, who's determined not to go back to being a coal miner. Written by David Stevens

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TV-PG
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13 December 1962 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Soundtracks

Shall We Gather At The River?
(uncredited)
Written by Robert Lowry
Sung by the church congregation
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Misfire
23 June 2015 | by (Claremont,USA) – See all my reviews

I hate to knock one of my favorite TV series, but this entry has got to be one of Hitch's least. There's no real tension, creepiness, or even irony since the climax is played more like an after-thought. Direction is slack, while the writing is unstructured.

Seems Evans (Falk) wants his aunt's house so he won't have to back to the coal mine, and by golly he's going to get it. Then the lovely Laura (Merrill) arrives and he finds out she's next in line for the aunt's estate, so what's he going to do.

The first ten-minutes, with Collinge as the aunt, had me thinking this would be a superior entry. But I should have hit the 'off' button since what unfolds after that is pretty aimless. We figure the 60-minutes has to go somewhere, but there's very little build-up to anything. Plus, padding is all too evident, e.g. hauling the trunk down endless stairs.

I'm inclined to think Falk is miscast, certainly as a lay preacher. He's clearly a better low-key Columbo than a high-key Elmer Gantry. Also, Merrill is way too pretty to be convincing as a lonely lass. Nonetheless, this may be the only series entry to give God the last word as he communicates from on high.


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