Residents of Roosevelt Heights are being caught off guard, and killed, by a flesh eating demon with the ability to appear as a person they know and trust.


(as Michael T. Caffey)


(created by) (as Jeff Rice),

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Harry Starman
Mr. Lane-Marriot
Abraham Sofaer ...
Elderly Rakshasa Hunter
Julius 'Buck' Fineman
Shelly Novack ...
Barry the Waiter
Jim Goodwin ...
Frank Rivas
Eric Server ...
Officer Boxman
John Bleifer ...
Herb Vigran ...
Mr. Goldstein


Carl investigates a series of deaths that take place in a community mostly populated by the elderly. The bodies are partially devoured, seemingly by rats, but Kolchak begins to suspect that a more sinister force is at work: a ghastly flesh-eating Hindu demon known as the Rakshasa has set up shop in the area, and it has the ability to take its victims by surprise by appearing to them as the person they trust the most. Written by acidxian

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis





Release Date:

20 December 1974 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Alternate title: "The Rakshasa". See more »


Kolchak correctly cites the fact that the swastika is an Indian character used to ward off evil, but the Indian swastika points to the left. The Nazi swastika - or, hakenkruis as the Germans called it - is reversed it so that it points to the right. Many of the swastikas in back of the Indian restaurant are the Nazi one. See more »


Carl Kolchak: The Rakshasa have magical powers, Tony. They seduce their victims to death by taking on the image of someone the victim trusts.
Tony Vincenzo: And poor Harry Starman... he trusted you? Obviously he never had to depend on you to come up with a cogent story... something that'll turn a profit!
See more »


References Citizen Kane (1941) See more »

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User Reviews

The best one
19 May 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I have to say that this episode from this influential series is probably the best, and I seriously doubt that I'm alone in that opinion. Kolchak(Darren McGavin)is on the hunt for a creature called the "rakshasa", a monster that appears as a person the victim trusts, and prepares to hug them before squeezing the life out of them. A cool shot is when the victim sees the person, we(audience)see the back of the "person", which is the hairy monster about to kill. The writing is also terrific, as we meet an interesting cast of characters, including Abraham Sofaer, who plays an elderly hunter for this mythical creature; the scenes he shares with Kolchak are both creepy and fun. This was Sofaer's last acting appearance as well, but it was memorable. Look for a very familiar face in Phil Silvers, as he plays it both funny and straight. The seedy atmosphere is great, as is the chemistry between the actors. Since no show is perfect, and I must be an honest reviewer, my only qualm is how composed Kolchak is when he sees the person he "trusts", even though he knows the person is actually the creature in disguise. I expected him to act a little more scared than he did, although he was equipped with a blessed weapon. Lest I forget, let me mention a few more familiar faces in Barry Gordon and Murray Matheson to round out a fine cast. This episode is a winner all around.

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