The Virginian: Season 2, Episode 26

The Secret of Brynmar Hall (1 Apr. 1964)

TV Episode  |  TV-PG  |   |  Western
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 19 users  
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A storm forces Randy to stay with Betsy and three of her friends at a mansion where they spent time in their youth. The host's daughter was killed two years earlier in a fire. The host has gifts and other surprises that put them on edge.



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Title: The Secret of Brynmar Hall (01 Apr 1964)

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Episode cast overview:
Judge Henry Garth (credit only)
Trampas (credit only)
Gary Clarke ...
Steve Hill (credit only)
Mrs. Sarah Brynmar
Roberta Shore ...
Randy Boone ...
Mrs. Tyson
Rev. Paul Martin
Stuart Brynmar (as Ed Platt)


Betsy is driven to Brynmar Hall by Randy after receiving an invitation from the mother of her friend Matilda who was killed in a fire there two years ago. When she arrives, she finds that three other friends have been invited as well and all were present when Matilda was killed. A serious storm including tornadoes forces Randy to stay as well. After dinner with Mrs. Bynmar, she gives each of the four guests presents that are burnt items owned by Matilda. The relationships among the four are strained and during the evening Mrs. Bynmar questions each person about their relationship with Matilda. This along with other strange events including Randy being knocked out and a snake in Betsy's bed put everyone on edge as the truth finally unfolds. Written by Anonymous

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Release Date:

1 April 1964 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

"There's more'n one thing about this house that don't sit quite right with me."
16 May 2011 | by See all my reviews

I suppose most TV series went for something off the beaten path at least once. Here a classic Western tries a mystery/suspense episode with nothing distinctively Western about it, set almost entirely in an elaborate Victorian mansion. Betsy Garth has been invited back to the home of her friend who died in a fire two years ago. Randy, who drives her from Shiloh, is also forced to stay by an approaching storm despite ominous hints that he is not welcome - a fortunate circumstance, as it turns out, since he seems to be the only one who entirely keeps his head during the ensuing spooky evening. In a classic mystery set-up, Mrs. Brynmar (Jane Wyatt) has also invited the other three friends (Brooke Bundy, Mark Goddard and Tom Skerritt) who were present the night of the fire, and we learn that she believes one of the four was responsible for her daughter's death and intends to find out who it is.

It's a nice little mystery, with a limited field of suspects and the usual red herring. (The only minor plot hole I noticed involved the letter; the script doesn't make it quite clear whether it ever reached its intended recipient two years before, or how it came to be where Randy found it.) The storm raging outside and sinister servants, strange noises and odd incidents indoors all add to the atmosphere. Agatha Christie it is not, nor is it film noir that makes you look behind the door after watching it, but it's a fairly intriguing and suspenseful episode and makes for pleasant entertainment.

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