Suspense (TV Series 1949–1954) Poster

(1949–1954)

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Wow!!
aimless-4626 February 2008
The 260 black and white half-hour episodes of the anthology series "Suspense" were originally broadcast from 1949-54 on CBS. Baby Boomers may confuse the original with the 23 episodes from the networks 1964 attempt to revive the series, which was hosted by Sebastian Cabot and was rather mild in comparison with the original.

The concept (suspense and tension) and the title actually date back to radio days. The 1942 radio program was very popular and ran for 20 years.

The series was early live television; it was broadcast as it was being performed. This was a concept that seemed quite logical to me as a child, I recall touring our local radio station and being disappointed that only a small portion of the programming was actually produced at that location. The show was not taped or conventionally filmed. If they wanted to preserve a performance (or broadcast it later in another region of the country) they filmed the broadcast image as it played on a video monitor. So don't except great contrast and resolution (and the audio is even worse); just be happy that a viewable image still exists.

The show's emphasis is scripting and acting, not production design and effects. But the stories are surprisingly entertaining and the DVD's contain some early commercials; which are as interesting in their own way as the episodes themselves. The DVD's are somewhat misleadingly labeled "Suspense: The Lost Episodes - Collection 1 and 2", as for practical purposes all the episodes were lost (but not unknown) until these DVD releases.

The Collection #2 four disc set includes: "Suspicion" (1949), "The Doors on the Thirteenth Floor" (1949), "Collector's Item" (1949), "Cask of Amontillado (1949), The Third One (1949), The Man Who Talked in His Sleep (1950), "Murder at the Mardi Gras (1950), "Dark Shadows" (1950), "The Tip" (1950), "Tough Cop" (1951), "Telephone Call" (1951), "The Three of Silence", "The Juiceman" (1951), "Murderers' Meeting" (1951), "Frisco Payoff" (1951), "The Far-Off House" (1951), "Betrayal in Vienna" (1952), "The Purloined Letter" (1952), "The Corsage" (1952), "House of Masks" 1952), "For the Love of Randi" (1952), "The Beach of Falesa" (1952), "All Hallow's Eve" (1952), "The Moving Target" (1952), "Monsieur Vidocq" (1952), Mr. Matches (1953), "Career" (1953), "The Quarry" (1953), "Black Prophet" (1953), and "Portrait of Constance" (1953).

The Collection #1 four disc set includes: "A Night at the Inn" (1949), "Dead Ernest" (1949), "Help Wanted" (1949), "Comic Strip Murder" (1949), "Dr. Violet" (1949), "The Murderer" (1949), "Black Passage" (1949), "The Man in the House" (1949), "The Suicide Club" (1950), "The Parcel" (1950), "My Old Man's Badge" (1950), "Photo Finish" (1950), "Edge of Panic" (1950), "The Brush-Off" (1950), "Dead Fall" (1950), "Double Entry" (1951),"On a Country Road" (1951), "Summer Storm" (1952), "Wisteria Cottage (1951), "The Black Panther" (1952), "Alibi Me" (1952), "The Debt" (1952), "The Crooked Frame" (1952), "Remember Me?" (1952), "Woman in Love" (1952), "The Invisible Killer" (1952), "Vacancy for Death" (1953), "Kiss Me Again Stranger" (1953), "The Duel" (1954).

Then again, what do I know? I'm only a child.
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A couple of Eps
Cristi_Ciopron14 July 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Suspense had the niceness of taking its audience into many countries ….

WOMAN IN LOVE is a story from the '50s communist Hungary—as often, the name of the protagonist is a funny one—Alexia Constancia, for a Hungarian babe …. Alexia wants to rejoin her Swedish fiancé; the asset of this episode is a small role by Newman as a subversive military. Newman is especially wooden, isn't he?

In MONSIEUR VIDOCQ, the Parisian characters speak English with a strong French accent. It could be called a piece of rubbish Holmesploitation—and we remember that Doyle read Gaboriau …. Otherwise, it's a nasty, silly defamatory piece. Van Rooten is nice as Vidocq.
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