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And So Died Riabouchinska 

Detective Krovitch investigates a murder at a run-down vaudeville theater and gets a hot lead from the ventriloquist's dummy.


Robert Stevenson


Mel Dinelli (teleplay), Ray Bradbury (story)




Episode complete credited cast:
Alfred Hitchcock ... Self - Host
Claude Rains ... John Fabian
Charles Bronson ... Det. Krovitch
Claire Carleton ... Alice Fabian
Lowell Gilmore ... Mel Douglas
Charles Cantor ... Zander
Harry Tyler ... Dan Silver
Iris Adrian ... Macey
William Haade ... Stagehand (as Bill Haade)
Virginia Gregg ... Riabouchinska (voice)


A dead man is found in the basement of a theater, and a detective comes to investigate. He learn that the deceased had been seen near the theater asking for Fabian, the ventriloquist. As the detective questions Fabian in his dressing room, a voice comes from the box in which Fabian's female dummy is stored. When the dummy, Riabouchinska, continues to talk, the detective is annoyed, thinking that the ventriloquist is trying to be funny. But the detective humors him and 'talks' to the dummy, and he soon learns about a web of tensions involving Fabian, his wife, and his manager. Much of the tension concerns the dummy - and there is also a connection with the dead man. Written by Snow Leopard

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Did You Know?


Mel Dinelli originally adapted Ray Bradbury's short story for the radio series Suspense. When he wrote the teleplay for Alfred Hitchcock Presents, he based it off his radio play, rather than the original short story. See more »


[first lines]
Alfred Hitchcock - Host: Good evening. This misty bit of ectoplasm forming on the inside of your television screen is one Alfred Hitchcock, coming to you from across that great barrier that divides the quick from the dead: the Atlantic Ocean. I have materialized for the express purpose of warning you that, during tonight's seance, you will witness a playlet entitled "And So Died Riabouchinska." Oh, yes. Before we have our play, I would like to make an announcement to those of you who can't stay until the ...
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Funeral March of a Marionette
Written by Charles Gounod
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User Reviews

Fine Cast, Memorable Episode
8 February 2016 | by dougdoepkeSee all my reviews

A detective is called to a backstage theatre after a body is discovered in the cellar. His investigation takes him into the weird world of an aging ventriloquist and his female dummy.

Another memorable episode from that marvelous first year. And what a casting coup thanks to the producers and probably the Hitchcock name—it's a subtly persuasive Claude Rains, a distinctive looking Charles Bronson, and a strangely sultry ventriloquist's dummy. Then too, I knew I was in trouble when I went looking for the dummy's name in the credit-roll. Seems ventriloquist Fabian (Rains) is having the same problem since his truth-telling super-ego is splitting off and entering the lovely dummy. Sometimes it's even hard to know who's doing the talking.

Okay, you've likely seen this "live" dummy premise before. But it's very well done here, thanks mainly to Rains who refuses to go over the top. Also, Bronson, as a cop, gets lots of close- ups, the camera seemingly fascinated with his unusual features. That's likely no accident since an ordinary looking cop would not fit the exotic theme nearly as well. Anyway, it's a subtly weird slice of abnormal psychology, along with a fine screenplay from noir veteran Mel Dinelli.

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Release Date:

12 February 1956 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Shamley Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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