Friday, April 29, 2011

Friday's Favorite OTR

SUSPENSE: “Finishing School”—12/30/43

I love a good whodunit. The anthology series Suspense did its share of stories in this genre and “Finishing School” is a strong example of how skillfully they could pull it off.

The story is set at a girl’s school and manages to generate quite a high level of creepiness in its tale of murder and psychological manipulation. And it manages to manipulate us listeners as well—there’s a twist near the end involving the true identity of the killer, then another twist that points us to someone else, all of which builds up to a very tense ending (with, of course, yet another plot twist). Elsa Lancaster—one of my favorite character actresses--is excellent the dean of the school and also the main object of our suspicions.

Suspense was one of radio’s longest-running shows and was, in fact, the last of the network dramatic radio shows to be cancelled in 1962. “Finishing School” is just one of many episodes that demonstrate why the show was around to long—it was just that good.

Click HERE to listen or download.

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