Friday, April 17, 2009

Friday's Favorite OTR

The Saint: “Prove I Did It” 11/07/49


Vincent Price is best remembered as a horror movie icon, playing larger than life and characters in countless scary films. But he was a great actor with a wide range, as it demonstrated weekly on radio when he played Simon Templar, alias The Saint.


This was a clever and pleasurable show, giving us solidly plotted mysteries during which Simon could suavely spout off countless one-liners and witty comebacks while investigating yet another murder.


In this episode, he’s approached by a man named Potts, who confesses to having just killed his partner in a jewelry business in self-defense. But the body has disappeared and the police don’t believe Potts’ confession. So he asks Simon to prove his guilt.


This is odd enough, but when the supposedly dead partner shows up quite alive at Simon’s apartment, it gets downright bizarre. Soon, someone really is murdered. Potts’ young, beautiful wife and a stoic butler are tossed into the mix. But Simon meets it all without losing his natural cool and soon has the whole thing figured out.


Like all the best Saint episodes, this one is both funny AND a good mystery. (I love the part where Simon asks Potts "Do you have any enemies?" and then--without missing a beat--adds "Are you married?") The writers never let the humor get in the way of good storytelling (or visa versa), giving us one of the most persistently entertaining old-time radio shows.

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