The Tudor House Presents Two Chilling Nights of Suspense

Remember listening to Suspense stories on the radio? Go back in time this weekend at The Tudor House. (File Photo)

By Susan A. Neufeld

Lake Arrowhead, CA – There’s nothing quite like an evening of suspense to liven up a cold winter’s night. Suspense Theater, which  aired on the radio from 1942 to 1962, was known as “radio’s outstanding theater of thrills.

The Tutor House Players will present two Suspense  episodes this weekend on Friday, March 2nd and Saturday, March 3rd.

In “Dead Ernest,” a cataleptic is mistaken for dead and taken  to the morgue. Can he be saved before he is embalmed?

Ernest Bower suffers from catalepsy and, if he has an attack, he can appear to be dead. He wears a medical bracelet on his wrist and carries in his pocket a detailed letter about his condition. What happens if the bracelet falls off and the letter isn’t sen by the right people? With his safeguards gone, Mr. Bower is at the mercy of fate.

This episode aired on August 8, 1946.

“Backseat Driver” is a Suspense story that borrows from the urban legend, “The Killer in the Backseat.” Radio comedians Fibber McGee and Molly appeared in this drama about a suburban couple held hostage by a killer.

According to the Encyclopedia of Urban Legends, “The Killer in the Backseat” is a classic automobile horror legend in the U.S. It is also a cautionary anecdote that has appeared in many articles on crime prevention. In it, the victim is usually a woman driving alone at night. Unbeknownst to her, a killer has slipped into the back seat of her car and is hiding there.  The story ends with either a passing car on the road noticing the man in the backseat and following her, or with a gas station attendant noticing the man and asking the woman to step out of the car.

In Suspense’s version, the intended victims are husband and wife on their way home from a night in Hollywood. The killer threatens that if they don’t do as he says, he will kill the wife. As the three of them drive toward San Fernando Valley the husband tries to find a way to communicate their need for help to others on the road.

This episode first aired on February 3, 1949.

The doors open at 4 p.m. for drinks and appetizers in Bugsy’s Place, with dinner available starting at 5:30 p.m. The shows will begin at 7 p.m.

There is no cover charge for these performances.

The Tudor House is located at 800 Arrowhead Villas Road, Lake Arrowhead, CA.

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