Tuesday, October 23, 2012



In fact, the opening of "Inner Sanctum" was so iconic that even today it is remembered, parodied and mimicked -- even if the name of the show isn't known to the people doing the "homage".  Inner Sanctum began with the sound of the famous "creaking door" and the host Raymond intoning morbidly.  The intro to Inner Sanctum was so famous that there was even a later radio show called "The Creaking Door" and much later, in the 1970s, CBS Radio Mystery Theater hosted by E.G. Marshall appropriated the Inner Sanctum opening in tribute.  The show was the brainchild of producer Himan Brown and ran from January 7, 1941 to October 5, 1952.  The lovely thing about the Internet Archives is that you can hear countless episodes of this and other shows for free and they make for superb Halloween listening.  By clicking this link you will be whisked away to the Inner Sanctum where, in the upper right corner of the Internet Archive page you will find a player with many episodes to play.  If I may be so bold as to recommend an episode or two -- if you scroll down the player to #69 you will find probably my favourite episode of Inner Sanctum entitled "Murder Comes at Midnight" starring Mercedes McCambridge; then, after that you may find scrolling up to #44 "The Wailing Wall" starring Boris Karloff enjoyable too.

Another classic and much-loved old radio horror show was Arch Oboler's "LIGHTS OUT" which was memorably and lovingly parodied by Bill Cosby in his famous "Chicken Heart" routine.  The Internet Archive also offers many episodes of this classic show if you click this link.  My number one favourite episode (and one of the scariest old radio shows I've ever heard) is "Knock at the Door" which you will find by scrolling to #38 on the player.  I really think these are some of the best horror shows old radio has to offer and I heartily recommend you listen to them and sample others as well.  And as one more treat for today's Countdown to Halloween, I thought Harvey Kurtzman's parody of Inner Sanctum from Mad (when it was a comic book) would be perfect.  As always, click on the pictures to "biggify" them and, to make them even more readable, right click on the picture and copy to "paint" on your computer and it should be huge and easily legible.  Enjoy!

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