The Veil – Jack the Ripper (1958)

vjackripper1Walter Durst is scheduled to give his final lecture on clairvoyance.  His wife Judith is angry that the tiny ad in the newspaper would need a clairvoyant to find it.  He is a clairvoyant of the kind you see only on TV — genuine.  He is concerned that he dreamed of a murder last night.

He dreamed he walked along an alley in the East End and witnessed a murder.  He looked in the window of a pub.  A clock ticked loudly, and he noticed the time.  He looked up and saw a sign reading Bucks Row East.  He wishes he knew what it meant.

Judith tells him of the newspaper story of the murder of Mary Nichols whose body was just found in Bucks Row.  The police say she was butchered with surgical skill.  Police believe she was murdered by the same person who killed Martha Turner three weeks earlier.  Both women were prostitutes although, judging by their pictures, they might have just starved to death. [1]

Judith thinks it would be swell if Walter told the police where the next murder would occur, but he doesn’t want to get involved.  She convinces him that he could save countless lives, so he gives in.  When Walter offers his services to the police, he is shown to the bench where all the other nuts clairvoyants seeking the reward are seated.  It’s a pretty good gag undermined by the score and direction.  Walter walks out, passing an hysterical woman who claims her little girl is clairvoyant.  Oh, what a good Alfred Hitchcock Presents director could have done with this!

vjackripper2A few days later, Walter has a vision.  Somehow the vision has left him with a bloody hand although damn if I can figure out why.  Judith suggests he might want to wash his hands, but he would rather call Scotland Yard.  Possessing super-vision, Judith concludes that it is Walter’s own blood.

On the way to Scotland Yard, Walter gets the willies, suggesting that the killer is near.  They get off the bus and follow a man into the park.  They lose him, so continue to Scotland Yard.  Walter informs them that a woman will be found the next day with her ears severed from her head.  The inspector asks for a sample of his handwriting.  The inspector produces letter from Jack the Ripper in the same handwriting, so locks Walter up.

Luckily for Walter, an earless woman is found murdered while he is in jail.  Walter says he knows how to find the killer.  The next night, he takes the inspector to the park.  Half in a trance, he leads them on a walk, ending at a door he proclaims to be Jack the Ripper’s house.  Unfortunately, the owner of the house croaked the night before.

Blah, blah, blah.  It is all so deadly dull that it’s not worth mentioning.  I literally fell asleep the first three times I attempted to watch this episode.  How do you take a story about Jack the Ripper, filled with murder and prostitutes, and make it so dull?

Feh, good riddance to The Veil.


  • [1] See, because they didn’t make much money, being so unattractive.

The Veil – The Return of Madame Vernoy (1958)

vreturn01A beautiful woman named Sita Vernoy died in August 1927 in Delhi.  A beautiful baby girl named Santha Naidu was born in August 1928.  In between, a pretty un-noteworthy 12 months for beautiful people.

Rama comes to Santha’s mother wishing to marry her.  Mrs. Naidu says that Santha is already married with a child — in another life.  Santha was born with memories of another life and still has those feelings.  Santha tells Rama she must go to her husband from her previous life.  She cuts short her rendezvous with Rama and says she must begin her journey.  Cuckmeister General Rama offers to accompany Santha and her mother.

Meanwhile, in France, Professor Charles Gencourt (Boris Karloff) has arrived to tell Armand Vernoy his son Krishna has been accepted to college in America.  Sadly, Vernoy does not have the money to send him, and Krishna will have to work in the Punjab Dell Computer Call Center all his life.

vreturn05Santha shows up at casa de Vernoy and tells Krishna she is his mother.  She throws her arms around Armand and claims to be his wife. Under-standably, Krishna does not accept this woman his same age to be his mother.  Not so understandably, Armand does not accept this woman 40 years younger than him to be his wife.  Dude!

Armand tells Santha that he cannot afford to send Krishna to America.  Santha is able to show him jewels that she, in her previous life as Sita Vernoy, hid in the base of a statue.  Despite Santha claiming to be his wife, finding untold rupees of jewels, and being 1/3 his age, Armand just can’t open his heart to her . . . his stupid, stupid heart.

Santha leaves.  Armand tells his son that he can go to America after all and take the job of an American.  Woohoo!

A fairly dull episode in a fairly mediocre series.  It is strange that Karloff’s role is entirely dispensable.  It would have made more sense for him to play Armand, who was not Indian.  The tragic figure here seems to be Rama.  He appears to be the only actual Indian in the cast (despite the actor being named Julius Johnson), and he is totally cucked by this snotty girl who claims to be married to an elderly Frenchman.

vreturn12Title Analysis:  Better than the episode.  The “return” is her rebirth, her return to Armand, and stretchingly her return to Delhi.

I rate it Return to Sender.


  • Trigger Warning:  Santha Naidu is played by Lee Torrance, whose name doesn’t look very Indian.  Krishna is played by George Hamilton, whose name doesn’t look very Indian. Mrs. Naidu is played by Iphigenie Castiglioni whose name looks like someone fell asleep at the keyboard.
  • Hmmmm . . . I wonder if that was the same Iphigenie Castiglioni who was in Return of the Hero and The Weird Tailor.
  • Yes, I will use that line every time she shows up.

The Veil – Summer Heat (1958)


Hey Grampa, what’s for supper?

Mr. Paige arrives home at his hotel. He is complaining about the heat while wearing a suit and tie on this sweltering day.  Did people not make the connection back then?  And the smell!  My God, the smell!

A neighbor that he passed on the stoop mentions that he always has hot soup for dinner.  Really, he doesn’t see the problem?  How about a nice vichyssoise?  Thank God jalapenos had not been invented yet, or this guy would spontaneously combust.

Across the courtyard, he sees a man looking around an apartment.  I’m not sure why Paige was immediately concerned unless he has made a habit of peering into that apartment and knows it is occupied by two hot college girls who beat the heat by lounging around topless and giving each other cool sponge-baths.  But I might be reading between the lines.

As the man is looking around the apartment, he finds a jewelry box.  Hearing a noise, he hides as a blonde woman comes into the room wearing a robe.  She finds his burglar bag — poor sap couldn’t even afford the fancy one with the $ on it — and he confronts her.  Paige watches helplessly as the burglar strangles the woman, flashing back four years earlier when he saw this same scene in a movie. [1]

Paige turns off the soup on his hot-plate — a nice touch — and dashes out of the room to report himself for peeping-tomming.  Since phones had apparently not yet been invented, he actually runs to the police station to report the murder of the “pretty blonde”.

The police show up and enter the apartment with Paige.  This burglar is damn good at his job — in minutes, he made off with the the jewelry, all the furniture, the woman’s body, the paintings on the wall and even shampooed the carpet based on the paper on the floor. Or maybe Paige is crazy and the apartment is vacant.

I’ll stop here and say this is why the series only lasted 10 episodes.  I predict that he saw a premonition of a future event.  The blonde will seen moving in later and he will be able to prevent her murder.  Continuing . . .

Paige and the police go back to his room and look across the courtyard.  Much as I wish the courtyard were some kind of portal, they only see the vacant apartment they were just in.  Paige seems pretty reliable, but the cops attribute his story to being hungry and crazy from the heat.  When Paige protests, the cops haul him away.

vsummerheat21Moments later, the “pretty blonde” asks Paige’s neighbors for directions to an apartment she wants to rent. Well, well, well . . .

Apparently the cops didn’t take him to the police station, they went directly to Bellevue where he is sedated and questioned by Boris Karloff.  After he tells his story, Karloff tells him he can go back to his room — well, not his room, but one at the hospital.  He calls in the police and tells them that Paige is perfectly sane.

The next scene is a replay of the murder, exactly as Paige third-eye-witnessed it.  The burglar clubs the blonde on the noggin and steals her jewelry.  He then rushes out, leaving the body, the furniture, paintings and dirty carpet.

The police get a report of a murder at that same apartment and return to the scene of the crime.  They discover that Paige was released from the hospital three hours ago, and see him enter his apartment across the courtyard.  He could not have been the murderer as he described the woman and her furniture before, but the police continue questioning him.  He finally remembers the burglar had a cauliflower ear, which I’m sure has some more politically correct name now.


This isn’t really pertinent to the story. I just had not thought about these in a long time — not the LPs, but the record-changer.

They haul in a thug matching that description who naturally denies any wrong-doing with Clintonian arrogance.  The police then bring in Paige who recounts every detail of the burglary and murder.  Aha! That tells the thug that Paige really saw the murder, but it doesn’t offer up any corroborating evidence for the police.

Uh, maybe this show is too smart for me after all.  Paige informs the police that the blonde bit her killer on the arm.  They roll up his sleeves and see bite-marks. There’s yer corroborating evidence.  Unlike Clinton, a doormat wife, the press and a phalanx of sycophants aren’t going to protect this guy — he’s going to the big house.

So I was wrong in my presumption of the simplicity of this episode.  A lesser man would go back and delete that paragraph.  And by lesser, I mean less lazier.  It turned out to be pretty good.

I rate it 86 degrees.


  • [1]  Jimmy Stewart helplessly watched Raymond Burr threaten Grace Kelly in an apartment across a courtyard in Rear Window.  In that case, Kelly was the burglar . . . the hot, hot burglar.  She was not murdered, but merely arrested and taken in for fumigation and a shower surrounded by young, pretty guards.  At least, that’s how I remember it.
  • Hey Grampa, what’s for supper . . . how can there be no YouTube clips of this?

The Veil – Destination Nightmare (1958)

vdestination02“Our story begins in Europe where Peter Wade has established a thriving air service.” It would have been nice for Karloff to tell us whether he meant Peter Jr or Sr. And just why would you write a screenplay and give two of the characters exactly the same name? “Hi, I’m Henry Jones, Sr. — they call me Indiana too!”

One of the flying Petes is co-pilot on a cargo run when he sees a ghostly disembodied head outside his cockpit window.  Until we see the other Pete, there is no way to know if he is Jr or Sr.  The head tells him, “Look at me.  Follow me.  1-3-5, 1-3-5, 1-3-5.”  When he makes a sudden course correction, the pilot comes back into the cockpit and wrestles the controls from him.

Back on the ground, Pete Sr. (played by Boris Karloff, so I think it is safe to say that just-plain-Pete is dead) asks Pete Jr why he deliberately headed for a crash.  Jr. says he is a wash-out as a flyer and probably can’t run the company either.  What he really wants to do is dance design planes.  Sr immediately strokes him a check to complete the last 2 years of graduate school to become an engineer.  But he puts it under a paperweight [1] until such time that “you feel you really earned the right to go to graduate school.”  Jr takes the check and heads to New York.

vdestination06That night, Sr is having nightmares about the war and a B-17 crash that killed his friend Wally Huffner.  Jr comes in to wake him up.  Sr says they were in a plane that was hit by the Jerrys in WWII.  Sr gave Wally his parachute and was able to pilot the damaged plane to the ground.  Sadly, Wally croaked, or more accurately splatted as the chute didn’t open; or maybe it had been replaced by a share of M&M Enterprises.[2]

Looking around the office, Jr finds a picture on the wall of Sr and the man whose head was hovering outside his cockpit window.  Jr takes a plane up on the same route they flew earlier.  He sees nothing until the pilot goes into the back to get a cup of coffee.  Jr locks the pilot out and tells him to bail out if anything goes wrong — because that worked so well for Wally.  Jr once again sees the giant floating head, and it repeats the same message, “Look at me.  Follow me.  1-3-5, 1-3-5, 1-3-5.”  Jr follows that heading and the plane soars around more erratically than Tyler Fitzgerald’s.  After nearly plowing into a mountain ridge, the head then tells him, “Bail out, bail out, bail out.”  Jr lets the pilot back into the cockpit, then grabs a parachute and jumps out of the plane.

Jr finds debris from a B-17 crash in the same area his father’s plane went down in WWII.  When he brushes the branches away from the fuselage, he sees a drawing of the same gremlin that is weighting down paper on his father’s desk.  Jr brings some of the pieces back.

Jr tells Sr that he saw Wally’s ghostly face and his voice.  He shows Sr a parachute with the serial number 0-1636184.  Jr uses this evidence to tell his father that another man died in that crashed plane — Wally Huffner.  Sr took Wally’s parachute back in the war and Wally died in the crash.  Well, at least, not long before the crash — Wally could not be captured by the Germans so he insisted Sr give him his cyanide tablet.

Jr explains to his father that Wally was wounded and could not have pulled the rip cord on the parachute anyway.  So it is not his fault that Wally had to stay on the plane and die in the crash.

These are some pretty thin stories.  It is no shock that they were shelved.  They look great and the performances are fine.  However, the scripts and the concept are just too simple.  The bombastic title Destination Nightmare was just setting the audience up for a disappointment.

I rate it a 1 . . . 3 . . . no, a 5.


  • [1] The paperweight is a gremlin with 0-1636184 on the base.  It is explained later in the episode.
  • [2] For the love of God, why are you still here?  Go read something that’s actually funny.
  • The most impressive thing about this series so far is the picture on Amazon.  How the hell do they get that thing to look so 3D?

The Veil – Genesis (1958)

vgenesis13John Haney is sick in bed.  His son John Jr. answers the door and greets his brother Jamie.  There is also a Jonas and a Judge in the episode — this won’t get confusing. OK, I’m going with Mr. Haney, Junior, Jamie, Jonas and Judge.

Since the episode is clearly based on the bible, I might as well have called the first three Isaac, Jacob and Esau.  I’m guessing Jamie will = Esau [1] because he has a mustache.  Jamie also seems to be a bit of the Prodigal Son as he is returning home for the first time in 10 years.  He is also kind of a dandy with suspenders and a fat tie, whereas Junior is wearing overalls indicating that he stayed on the farm with his father or is the 1960s stereotype of a lesbian. [2]

They hear a crash above and run upstairs.  They find the cadaverous Mr. Haney — oddly not played by Boris Karloff — on the floor.  The brothers lift him back into bed, but he babbles incoherently.

Junior reminds Jamie that he stole money from their father when he ran away 10 years earlier.  Jamie counters that he was only 17 and that money was coming to him anyway. Since he was 10 years old, his father had him doing chores like a servant or a slave or his child.  Jamie is only back now because he figures their father has built up his cash reserves again.  After Jamie goes up to bed, Junior says to the empty kitchen that Jamie wasted his time coming back — if the old man dies, he gets nothing.

vgenesis15Sure enough, the old man croaks. When the family gets back from the funeral, Junior gives the old man’s will to their lawyer Jonas Atterbury (Karloff).  As Junior said, he inherits everything.  Jamie has an ace up his sleeve, though.  And by ace I mean alternate will, and by sleeve I mean coat pocket.  He hands it to Jonas who sees that it proclaims Jamie as the sole heir, and is dated later than the first will.

Jamie wastes no time in announcing that he plans to sell the farm and ship their mother off to an old folks home.  Junior contests the will.  He tells the judge that he doesn’t trust his brother to take care of their mother because he is “a liar and a thief.”  After Jamie’s lawyer objects, the Judge says, “this court will not tolerate name-calling”. Also horseplay and wedgies will be frowned upon.  The Judge adjourns the court “until 2:30 o’clock.”  WTF?

While Jamie is visiting a buyer for the farm, Junior goes back to the house to get some things.  Upstairs he sees his dead father rocking in a chair.  Mr. Haney just says, “Genesis 27.”  After he disappears, Junior goes downstairs and tells them of his experience.  His mother recognizes the citation as the story of Jacob and Esau and the case of the stolen birthright, and the less desired afterbirhright.  Junior pulls out the family bible and Jamie grabs a loaded rifle that they apparently keep in the kitchen. Jamie flips through the pages, but finds nothing important, just yada yada, word of God, yada yada.

vgenesis19Back in court, Junior asks his mother if maybe there is another bible laying around the farm.  Jamie has the same idea and finds another bible in the attic.  Yet another will is inserted in the book at Genesis 27. Junior is again named the sole heir.


  • [1] Wrong.  The episode really put no effort into paralleling the biblical story.  That is really the weakness of the series.  They come up with one scene of a dead person appearing and forego any other characterization or metaphor.
  • [2] Strange how the stereotype evolved to include hot babes.  I believe this was done to give guys an excuse why beautiful women won’t talk to them.  That’s the excuse I use, anyway.