Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Paul Temple: the TV series

Just spent $25 for the surviving 11 episodes of Paul Temple, a British/German TV series from 1969-1971. Received the discs today.

The last episode of the series was "Critics, Yes. But This is Ridiculous." It survives. Simon Lack played Inspector Agnew, with his actual Scots accent.

He only shows up in the last ten minutes, when Japp, a hippie, is murdered. (Although staged to look like suicide.)

There's a bunch of hippies in this episode - not part of the Paul Temple scene at all. There's drug taking, which is. Not from Paul and Steve, of course, but from the hippies. And the hippies aren't the easy going ones of the USA, but sullen, violent ones who attempt to stomp to death the murderer when he is found.

Not a cheerful episode, and not one that properly sends off the series, imho,

I wonder if "they" - the casting directors/powers that be - cast Lack in this because he'd been practically all the radio episodes and so deserved to be in the final ep...but if so I wish they'd given him a better vehicle in which to shine - redo the Alex Affair where he's the villain, or the Van Dyke Affair - something where he could show his acting chops!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Simon Lack in They Drive By Night (1938)

Every so often, I do a google image search on Steve Ihnat and Simon Lack, just to see if anyone's put some photos on the web. (And if there are photos, there'll be text!)

Well, today my search finally paid off. For Simon Lack, at least.

In doing a Google image search, I found a Spotlight Casting Directory page that had a very young Simon Lack on it, circa 1939. (He'd be 24 if born in 1915, which most sources say.) (The photo was newly uploaded as a memorabilia company in London was offering it for sale.)

It listed his height - 5' 9" I have to admit I was surprised by that. He'd always seemed much shorter than that to me. I guess everyone he ever acted against must have been very tall. (Patrick McGoohan was 6'2, so he was 5 inches shorter than him...I guess that's why he looked so short in his Secret Agent ep when he was speaking with McGoohan.)

Anyway, the paper also listed three movies he'd been in...one of which was They Drive By Night (1938). I checked the IMDB and he wasn't listed in it. Then I checked YouTube, and glory be it was there, uploaded in its entirety. )Being 74 years old I guess it's in the public domain.

I started watching it, and a very young Simon Lack appeared within the first 5 minutes. As the star of the film is coming out of prison, Simon stops him. He wonders if Shorty had known Allen in prison. Shorty give shim a flip reply and walks past, until Simon says that Allen is his brother. Allen is due to die at 9 o'clock am for having killed a woman. Simon speaks in a soft, Scottish-accented voice (which of course makes sense as he is Scottish!) and then bows his head as 9 am tolls and inside the prison he knows his brother is being hung.

Simon Lack on the left talks to Emlyn Williams as Shorty on the right.

 "Roy Allen" wants to know if Shorty knew Allen in prison (they never give his first name) and how he took his last day before his scheduled execution.

A bell begins to toll nine am. (That white streak at Emlyn's mouth is a cigarette.)

Friday, April 20, 2012

Paul Temple and the Alex Affair - Synopsis

Simon Lack

Paul Temple and the Alex Affair, aired in 1968, was the last Paul Temple radio mystery for 30 years.

Part 1
A conductor collecting tickets on a train finds a woman dead. He enlists a passenger, Mr. Wilfred Davis, a Welshman, to verify. On the window is scrawled the word, Alex.

Sir Graham Forbes and Inspector Crain visit Paul Temple to ask him to look into it. Paul refuses - he's started a new book and he's promised Steve not to get mixed up in any more murders. He does ask Sir Graham to give him the history of the Alex murders - this is the second one - and Forbes mentions that both victims had, written in their diaries, the name "Mrs. Trevelyan."

He goes to Broadcasting House, driven by Steve, to take part in a Question Time show. One of the other guests dies, but before doing so whispers to Temple the name, Alex. Steve is driving home with Paul when a car tries to force them off the road. They both get the number, and Steve releases Paul from his promise.

Paul and Steve wait in a bar for Spider Williams, an acquaintance of Paul's. He's tracked down the number - the car belonged to a Doctor Kohima. (At the same time, he is greeted by Wilfred Davis, who mistakes him for a man named Simon Phipps.)

The next day Paul visits Dr. Kohima, while Steve has come with him to go to a registry office to find a new valet, as their old one, Charlie, is in the hospital. In Dr. Kohima's waiting room, he meets Carl Lathom (Simon Lack). Lathom is there early for his own appointment with the Doctor. A playwright - the actress Norma Rice who had been found in the railway carriage had been in his one and only play - He tells Paul that he's been suffering from hallucinations - a woman dressed all in brown following him - but that Dr. Kohima had cured him.

The secretary comes in and tells Paul that Dr. Kohima (a nerve specialist) will see him in a moment, and tells Lathom that he's early. Lathom says he was in the area with nothing to do, so decided to come in and wait. The secretary goes back to her sanctum and Lathom tells Paul that her name is Mrs. Trevelyan.

Part 2
Paul goes in to Dr. Kohima, and tells him Kohima that his car had been used to try to run them off the road the night before. Kohima says his car has been in a garage for repairs for several days, and asks Paul to call the garage to verify. Paul does so, and learns the car had been ready the night before, and that it had been taken out for a few hours by Kohima's chauffeur. Kohima denies having a chauffeur.

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Part 6

Part 7

Part 8
Carl Lathom is revealed as Alex. He pulls a gun and hold the others at bay, but valet Ricki hits him on the head with a vase, saving the day.

Monday, January 16, 2012

2 Audio programs featuring Conrad Veidt

1. A doc on Connie put together about April 3, 1993, when the ashes of Connie and his wife Lily were laid to rest in Golders Green

2. Connie has a few lines in the radio play, Return to Berchtesgaden. He speaks at about the 3 minute mark.