What's new

JohnHopper

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Oct 31, 2010
Messages
2,750
Real Name
John Hopper
I like that in doing another vampire story, they switched sexes. Watching it for the first time way back then, I was caught off guard by the switch. The show did well to set the story in another venue, and the series might not have been quite as formulaic if they had taken Carl out of Chicago more often (as Murder, She Wrote found a decade later; they took Jessica around the world even though it was all filmed at Universal).


Don't worry episode #5 is another departure from the series format and Kolchak travels by the sea.
See you on Monday 22 for another fantastic adventure!
 

HenryDuBrow

Screenwriter
Joined
Jan 23, 2004
Messages
1,517
Real Name
Henry.
John, are the Kathleen Nolan pictures your own screen shots from the new release or from somewhere else? If from this release, they do look very nice indeed, most I've seen on review sites look pretty bad to me.
 

JohnHopper

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Oct 31, 2010
Messages
2,750
Real Name
John Hopper
John, are the Kathleen Nolan pictures your own screen shots from the new release or from somewhere else? If from this release, they do look very nice indeed, most I've seen on review sites look pretty bad to me.

The screenshots are taken from my old Universal DVD set, released in 2005.
 
Last edited:

JohnHopper

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Oct 31, 2010
Messages
2,750
Real Name
John Hopper

Item: “Next on the desk of my editor… the reviews of the first disc and its side B… starting: November 22, 8 AM… Load your camera, check-out your tape recorder and be ready!”


kolchak_dvd02.jpg
 

JohnHopper

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Oct 31, 2010
Messages
2,750
Real Name
John Hopper
Episode #5
“The Werewolf”
written by David Chase and Paul Playdon
directed by Allen Baron
music score by Jerry Fielding
guests: Dick Gautier, Henry Jones, Nita Talbot, Eric Braeden, Jackie Russell, Lewis Charles, Bob Hastings, Barry Cahill, Dort Clark, Heath Jobes, Jimmy Hawkins

Mel Tarter: “A reporter… Oh, you mean like the Fifth Column, huh?”
Carl Kolchak: “Uh, no. The Fifth Column was a Nazi spy ring… Now, if you mean the press, that’s the Fourth Estate.”


Item: It’s a good and fun second departure from the series format with a great score by Jerry Fielding, in other words, Kolchak doesn’t investigate in Chicago but in the ocean liner S.S. Hanover in order to write a conventional traveling article about the cruise and encounters the unexpected event and even poses as Carl K. Wells, the son of the Captain and cuts the silver buttons of his dress uniform to fashion slugs for his shotgun provided by peddler George. The narrative uses the constant shift of tone from dead-serious with actor Eric Braeden as the tough and laconic wolf man Bernard Stieglitz who threatens ship doctor Ross to get a painkiller and chains himself to light-hearted with actors Dick Gautier as divorced simpleton Mel Tarter who pushes Kolchak to get a mate and Nita Talbot as the intrepid movie buff Paula Griffin—Talbot used to play with McGavin in Mike Hammer—and as in the first departure from the series format “The Vampire”, Kolchak takes a commercial airplane, plays and impresses with his I.N.S. press card and teams up with a lonely lady: Paula creates a contact lens diversion so that Kolchak sneaks into and steals infos in the radio room. What links Mel Tarter and steward George is that they act like pushers.

Mel Tarter: “Hey, listen, Carl. Paula, you will love her, man. I mean, she’s gonna really turn your train around.”
Carl Kolchak: “Turn my train around?”


Item: My favorite scene takes place during the outcome: Kolchak comes out of his cabin and crosses the corridor with a superposed shotgun, witnesses a dead Mel lying on the floor, and heads outside for the final hunting and even fails to fall overboard. As in “The Zombie”, the director uses shadowgraphs to minimize the look and to intensify the threat of the monster: see the hunting outcome. First episode with Miss Emily that we briefly see in the snowy Chicago during Christmas time where we see additional employees of the I.N.S. This one can be considered as the first episode from the new regime, i.e., producer Cy Chermak, composer Jerry Fielding and actress Ruth McDevitt and a highlight on a “human” monster embodied by a genuine actor who receives a special guest star credits. Here’s another episode in which the film editor uses the freeze frame in order not to show the savageness of the monster: see, among other things, the wild attack on the three crewmen in the ship cockpit. The story was written by the first producer of the series: Paul Playdon. Oddly enough, the newspapers montage that opens Act 1 reminds the main titles of the 1971 telefilm Ellery Queen: Don’t Look Behind You, scored by Jerry Fielding. It’s one of the rare episodes with no police head but substituted by a seaman equivalent: the rigid Captain Julian Wells (actor Henry Jones) who threatens Kolchak with the articles of the Maritime Code and the old-fashioned irons, assisted by watchdog Gribbs (actor Dort Clark).

police head: none.
monster: a NATO officer werewolf.
Tony’s tidbit: Tony is disguised as a cheap Santa Claus (just the white beard), cancels his vacation, has the flu and fears the arrival of the New York accountants.
featuring: steward peddler George (actor Lewis Charles).
 

JohnHopper

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Oct 31, 2010
Messages
2,750
Real Name
John Hopper

My favorite scene takes place during the outcome: Kolchak comes out of his cabin and crosses the corridor with a superposed shotgun, (…).


 

Matt Hough

Reviewer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Apr 24, 2006
Messages
24,484
Location
Charlotte, NC
Real Name
Matt Hough
The werewolf make-up is subpar, but the budget for the show likely didn't allow for anything better. The monster is kept out of the spotlight as much as possible anyway, a wise move. Ruth plays Edith Cowles for an episode (and in the credits for a couple), but of course it's really the one and only Miss Emily, a beloved character.
 

JohnHopper

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Oct 31, 2010
Messages
2,750
Real Name
John Hopper
Episode #6
“Firefall”
written by Bill S. Ballinger
directed by Don Weis
music score by Jerry Fielding
guests: Fred Beir, Philip Carey, David Doyle, Madlyn Rhue, Virginia Vincent, Alice Backes, Lenore Kasdorf, Joshua Shelley, Carol Ann Susi, Carol Veazie, Patricia Estrin

Tony Vincenzo: “Kolchak. When you get back to the swindle and fraud stories, write about how you’re employed here, which is one of the biggest swindles in memory!”

Item: It’s a delight for music lovers and an inspired episode that highlights actor Fred Beir as the hyper rationalistic and perfectionist symphony conductor Ryder Marshall Bond chased and harassed by a frustrated and playful convicted arsonist ghost dreaming to become a conductor and projects his image to fool its victims. The film editor uses a series of three freeze frames to introduce punctual Ryder Bond en route to rehearsal to the audience which triggers his future trouble because a deadman doesn’t like being passed by during its funeral. This episode is music-oriented down to the last details: horn player and arsonist Frankie Markoff, the special funeral music for Markoff’s hearse convoy, the carbonized victims are music people (first violinist and concertmaster George Mason, Sorbonne graduate and music groupie Felicia Porter, treasurer and business manager of the Great Lake Symphony Association Philip Randolf Rourke) except Kolchak who fails to be on the list, the old music lover and next door neighbor Mrs. Sherman, music lover reporter Ron Updyke is a French horn player, Kolchak’s brief entrance during a music rehearsal that is underlined by two simultaneous shocking zoom shots (Kolchak/Bond), the weird events (the sudden frightening shaking piano of Bond, the Church entrance music, the quick appearances of the ghost nearby the Church windows acting like a little devil). Fire-wise, the family of Markoff make references to it: his wife (“you couldn’t say he was exactly burning with ambition”) and his young son who plays with matches in the apartment.

Carl Kolchak [voiceover]: “September 9, 5:30 PM. I was faced with two equally unpleasant possibilities. One, some sort of horrible freak note was being played in the brain of Ryder Bond… and he was setting fire to his fellow man, or two, to paraphrase Mr. Cardinale, something inexplicable was happening that perhaps I really did want to know about. Unfortunately, a reporter is paid to find out things… whether he wants to know about them or not. As I was to be taught once again, there are nicer ways to make a living. Far nicer.”

Carl Kolchak to Ron Updyke: “Don’t you read the Teletype, Uptight?”


Item: Find the most exciting cast and crew credits displayed in front of Chicago shots (the heart of the city, the motorway) and punctuated by Jerry Fielding’s highly jazzistic music that is a rework from the 1971 telefilm Ellery Queen: Don’t Look Behind You. As previously (see “The Vampire”), Kolchak is exfiltrated from the scene of the crime by a common man in blue and even twice. As in “The Zombie”, Kolchak exhumes a body and you find another reference to the underworld: see the introduction scene depicting the shooting of arsonist/pinball player Frankie Markoff (uncredited actor George Sawaya) by two gangsters. For the anecdote, Monique replaces Miss Emily at creating a crossword and a puzzle and is ordered by sleepless and weak Kolchak to deliver some stolen cash to informer Maria. Despite an inspired score by Jerry Fielding that can be connected to four of his film scores (Straw Dogs, Scorpio, Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia and especially the two cues “Night Dig” when Kolchak awakes and sees the ghost of Bond in the Church—edited with short epileptic cuts—and “Goodbye Elita” when Kolchak stops his car next to the penny arcade, Demon Seed), he re-uses one of his own personal effect called “The Laughing Trombones” (see the following scenes: Kolchak trapped in the burning apartment of Ryder Bond’s ghost and Kolchak sees Ryder Bond’s ghost at the exit of the penny arcade) and also instills discreet snare drums and introduces a weird synthesizer played by Ian Underwood, it contains stock music by Gil Mellé (cues from “The Ripper”).

Carl Kolchak to ghost Frankie Markoff: “Listen to me, Markoff. This, is your body, here. You are dead. You are not Ryder Bond. You will never be Ryder Bond. Leave Ryder Bond alone. Return to your own body. Leave Ryder Bond alone! Return to your body! Return to your body, Markoff! And rest in peace forevermore.”

police head: Sergeant Mayer (actor Philip Carey).
monster: an arsonist doppelgänger (a vengeful ghost double).
Tony’s tidbit: Tony fears a lawsuit from Ryder Bond because of Kolchak’s article and treats Kolchak as a crook who later steals some petty cash from the box of his desk.
featuring: informer gypsy Maria Hargrove (actress Madlyn Rhue), Monique.
 

JohnHopper

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Oct 31, 2010
Messages
2,750
Real Name
John Hopper
I like this one, but I wouldn't rank it among the top five episodes. With some of his darting pop-ups, the doppelgänger is kind of creepy.

I see we differ on this one. Anyway, from this one, the writers renew the stock of monsters, explore new folklores and stay away from the traditional ones (vampire, zombie, werewolf).
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Forum Sponsors

Latest Articles

Forum statistics

Threads
350,771
Messages
4,930,238
Members
142,910
Latest member
fadilale
Recent bookmarks
2
Top