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CBSRMT Episode Information
The Witches' Almanac
An amusing tale of a married witch couple trying to make a potion tat will grant them eternal life. The missing ingredient is a virgin's blood. But problems start when their chosen victim, a young boarder, falls in love with a journalist.
Air Dates:
First Run - May 26, 1975
Repeat - September 13, 1975
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12 Responses to Episode 0280

This GREAT 5-STAR episode is another of my personal favorites. Sara Worlock(Warlock?) as played by Virginia Payne sounds like such a sweet, pink-cheeked grandmotherly type-(the kind we all wished we HAD as our grandmothers but, we RARELY ever get!) Robert Dryden is GREAT as her husband,Jason. His voice sounds so crackly and aged. You would never guess from the way Sara and Jason sound that they were up anything sinister. I've heard Robert Dryden on other radio programs from the 40's & 50's and he could sound like an really old man even then. What a great voice talent! I always enjoy his roles on the episodes that I have heard so far on CBSRMT.

A coven needs the blood of a virgin to concoct a potion of health.

A kindly old couple, Mr. and Mrs. Warlock, seek a border to whom they will rent a room after the departure of their previous guest. Of course, they have some standards to which their border will be held, but any young pure female virgin will do. The Warlocks want to do everything in their power to keep their guest happy and satisfied, for their plans go far beyond mere pleasant accommodations, as their name might suggest!

This episode struck me as a well-rounded story. The witches have a problem, the girl has a problem, they solve it for each other then it gets complicated and there is a solution. And the girl gets out alive! I enjoyed it for the story. Also, this one did seem more timeless. There weren't any glaring 1970's sayings or opinions in it, unlike the episode I had listened to right before it "The Plastic Man". I have to admit, the title is also intriguing. That has pull for me sometimes. So, I didn't suggest this as the best episode ever, it was very listenable and entertaining. Glad folks liked this episode!

This episode had a lot of possibilities. The old witch couple, Sara and Jason, truly were, as mentioned at least twice, "ghouls." Well-acted on their parts (Dryden and Rowland, I assume). Their performances make this episode well worth a listen. I thought The actress who played Kathy was way overboard on the virginal personality, though. I do like humor in the mysteries, but this went from being spooky to a farce. The ending was just a bit too corny. I was a bit chilled by the lines the old lady used when she was giving Kathy the "medicine" near the end. "It'll settle your stomach!" This was he peak of the suspense for me; a few minutes later, the reporter/boyfriend is on the phone calling Kathy "honey" already like they'd been together for weeks. And how far out in the burbs did these folks live that they had a blacksmith foundry pouring out smoke, but the city cop can come over and bust them? Oh well.... the stolen wallet idea was clever, I'll give Ian Martin that one. This might be, IMHO, an average to slightly above average episode. Like nearly all of them, I enjoyed it and was unsure of how it would end. I liked the diversion of making the boyfriend seem somehow sinister at first. I was thinking that maybe Kathy was going be seduced and lose her virginity in NYC, after having drinks for the first time in her life, and that night, the old man would draw her blood for the elixir and wind up poisoning all the witches. Something like that.

I'd not heard this one, and at the end it leaves no doubt, again, what apparently some of (in this case, Ian Martin and possibly E.G.) the RMT folks thought about witchcraft. This one had the earmarks of a program with an ending like "The real printer's devil" (which also featured Jada Rowland, as this one did) or "The summer people", but I always thought the heroine (or at least one could call her "the nice girl") in this story wasn't going to meet a similar fate. Glad scriptwriter Martin didn't disappoint.

Thanks for a great pick! I enjoyed this one, though I thought at first I had heard it before... turns out it was similarly styled to The Summer People, if memory serves. My favorite thing in the show was the clock. It had twenty-four numbers on it, like a military clock, and the young girl just happens to arrive on the scene at exactly one o'clock - which, of course, is the thirteenth hour. The clock chimes thirteen times... very nice. While the show really didn't "grab" me in a headlock for very long (the beginning was great, but once Kathy met the reporter, it was all downhill for me), I found great excitement in the production of this tale, specifically the attention to the sound effects: the clock, the hammering out of the iron, the bubbling of the elixir, etc. These little details paint a wonderful landscape behind the talented craftspeople who are performing. Their art is enhanced by the effects which alone often boost the image in the mind's eye. I must admit though, that the show had an extreme jump in Act 2, where the writing became somewhat predictable and droll. Comments like "I'm going to sleep like the dead" and "it'll settle your stomach" were a bit over the top. We got it without needing to be told. Lastly, I find it interesting that here we have another episode which seems to put the religious norm in the minority. When Aunt Sarah gasps because Unlce Jason says the word "mass", I nodded lightly with a smirk on my face... typical for the CBSRMT. Of course, it IS a tale of witchcraft, so I suppose the whole Satan versus God thing is justified. I don't like to admit it, but part of me wishes Kathy had never gone to New York. I would have found it interesting to see how the coven of witches faired with their new-found supply of virgin blood. :twisted: All in all, a very enjoyable show. I gave this one a 4.3. Thanks again and best wishes!

I liked this story although nowadays the writer would probably get sued for slandering a "legitimate religion." I liked the story as is, but I think Sue had a cleverer idea for the ending.

I agree with Dennis about the sound effects painting a good picture on this one and I had thought of Sue's ending as well. However, I had thought I had heard that Satanists (or whatever they may be called) attended a Black Mass, so I was surprised by the idea that Mass was a bad word (especially when discussing the body's resistance to being accelerated by a force and the strength of its mutual gravitational attraction with other bodies - physics). This was an okay episode, but not the best.

The Witchs Almanac is my favorite.

One of my all time favorite.

I rate this episode ★★★★☆ for GOOD. The word “Amusing” would be the best way to describe this Fantasy-Mystery. It’s not side-splitting hilarious, nor is it spine-tingling scary, but it is definitely an eye-opening story written by Ian Martin. The story was going smoothly in ACT-1, then it was going swell in ACT-2, but then near the end of ACT-3, it plunge to a quick climax and a quick resolution that seemed far-fetched on what happened to our antagonists when their plan failed. Another way to Title this would be “Mr. & Mrs. Warlock in Brooklyn Heights.” The music had great tunes that presented themes of tension & curiosity for every character in every scene. The sound effects of the doors, clock ringing at the Witching Hour, whistling of the kettle, newspaper, cups clinking, metal forging, doorbell ringing, birds chirping, the tableware, piano music playing in the restaurant, bubbling of the cauldron, howling wind on the boat, car horns during New York traffic, typewriters and phones at the police station, popping the bottle to open, rotary phone, and bursting in from the door were all the right pieces to fit in this CBSRMT episode. E.G. Marshall was masterful as the Host. In his Prologue, he brings up the topic of Witches; knowing what they do and the history about them. In ACT-1, he holds a 17th Century book of the Witches’ Almanac that contains a recipe for a Witches’ Broth that involves the parts of a newt, a goat, a lizard, a bat, and a rat, and then boil in alcohol, and lace with blood of a virgin. Ghastly that sounds, but even more ghastly at the end of the Act when he talks about the fly meeting the spider; a great metaphor on Trust Issues when our main protagonist meets the main antagonists. In ACT-2, he quotes the Witches’ words from William Shakespeare’s MACBETH: “Double, double toil in trouble. Fire burn and cauldron bubble.” Classic words as the Witches’ Broth are nearly done. In ACT-3, E.G. Marshall discusses obsession and how sensible people can do the most outlandish things in the name of some irrational belief. He also discusses the “things that go bump in the night.” In his Epilogue, he summarizes the whereabouts of our characters; the protagonists get married and the antagonists stay behind bars for life (and this is the far-fetched part I was talking about on how exactly you get 2 Occultists life sentences). But I saved the best part of this review for last: our talented cast starring Virginia Payne (as Sarah Warlock: the Witch), Robert Dryden (as Jason Warlock: the Warlock and the Restaurant Greeter), Jada Rowland (as Kathy Pryor: the 18-year old Virgin), Marshall Borden (as Patrick Trent: the Police Journalist), and Dan Ocko (as Lieutenant Jim and Dr. Callios: High Priest of the Coven). Virginia Payne & Robert Dryden were outstanding as the occultist duo. Jada Rowland is my favorite actress in the CBSRMT series and she played the part well, especially at the 15-miunte mark where she breathes while sleeping. Dan Ocko’s role as a cop & doctor were nicely done. As for Marshall Borden, it’s unfortunate that this is the only CBSRMT episode that he did. He was terrific in this; sounded like a young Norman Rose. If you’re interested in tales of Witches and/or a fan of Jada Rowland, I recommend this episode to you. Until next time…pleasant dreams. =0)

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