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CBSRMT Episode Information
Title:
The Saxon Curse
('Oscar Wilde story')
Plot:
A fortune teller foretells that he will carry out the perfect crime in order to safeguard his betrothed. Armed with that knowledge, the haughty nobleman picks his target.
Episode:
0457
Air Dates:
First Run - March 29, 1976
Repeat - August 13, 1976
Repeat - November 11, 1979
Writer:
Listen:
Rating:
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9 Responses to Episode 0457


after learning from a fortune teller that he can and will commit the perfect murder, an arrogant aristocrat selects his victim.

An aristocrat visits his old aunt, his only living relative apart from his twin sister. The aunt is entertaining other famous individuals, one, a palm reader of some renown. Despite his objections, the man has his palm read and it is apparent the palm reader is not telling all that he sees. Seeking him out the following day, the man demands to know what is in his palm. The reader says that murder, a long trip, and a lost relative are thereā€¦ but how, where and who? This is a delicious episode with one of those 'just dessert' endings. Fun fun fun.

I enjoyed this one. I heard it recently as well. It left me thinking in several different directions. Was it fate for the 3 predictions to happen, or did he make them happen by believing they would? Maybe if he hadn't seen the fortune teller, (charlatan - liked that word!) the 3 pieces would have still happened, but fit together differently. The story seemed to say towards the end that he was a phony, but was he? His predictions did come true (although the character only commited attempted murder, and I wouldn't consider his wife to have murdered him.) If someone tells you something bad will happen to you, you will obviously try to stop it. If it doesn't happen, then you may feel gratitude toward the person because you believe knowing ahead of time allowed you to prevent it (as the character tried to.) Or, if it does still happen, then the fortune teller's prediction was correct. He wins either way. Hmmm This story made me think about whether or not someone can change their destiny, or if it is already laid out. It is creepy sometimes to think of the smallest decision - or a split second in time can throw your future on a wildly different course. I was very intrigued by the movie "Frequency" which was the opposite idea of changing the past (which of course creates a paradox.)

WOW! This is one with a twist at the end. I should have seen it coming, but I didn't. I just love that as I am listening to these shows, my husband and I react to the story as if it were real. He said "This guy is such a wacko!" I think that indicates how well the actors come across as real people, not just actors. I am copying this one for my mother right away! It was a great episode. Please, keep suggesting your best picks here Steve!

OK, I can take a hint. hehe... I know that feeling, Steve! I did catch the show, but I just purchased a new system and should have it online in a day or so. Once I do, I'll be posting again on a regular basis. I'll save my comments for then. Thanks for choosing it!

I'll look forward to hearing your comments. Glad everyone else seemed to like it. I thought this was a fun witty mystery, and it sounded like the actors were having a great time performing it. (I sure had a great time listening to it!)

Anyone who is interested in the works of Oscar Wilde might enjoy the films (1990s?) called Salome's Last Dance, based on the play by O.Wilde. I read quite a bit of his work years ago, and though Dorian Gray is perhaps his finest and most mainstream work, along with the Importance of Being Earnest, this tale is certainly worthy of recognition. His witty, epigrammatic style is a testament to the class of society he often offended, yet delighted. I always found his insolence to be refreshing. This was a fabulous adaptation and stays true to the original (titled, Lord Arthur Savile's Crime). The only thing this tale seems to leave out, is how obnoxious and over-bearing the wealthy woman truly is. In the original story, she is often heard to "shout at the top of her lungs" to guests and relatives. This small bit of info is the only thing that does not clarify exactly why the main character wants to poison her in the first place. Anyhow, without droning on, this was a wonderful tale that explores a question similar to The Chinaman Button and many other RMT shows, "If you knew you were going to commit a murder AND get away with it, what would you do with this information?" As oft as Wilde loves to tease the society folk, it is my suspicion that in his own mind, this was pure fanatasy for him, likely derived from his own relations and upbringings. A morality test which the main character refuses, but inevitably embraces. A caustic embrace, which of course, eventually costs him his own life. I gave the show a glaring 4.9/5.0 and thoroughly enjoyed every moment of it. Thanks for a great pick!

thanks for recommending this episode. A couple of thoughts: 1. We've talked about the morality aspects of the RMT, and of how some plays they aired then might not make it today. One such play was also written by this episode's original author, Oscar Wilde. The play is "Picture of Dorian Gray". I've seen it done on something like a Hallmark play back in the 70s, and I watched it when my Dad was still alive and I was junior high age. (I was so naive in those years that I had no clue what issues Gray, and Wilde, were grappling with.) There are what today would be some very sensitive subjects in that play/story...no pun intended. 2. Interestingly, in "Picture of Dorian Gray", like "The Saxon Curse", the main character's female love interest is named "Sybil". 3. Was it Evie Juster who played Aunt Clementine? She did some strange phasing of her voice while in character...at one moment she'd sound like Ms. Juster (always one of my favorite female RMT voices), then the next she'd sound like the marooned-aristocrat millionaire's wife in "Gilligan's Island". At times I expected her to start saying "Thuuuuston...dahhhling." Paul Hecht is a consummate radio actor, and always sounded good in cultured roles (i.e. the doctor he played in the RMT's "The captain of the Polestar" or "Premature burial".) 4. Excellent twist at the end. Crime never pays...pretty much always the message on the RMT.

One of the better episodes I've listened to. Strong script and performances. Good sound quality.

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