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In the pursuit of slumber, an insomniac begins listening to non-existent radio stations. The reason behind her sickness is uncovered when she finally succumbs to slumber.



Air Dates

  • First Run - May 20, 1981
  • Repeat - August 26, 1981





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6 Responses to Episode 1200

I can't believe it. I cannot believe that playwright Elspeth Eric missed such an obvious line at the end. Or maybe she just wrote this where we THOUGHT that was what Teri Keane was going to say. Remember the Al Pacino flick of the same name a few years ago? Well, this is an Eric play, so Teri Keane's not likely to be shooting dead dogs in an Anchorage alley somewhere to collect blood sample to falsify crime scene information. Instead, Keane's a divorcee lives alone and whose husband dumped her for a younger woman earlier. She does apparently harbor guilt, and hurt, and some self-loathing (like Pacino's character) which appears to make her unable to sleep. However, she does have a kindly neighbor and a married son who both care for her. The neighbor in particular tries to help...she lends Keane a radio to listen to at night (All Keane hears is one station, on the western side of the US (she lives in the east), which plays one song), then suggests she get a canary to sing to her (a cat breaks in and eats the canary) then suggests Keane get a night light (Keane sees mysterious shadows, but by then the plot starts to get somewhat resolved). It is an Eric script so it moves (like several but not all of her others) like a tortoise on Sominex. However, I ended up enjoying it. If someone else hears this show, were you, too, expecting her to say at the end: "Tell him...tell him...I'll have to sleep on it."?

John Aljohn T.

I like Insomnia my favorite.


Just to first comment on John's comment about the last line of this story. The real ending is nowhere as good as "I'll have to sleep on it" would have been. Maybe Eric thought it is a little too bit cliche? I think it would have been great to hear Keane say those words. I found this story a bit sad. There are few things more heartbreaking to see than a marriage gone bad, especially one that has years behind it. Running off with a young woman after so many years of love saddens me. People should really think before they act. Anyway, I love stories about people who can't sleep so I was all in right from the beginning. I guess Eric's writing was good because I felt the desperation and cared for the main character. I was rooting for her to come to a resolution because it seemed that she had a son that cared for her and a neighbor who was understanding. I could never relate to a person that has trouble sleeping because when my head hits the pillow, I'm out like a light. That's why I thought the acting and writing was top notch in this story. If a story can take a topic I don't understand and make me care for the character, it more than did the job. I give this story 4 stars. Now, I'm going to sleep!

Vinny Viola

It's got Teri Keane in it so you know it's worth listening to. Keane sometimes gets stuck playing some pretty dumb characters, though, one must admit. The wife in "The Eavesdropper," for ex. ("Grease?! Ohhhh, Greece!"), and then there's this brainiac -- a woman who can't sleep, can't stand the darkness, and can't withstand the quiet as she lies in bed trying to find the arms of Morpheus -- but a woman who, strangely, never thought of, oh, you know, getting a night light or maybe turning on a freakin' radio! I had to laff. When her very helpful neighbor, whom she first meets by knocking on her door at 3AM, gives her the brilliant idea about turning on a radio, we hear Keane asking, "Do -- do people do that?" as if she has to have some sort of societal permission to turn that knob LOL Cracked me up!


I enjoyed this episode it was nice to hear a woman's voice without any accents or odd speech traits or hurried speech. One of the women points out how it is better to listen to the radio even if there is nothing on it that interests her. And of course the theme of insomnia is a good one for people who were listening to Mystery Theater back when it was on the radio or even now. Good background music and sound effects. This episode is already 34 years now in 2015.


Fantastic episode and one of Teri Keane's best performances, imo. I love her very realistic portrayal of an older person's loneliness and isolation. The story doesn't lose it's relevance because there is even more isolation now than there was in those days. I don't think you could go and knock on a neighbor's door late at night these days, especially just to talk. No one would answer the door, and if they did, they would probably tell her she's nuts and slam the door, or call the police, lol! It's amazing how much more friendly and open people were, even as recent as back when this show was made. Even though this show wasn't a typical mystery story, and there were no supernatural elements, it was still very interesting to listen to, mostly because of the amazing performance of Teri Keane. Some actors would have ruined it and made the episode a drag to listen to, but she made this episode great.


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