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The Dominant Personality


After their wedding, a city waitress moves to the wilderness to live with her loner husband. A series of murders take place on the nearby property and all clues point to her man.



Air Dates

  • First Run - January 26, 1979
  • Repeat - July 26, 1979





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17 Responses to Episode 0950

What a great episode The Dominate Personality I really enjoyed this one, but so few time have i heard himan brown's voice speak. Was not quite the same without EG marshal narrating but a good show never the less.

Romulus LoCollo

This Episode is 8 out of 10. The actors are all first rate The Plot moves quickly as we see the husband as killer, but with a clever twist as to who's actually responsible for the killings. The great Himan brown (lived to 99 years young), creator of CBSMT, the Creaking door and everything else, is awesome as always.


The acting I thought was top notch! The reminiscent story of "The Manchurian Candidate" but much less complicated on presentation. In listening to this on the website that I posted it was absent of EG marshall which is usually a negative and I think it was here.


What's interesting about Percy Granger's writing is that his work was histrionic. Episode #0778-DR. HEIDEGGER'S EXPERIMENT is a perfect example. But as for this CBSRMT episode, it's a Who-Done-It-Histrionic-Mystery. You've read the plot, now here's the rest. SPOILER ALERT: Rod Talbert the recluse (played by Ralph Bell) hypnotizes his wife Olivia (played by Roberta Maxwell) in her sleep to commit murder. Turns out, Professor Leo Hertel (played by Gordon Heath) hypnotized Rod to hypnotize Olivia to commit those crimes. Rod was the Middleman, Olivia was the killer, and the Professor was "The Dominant Personality". There was a climax, but no resolution. There were characters with idiosyncrasies, but not enough character development. Don't get me wrong; the talented acting of Roberta Maxwell, Ralph Bell, Gordon Heath, and Charles Irving were terrific, just not for this type of story. Himan Brown was the Host and his voice is suitable for episodes that are comical, eccentric, perplexing, etc. But this one should've gone to E.G. Marshall. What I enjoyed the most was sound effects of the howling wind, the dog barking, the burning fire, the automobiles screeching, and the gun shots. Also, there was the music that makes you feel like you're there in the rural woods. The cryptic melody at the 26-minute 14-second mark, the heartless tunes at the 27-minute 28-second mark, the chills at the 29-minute 25-second mark, and the iciness tune at the 41-minute 21-second mark. SPECIAL NOTE: There's a loud BEEP noise that interrupts the episode at the 18-minute 6-second mark. The story & host were adequate, but the acting & music were splendid


Hope you meant this Friday lol. Murder mystery with surprise twists.


I've listened to this episode three times in the last year. I like the setting and the hypnotism. I go back and forth as to how I feel about the motive.


Forgot a sound effect I really liked: the Loon in the night. ( Loon, right? Not sure already)


I rate this as an excellent episode. The acting I thought was top notch! The reminiscent story of "The Manchurian Candidate" but much less complicated on presentation. In listening to this on the website that I posted it was absent of EG marshall which is usually a negative and I think it was here. I still rate it high at 4 out of 5. check it out!


This production is so different from the ones narrated by EG Marshall as to sound like a different series.

Abba Yeshua

Himan Brown narrated the episodes when PBS aired them in 2000. When this episode aired in 1979, E.G. Marshall was the narrator.


Great story, one of the better ones.


@Russ, "Himan Brown was the host but this episode should have gone to E.G. Marshall." As I understand Himan Brown re recorded every episode [except the final season] of Mystery Theatre when it was broadcast on the PBS networks in the nineties or 2000's, and narrated the introductions word for word, presumably because E.G. Marshall was too ill to work. This episode is one of the later recordings presumably because they couldn't find one of the CBS run.

D.C. Klinkensmit

D.C., E.G. died in 1998, so that couldn't have been why they rerecorded the hosting segments. I really don't know the reason though--was it because it was the THE Hi Brown was hosting his own show as a way of attracting fans of radio drama? Not sure--I do intend to inquire in one of my radio groups though. Thanks for getting the gears turning for me! :)

Dan from South Jersey

Probably due to money. Hi Brown was notoriously cheap.

Commodore's watch

This is an extremely well-written episode with a great twist at the end.


Hard to get into this one as it starts off as another entry in the stupid woman series. Male writers tended to write women as idiots. A woman married an apparently violent loner she knew nothing about after two weeks because she "fell in love with his eyes" and moved into his Unibomber cabin in the middle of nowhere. Stupid.

Commodore's watch

The husband s a monotonic Neanderthal (Ralph Bell in his worst role ever) and the wife is a cliche but if you get past the first act it gets better, with not one but two twists. Hardly a classic however.

Commodore's watch

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