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Posts Tagged ‘elva mai hoover’

Nightfall #38: “All-Nighter”

Don FrancksWe close the first season with another of the creepiest episodes of the series: Graham Pomeroy's "All-Nighter".

When it comes to serial-killers, NIGHTFALL's have some of the weirdest MOs. In "Dark Side of the Mind", it was Carl recording responses from his victims before killing them, then playing back the appropriate responses when needed to assuage worried friends and relatives. In this one, a cleanliness-obsessed murderer is compelled to wash and dry his victims in the large-capacity machines at all-night laundromats.

Elva Mai Hoover plays Cheryl, a worker at one of these laundromats who first encounters evidence of the murders, and Le Femme Nikita's Don Francks (photo left) plays Officer Charlie Burns, the local beat patrolman who takes on the investigation.

This episode is also a classic example of producer Bill Howell's fascination with using synth-rock production music in his soundtracks. It's one of the things that establishes NIGHTFALL's unique style.


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All-Nighter

Air Date: 6/5/1981
Writer(s): Graham Pomeroy
Production Location: CBC Toronto
Producer: Bill Howell
Featuring: Elva Mai Hoover, Don Francks, Linda Sorenson, Ruth Springford, Budd Knapp
Commercial Synopsis: A 24-hour laundromat is the scene of a series of psychotic murders.


If you like what you hear, please contact the CBC Shop and encourage them to release the series!

Nightfall #28: “A Short Wave Goodbye”

Maxine MillerThis week we feature the second episode penned by George R. Robertson (the first being “The Willoughby Obsession”). It is also the second episode where an electronic device receives signals from the future, much to someone’s lament – though, in this case, it’s hard to tell who laments it most.

After a fight with his long-suffering wife, Harriet, in which his prized short-wave radio set is damaged, suburban accountant Harvey John Beasley discovers that he can now pick up transmissions from the near future. After placing a few successful bets with his friend Philip’s bookmaker (though the term “friend” may be subjective, considering what Harriet and Phillip are doing together in their spare time), Harvey goes one further and tries to warn a local mob boss that’s he’s about to be the victim of a hit. Unfortunately, the mobster is gunned down anyway, proving to Harvey that the future cannot be changed – at least, not in the broad scheme of things. Things take an interesting turn when Harriet and Phillip learn of Harvey’s sudden wealth and, aiming to have it for themselves, seek out ways to do Harvey in. Once Harvey figures out their plan, however, things escalate into a covert war of assassination: of his wife and her lover’s traps versus Harvey’s knowledge of future disasters. The result, as it often is, is that someone wins the battle, but someone else loses the war. Which is which and who is who, though, might be a toss-up.

NIGHTFALL regular Arch McDonnell stars as Harvey, Maxine Miller (photo left) as Harriet, and Budd Knapp as is Harvey’s friend, Phillip. John Stocker appears as the Newscaster and Elva Mai Hoover plays the receptionist.


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A Short Wave Goodbye

Air Date: 1/9/81
Writer(s): George R. Robertson
Production Location: CBC Toronto
Producer: Bill Howell
Featuring: Arch McDonnell, Maxine Miller, Budd Knapp, John Stocker, Elva Mai Hoover
Commercial Synopsis: A ham radio enthusiast accidentally discovers how to pick up transmissions from the future, and notices that they are becoming increasingly closer to the present.


If you like what you hear, please contact the CBC Shop and encourage them to release the series!

Nightfall #25: “On Christmas Day in the Morning”

Sandy WebsterThe 1980 Holiday season brought us not one, but two Christmas episodes!

This week's is a fun little story that, at first, seems pretty unlikely as a NIGHTFALL episode. It's one everyone can listen to: no severed limbs, no creepy ghosts, no self-destructive split personalities, and no historical vampire royalty. Just a good ol' mystery. Oddly enough, though, it was penned by the same duo that brought you episode #3, "Welcome to Homerville". Hard to imagine this story coming from Don Dickinson and Allan Guttman!

It is an adaptation of one of British author Margery Allingham's popular Campion mysteries, originally written in 1952. For the purposes of making it a one-off story, the writers replaced Arthur Campion with a retired provincial judge and set it in rural Ontario during the Second World War.

The story deals with the death of the local mail carrier, who seems to have been the victim of a hit and run, on Christmas morning. Things look bad for the mayor's son and his girlfriend, except in order to pin the crime on them, they would have to explain how the carrier managed to deliver mail to a reclusive old woman after he was dead.

The episode features the wonderful voice of Sandy Webster (photo left) as the judge, as well as series regulars Colin Fox, Arch McDonnell and Robert Haley. Michael Wincott and Elva Mai Hoover play the teenage suspects.

(NOTE: There's a slight dropout in the recording at 28:00, but it's only momentary. Nothing significant to the story is lost.)


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On Christmas Day in the Morning

Air Date: 12/19/80
Writer(s): Don Dickinson & Allan Guttman  (based on the short story by Margery Allingham)
Production Location: CBC Toronto
Producer: Bill Howell
Featuring: Sandy Webster, Colin Fox, Arch McDonnell, Sandra Scott, Robert Haley, Elva Mai Hoover, Michael Wincott, John Stocker
Commercial Synopsis: The sudden death of the local mail carrier on Christmas morning presents a newly-retired judge with a bizarre mystery: how could the carrier have delivered mail to an elderly woman after he was dead?


If you like what you hear, please contact the CBC Shop and encourage them to release the series!

Nightfall #23: “Where Does the News Come From?”

August SchellenbergThis week's episode asks the very relevant-to-today question: "Who actually controls what news we see and hear?"

August Schellenberg (photo left) — in his second of two NIGHTFALL appearances — stars as foreign news correspondent David Winston, returning from Rome to be offered a national news anchor position, replacing a friend who inexplicably walked off the set one night and into a padded cell. But once he arrives, Winston is confronted by the strange, conspiracy-laden tales of a long-time friend, Stella Parsons (singer/actor Peggy Mahon, in her only NIGHTFALL role).

This episode also marks the first of nine NIGHTFALL appearances by the distinctively-voiced David Calderisi as producer Martin Grant. David is probably better known to CBC Radio Drama fans as the Voice of Introduction for the post-NIGHTFALL series, Vanishing Point.

Also featured are series regulars Frank Perry, Elva Mai Hoover and John Stocker, providing a number of extra voices.

This was the only episode written by actor James D. (Jimmy) Morris ("Welcome to Homerville", "Baby Doll").


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Where Does the News Come From?

Air Date: 12/05/80
Writer(s): James D. Morris
Production Location: CBC Toronto
Producer: Bill Howell
Featuring: August Schellenberg, Peggy Mahon, David Calderisi, John Stocker, Elva Mai Hoover, Frank Perry, Trish Allen
Commercial Synopsis: A foreign correspondent returns home to take the national TV news anchorman's slot, and discovers some mysterious events which somehow never end up on the air.


If you like what you hear, please contact the CBC Shop and encourage them to release the series!

Nightfall #22: “Deadly Developments”

Gordon ThomsonAh, another one of my favorite episodes! It joins the ranks of several other episodes about "cursed objects" and was the first to be written by a woman.

John Stocker and Gordon Thomson (photo left) – starring together on NIGHTFALL for the first time since "How Did You Get My Name?" (#8) – respectively play professional photographer André Phillipe and his assistant, Steve Balfourt, who are preparing a photo shoot for the cover of an upcoming horror novel. During the session, André decides to try out his newly-acquired Von Hensdorf, an extremely rare camera made in pre-war Germany, known for the stark quality of its photos. Very quickly, the shoot turns into a terrifying experience for the three women sent by the modeling agency, who are overwhelmed by the sense of a malevolent presence in the studio. The next day, two police officers arrive at the studio and begin asking questions about three separate incidents that occurred the afternoon before. At roughly the same time, André realizes, that the Von Hensdorf photos were being developed…

The playwright on this episode is something of a mystery. Arlene Ezrin is one of the few writers I haven't been able to track down or to account for as deceased. The only Arlene Ezrin I can find any reference to on-line is the wife of Canadian music producer Bob Ezrin (known for his work with such talents as Alice Cooper, Kiss and Pink Floyd), but so little is to be found about her as to be non-existent. They did, however, live in Toronto, so it's quite possible this is the same person.

Historical Note: The original CBC Radio broadcast of this episode (as well as the version you are listening to here) has an opening scene in Paul Gemmel's pawn shop, in which André purchases the Von Hensdorf camera. However, the oft-circulated copy of this episode is from its run on NPR Playhouse  in 1981, which did not include the scene. Correspondence between the producer of NPR Playhouse and Bill Howell indicates that, due to time constraints, episodes had to be limited to 29 minutes or less in length, so it is likely that Bill Howell excised the scene from the version he sent to NPR to keep it under time. This is only a theory, though, and has not been confirmed.


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Deadly Developments

Air Date: 11/28/8
Writer(s): Arlene Ezrin
Production Location: CBC Toronto
Producer: Bill Howell
Featuring: John Stocker, Gordon Thomson, Budd Knapp, Sandy Webster, Linda Sorenson, Elva Mai Hoover, Nicky Guadagni, Colin Fox, Arch McDonnell
Commercial Synopsis: The discovery of a mysterious old German camera starts a bizarre series of events in this contemporary story focusing on the world of fashion photography.


If you like what you hear, please contact the CBC Shop and encourage them to release the series!

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