Alfred Hitchcock Presents

Season 5 Episode 2

The Crystal Trench

Aired Sunday 9:30 PM Oct 04, 1959 on CBS

Episode Fan Reviews (1)

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  • The folly of living in the past...

    A woman waits forty years to recover the frozen body of her late husband; meanwhile, another man who loves her waits for her those forty long years. Stella Ballister is heartbroken when her marriage of six months ends in her husband's sudden death climbing a Swiss peak in the snow. With the help of kind Mark Cavendish, she confronts the two men who were with her husband in his final moments. As much as he demonstrates his love in his pursuit of her, Mark realizes that Stella is determined to keep her husband alive through constantly reviving their brief past together. Patricia Owens' and James Donald deliver some fine acting which makes this episode enjoyable, and Hitchcock takes the viewer down some suspenseful bunny trails before landing them back in the Alps for the final scene. There were, however, some downers to this episode's greatness: namely, the credibility that after six months of marriage a man would be wearing a locket containing the photo of another woman...on a climbing expedition, no less. Pinpointing the physics of the glacier's move to the very morning forty years in the future was also a far fetch. The aging effects of the pair were dubious, but their relaxed and easy interaction as two intimate friends the alleged forty years later was believable.The shame of it all, as the message of the episode drives home is the great waste of living in the past, as well as the rose-colored tint that nostalgia gives reality.