Alfred Hitchcock Presents

Season 1 Episode 17

The Older Sister

Aired Sunday 9:30 PM Jan 22, 1956 on CBS



  • Trivia

    • The positioning of the cat in Lizzy's arms changes dramatically from one shot to the next in the scene in which she shows the reporter the door.

  • Quotes

    • Nell: Tell me, Miss Emma. Is it true that on the morning of the murder, breakfast consisted of bananas, cookies, and cold mutton soup?
      Emma: I don't know. I wasn't here. I was in Fairhaven.
      Nell: Cold mutton soup in August, no wonder somebody committed murder!

    • Closing Narration
      Alfred Hitchcock: Did she seem a trifle overwrought to you? She did to me. But I react in precisely the same manner whenever I hear a child singing "Davy Crockett." Being more civilized, of course, I don't go around hitting tables. I hit the child instead…not with the axe, of course, but in a nice way. It's so much better to end the program on a pleasant note, don't you think? Good night.

    • Alfred Hitchcock: (Holding up an axe) This is an axe. I say this for the information of those of you whose television tubes may have burnt out. I wish to reach the widest possible audience. Tonight we have a story based on one of our most celebrated murder cases. One that rocked Fall River, Massachusetts and the entire country, late in the last century. The crime was and still is a shocking one. But since it actually happened and is a matter of record, we felt it unwise to pretty up the details to make them palatable for the squeamish. Tonight's theme song will be that familiar little ditty everybody knows. "Lizzy Borden took and axe, gave her mother forty whacks. And when she saw what she had done, she gave her father forty-one." I venture that by this time you can see we are not presenting a romantic comedy tonight. However, we shall not re-enact the crime. We had intended to, but casting difficulties interfered. Oh, we had no trouble casting the mother and father, but we kept losing them in rehearsals. So, instead, we shall show you a slightly different interpretation of the Lizzy Borden story. It begins just one year from the time of the murder.

  • Notes

  • Allusions