Season 1 Episode 7

The Purple Room

Aired Tuesday 9:00 PM Oct 25, 1960 on NBC
out of 10
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Episode Summary

The Purple Room
A man who inherits a house from his brother has one night to decide whether or not to stay - if he leaves, his cousins will inherit the house instead. He expects his cousins to try and frighten him into leaving, but could the strange happenings be more than pranks?moreless

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  • It's the usual premise--in order to claim an inheritance, a man must spend one night in an old (probably haunted) house, but somehow, this episode manages to maintain the suspense.

    Boris Karloff assures us that each episode "…is a thriller" as a matter of routine, but this one actually delivers. I'm not exactly sure why it works so well. Perhaps the chills are based merely on the knowledge that one is not alone in a dark house--because at that point, it really doesn't matter if the noises are caused by ghosts or by greedy cousins. Or maybe the fearless bravado displayed by Duncan Corey (portrayed by Rip Torn) works to intensify our own concern for his safety. In any case, the suspense is gripping.

    After a few twists near the end, the conclusion is somewhat expected. But following such spine-tingling suspense, the ending is not so much anticipated as it is satisfying.moreless
Patricia Barry

Patricia Barry

Rachel Judson

Guest Star

Richard Anderson

Richard Anderson

Oliver Judson

Guest Star

Joanna Heyes

Joanna Heyes

Caroline Ransom

Guest Star

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Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


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  • NOTES (3)

    • Details of the ghost story related in this episode, as well as the plot device used to test the authenticity of the ghost, were used four years earlier in an Alfred Hitchcock Presents episode, "The Gentleman from America", which also centered around a man required to spend a night in a haunted place.

    • At NBC's request, Universal replaced producer Fletcher Markle with William Frye. NBC had threatened to cancel Thriller after its first six episodes because they felt the stories were all too similar and weren't pleased with the production values.

    • The frightening house used for "The Purple Room" is the same house used in the movie Psycho.