Escape

Escape

Courtesy OTRR

Escape was radio’s leading anthology series of high-adventure radio dramas, airing on CBS from July 7, 1947 to September 25, 1954. Since the program did not have a regular sponsor like Suspense, it was subjected to frequent schedule shifts and lower production budgets, although Richfield Oil signed on as a sponsor for five months in 1950.

Despite these problems, Escape enthralled many listeners during its seven-year run. The series’ well-remembered opening combined Mussorgsky’s Night on Bald Mountain with this introduction, as intoned by Paul Frees and William Conrad:

“Tired of the everyday grind? Ever dream of a life of romantic adventure? Want to get away from it all? We offer you… Escape!”

Following the opening theme, a second announcer (usually Roy Rowan) would add:

“Escape! Designed to free you from the four walls of today for a half-hour of high adventure!”

Of the more than 230 Escape episodes, most have survived in good condition. Many story premises, both originals and adaptations, involved a protagonist in dire life-or-death straits, and the series featured more science fiction and supernatural tales than Suspense. Some of the memorable adaptations include Daphne du Maurier’s “The Birds”, Carl Stephenson’s “Leiningen Versus the Ants” (filmed in 1954 as “The Naked Jungle”, Algernon Blackwood’s “Confession”, Ray Bradbury’s oft-reprinted “Mars Is Heaven”, George R. Stewart’s Earth Abides (the program’s only two-parter), Richard Connell’s “The Most Dangerous Game” and F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “The Diamond as Big as the Ritz”.

John Collier’s “Evening Primrose”, about people who live inside a department store, was later adapted to TV as a Stephen Sondheim musical starring Anthony Perkins. Vincent Price, Harry Bartell and Jeff Corey were heard in the chilling “Three Skeleton Key” (broadcast on 17 March 1950), the tale of three men trapped in an isolated lighthouse by thousands of rats; the half-hour was adapted from an Esquire short story by the French writer George Toudouze and later remade for the 9 August 1953 broadcast starring William Conrad, Ben Wright and Jay Novello.

Actors on the series included Elvia Allman, Eleanor Audley, Parley Baer, Michael Ann Barrett, Tony Barrett, Harry Bartell, Ted Bliss, Lillian Buyeff, Ken Christy, William Conrad, Ted deCorsia, John Dehner, Don Diamond, Paul Dubov, Sam Edwards, Virginia Gregg, Lou Merrill, Howard McNear, Jess Kirkpatrick, B.J. Thompson, Shep Menken, Frank Gerstle, George Neece, Jeanette Nolan, Dan O’Herlihy, Barney Phillips, Forrest Lewis, Robert Griffin, Alan Reed, Bill Johnstone, Sandra Gould, Junius Matthews, Carleton G. Young, Frank Gerstle, Marvin Miller, Frank Lovejoy, Berry Kroeger, Vic Perrin, Elliott Lewis, Eleanore Tanin, Herb Vigran, Jack Webb, Peggy Webber and Will Wright.

Music was supplied by Del Castillo, organist Ivan Ditmars, Cy Feuer, Wilbur Hatch and Leith Stevens. The announcers were Paul Frees and Roy Rowan.


EPISODE LISTING:

470228 000 Aud1 Out Of This Worlddead Of Night
470324 000 Aud2 Dead Of Night
470707 001 The Man Who Would Be King
470714 002 Operation Fleur De Lis
470721 003 A Diamond As Big As The Ritz
470728 004 Typhoon
470804 005 Sire De Maletroit’s Door
470811 006 Ring Of Toth
470818 007 The Fourth Man
471001 008 The Most Dangerous Game
471008 009 Run Of The Yellow
471015 010 A Shipment Of Mute Fate
471022 011 The Fall Of The House Of Usher
471029 012 Pollack And The Porrah Man
471105 013 Evening Primrose
471112 014 The Young Man With The Cream Tarts
471119 015 Casting The Runes
471126 016 Country Of The Blind
471203 017 Taboo
471210 018 An Occurrence At Owl Creek Bridge
471217 019 Wild Oranges
471224 020 Back For Christmas
471231 021 Confession
480107 022 (EC) The Second Class Passenger
480110 023 (WC) The Second Class Passenger
480114 024 (EC) Leiningen Versus The Ants
480117 025 (WC) Leiningen Versus The Ants
480121 026 (EC) Papa Benjamin
480124 027 (WC) Papa Benjamin
480128 028 (EC) Three Good Witnesses
480131 029 (WC) Three Good Witnesses
480201 030 (EC) The Vanishing Lady
480207 031 (WC) The Vanishing Lady
480208 032 (EC) Snake Doctor
480214 033 (WC) Snake Doctor
480215 034 (EC) Ancient Sorceries
480221 035 (WC) Ancient Sorceries
480222 036 (EC) How Love Came To Professor Guildea
480228 037 (WC) How Love Came To Professor Guildea
480229 038 (EC) The Grove Of Ashtaroff
480307 040 (EC) Jimmy Goggles, The God (Afrs) (Op,
480314 042 (EC) The Log Of The Evening Star
480321 044 (EC) (Afrs) Misfortune Isle
480328 046 A Shipment Of Mute Fate
480404 047 Action
480411 048 The Brute
480418 049 Drums Of Fore And Aft
480425 050 The Fourth Man (R)
480502 051 John Jock Todd
480509 052 The Time Machine
480516 053 The Match
480523 054 Leiningen Versus The Ants
480606 055 Beau Geste
480627 056 The Country Of The Blind
480704 057 A Tooth For Paul Revere
480711 058 She
480718 059 Habit
480801 060 The Man Who Would Be King (R)
480815 061 The Fugitive
480822 062 Ss San Pedro
480829 063 The Diamond As Big As The Ritz (R)
480905 064 Dream Of Armageddon
480912 065 Evening Primrose (R)
480919 066 The Man Who Could Work Miracles
490212 067 The Lost Special
490219 068 Orient Express
490226 069 Red Wine
490305 070 Conqueror’s Isle
490312 071 He Who Rides The Tiger (Afrs)
490313 072 A Shipment Of Mute Fate
490319 073 Finger Of Doom
490320 074 Country Of The Blind (R)
490326 075 Adaptive Ultimate
490327 076 The Diamond As Big As The Ritz
490402 077 Confidential Agent
490409 078 When The Man Comes, Follow Him
490416 079 The General Died At Dawn
490423 080 The Great Impersonation
490707 081 The Fourth Man
490714 082 The Drums Of The Fore And Aft
490721 083 Action (R)
490728 084 Second Class Passenger (R)
490804 085 Leiningen Versus The Ants (R)
490811 086 Red Wine (R)
490818 087 Snake Doctor
490825 088 Evening Primrose
490921 089 The Fortune Of Vargas
490928 090 Wild Oranges (R)
491015 092 The Sure Thing
491022 093 Night In Havana
491101 095 Flood On The Goodwin
491108 096 Plunder Of The Sun
491115 097 Three Skeleton Key
491122 098 Maracas
491129 099 Letter From Jason
491206 100 Command
491213 101 Border Town
491220 102 Figure A Dame
491227 103 Seeds Of Greed
500103 104 The Pistol
500110 105 Vanishing Lady (R)
500117 106 The Sure Thingend Music Cut
500124 107 Treasure, Inc
500131 108 Present Tense
500207 109 Outer Limit
500214 110 Two If By Sea
500221 111 The Red Mark
500228 112 The Man Who Won The War
500310 113 Port Royal
500317 114 Three Skeleton Key (R) (Vincent Price)
500324 115 Danger At Matecumbe
500331 116 Green Splotches
500407 105 Ambassador Of Poker
500407 117 Ambassador Of Poker
500414 118 The Golden Snake
500421 119 Shanghai Document
500428 120 Something For Nothing
500505 121 The Man Who Stole The Bible
500512 122 Rim Of Terror
500519 123 Pass To Berlin
500526 124 Command (R)
500602 125 Mars Is Heaven
500616 127 Serenade For A Cobra
500623 116 Sundown
500630 117 Blood Bath
500714 119 Shark Bait
500721 120 Yellow Wake
500728 121 Poison
500804 122 Two Came Back
500811 123 Red Forest
500818 124 The Footprint
500825 125 Crossing Paris
501006 126 Sleeping Draught
501013 127 Roulette
501020 128 Power Of Hammer
501103 130 Seven Hours To Freedom
501105 131 Earth Abides 1o2
501110 144 Earth Abides Part I
501112 132 Earth Abides 2o2
501117 145 Earth Abides Part Ii
501119 133 Journey Into Fear
501124 146 Journey Into Fear
501126 147 Funeral Fires
501203 148 This Side Of Nowhere
501210 149 A Passenger To Bali
501217 150 Wild Jack Rhett
501224 138 The Cave
501229 151 The Cave
510105 152 The Man Who Could Work Miracles
510107 140 Conquest
510112 153 Conquest
510114 141 A Bullet For Mr Smith
510119 154 A Buliet For Mr. Smith (Afrs 41)
510211 155 Killer Mine
510216 142 Killer Mine
510218 156 The Follower
510223 143 Follower
510711 157 The Island
510718 158 Macao
510725 159 The Earthmen
510801 160 The Gladiator
510808 161 Up Periscope
510815 162 A Rough Shoot
510822 163 The Silent Horror
510829 164 The Man Who Stole The Bible (R)
521012 165 Gringo
521019 153 Price Of The Head
521026 197 Robert Of Huntington
521102 198 The Running Man
521109 169 The Return
521116 170 The Loupgarou
521207 173 Incident In Quito
521214 174 Four Went Home
521221 175 The Man Who Liked Dickens
530111 178 Conqueror’s Isle
530118 179 A Matter Of Conscience
530125 180 Diary Of A Madman
530201 181 A Study In Wax
530208 182 Jetsam
530215 183 Wild Jack Rhett
530222 184 I Saw Myself Running
530301 185 The Tramp
530308 186 The Island
530315 187 The Man With The Steel Teeth
530322 188 Pressure
530329 189 The Invader
530405 190 A Sleeping Draught (R)
530412 191 Classified Secret
530419 192 El Guitarero
530426 193 The Derelict
530503 194 Lily And The Colonel
530510 195 The Vessel Of Wrath
530517 196 North Of Polaris
530524 184 Blue Hotel, Reenactment
530531 198 A Good Thing
530607 199 The Voyages Of Sinbad
530614 200 Clear For Action
530621 201 The Far Away Island
530705 202 Source Of Irritation
530712 204 The Out Station
530719 205 The Open Boat
530726 206 The Notebook
530802 207 The Red Forest
530809 208 Three Skeleton Key (R)
530816 209 The 13th Truck
530823 210 The Man From Tomorrow
530830 211 The Game
530906 212 Train From Olbiefelde
530913 213 The Abominable Snowman
530920 214 The Log
530927 215 The Untouchable
531004 216 Zero Hour
531011 217 Elementals
540311 218 Bird Of Paradise
540318 219 Violent Night
540325 220 The Second Shot
540401 221 The Return (R)
540408 222 The Scarlet Plague
540415 223 Affair At Mandrake
540506 224 The Adversary
540603 225 An Ordinary Man
540610 226 Benchillina And The Fisherman
540617 227 Blood Waters
540624 228 Judgment Day At Cripple Deer
540701 229 The Dark Wall
540710 230 The Birds (End Cut)
540717 231 Eye Of Evil
540724 232 Flood On The Goodwins
540731 233 Night Of The Guns
540807 234 The Price Of The Head (R)
540814 235 The Coward
540821 236 Two And Two Make Four
540828 237 The King Of Owanatu
540904 238 The Boiling Sea
540911 239 Carnival In Vienna
540918 240 The Target
540925 241 The Heart Of Kali