Mystery Playhouse

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Mystery Playhouse is an American radio drama hosted by Peter Lorre which aired on the American Forces Network from July 1944–June 1946.[1]

The series aired during World War II specifically for the purposes of entertaining the troops serving during the war.[2]


Mystery Playhouse was created by the American Forces Network in 1944 for the entertainment of the troops during World War II.

Every week, the series aired rebroadcasts of episodes of many popular radio shows of the time. Some include rebroadcast of The Whistler, Mr. and Mrs. North, Inner Sanctum Mystery, and The Adventures of Nero Wolfe.[2]

Peter Lorre's way of introducing each episode was noted as "...part plot summary, and part philosophical about the human condition".[3]


These are two typical intros that a viewer could find when watching the series;

Host: "Two pairs of footsteps echoed down the alley. He stopped. Waited. Waited for Jack the Ripper to Strike! But this is not London in 1888. No, this is Chicago in 1945! Yet, Jack the Ripper is loose again to knife, to butcher his victims... without a trace!"

Host: "Hello... Creeps. This is Peter Lorre opening the doors to the Mystery Playhouse. If you recall, some 50 years ago, London was terrorized by a one man crime wave. A murderer, who was never captured and never seen. And tonight, we follow the investigations of Sir Guy Holless, who firmly believes that Jack the Ripper is still alive. That it is he that is the fiend, that once again slashes and kills! There is an element of the supernatural in this story, that will amaze you. For it seems that the spirit world has given the black heart of Jack the Ripper, the power of everlasting life!"[2]


  • Fifty Candles - July 25, 1944
  • Nightmare - November 28, 1944
  • The Bottle - December 12, 1944
  • The Letter - December 26, 1944
  • Deadline at Dawn - January 30, 1944
  • The Eleventh Juror - April 3, 1945
  • Lady in the Morgue - May 15, 1945
  • Angel Face - October 5, 1945
  • A Death is Caused Part I - October 12, 1945
  • A Death is Caused Part II - October 12, 1945
  • Leg Man - October 19, 1945
  • Ladies in Retirement - January 18, 1946
  • Witness for the Prosecution - May 31, 1946
  • Female of the Species - June 7, 1946
  • The Adventure of the Fa - June 14, 1946[4]

Listen to[edit]

Audio of Mystery Playhouse


  1. ^ "Matinee Classics "Mystery Playhouse"". Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  2. ^ a b c "Mystery Playhouse w/ Peter Lorre 1944". Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  3. ^ "Mystery Playhouse & Inner Sanctum Mysteries | Old Time Radio". Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  4. ^ "Listen to Mystery Playhouse episodes". Retrieved November 1, 2014.

External links[edit]