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The Talking Head 

A 12 year old boy insists his dead father told him to kill his mother's new fiancée.


Paul Dickson (as Paul Gherzo)


Leslie Slote (script), John Dickson Carr (based on: "The Department of Queer Complaints" by) (as Carter Dickson)


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Episode complete credited cast:
Boris Karloff ... Col. Perceval March
Ewan Roberts ... Inspector Ames
Hugh Williams ... Harold Hartley
Hugh Griffith ... Dr. Ivy
Helen Christie ... Phyllis Barton
Mary Clare ... Mrs. Wrigley
Peter Asher ... Andrew


A 12 year old boy insists his dead father told him to kill his mother's new fiancée.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama


Did You Know?


Last episode to be produced. See more »


When March empties his pipe in the ashtray, the whacking sound continues after March has stopped. See more »

User Reviews

Final episode features Hugh Griffith and Peter Asher
19 September 2011 | by kevinolzakSee all my reviews

Episode 26, "The Talking Head," was also the last, and the series went out on a high note. A clean shaven Hugh Griffith pops up as Dr. Ivy, ecstatic over the recent purchase of a stamp from more than 700 BC; he also tells his friend Colonel March of a patient, Harold Hartley (Hugh Williams), who has survived a murder attempt by a 12 year old boy, Andrew Barton (Peter Asher). Hartley is a close family friend who has always treated Andrew like his own son, and is now engaged to the boy's mother Phyllis (Helen Christie), since the untimely death of her scientist husband John in a plane crash. A frantic call from Phyllis reveals that Hartley has met with another 'accident,' falling down the stairs, so Colonel March journeys to the Barton home, where the housekeeper, Mrs. Wrigley (Mary Clare), eyes him with suspicion. When questioned, Andrew reveals that he tried to kill Hartley because his father asked him to, and, incredibly, the bust of John Barton actually does speak to the lad, preparing him to use poison for the next murder attempt. It's up to Inspector Ames (Ewan Roberts) to ascertain whether Barton is really dead, or else Colonel March may have to arrest a ghost! One of the best scripts of the entire series, a shame since this was the finale (lucky this show has survived, like THE VEIL, from 1958). Billed in the opening credits with Karloff and Roberts, Hugh Williams had previously worked with Karloff's former comrade in terror, Bela Lugosi, playing a Scotland Yard man in 1939's "The Dark Eyes of London." Peter Asher did fewer than a dozen parts as a child actor, while his younger sister Jane continued her acting career well into the 70s (as a child, she was in Hammer's 1955 "The Quatermass Xperiment," while later appearing with Vincent Price in 1964's "The Masque of the Red Death"). By 1964, Peter Asher had turned his attention to pop music, as half of the harmony duo Peter and Gordon (Gordon Waller), whose earliest hits were supplied by Jane's then-boyfriend, Paul McCartney, who lived at the Asher home in London for a time. By decade's end, Asher had turned to producing artists for The Beatles' Apple label in London before relocating to the US (James Taylor and Linda Ronstadt being the most successful).

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Release Date:

17 December 1955 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Fountain Films (I) See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

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