This week's Saturday Night Special is a TV show from 1953-54 called "Topper," that I loved as a kid. The idea of benevolent ghosts always appealed to me. I really wanted to tell you about the first episode, but it wasn't on one of these three DVD's I found in a dumpster. I'm not kidding!
"Topper" was a TV series based on the "Topper" characters written about by Thorne Smith in his novel "Topper." I liked the original 1936 movie so much, I had to read the book, and I was not disappointed.
So, instead of episode 01, we've got episode 014 called "Second Honeymoon," and here's the beautiful Black Swan Inn where Mr. and Mrs. Topper spent their first honeymoon!
Here are Mr. and Mrs. Topper on that fateful night 25 years earlier.
Topper's wife Henrietta is showing her friend Thelma Gibney the pictures from her and Cosmo's honeymoon. Thelma was played by Mary (Mighty Joe Young, To Hell And Back) Field. The Kerby ghosts are just hanging out, and observing.
Henrietta and Cosmo Topper, what a great couple. Henrietta was played by Lee (The Maltese Falcon, Vertigo) Patrick, and Cosmo was played by Dungeon Super Hero Leo G. Carroll. As a kid, it was tough to go from watching Leo as Cosmo Topper to having his face melted in "Tarantuala."
Anne (Tess Trueheart) Jeffreys was the delightful Marion Kerby, and Robert (Voyage To The Bottom Of The Sea) Sterling had the role of George Kerby. The ever-present Saint Bernard ghost Neil was played by Buck. Robert Sterling was also in "The Twilight Episode" titled "Printer's Devil."
Guy (The Haunted Palace) Wilkerson plays Luke, the odd character working the counter at the The Black Swan.
Things have changed in the 25 years since the last time the Toppers were here. Guy was 6'2" and towers over Cosmo after he stands up. Guy (Panhandle Perkins) Wilkerson was also in "The Twilight Zone" episode "Nick Of Time."
Juney (The Magnetic Monster) Ellis is Miss Loomis, the creepy and current proprietor of The Black Swan. Juney has that rare distinction of being in two episodes of "The Twilight Zone," "What You Need," and "The Midnight Sun!"
There's a whole lot of noise keeping Cosmo and Henrietta from getting any sleep, but Miss Loomis assures Cosmo that everything is all right, and even though they'd like to leave, there's no trains running!
Despite Cosmo telling George and Marion to leave him alone for this special trip, they still show up when they sense something is wrong.
Well here's what all the racket was about!
It's not ghosts or goblins, it's just Luke down in the basement enjoying his record collection!