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The anthology series no one ever saw

February 17, 2013

Yet another example of how Amazon owns my soul.

Yet another example of how Amazon owns my soul.

For my most recent round of anthology watching I just finished up the Boris Karloff hosted series The Veil. It was filmed in 1958 by Hal Roach Studios but never made it to television due to the impending collapse of the studio. The Veil is interesting because in addition to hosting the episodes, Karloff appears in each one as well. I should probably have also put the word finished in quotes because I was only able to watch eight of the ten episodes due to Netflix having an earlier release of the series that only had the first eight shows.

The Veil was a series I skipped for the longest time because like One Step Beyond, which would show up a year later, each story was a drama based upon supposedly real unexplained/supernatural events. Having read a ton of those books in my youth, I really didn’t see how you could avoid a high degree of similarity between the stories. It turns out that with The Veil, these concerns were completely unfounded. The episodes are either ghost or second sight stories but, they are able to go in a enough different directions to keep each story unique unto itself. The episodes are half hour format like The Twilight Zone and like that series the writing is quite solid.

Apart from the story quality, the other huge selling point for the series is Karloff himself. I don’t know what sort of reputation Boris Karloff has an actor outside of horror movie fans but, anyone who would questions his acting credentials really needs to check out this series. You get to see Mr. Karloff in some truly unique rolls for him. Of the eight episodes I saw, I felt his most outstanding performance was in an episode titled Destination Nightmare. In this show he plays the owner of an air freight company who is trying to get his son to settle down into the family business. On top of playing the concerned father role, his character is attempting to hide a dark secret, the effects of which are to shake the brave front he is trying to maintain. It’s an amazing performance that easily made Destination Nightmare my favorite episode of the set. That episode alone will probably get me to purchase the recent Something Weird DVD release that actually has all ten episodes (IMDB lists 11 but, one was an add on episode that wasn’t originally shot for the series). There is a good chance that I’ll be acquiring it soon anyway as I just filed for my income tax refund which should put Amazon about a week away from their regular genre tv series sale to grab their traditional share of my windfall. On sale or not, The Veil is a series that is definitely worth owning or at least checking out. Next up for my anthology tv pleasure will be Tales From the Darkside.

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3 Comments
  1. Valerie permalink

    Thanks for this review. I’m a huge Boris Karloff fan. It takes me back to the 1960’s watching Creature Feature on channel 11 as a child with my father. I will definitely check this series out!!!

  2. I need to find this one Nick!

  3. I love this series. I discovered it a decade ago when I was rapidly acquiring everything Karloff. It’s a forgotten gem. Great review!

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