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Quiet, Please

Quiet Please was an old-time radio horror program created by Wyllis Cooper, also known for creating Lights Out. Ernest Chappell was the show's "featured actor." Quiet Please was first broadcast on June 8, 1947, and its last episode ran on June 25, 1949. A total of 106 shows were broadcast, with only a very few of them repeats.

Cooper's scripts displayed a great deal of thematic range; though the general thrust of the stories were horror and suspense, Cooper often included humor (some of it quite self-deprecating), romance, and moving family drama. There was very little use of sound effects, and most episodes featured only two or three actors. Each episode began effectively with Cooper intoning the show's title twice, with a long pause inbetween, inspiring collectors and reviewers to remark upon Cooper's use of the dramatic power of silence. The show's theme music, a funereal piano dirge, was derived from Cesar Franck's 1899 composition Symphony in D Minor.

For many years, the majority of the show's episodes were feared lost, with only twelve episodes in general circulation among collectors until the late 1980s. At this time over 80 more episodes were discovered, comprising the majority of the series' run. Many of the recordings have very poor sound quality, but are treasured by collectors all the same for their rarity.

Probably the most highly regarded episode of Quiet Please is "The Thing on the Fourble Board" (8/9/48), about an oil patch roughneck who encounters a mysterious subterranean being hiding on the derrick's catwalk. The story's twist ending has led some fans to label the episode one of the best OTR horror programs ever broadcast.

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