I remember when the hosts of Mystery! would give us background information about the particular show that was going to air that night. This was years ago, before Mystery! became Masterpiece Mystery. Two of the hosts that stand out in my mind are Vincent Price and Diana Rigg.
Vincent Price is a familiar actor to most people. He appeared in movies from the 1940s (like the classic, Laura, before my time, but that doesn’t stop me loving movies from this era…), 1950s, 1960s’ scary “B” movies (The Pit and the Pendulum, The House of Usher, The Masque of the Red Death, etc.>>> perfect Halloween fare) all the way into the 1990s (as the inventor in the wonderful Edward Scissorhands movie). Through the Mystery! introductions by Price, we were able to get a feeling for who (the author), what (the particular work on which that night’s show was based), where and when (the location and era in which the show took place). WOW!!! He was a fantastic Mystery! host!!!
If you don’t remember his introductions, just take a look at these from YouTube:
(Price starts about 50 seconds in on the clip.)
(Price starts about 1 1/2 minutes in on the clip.)
Diana Rigg took over as the Mystery! host after Vincent Price. Rigg is probably best known for her roll in the original Avengers… she was perfect as Mrs. Peel. She was absolutely fantastic as the hostess of Mystery! Rigg would introduce the particular show that was going to air that night, filling the viewer in about the author, the conditions of the times, etc. (And, although I know this isn’t at all important, her outfits were some of the most beautiful, shimmery gowns I had ever seen!) Rigg was a perfect replacement for Price.
If you aren’t one of the lucky people who can remember back when Diana Rigg was the hostess of Mystery!, check out this YouTube clip:
(Rigg starts after first minute of the clip.)
It was very bittersweet to watch these clips of both Vincent Price and Diana Rigg as they hosted Mystery! But, I will probably end up watching them again… and again…