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The Hidden Thing 

After Dana Edwards' fiancée Laura is killed by a hit-and-run driver, he is visited by John Hurley, who claims to be able to use memory recall techniques that will help him to remember the car's license plate number.


Robert Stevens


James P. Cavanagh (teleplay) (as James Cavanagh), A.J. Russell (story)


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Episode complete credited cast:
Alfred Hitchcock ... Himself - Host
Biff McGuire ... Dana Edwards
Robert H. Harris ... John Hurley
Rachel Ames ... Laura (as Judith Ames)
Theodore Newton ... Lt. Shea
Katherine Warren ... Mrs. Edwards
Richard Collier ... Counterman


When a young man sees his fiancée struck and killed by a hit-and-run driver, he is inconsolable. When questioned by the police, he is unable to remember anything that he saw, even though he wants very much to have the driver caught. A week later, he is visited by a stranger who claims he can help. The visitor tells him that his own son died in the same way, and he offers to help the young man to remember the license plate number that he saw, by using special memory recall methods. It's not clear, though, what the visitor's motive for helping might be. Written by Snow Leopard

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Release Date:

20 May 1956 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Shamley Productions See more »
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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


[first lines]
[opens with Hitchcock taking things out of a trunk]
Alfred Hitchcock: Now, that's not it. I'm trying to locate a lost article. The only difficulty is, I can't remember what I lost.
[pulls out a noose]
Alfred Hitchcock: No, this isn't it. I don't know why I keep it. I don't think it's any good anymore, it's been used.
[pulls out a gun]
Alfred Hitchcock: This is for the man who has everything. It's to enable you to take some of it away from him. By the way, this may take all evening, so while I'm looking here, why don't you look over there.
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User Reviews

deserves a better review
9 October 2010 | by lucad_99See all my reviews

A man finds himself trapped in his mind, unable to break through an important memory which will make it possible for the police to catch the person who killed the woman he loves. A strange man keeps calling and finally comes over to say he can help this poor man remember an important number.

The ending, which will go unspoken here to avoid spoiling it, is the reason why the two previous posters did not like this episode. I for one loved the ending. Sure, there were many other choices and reasons for what the man had done, but since the viewers can easily remember the license plate, through the art of the cameraman, it is a wonderfully ironic ending which is so much less obvious than any other could be and makes you shake your head at bullet headed authority. One has to wonder what will happen next to this poor guy and his Svengali and the cops. The acting is wonderful by two Hitchcock regulars

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