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When in Rome


After becoming the ambassador of a small, European country at his wife's urging, wealth man discovers that all is not well in his new city.



Air Dates

  • First Run - June 12, 1981
  • Repeat - September 17, 1981





61     12

5 Responses to Episode 1210

Good character development. Fred Gwynn as the embassador, brings good old American resourcefulness to solve the challenges on European soil. There are really two story lines, though that of his wife is mostly implied, but gives depth and legitimacy to the story and plot. CHaracters all very well played. Not a dark episode, I appreciated that. 5 star!


I rate this episode ★★★★☆ for GOOD. This story, written by Sam Dann, was intriguing. Mostly because it was about romance within royalty and government. Our main character, the U.S. Ambassador of Lavaria, was smart, keen, and diligent. And very likable because he was productive to prevent a deadly assassination. The only downside that I’ve found in this mystery story, was that there wasn’t enough romance presented. We know that there’s a secret relationship, but no scene that shows the Queen cheating on her King Husband with the Prime Minister of Lavaria. We’ve been informed, but no dialogue of the romantic chemistry included. A suitable ending, though. The old saying “When In Rome” is a good title, but another way to title this would be “Strangers Of The Court” or “A Dark Shadow In Europe.” In our Host’s Prologue, E.G. Marshall starts with the old saying, “When in Rome, live like a Roman” (meaning, adapting ourselves to the customs of the people who are in a certain place or situation and behave like they do). In ACT-1, meet our main character living in the 19th Century. In ACT-2, a historical note that Central Europe had picture-book-kingdoms in the 19th Century like fairy tales. More importantly, happy endings are not the rule in Life. After the next conflict in our story, our Hosts points out that love oppose a triangle. In ACT-3, we look at Kings & Queens at a different light when it comes to marriage. After the story’s over, E.G. Marshall states that right or wrong, those who rock boats usually don’t win popularity contests. In his Epilogue, finish it off with a William Shakespeare quote about the life of kings and how they must live up to their position. His narrations were informative and instructive. Sound effects of map pages, documents, doors, customers and music at the tavern, bell tolls, clanging noise, and photographs were OK. But the music they used was astonishing! Truly, a wonderful mix of tunes that brought the themes of dreaminess, royalty, conflict, festivity, and mystery. Whoever organized the music in this when it aired, deserves a round of applause. And a round of applause to this cast: Fred Gwynne (as Ambassador Henry Thomas Cahill), Joan Shay (as Livy Cahill and the Queen), Ray Owens (as Congressman Morton B. Stifle and Count Rosporo), and Ian Martin (as Mr. Daley and King Zulan). SPECIAL NOTE: Himan Brown plays the Tavern Bartender. Both Ray Owens and Ian Martin were great in their parts. So was Joan Shay when she played a talkative wife and a royal vixen. As for Fred Gwynne, another terrific performance that was perfect for him! Fans of Fred Gwynne would get a kick out of this episode. Until next time…pleasant dreams. =0)


How far ahead were episodes announced or scheduled? I remember hearing local announcers tell us on the day of the show what was airing later, but I wonder now how far ahead the schedule was released. Anyone know? Thanks!


I remember very, very clearly they would be announced in the newspaper the night before. It was in the little entertainment section just below the television listings. KRLA had the Beatles hour, KMET had Dr Demento and Harrison's Mike, and KNX1070am had mystery theater with the title of the episode for that night and the next night. You know, it is funny what makes you remember things. My buddy told me that tomorrow night's episode was going to be good. He said, "It is the Killer Insects." My mother and I got all prepared to listen to it. He misread it. It was the Killer instinct. Oh, he felt like a fool when I reamed him out the next day at school! hehehehe


My teachers wondered wth I was doing awake at eleven o'clock at night, when I mentioned the show. 😉 I had an agreement with my folks: If I was in bed with the lights out, I could have the radio on. If it wasn't a school night, we were often listening together. :-)


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