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The Hand that Refused to Die


A gifted pianist is devastated by the loss of his hand as a result of an automobile accident. He is infuriated when he finds out that the amputation was unnecessary.



Air Dates

  • First Run - September 11, 1974
  • Repeat - November 1, 1974
  • Repeat - May 16, 1980





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17 Responses to Episode 0146

A concert pianist loses a hand after a car accident. He is angry and bitter when he finds out it might not have been necessary. The hand is pretty ticked too.

Jake Rattle

"The Hand That Refused to Die" had moments of greatness, but for the most part, it had so many side-stories that it was difficult to maintain interest. Murders were committted that were never solved conclussively. Still, it was entertaining. 3 stars.

Davy Joe

A concert pianist loses his right hand in a car accident. He is distraught and cannot bear to look at his piano again. His wife and his teacher/mentor try to cheer him up but it is a difficult task. His career seems to be over, the insurance company is balking at the large payout when the accident seemed to be his fault, and he is losing interest in living. His mentor tries to get him to see hope: that he can still teach. She even has a pupil in mind, they go to see him in performance and see a remarkable sight: the student’s right arm is drawn away from the piano and he plays the entire piece with only his left hand. The disfigured pianist is convinced that it was his own right hand that took over. Twin Episode: Death by Whose Hands March 26, 1974


[bring bring bring] "Hello, Anton? This is the police calling. Your amputated right hand just strangled your surgeon. Goodbye"

Ridiculous Police Call

I agree, the associated press calls him before the FBI does to tie his fingerprints to a murder… HUH? And what happened with that, and why was it inserted at the beginning? Decent story though 3 out of 5.


I give props to Russell Horton for playing 2 characters, a doctor & a concert pianist. However, the voice of Carol Teitel (as Lottie Stern) sounded cliché for a character that believes in the supernatural, like an old gypsy. CBSRMT should've hired Jada Rowland to play that part (because her voice was genuine & serene from Ep.0790-A MESSAGE FROM SPACE) The suspense was building up at the end of ACT 1 when Anton Walburg (played by Mandel Kramer) heard that his severed right hand had strangled a person. Then it got better in ACT 2 when the hand started playing playing at the concert. At the 33-minute 46-second mark, you can hear computer beeps in the background. Unfortunately in ACT 3, the story slumped at the 42-minute mark when Anton Walburg verbally abuses his music student on how to play. I was expecting the mysterious hand to go on a killing spree, strangling anyone that would stand in Anton Walburg's way of his music career. But it ends on a happy note for our main character.


Yes, I was expecting some disembodied killing hand action, like in "Evil Dead 2"

Cindy Caldwell

I agree with Buddy. The show hadn't even been on the air for a year yet, and they already repeated an episode. I am pleased that Anton learned to aceept his new role in life as a one-handed musician...but what about that murder? It was sort of forgotten about. Crime drama/morality play, reanimation.


Meh, they should have ran it as a murder mystery. "The hand that killed and wouldn't die." So I guess the FBI just dropped the case?? No follow-up. A bit lame and predictable.


Hmm, so all someone has to do to get away with murder is have their hand amputated and have it go on the killing spree for them and they can get away with it ("really officer, I haven't seen it in ages"). I think Mr. Lowthar was trying to do too much in this episode and could've cleaned it up better. Then again, he may have been under a time crunch to get it done.


I remember hearing this when I was at home, in Omaha, NE......age 14. It was bedtime and normally I would put a small radio underneath my pillow. The bed was facing east. The house is located on the 3500 block of Evans Street. The station was KLNG 1590.


Certain an auto accident has finished his career, celebrated concert pianist Anton Walburg spurns all suggestions that what he thinks impossible is possible — playing with one hand. But after several seemingly supernatural occurrences, Anton is enticed to attend the concert of a younger virtuoso whose right arm, in the middle of the performance, suddenly becomes paralyzed. Nonetheless, he continues playing all the notes with his left hand.


I find myself disliking most of the characters played by Carol Teitel. I think this actress is only good at playing villains. As Lottie Stern (his teacher/mentor) she is irritating as heck. I dislike her harsh voice and phony, exaggerated, so-called European accent. Also, why was the murder just forgotten? (I'll mention this because others already gave this part of the plot away.) The spirit of his hand commits murder, and no one condemns him for it, and Lottie (who is supposed to be such a wise, compassionate lady), doesn't even scold him about it,even though she realizes what happened. He never gets punished for it, and no one seems to care. What kind of message is this story trying to send?


Of course, I'm not saying the police would have ever believed him if he turned himself in, but you'd think "God" would punish him in the story. Yet he faces no consequences at all.


Also, Anton was just horrible and abusive when he was trying to "teach" his piano student. The student should have walked out and slammed the door. Also, the recording they used sounded okay, so it didn't make sense that Anton would say the student was playing horrible. Then when Anton sits down and plays the piece, it sounds no different than what the student played, (because it was the same recording, lol!)


Not one of my favorites. The storyline was weak and Anton was so petulant (perhaps that is the way of musicians of his ilk?) throughout and abusive to the student to boot. The death of his surgeon and killed by his amputated right hand was a sour note because it went no where as in, "they probably won't pursue it". Then the ending of hey, i can be a complete jerk and still be even more famous one-handed! The point of the story being???


What?!? God guided this man to redemption... and didn't care that he (or his handspirt anyway) killed the poor surgeon who saved his life by amputating his beyond-saving hand after he fell asleep driving? The woman with the dreadfully bad accent talking about "the spirt of the hand" and say god like it ends with a T was bad. The bratty lead guy who was annoying the whole time, the stupid "it was god" ending (after the writers forgot that the spooky handspirit WAS A MURDERER), and the total lack of suspense all around make this one a loser. My eyes hurt from rolling so hard with every "the spirt of the hand" and "trust god." The surgeon should have let the brat die before this DOA story even started. Shortest episode yet!


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