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Only the Dead Remember


Two decades is a small time for Korean war veterans as they come together to plot the murder of a fellow prisoner of war who foiled their escape attempt from a POW camp.



Air Dates

  • First Run - April 15, 1974
  • Repeat - July 5, 1974





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28 Responses to Episode 0074

Not the first whodunit on The CBS Radio Mystery Theater, but the first whodunit where the perpetrator was caught by logic, rather than by a panicked confession. Excellent episode, very gripping. Murder mystery, no supernatural elements.


A Korean war vet stumbles on an old nemesis - a man who disclosed prison camp escape plans. He contacts his old war buddies and makes a suggestion to exact their revenge as vigilantes.


Very hard, very harsh, very good. Drama with surprises and characters that count.

Jim B.

War buddies conspire to kill the fellow former POW who ratted out their escape attempt from a Korean POW camp. They want to avenge the death of one of their own 20 years after the war's end. Bit confusing at times. Not Roberts' best performance.

Dwarde Preston

Korean war veterans gather together years after the war when one of their colleagues who they suspect of having ratted them out on one of their escape attempts from an internment camp resulting in the death of one of their number, turns up unexpectedly.


ONLY THE DEAD REMEMBER. Very hard, very harsh, very good. Drama with surprises and characters that count. Drama-10 This was one of the first CBSRMT’s I had the pleasure to listen to. I have listened to it perhaps 5-6 times over the last couple of yr. The story is more than a mystery, which is a minor point and really only presented as such in the end. The issue of Revenge vs. Justice is really compelling here. It is interesting to consider that if Eddie accomplished his objective he would have murdered an innocent man. A little deeper still and one might say he killed himself, as his misspent obsession resulted in his own death. The central drama and strain is hard on all of them. Even the ultimately disgusting lawyer (an oxymoron?) Tom is revealed to remember…and the weight of his guilt kills him. Is this Justice resolved? The title is interesting because everyone but the dead remember!………a minor point. I hope the esteemed members (lawyers included) enjoyed the show. I have invited a friend to join this site and the discussion panel. His name is Phil (user name unknown). If you should see his post please make him feel welcome. Like the Budweiser commercials we hear on our episodes…..he is the “King of OTR”. He is the most knowledgeable and devoted fan of radio drama I know. But, this quality pales when considering what a great guy he is….generous and pleasant. He has a good brain too. So, if you are here Phil…….Welcome!!!!!!!!!!!!


Howdy folks, First of all, thanks for the warm welcome Dave. I am flattered. I get most of my knowledge of OTR from listening, listening, listening! That and the fact that I spend WAY too much money building up my OTR book library (36 books and counting). Anyway, enough about me.... Since we are supposed to be honest in our evaluations of the episode, I will try to be from the start. When the show first started and it was revealed that this was a "war incident" episode, I thought to myself "oh, man, not another one." I think the "secret among war buddies" stories have been overdone to the point of being just plain boring, especially since Vietnam. That was my general thoughts on the episode for the first two acts. The third act, however, was when it all came together and the mystery unravelled. As much as I was initially turned off by the war buddies theme, by the time the third act got under way, I HAD to hear how it turned out! That, I think, is what makes a good story good. It holds your interest until you reach the point where you just have to know what happens next. I knew something was up with the lawyer (Tom) and that he was more central to the story than just the so-called "voice of reason". I didn't think of it until Dave mentioned it in his review about how Eddie would have murdered an innocent man had he accomplished what he set out to. Obsession can be dangerous and blinding, as seen in the character of Eddie. Overall a pretty good episode. One I will "remember" (and no, I'm not dead) :?


If a show says "Rip me!"...then rip it. No doubt about your having heard more of these stories than I, for it never occured to me as "another war buddy story". ........Also, if possible, try to post a comment before reading other's reviews. This is a goal, not a directive and something we all have strayed form here and there. The forum does ask for it...and I think for good reason. ...Anyhow, good to see you and am looking forward to future reviews from you.


Good show. l loved the quote "toothbrush, razor and revolver." Look forward to the next show!!!


I dunno. The show itself was well put together, but the story for me just never picked up. It left me quite flat. The pace was lulling... enough so that it took me four "listens" to really hear it (I kept falling asleep). Perhaps had I been in that kind of situation, I might be able to understand better, but the whole concept of someone holding a grudge for twenty years (or whatever it was), was a stretch. Most people would have let it go and simply mourned the loss. But, I suppose it is possible, especially under these conditions. What was a let down for me, though, was when the episode got to the part where Liz became involved. She seemed to come out of nowhere and had no real purpose to the tale. When Bill asked "How did you know I was supposed to go with Eddie?" her reply was, "Because, Bill, I have faith in you!" She remained involved only enough to give information that Bill could have found out anyway, making the "waitress can I have a newspaper" scene near to silly. The entire discussion is disjointed... THEN Tom appears, again out of nowhere, but at least he's part of the story. When Liz calls to warn Bill, again, the story goes silly - Bill just ignores her. Hunh? It just didn't make any sense. Why even bother putting Liz in the story at all? The character, in my opinion, didn't offer enough of a misdirection to be a good device. Finally, when Tom slipped up and mentioned the waitress, I just rolled my eyes. I'm sorry, but that was just too easy. I didn't actually see it coming, but there was a lot of emphasis put on Myers... perhaps too much. Enough to make me realize that something else was going on. The ending left me with a slight yawn. In the end, I felt bad for Myers, a character we barely got to know. Bill turned out to be slightly annoying in the end, and Tom became ridiculous. "I wanted us to get caught!" or "I was trying to save our lives!" If a man could hold a secret like that for twenty years, it seems odd that he'd go so puddly in the final hour. There are episodes of Scooby Doo with more intricate plot twists and revelations. Overall, I gave the show a 2.9. Production was very good, acting was good, but the story left me feeling like I just watched a Matlock episode. As always, thanks and very best wishes!

Alfred N.

It is interesting to consider that if Eddie accomplished his objective he would have murdered an innocent man. A little deeper still and one might say he killed himself, as his misspent obsession resulted in his own death.[/quote:b9879ace1c] I love how you worded this UNT, very good! But, I revert to my feeling that the episode, for me, was a stretch on the far side. Any reasonable person would not have spent 20 years dwelling and focusing on revenge, without perhaps at some point thinking, "What if Myers didn't do it?" I mean, it was TWENTY years we're talking about... that's a mighty long time to obsess over something, especially something so serious. Mind you, Eddie may not have been a reasonable person, so there is certainly room for interpretation, right? Anyhow, nice post UNT! And PHIL - welcome! I look forward to hearing more from your perspective as well!!

Jerome Juggs

There are episodes of Scooby Doo with more intricate plot twists and revelations. ........OK, I really enjoyed reading your review, and am glad somebody has humorously slammed an episode with such deleightful style, but the above quote is beyond belief. I have a 4 and a half yr old and have seen more than my share of Scoobie Doo! This tale was Shakespearian' compared to Scooby Doo.


hehehe... okay, maybe the Scooby Doo comment was a bit of a stretch!


What I want to know is how did Eddie survive 20 years looking for this guy? I mean travel is expensive, and piano players don't top the list of best paid professions.


What I want to know is how did Eddie survive 20 years looking for this guy? I mean travel is expensive, and piano players don't top the list of best paid professions. Good point, I usually think of little things like that (my wife hates it), but on this one I didn't. The obsession obviously played a huge role in his life.


I believe it was Bill who said to Eddie, "We always figured you'd hit it big writing songs for Broadway" (something to that effect), so I would safely assume he worked not only as a piano player but also a songwriter. Since many of the characters, especially the waitress, seemed to know "the song" which he played often and which was being played even after he was killed, it may also be safe to assume "the song" was a hit and was well-known, if not even being a "one-hit wonder." The hit song, however, would lead me to also guess that perhaps Eddie had a string of minor hits and maybe even penned a few minor scores for off-Broadway shows. Add any compensation from his musical career to any money he received from his military service. Also, let's suspend disbelief and imagine he even had a trust fund. Or perhaps he had a relative that passed away and left him a handsome estate. Personally, I like to imagine that Eddie pressed the Chinaman Button and in a strange twist of fate, he received a large sum of money from a wealthy cousin in South Africa who suddenly "passed away." But that's just me of course.


The story never gripped me; just a so-so episode. 3 stars. However, by all means, listen to the first 7 minutes of it for the news--Patty Hurst, Vietnam, Kansas City School Board, etc... Great news from 1974.


I personally thought this was a good episode, even though I agree with Alfred about Liz's character. I understand she was there to point things out and help the plot along, but it was sometimes stilted in doing so. Besides the story, I did like hearing the news from 1974 as did Davy Joe - sometimes the commercials get overbearing and way too repetitive (but that's understandable considering we're listening as often as we want, not like when it was broadcasted and recorded). Even though this is the second time I've heard the episode I didn't quite remember that Myers wasn't the guy, even though as others have stated it seemed like something was building up to where he wasn't.


I wouldn't rate it as high as a 4, because compared to the rest of the body of work of The CBSRMT it just isn't that great. I think a 3 would be much more accurate. It's good, but really rather unremarkable. It has a good plot, but somehow it's just a little slow and lacks something - not sure exactly what it is missing.

Darvey Reeger

I would like to comment not on the story, but on the comment by Patrick. He asks if the phrase "disgusting lawyer" is an oxymoron. It is not. An oxymoron combines two antonyms to create a third item. The classic example is "jumbo shrimp." The words "disgusting" and "lawyer" are, in fact, synonyms and thus cannot be an oxymoron. This is, of course, a different type of oxymoron than the one that applies to politicians which is defined as "a person who, every time they breathe, says something stupid."


The best part about this episode is the featured piano song that is discussed and played in the background. (The rest of the story was just kind of meh, so I choose to focus on the music instead of the plot of the episode.) They have used this haunting song in other episodes and it's my favorite of the background pieces. There are some other great songs that are often playing in the background of other episodes, especially when characters are at classy restaurants. There's the "we're in Europe" accordion song that plays when people are in Paris, and the blusey swing song with the saxophone that often plays when people are dancing, the tuneful waltz that plays during other scenes. These themes often add color and flavor to the stories. I wish there was a CD of these songs. Some of them are actually very nice.


*I meant "bluesy" not "blusey" lol!


What really put this episode over the top what is the cast. You have radio veterans Mandel Kramer and Lon Clark as well as Tony Roberts and George Petrie, they kept it moving along at a gripping fast-paced hour.


The news and commercials made this a really good episode to listen to, really takes you back. This episode had really good characters and pacing. My heart goes out to war vets, there was a lot they've gone through in war and in coming home. Thank you all for serving! How are truth and justice best served? Promises made in the heat of war, loyalty and friendships, things that bind hearts. This episode is very much worth a listen.


This is very good episode: 4 out of 5. A complex drama involving a deception that is only revealed after 20 years, and themes of betrayal and the morality of justice. Nice voice acting.


Tough story. Do you carry your hate with you? Learn to live with it? Or let it go? After Nam I, found my answer. 10 out 10 for personal reasons.

John F Ault

Great Episode, 7 out of 10!! We’ll written, great sound effects and very thought out casting. The kind of story that an older older generation can reflect back on and appreciate. It doesn’t get much better than this in the pantheon of CBSRMT !

John Miller

I would like to give this a 10 but I think I'll give it at 9. The reason being that didn't think that the writer should have had Liz telling Bill anything about Tom that she thought was wrong. It was sort of giving things away but somehow I still went slightly down the wrong path. I started thinking that Tom was working with Myers and at no time to occur to me that Myers was innocent. Sometimes I let CBSRMT be sort of the background music as I'm doing things around the apartment and some episodes just don't grab me. With this one I guess because of the sounds and music and acting and the story I found myself listening to everything being said and pausing if I had to leave the room for something, so I wouldn't miss anything. Strangely enough at the end I found myself feeling sorry for Tom. When he went off in the snow looking for Hennessy I couldn't see straight and had to remove my glasses because there were tears in my eyes. It would seem that Tom had PTSD that never left him, not really. I cried for a while after it not because I was the kind of person who had been in war, but because of my feelings for those who did have to be in war. If that was any of y'all thanks for your service.

David Hutchinson

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