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Oct. 28, 2004

“The Sixty-four Agonies;
Three-thousand Itches...”

Paul in the Storm

Last night, the moon turned blood red, the Red Sox won the World Series, and we completed the set for Season Four of the Great Eastern. An auspicious night indeed.

Five episodes round out the season. Episode 26 (Feb. 28, 1998) is a rebroadcast of the Season Three Ice Fishing Episode - a bona fide classic always worth revisiting.

Episode 27 (March 7, 1998) traps Paul at the station with Hollis during a massive winter storm, hilarity ensuing. The big treat here is an extended clip from The Vault (sans Ish) of an episode of Elmer Collins, Ham Operator, a taste of what was to come in the full-episode of Bullseye Mystery Theatre in Season Five.

Episode 28 brings Paul deep into the labyrinth of our ailing health care system. Paul’s Health Care Diary is worth a close listen, not only for the overt comedy — the sleepy intern who keeps calling Paul Mrs. Murphy — but for the numerous asides and barely audible announcments on the intercom. A splendid episode.

The final two episodes are “normal” in that they follow standard GE structure. In Episode 29 (March 21, 1998), the Vault piece on the Drodge Flying Hotel is a hoot, and there’s more stiletto-sharp digs at the anti-seal hunt crowd (“Let’s face it — a human population has never really been sustainable on Newfoundland.” Episode 30 (March 28, 1998) brings us early set-up for the Season Five Funk Islands show, as Erling Biggs prepares to assume his duties on the Funks rotation. This is where Paul shows Erling his writings from his own time manning the remote repeater station: “The Sixty-four Agonies; Three-thousand Itches.” Also from that show, Paul and Morris Jesso go the graveyard in search of the Moth family tree, and find it ... isolated from sanctified ground...

The shows...

Season 4, Episode 26
Season 4, Episode 27
Season 4, Episode 28
Season 4, Episode 29
Season 4, Episode 30