Houdini Grim Game Cards throughout the years – Sketch Cards

Today we continue the series on Houdini Grim Game Cards throughout the years.  Last time, we looked at the Modern Trading Card category.  This time we are taking a look at the Sketch Card category.

Let’s start by looking at the one of one Weird Tales Sketch Cards:

Next, let’s look at the one of one Sketch Card I own from Houdini’s The First World Super Hero Series:

  • 2012 Worlds First Super Hero Sketch Card (Dan Gorman)

houdini sketch cards gorman 298-47

The sketch is from the following famous 298-47 still:

298-47 AMPAS Cropped

Cropped Image courtesy of Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences


1 day to go until premier of The Grim Game

At the Press Club, Houdini tells Dr. Tyson that he must order his uncle to the mountains for a month and Ethel as his nurse will accompany him.  His departure must be at night – secretly.  Ethel smiles with pleasure at the prospect without in the least knowing what it is all about.  Dick Raver, Clifton Allison, and Dr. Harvey Tyson are looking with inquiring expressions.  They fail to see the big scheme and are waiting for him to proceed.

Houdini tells them that he will create the impression that his uncle was murdered.  He will plant clues that will prove his guilt and then get arrested.  He will then reveal the hoax and prove the fallacy of conviction by circumstantial evidence.  The resultant publicity will be a scoop for his newspaper.

MHL PRINTS 008 298-9 snippetSnippet of Still 298-9 from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences

5 days to go until premier of The Grim Game – Happy Birthday!

With the help of Grimwood and his men, Dr. Harvey Tyson throws Houdini a surprise birthday party.

The men place Houdini near the center of a bear trap.  They hold him down while attending one rope after another to his hands and feet, then they rise and let the body shoot upward.

MHL PRINTS 007 298-65 snippet

Snippet of Still 298-65 from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences


One Week and Counting – 7 days to go until premier of The Grim Game

We are one week away from the premier of The Grim Game at the 2015 TCM Film Classic. In honor of this special occasion, I plan to tease you with a different Grim Game production still each day leading up to the event.

298 was the Paramount-Artcraft production number of The Grim Game.  And production stills ranged from number 1 to 92 (e.g., 298-1 to 298-92). I was fortunate enough to be allowed access to see most of these Grim Game production stills at the Margaret Herrick Library, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

When the Grim Game stills were published, for example in Newspapers, they would use the L302 ID number instead of 298, but the still number (e.g., 1 to xx) would remain the same in most cases.   Still number 55 is an exception.

Below is still 298-55 from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences:


And below is an 8×10 still of L302-55 from my personal collection:

L302-55 with Movie Title 001

This is the only photo that I have seen of L302-55 that has the movie title in the image.

Please don’t confuse L302-60 with L302-55.

Random Treasures Inaugural Auction was a Grim Game

Last Week, Random Treasures International had their inaugural auction that had approximately 25 Houdini items up for bid. Twelve of the items got passed on without a bid, including a Buried Alive Poster for $13,000. The starting bids were awfully high on most items IMHO.  The items that did sell were the photos and movie related items and they went between $200 and $410 w/o auction fees, despite many of them being cropped on the web-page.  I bid on one item and won, or at least I thought I did, but when I checked the site later, there was no confirmation.  I sent an email via LiveAuctioneers to Random Treasures International requesting status, but never heard anything one way or another. I guess it wasn’t meant to be.  That said, there were three Grim Game stills for sale, L302-54 (Lot 80), L302-14 (Lot 82) and L302-42 (Lot 84) which I would like to comment on:


To read about the events that led up to Houdini going over the wall in the movie, see the following post: Over the Edge With Death Below and Imprisonment Above!


L302-54To read about why Houdini is being visited at the jail cell in the movie, see the following post: THE GRIM GAME Cinema Trade Promotion (Stills 298-54 and 298-63)



And keep reading this blog to find out what the scene in still L302-42 is all about:

As Houdini creeps toward the door of the Lodge, the unknown assailant seizes a bolo from the wall and hides under the cot.  Houdini cautiously, closes the door behind him and strikes a match.  He throws the burning match on the floor, then turns and starts towards Ethel’s unconscious form.  He steps in his tracks as the burning match which he dropped near the cot is put out by a hand from under the cot.  Houdini is standing very close to the cot when he sees this.

We see Houdini’s boots standing near the cot. The bolo swings viciously toward them and they crumble.

We then see that Houdini, has swung himself to the rafter, leaving the boots on the floor.  He swings his legs over the rafter, reaches down and lifts the cot from over his man.  In the light we recognize Allison.

Houdini drops from the rafter and a terrific fight ensues between Allison armed with the bolo and Houdini.  [Paraphrased from Paramount Files at Margaret Herrick Library]