"Night of the Execution" was broadcast on December 29, 1957, during the third season of Alfred Hitchcock Presents. It was an adaptation of Henry Slesar's short story, "The Day of the Execution," which had been published earlier that year in the June 1957 issue of Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine.
As the story begins, young prosecuting attorney Warren Selvey can barely contain his glee at receiving his first murder conviction. He races home to his wife, Doreen, deflecting any expressions of sympathy for the convicted man, Murray Rodman. On the day that the prisoner is to be executed, Selvey is approached by a "stooped, gray-haired man with [a] grease-spotted hat." The man, Phil Arlington, tells Selvey that he killed Rodman's wife and was out of town during the trial. On his return, he became consumed with guilt that another man had been sentenced to die unjustly.
|Russell Collins as Ed Barnes|
|Georgann Johnson as Doreen Selvey|
As the heavy, metal clock on an end table ticks closer to midnight, Barnes bursts into Selvey's apartment. Warren is a wreck and has obviously been drinking. Barnes rushes to the telephone and Selvey pushes him away. Barnes grabs the clock to hit Selvey but Selvey pulls it away from him and hits Barnes with it. Just then, Doreen and her father enter. Sidney examines Barnes and announces that the old man is dead. Surprisingly, Sidney knows "Old Barnes," remarking that "when I was on the bench he was always confessing to murder. He'd study the evidence and then claim he did it." Doreen asks Warren why he did it and the clock strikes twelve, marking the time of Rodman's execution and tolling a death knell for Doreen's ambition and Warren's life and career. Their triumph is hollow after all.
|Vinton Hayworth as Sidney|
|Pat Hingle as Warren Selvey|
Georgann Johnson (1926- ) played Doreen. She started on television in 1952 and can be seen in three episodes of Alfred Hitchcock Presents. Like Hingle, she appeared in episodic television a great deal until 2007 and had a recurring role on Mr. Peepers (1952-1953).
|Frank Marlowe as the judge|
Finally, Frank Marlowe (1904-1964) has a small role as the judge. He was in movies from 1931-1961, appeared twice on Alfred Hitchcock Presents, and had small parts in Hitchcock's Saboteur (1942), Notorious (1946), and North By Northwest (1959), as well as being seen in The Dark Corner (1946--co-written by Bernard C. Schoenfeld) and The Screaming Mimi (1958), adapted from the Fredric Brown novel.