In Escape's "The Loup Garou" a newcomer to a Louisiana bayou village is accused of being a werewolf.
A young farmer, Mr. Zebb, moves into a bayou community where he is not readily accepted by the locals. He gets involved with a young woman named Marie, and then his problems begin. One of the locals, Gus, doesn't like the attention that Mr. Zebb gets from Marie, so he spreads the word that Mr. Zebb is a "loup garou," responsible for the death of a baby and for missing animals. Gus manages to whip the superstitious villagers into such a frenzy for "swamp justice" that they storm off to get Mr. Zebb. Meanwhile, with the help of Marie and the preacher, Mr. Zebb escapes into the swamp. The villagers follow them, but are scared away by what they believe are swamp spirits. They leave, and Gus then gets into a knife fight with Mr. Zebb. Gus, the true bad spirit behind it all, is killed.
This episode is difficult to enjoy because the of the grunting and drawling Louisiana French accents that drag out the story. The acting, on the whole, is too loud and over the top, except for William Conrad, who plays the young farmer accused of being a monster.
"The Loup Garou" was written by William Froug and produced/directed by Norman MacDonnell. William Conrad starred. Also appearing were John Dehner, Georgia Ellis, Forrest Lewis, Tom Tully, Lou Krugman, Jack Kruschen, and Don Diamond. This episode aired November 16, 1952.
"The Loup Garou" may not be one of Escape's best episodes, but William Froug went on to bigger and better things. For a more interesting story, read his book How I Escaped from Gilligan's Island: And Other Misadventures of a Hollywood Writer-Producer (Ray and Pat Browne Book) In it, he talks about his days at CBS Radio and how he made the transition to television. He talks about E. Jack Neuman, Norman MacDonnell, Larry Thor, and other names that we know from CBS Radio. He also talks about his days producing numerous television shows, including The Twilight Zone, Gilligan's Island, and Bewitched. There are also some very interesting passages about working with Ida Lupino.
It is clear from the book that Froug liked radio and disliked television. In his later career, he was rescued from producing tv shows by (former Escape announcer) Larry Thor, who offered him a position teaching screenwriting at UCLA.
(There is a brief passage in the book where William Froug reminisces about the time he and Rod Serling exchanged stories about the worst radio scripts they had ever written. One wonders if "The Loup Garou" entered that conversation.)