Thursday, October 15, 2009

Mystery! Merchandise

There are a number of Edward Gorey collectibles associated with the PBS program Mystery!. Mr. Gorey created many different posters which advertise programs appearing in upcoming seasons, and these are frequently available through on-line auctions. I had one very large bus stop/subway poster for The Woman in White which I sold a few years ago because it was too large to display (see photo to the right).

I have a few Mystery! related items in my collection. The first is a bookmark that was produced for the series. The front of the card has a wonderful image of a skeleton holding a knife and reading a book. The reverse lists the titles and dates of shows appearing on the program.

Another really nice item is the Mystery! Sarcophagus Box. This small black box was sold through the Signals Catalog. The lid of the box has a low relief design by Mr. Gorey. In typical Gorey style, the image has an Egyptian flavor yet still looks like something out of a 1920's silent movie.

The next piece is a boxed pewter letter knife which might not have been specifically made for Mystery!, but I regard as Mystery! merchandise. I purchased this piece through the Gotham Book Mart. This letter opener is adorned with a female character in low relief on the handle. I always felt that this piece was poorly designed and executed - the casting is rough and not finely detailed. The letter knife was inexpensively produced and has that feel when you pick it up. I don't believe this piece of Gorey ephemera was widely distributed.

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