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FROM CHARLIE CHAN: “Deception is bad game for amateurs.”

GREETINGS! Charlie Chan takes on a private case between his government assignments. Can he uncover the secret of the notorious “Torso Killings”?

OUR CHAT ROOM: Our Chat Room can be accessed the same way that we accessed by going to our “Chat Room” link at, or use this direct link:

THIS WEEK’S PRESENTATIONS: “Shadows over Chinatown” (1946; 64 minutes) along with our “extra,” the ELEVENTH episode of “Secret Agent X-9” with Keye Luke! (1945; 20 minutes). Please note! Our feature movie is NOT available via the Internet!

FEATURE SUMMARY: Charlie Chan, Number Two Son, Jimmy, and assistant, Birmingham Brown, are all on a bus heading south to San Francisco to investigate a murder case involving an unidentified armless, legless, headless torso. Chan learns that an elderly woman, Mrs. Conover, is traveling to San Francisco to search for her missing granddaughter, Mary. He tells the concerned woman that he will do what he can to help her find her missing loved one.

FEATURE NOTES: This film's working titles were “Corpus Delecti” and “The Mandarin's Secret.” “Shadows Over Chinatown” featured the return of Sen Yung (Victor Sen Young) as Charlie Chan's Number Two Son, whose previous appearance had been as a member of the U.S. Army Signal Corps on leave in “Castle in the Desert” (1942). Victor Sen Yung's return to the Chan series, now being produced at Monogram Pictures, in a case of art mirroring life in the case of Jimmy Chan, followed his return to civilian life after having served in the Army Air Forces during the war.

TRIVIA: Victor Sen Yung returned to the Charlie Chan series, appearing as Charlie Chan’s Number Two Son, Jimmy, in “Shadows Over Chinatown.” He also appeared as Jimmy in “Dangerous Money” and “The Trap.” With the beginning of the Roland Winters era of the Chan series, Victor Sen Yung appeared as Number Two Son…TOMMY.

TERM OF THE WEEK: canary - (Slang; as used) Someone acting as an informer or decoy for the police.

Birmingham Brown: "...we was following a canary..."

THIS WEEK’S IMAGE: Birmingham Brown finds himself alone in the city morgue.

For a viewing of more than 500 images from ALL films in the Charlie Chan series, please visit our Gallery:

LOCATION: Our Charlie Chan Family Chat Room, which is accessed at

IF YOU LACK A COPY OF OUR FILM: Often our features can be found online. Sadly, OUR FEATURE IS NOT AVAILABLE ONLINE!

CAST (as credited):

Sidney Toler: Charlie Chan
Mantan Moreland: Birmingham Brown
Victor Sen Young: Jimmy Chan
Tanis Chandler: Mary Conover (alias Mary McCoy)
John Gallaudet: Jeff Hay (alias for Craig Winfield)
Paul Bryar: Mike Rogan
Bruce Kellogg: [Corporal] Jack Tilford (alias Joe Thomas; Corporal Joe Thompson)
Alan Bridge: Captain Allen
Mary Gordon: Mrs. Conover
Dorothy Granger: Joan Mercer
Jack Norton: Cosgrove
George Eldredge: Lannigan
Tyra Vaughn: Miss Chalmers
Lyle Latell: Police Clerk
Myra McKinney: Kate Johnson
Harry Depp: Dr. Denby
Gladys Blake: Myrtle

UNCREDITED CAST (alphabetical):

Kit Carson: Hotel Clerk
George Chan
Jimmy Dugan: Police Driver
Louise Franklin: Maid
Doris Fulton: Angie
Jack Hamilton: Pronnet
Charlie Jordan: Jenkins
James B. Leong: Chinese Curio Shop Owner
Frank Mayo: Police Lieutenant
Jack Mower: Hobart
Bob Reeves: Man Leaving Bus Terminal
Brick Sullivan: Police Officer

FOR DETAILED INFORMATION on this week’s feature, please visit:

OUR MONTHLY POLL: Please take a moment to cast your vote in our September 2020 POLL, found as you scroll down our Entrance Page (!


QUESTION: Which Charlie Chan film offers the best "shipboard" murder(s)?

“Charlie Chan Carries On” (as seen through the Spanish language version, “Eran Trece”) 0%

“Charlie Chan at the Race Track” 11%

“Charlie Chan at the Olympics” 6%

“Charlie Chan in Honolulu” 6%

“Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise” 38%

“Dead Men Tell” 38%

“Dangerous Money” 6%

Please cast your vote in our SEPTEMBER Poll!!

DO YOU HAVE A POLL QUESTION? Please feel free to suggest a Monthly Poll question! Send your ideas to:

OUR CCF CHAT ARCHIVE: Please take a look at our growing collection of CCF Chat Texts from previous years and this year:

NEXT WEEK: Please join us on Monday, September 21 for “Dangerous Money”!

AND… DON’T MISS THIS GREAT CHARLIE CHAN BLOG!: Continuing strongly in 2020, great blog site, The Postman on Holiday, offered by our own Charlie Chan and Earl Derr Biggers expert, Lou Armagno which is: "A place to explore all things surrounding Detective Charlie Chan, his creator Earl Derr Biggers, and their connection with Hawaii, Cleveland, and mystery fiction." Updated each month.

SO, REMEMBER, PLEASE JOIN US for this week’s feature: “Shadows Over Chinatown.”


Rush Glick

Re: OUR CCF MONDAY EVENING CHAT AND FILM VIEWING FOR September 14: “Shadows Over Chinatown”

I've always wondered if Cleveland's famous "Torso Murders" were the inspiration (if one may call it that) for Shadows Over Chinatown?

From 1935 to 1938, twelve dismembered victims (similar to the film) were found and only 2 were ever identified. The cases were made all the more famous as Elliot Ness, then Safety Director of CLE, never solved the case before heading off to Chi-Town!

I can't remember, but in the Chan film doesn't he reference a previous case somewhere? Here's a link if you'd like to read about these gruesome crimes:

Re: OUR CCF MONDAY EVENING CHAT AND FILM VIEWING FOR September 14: “Shadows Over Chinatown”

Dear Lou,

Thank you for the "gruesome information"! But, then, such is usually the case with murder!

In last night's movie, there was a brief mention of "Trunk Murders." I looked them up tha one was associated, I believe, with Louisiana in the '20s, and the other came to light in Phoenix, Arizona in 1932. I suppose that these and what you mentioned as well as other weird killings probably inspired the "Torso Murders" as seen in "Shadows Over Chinatown."

Takee care...TYSM...


Re: OUR CCF MONDAY EVENING CHAT AND FILM VIEWING FOR September 14: “Shadows Over Chinatown”

Dear Rush, so many "dicy" murders you must be correct! Probably a, I mean recapitulation of many a gory crime that made the headlines. However, I claim close proximity rights (date wise) over those other two affairs :trophy:

Re: OUR CCF MONDAY EVENING CHAT AND FILM VIEWING FOR September 14: “Shadows Over Chinatown”


Did you know that it is NOT a Charlie Chan movie?

That's a surprise, isn't it?

In contrast to the movie before and after.
Check the gallery for Alibi, Chinatown and Money.

Look at the publicity stills to prove it.

See? Chinatown is a Charley Chan movie :joy:
Huh? Really?


Re: OUR CCF MONDAY EVENING CHAT AND FILM VIEWING FOR September 14: “Shadows Over Chinatown”

Michael H., you had me there for awhile! I wonder if the folks at Monogram ever caught that mistake? Or maybe "Charley" Chan was Charlie's younger brother...yuk, yuk! Good catch!

Re: OUR CCF MONDAY EVENING CHAT AND FILM VIEWING FOR September 14: “Shadows Over Chinatown”

Dear Michael,

Oh, that Monogram publicity department!