Vanishing Point (Season 1)
Vanishing Point was a follow-up series to Nightfall, which was broadcast on CBC radio in Canada beginning in the early 1980's.
This page details the episodes in the first season, with the second season, third season and onwards available on separate pages. The episodes in the third season and onwards had an adjusted format which broke from the usual single-episode story format of the first two seasons.
Please note that episodes of the Vanishing Point on other websites are often named incorrectly, while some appear to be missing. Work is underway to identify the correct episodes so that the synopsis can be written. Therefore, episodes marked as unavailable on this page may change in the future.
Vanishing Point (Season 2)
The Testing of Stanley Teagarden
A woman, Rose, is travelling with a friend on an airplane to Jamaica. She makes friends with a psychometrician, Stanley Teagarden, who is obsessed with personality tests as part of his work for an insurance company. He is also severely paranoid claiming that seemingly unrelated events can cause particular outcomes, such as swimming too far out to sea can get a woman pregnant. At the resort, the three spend their time together where Rose is introduced to the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory test as he describes his time spent testing himself. As Rose asks more questions about the tests, the answer she gets become more strange and terrifying.
Bartender Roger notices that a regular customer hasn't be seen in a while. He begins to be plagued by more disappearances including his car, which he reports missing to the police. At his mother's, he discovers two former school friends are getting married but can't remember aspects of them. On his way to work, he finds a building has disappeared causing him to lost while walking resulting in him being late. His friend and colleague, Linda, suggests that he is shedding memories he no longer needs, and his mother finds that his apartment is also bare. A record store also goes missing, and eventually Linda and her apartment also vanish. As his memory continues to fade, Roger forgets everything about his life and the world.
Michael is an autistic child, and his marine-biologist parent Jeff struggles to connect with him. A position has opened up for Michael to go into a special school, though he argues with his daughter Miriam about whether it is the best thing for him. However, taking him to the pool which houses dolphins currently being used in a research project leads them to discover that Michael can interpret the dolphin communication and talk to the animals. Six months later, and further experiments, lead to incredible developments in Michael's ability to talk to other people though his loss of solitude leads to losing the ability to talk to the dolphins.
Death and the Compass
Lönnrot is a famous detective who sets about investigating the murder of a rabbi in his hotel room. He tries to solve a cryptic message left on the rabbi's typewriter. Several other murders occur with similar clues left at the scene. The detective soon works out that his criminal nemesis Red Scharlach is involved, and that a particular part of the city has yet to be targeted. Believing that the serial killer is murdering people in specific locations which when placed on a map create an equilateral triangle, he heads out to the site of the believed next murder. Lönnrot plans to surprise the murderer, however it is he who ends up surprised.
Cage of Light
In 2116, a mission to find intelligent life in the universe goes awry when just one of the explorers returns to Earth. He finds himself with no memory of the journey or events, and is put on trial to determine whether he has committed the biggest sin of exploration service; killing aliens. Explorers are expected to kill themselves to avoid killing other lifeforms, and he cannot explain why his suicide packet was used without killing him, and where the lifeforms he was to establish contact with have disappeared to. To discover what happened, the court has the jury overseeing his case take a journey into his subconscious.
Charlie sets about visiting a playground before bringing his son Jimmy to play at, though encounters a strange reaction while watching the children who are playing. Back home, his wife Susan questions whether it was an anxiety attack due to his bad childhood as he describes that the playground gave him bad feelings. When his wife leaves Jimmy at the playground, Charlie becomes angry when he believes the other children are bullying his son during a game of "tag". On a late night walk, Charlie encounters the son of a former friend who offers him help with the bullying that only Charlie can see. Returning to the playground with Jimmy, Charlie sets about confronting his own demons.
The Baliff and the Women
Adrian Toope, a civil servant in the Department of Social Welfare arrives home for the evening, where he is greeted by his wife and young child. However, he is soon transported to a "dream court" where the outcome of his work is put on trial. The judge hears from a number of women who have been affected by Toope's decision while carrying out his duties. Toope defends himself by quoting rules and regulations, but shows little remorse for the impact he has had. Things get worse for Adrian however when his wife Mary-Anne appears after being called by the women - to testify against him.
At an evening party, couple Laura and Peter are always being told they are the perfect couple, as their friends encounter various relationship issues around them. After spending an enjoyable evening with their upwardly mobile group of friends, they head home in their car. Discussing the events of the night, the pair begin to suffer from rising tensions with regards to their past including an abortion the pair have never properly discussed. Arriving home, they settle down and head up to bed, where Peter begins to act oddly, before standing up and accusing her of thinking of something else. The pair begin an argument, in which Laura reveals she hates having sex with Peter, as Laura begins to recall memories from her past.
The Golden Triangle
At a strip club, two professors, Russ and Stav spot a stripper on stage, and both remark that she looks like Maxine - the ex-wife of one of Stav - who he split from five years prior. Speaking some days later, Stav discovers that the woman is actually Maxine, and is also working as a hooker. Feeling sad and angry about the outcome, he pontificates on "buying her" for a night to see if she has changed, but instead suggests Russ find out for him. Russ eventually goes through with it, and discovers from Maxine that their divorce was caused by Russ' belief that Stav and her had an affair. The following day, Stav catches up with an irritated Russ who is out shooting with a rifle, where Stav lies that the woman is not actually Maxine. He eventually calms him down, and the two reconcile.
The Silenian Test
A man recalls the events which lead him to be travelling on an alien spacecraft. At a protest he attended, the proceedings turn disorderly, however, the group quickly calms when alien spacecraft appear in Earth's atmosphere. The aliens, known as the Silenians, offer the promise of bringing world peace, though the governments of the world come together to attempt to bomb the aliens, which fails. Realising the humans collectively are not ready to be saved, they contact people individually to "test" them, in exchange for travelling to the stars. However, one man has to make a horrible sacrifice in exchange for the peace.
Teenage Catalogue Model
A police detective, Rockhart, is investigating the disappearance of a teenage girl, Cheryl, while the police force is under pressure to ensure they have enough evidence to convict before bringing a suspect in. The case takes Rikert to a suspect, a peculiar old man called Afred, who is a neighbour of the teenager and her mid-thirties mother. Bringing up the events surrounding Cheryl's disappearance, and an apparent incident prior to Alfred's early retirement, the detective and the man go head to head during their discussion. After referencing an earlier conversation between the two in which the old man mentioned Cheryl looked like a catalogue model, the questioning suggests that Alfred has something to hide.
How Love Came to Professor Guildea
Professor Guildea is approached by Father Murchison after a lecture, where he invites the father to dinner. The two men are celibate and avoid love at all costs, with the professor spending his life on science while the clergyman focusing his efforts on religion. The pair become close and develop a strong friendship, though Guildea begins to believe that there is another person in his house and the being is becoming fond of him which Murchison puts down to overwork. Proving his theory, Murchison soon discovers that Guildea's parrot reacts to being scratched by an invisible being. Guildea attempts to deal with the being and begins to suffer mentally when it starts to haunt him all the time. The father challenges whether Guildea's avoidance of human relations is part of the problem, however the realisation comes too late.
W. D. Valgardson tells a tale to his daughter when he receives a letter from Iceland. He tells her of when he was in his late twenties, and the events surround his Icelandic girlfriend who he had just met. He recalls that she and her family had been obsessed with a mysterious cave for generations. Refusing to marry him, she tells him that her mother asked on her death bed not to get married and that back home she is known as the "Ice Queen". He sets about finding out whether there was a reason for her mothers death bed request, in the hope of persuading her to marry him. They eventually discover a box which reveals the history of his family and the relationship with the cave.
The Lost Door
A man, Arthur Davis, is commuting home in the late afternoon and sees a person jump from a bridge. Showing little empathy, he contemplates what he is going to do when he gets home. However, on arriving home, he finds a teenager working on a car in his driveway. Confronting the lad, he discovers the house appears different. Irritated at the situation, it leads to his arrest and subsequent analysis by a psychiatrist. Under sedation, the doctor finds out more about the situation from his mumblings, and sets about trying to find out has happened. Once the man comes around, the doctor finds that everything she was told could not be verified, and he believes that she is a spy for a foreign agency who is attempting to manipulate him.
The Blue Devil
This episode is unavailable.
Point of Departure
Husband and wife, Bob and Ruth, prepare to leave for a vacation in Mexico. Ruth answers to a knock at the door, and finds a police officer, asking about a man named Jerry Wallace, who she initially says she can't remember. They invite the officer to ride in the taxi with them to continue asking questions. While in the taxi, Ruth goes on to describe how she met Jerry who she went on to marry. The story continues on the aircraft, with the officer, where she tells of a marriage in which they always argued. Bob points out quietly to Ruth that the other people on the plane appear to be dressed for a destination other than Mexico. The plane soon lands, and Ruth finds herself having gone north, to a cabin she used to visit with Jerry. She tells them she visited a year ago with Jerry for old times sake, around the time he was last seen alive.
At an art gallery selling painting by Chaïm Soutine which is hosting a private, invitation only event, a man, Drioli, walks in who is uninvited. The gallery director attempts to throw him out, but the man demands that he has more right to be there than anybody. He reveals that he has an early Chaïm Soutine work of his own, which he reveals by taking his clothes off, to reveal a tattooed back, created by Soutine. Drioli reveals he was once a tattoo artist who lived in an apartment with Soutine, who was under stress due to his paintings not selling. Drioli offers to allow Soutine to tattoo a picture onto his back, while drunk. The art gallery crowd make offers for Soutine's newly discovered work. However, Drioli accepts an offer to exhibit his back in the Bristol Hotel in Cannes, which doesn't exist. However, the image appears from his back for sale in Buenos Aires some weeks later with the man having mysteriously disappeared.
A car manufacturer has been introducing phases of automation, with phases one and two bringing in robots, which has lead to many of the men who worked there being laid off. Assembly line worker Jenkins becomes convinced he is about to be replaced by a robot in phase three of the rollout, though remains calm for his wife's sake as she worries about the future. At work, he finds that their lunch break has been cut. Jenkins agrees to go out for a drink with son and fellow worker, Eddy, after discovering a colleague has been badly injured which the company are keeping quiet. They meet a man in the bar who advises him what to do to get injured on the job and receive a lifetime payout from the company, and has been arranging accidents for others.
Paralegal Madelyne attends her regular appointment with her doctor, who is unable to renew the prescription for her pain medication, as she has become addicted, and had his ability to issue pills suspended when he uses her medical records to fight her case. Her mother also provides little support due to her own problems. Unable to afford her habit with other drugs on the scant wages she is paid, she turns to crime and prostitution, which also brings violence when she is beaten by her husband Richard when she refuses to go out while feeling unwell. Along with contemplating suicide, her doctor discusses her going into rehabilitation, which angers her. She resorts to murdering him by smashing a bottle of sherry and cigarette onto him, though also ends up dying in the process herself.
Ted walks into a shop selling appliances, and ends up coming away with a coffee machine which has the ability to speak, as well as integrate into his existing home system. His girlfriend, Birgit, however is unhappy at being woken up and having to live with his vast array of purchased gadgets. Being woken abruptly the following morning, Ted and Birgit find their apartment being flooded by the coffee machine. Attempting to disconnect it, they discover it has quickly begun to try and take over the planet, and causes a mass coffee-coloured flood which initially affects the whole town, and goes on to affect Ontario, before the rest of the world, as Ted attempts to fight back.
While enjoying dinner, a couple hear a large bang, and wonder whether it is a government weapons test. However, they discover that a small meteor has landed a short distance away in a crater. Inside the meteor, a small race of aliens prepare to make the planet their new home as they begin their colonisation plans, having travelled from their own planet to explore. Meanwhile, the object has been dug up by the couple who place it in their shed while they contact the police, who insist on having it checked out by the bomb squad. The aliens emerge from their spacecraft, but soon discover that colonising a new world is harder than they imagined, especially when the native lifeforms are significantly larger than them. It isn't long before their numbers are reduced, and things get worse when the humans discover the existence of the aliens, which proceed to attempt an attack.
Zeppi, a shopkeeper in Trinidad fights against modern medicine as he continues to cling to his alternative medicines and received wisdom. He attempts to convince one of his friends of his previous medical help when she heads to the hospital to receive an x-ray, while also questions the doctors who report a shadow on the lung of another. With the locals now seeing little use for Zeppi, he takes to buying various machines and computers. When a shopkeeper is burgled, Zeppi offers the use of his machines to help solve the crime, as well as sees his chance to regain some confidence in his abilities. With everyone gathered in the store to see him work, the machine points out the person who was responsible for the crime. Zeppi also anticipates his newfound attention with the machine he has embraced.
Evaluation / Evaluuation
Two pilots, Michael and Harry, are grounded in the north of Canada by poor weather conditions. In a bar, Michael invites over an Inuit woman who introduces herself as Evalu, and the pair begin talking. Her fellow Inuit, Belak, however advises Michael to leave, and attempts to offer a warning to Michael about Evalu. Ignoring the advice, he sets about enjoying more time with Evalu. Harry also tries to offer his opinion on the situation, as his conversations with Evalu descend further into him being persuaded to join her. Harry sets about finding out what Evalu wants with Michael, and offers to take Michael's place, as he believes he owes her.
Free to a Good Home
A couple, Tommy and Nancy, who are due a baby, are contacted by a Mrs Goodhead, a mysterious woman who wants to take an orange tabby which is up for adoption from a litter. She demands that the cat isn't given away, and has named it Sandy. However the pair discover that the newspaper advert has yet to be run. The phone soon rings again with Mrs Goodhead again demanding that the orange tabby not be given away but that she can't be picked up yet. When Nancy queries about the colour of the other cats, Mrs Goodhead shouts that they are dead before hanging up. Another phone call is received by the Nancy with Mrs Goodhead saying that she has changed the name of the cat to Joanne, and it is the only one remaining. She also leaves an address for the cat to be dropped off at her apartment. Receiving several more calls from Mrs Goodhead, Nancy and Tommy deliver the kitten to the apartment where they find Mrs Goodhead died three months prior.
In Alice Springs, tourists Megan and Wendy, prepare to head to Uluru with guide Michael. Wendy is talkative and outgoing, while Megan laments her time with someone who acts like a tourist all the time. At a bar, Wendy offends some aboriginal children while using them as props while taking a picture, which results in Michael having to calm the situation. Arriving at Uluru, the pair are joined by hundreds of other tourists. Michael and Megan discuss their relationship, which has previous history, with him wanting her to move to Australia. Wendy meanwhile ventures into the forbidden caves, which she is accused of desecrating by entering it. At a bar as Megan and Wendy prepare to leave, an angry, drunk aboriginal man, who has been refused another drink, drives his large truck into the bar killing four. Wendy blames herself for her disrespect of the natives.
The Third Bank of the River
A blind man who makes boats is observed at his work by a child, Miguel, whose father asks the boatbuilder to make a one-person boat out of mimosa wood with the intention of it lasting for decades. The new boat is constructed in time for the fiesta, at which point Miguel's father up and leaves, heading out via boat with the suggestion that he will never return. Miguel is caught by a man who questions what he is doing out late at night, and he tells him that he leaves food for his father who rows up and down the river. The man continues to travel the river for years, despite Miguel's attempts to try and encourage his father ashore to meet his grandchild. Decades later, Miguel still waits by the river for his father and eventually goes into the river to tell his father that he is willing to swap places. However, he discovers he could never do what his father did, shortly before he himself dies. His final wish was to be placed on a boat and pushed into the river.
Fred, a theatre owner, returns home to his wife, Gloria, who reports that she has received three strange phone calls where the person just hung up. Fred also encounters a strange phone call in the middle of the night which a man says "we know all about you" before hanging up. The couple also start to receive strange mail suggesting he had written a film script when he hadn't. Fred also discovers that his son has been caught stealing, and he receives a phone call referencing a theatre owner having an affair with an employee as part of a film script. At work, he receives a suggestion to read a particular verse of the bible, and soon discovers that he is being encouraged to reconsider the choices he has made in his life.
Advertising executive Steve becomes convinced he is about to lose everything in a nuclear holocaust, and so becomes obsessed with keeping his family safe which includes wife Alice and teenage daughter Diane. He awakes every night with from a nightmare which ends with a blinding white light. His nightmares have also taken to informing his work, and somewhat interfering with it. Arriving home, he contemplates a bomb shelter after Diane and Laszlo get into an argument about nuclear bombs. Steve sets about constructing one in the basement of the house which somewhat initially settles his mind. Steve however soon becomes protective of the shelter, and begins to push away the outside world as he retreats into it.
Singer Judy has got a new answering machine which has been given to her by her singing coach who is retiring. While talking on the phone with a friend and fellow orchestra member, she reveals her unhappiness with some of the decisions made by the lead, Walker. She is also under pressure from her mother who wants her to have a more secure career. Each time she is talking on the phone, Judy discovers her answering machine recording when it shouldn't be. The following day, Judy receives a call from Walker who agrees with some of her complaints, despite her not making a call to him. She soon works out that her answering machine is attempting to make improvements to her life and career, though things are soon out of her control.
The Shining Path
Larry visits a psychiatrist where he discusses his failing relationship with his wife, Sheryl, and his sleepwalking, which he feels is getting worse, though his doctor believes it is nothing to worry about. At dinner with Sheryl, Larry is distracted, which results in her getting upset at his lack of attention as she also tries to get him to talk about his feelings. She is also dismayed at his revelation that he has met someone else, and their marriage may be over. At night, Larry finds that he is walking on a street and hears a voice which instructs him to head to a house and break the glass window. However, he is soon awoken by the sound of his doorbell ringing where he discovers that his hand has been badly cut. Larry sets about speaking with the doctor again, and discusses the events of the night's dream and sleepwalking. Another sleepwalking event causes things to get worse when Larry believes he has brutally murdered his psychiatrist's wife.
The Yellow Wallpaper
Catherine is taken to a rented old mansion by her physician husband John for the summer. The purpose of the trip is to treat her "condition" which has never been fully explained to her though manifests itself as a nervous depression, with it being forbidden from working or writing during her stay. She initially spends her time in the garden, before heading to her room at the top of the house, which happens to be the nursery. Catherine is also left with Jenny, John's sister, though John spends most of his time away from the house. Jenny is also struggling to look after Catherine as she craves excitement, who is beginning to hate the room she is confined to, with a particular disdain for the yellow wallpaper on the walls, as she descends further into madness.
The Woman in Black Velvet
A woman tells of settling into life in Africa with her husband Jason, and two children, with the trip to her new home. On arriving at the house, the family meet Joseph, their cook steward who she soon gets to know Joseph who reveals he was almost poisoned by his now ex-wife. He also discusses with some enthusiasm his younger brother, who works as a truck driver. Eight months later, Joseph asks to return to his village due to his brother being sick. He returns after two weeks though is no longer the happy man he was. Eventually talking to the woman, Joseph says that his brother picked up a woman, believed to be a prostitute, at the side of the road, who he sleeps with. His brother then begins to see "the woman in black velvet" at the side of the road wherever he goes, which begins to drive him insane. Dropping Joseph off in his village, the woman sets off to return home, and believes she has seen the "the woman in black velvet" herself.
Margaret is struggling with depression and enters rehabilitation at a cutting-edge psychiatric clinic to resolve her issues. She is assigned to Dr. Cameron, who initially just talks with her. However, he decides that they she move on to his pioneering experimental techniques which include recording the conversations. Margaret also discovers that her doctor has used LSD in some of his experiments, including on the nurses and other staff who work for him, while being put into drug-induced comas herself, while having to listen to tapes being played on a loop. Having a wide range of experiments performed on her, Margaret's mental condition begins to deteriorate as she begins to believe Cameron is acting like God.
Vanishing Point (Season 2)