The House on Punchbowl Hill



















Two-franc coin, as the one found by Chan.

 
 

A Charlie Chan Glossary

 
 

adrenaline - A hormone secreted by the adrenal medulla that is released into the bloodstream in response to physical or mental stress, as from fear or injury. It initiates many bodily responses, including the stimulation of heart action and an increase in blood pressure, metabolic rate, and blood glucose concentration.  Also called epinephrine.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Dr. Ainsley: "Adrenaline.  She's got to have a heart stimulant."
 
aerodrome - (chiefly British) An airfield equipped with control tower and hangers as well as accommodations for passengers and cargo. 
Charlie Chan in London - Charlie Chan: "To aerodrome at Farnwell."
 
Aerodrome du Bourget - Opened in 1919, Aerodrome du Bourget (today, L'Aéroport du Bourget) was the first civil airport in Paris.  On May 21, 1927, Charles Lindburgh landed his Spirit of St. Louis there following his famous trans-Atlantic flight.  In Charlie Chan in Paris, Chan arrives in Paris at Aerodrome du Bourget following a flight from London.
Charlie Chan in Paris - Sign: AERODROME DU BOURGET
 
all wet - (slang) Entirely mistaken.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Johnny McCoy: "You're all wet!"
 
aloha - (Hawaiian) An acknowledgment that can be used to say hello or goodbye.  Other meanings include love, compassion, and a profound spirit of welcome. 
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Honolulu Police Chief Inspector: "Aloha - and good luck."
 
Amos 'n' Andy - A situation comedy popular in the United States from the 1920s through the 1950s. The show began as one of the first radio comedy serials, written and voiced by Freeman Gosden and Charles Correll and originating from station WMAQ in Chicago, Illinois. First broadcast in March 1928, the series had such an immense popularity that at its peak it was heard six times a week by an audience of 40,000,000 listeners, one-third of the total U.S. population.
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Charlie Chan: "Murder without bloodstains like Amos without Andy - most unusual."
 
amyl nitrate - A vasodilator that is sometimes used to treat angina pectoris.
Charlie Chan Carries On (script) - Mark Kennaway: "Amyl nitrate. It will bring him around in a moment."
 
and how - an expression of emphatic agreement.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Chief of Police King: "And how, I'll circulate it!"
 
angle - (slang) A devious method; a scheme.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Reporter: "Yeah, what's the new angle?"
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Grenock: "Hey, what's her angle?"
 
Apiang Island - Called Abiang today, Apiang is one of the islands of Kiribati, which was once known as the Gilbert Islands, a group of islands in the central Pacific Ocean. Inhabited by a mixture of Polynesian and Melanesian peoples, the islands were first visited by the British in 1765, made a protectorate in 1892, and later became part of the Gilbert and Ellice Islands Colony (1915-1976). Full independence as the principal islands of Kiribati was achieved in 1979.  Charlie Chan's Greatest Case (script) - Reverend Upton: "Brade died when they were in port, at the Apiang Islands."
 
applesauce - (slang) Nonsense; foolishness.
The Black Camel - Charlie Chan's Oldest Daughter: Ah, that's a lot of applesauce!"
Charlie Chan at the Circus - Charlie Chan: "Wise precaution to accept applesauce with large pinch of salt."
 
aria - (1) A solo vocal piece with instrumental accompaniment, as in an opera. (2) An air; a melody. 
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Charlie Chan: "Much applause tonight after beautiful aria."
 
a screw loose - (slang) Crazy; something wrong.
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Lee Chan: "There's a screw loose somewhere."
 
baksheesh - (Egyptian) (1) Almsgiving. (2) For services rendered. (3) For the granting of favors.
Charlie Chan in Egypt - Dragoman: "But first, baksheesh."
 
Balboa -  A part of Panama City, located at the Pacific entrance to the Panama Canal.  It includes Balboa Harbor – the city's main port – and is the location of the Canal Administration Building.
Charlie Chan in Panama - Clivedon Compton: "Stewardess, when shall we be in Balboa?"
 
baloney - (slang) Nonsense.
The Black Camel - Charlie Chan's Young Son: "Ah, baloney!" 
 
banjo-eyed - (as used) Large-eyed.
Charlie Chan at the Olympics - Betty Adams: "Just because that banjo-eyed brunette looks at you..."
 
baritone - A male singer or voice with a range higher than a bass and lower than a tenor.
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Lilli Rochelle: "Enrico is the baritone of my company."
 
Batwa tribe - Located within the borders of present day Rwanda, the Batwa are among the "pygmy" peoples of central Africa.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Sign: "PIGMY HUNTER (BATWA TRIBE)"
 
beggar - (informal) A man or boy.
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Jeremiah Walters ; "I caught the little beggar red-handed."
 
Benedictine - A sweet cognac-based liqueur, flavored with various aromatics, fruit peels and herbs.
Charlie Chan at Monte Carlo - Joan Karnoff: "Benedictine."
 
benny - (slang) A hat, probably a derby.
Charlie Chan Carries On (script) - Elmer Benbow: "Just take off the benny, will you -- the lid, you know -- the hat."
 
big noise - (slang) An important person.
Charlie Chan at the Olympics - Charlie Chan: "Letter apparently from big noise..."
 
big shot - (slang) An important or influential person.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Pete Lewis: "Rhadini's miproved now, Charlie, he's a big shot."
 
big top - The main tent of a circus.
Charlie Chan at the Circus - Dan Farrell: "Don't let him get near the big top."
 
bigwigs - (slang) Very important persons.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Inspector Nelson: "The bigwigs expect you to tear a duck apart with them tonight."
 
bilge water - (slang) Nonsense.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Captain Johnson: "Ah, bilge water!"
 
Billy Goat Hill - A location at the top of Beacon Street in the southern portion of the city of San Francisco, California.  Today, the location of Billy Goat Hill Park.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Deputy Chief J.J. Kilvaine: "Well, Charlie, if this don't send me back to Billy Goat Hill pounding pavement..."
 
bird - (slang) A person, especially one who is odd or remarkable.
The Black Camel - Chief of Police: "I'm going to nail that bird now!"
Charlie Chan's Courage (script) - Bob Crawford: "...a hard looking bird followed me down there..."
Murder Over New York - Jimmy Chan: "Well, I thought it was him until I saw this bird."
 
birds - see: bird
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Lee Chan: "We've got to do something to stop those birds."
 
blackbirder - A slave ship; a slaver. As used: a slave trader.
Charlie Chan's Greatest Case (script) - Reverend Upton: "He was a blackbirder."
 
blackjack - A leather-covered bludgeon with a short, flexible shaft or strap, used as a hand weapon.
Charlie Chan's Chance (script) - Inspector Flannery: "Last night in Washington Heights he put a man to sleep with a blackjack..."
 
block - (slang) The human head.
Charlie Chan at the Olympics - Betty Adams: "...now he's going after him to knock his block off."
 
blood and thunder - A term for popular adventure novels such as those in the pulp fiction realm. 
Charlie Chan in Panama - Miss Finch: "...like one of those blood and thunder novels you write."
 
blown over - To have subsided, waned, or passed over with little lasting effect.
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Dr. Cream: "...why not come back in a month, when this get away has blown over?"
 
bluenose - A puritanical person.
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Jimmy Chan: "I'm going to keep my eye on that old bluenose."
 
boanide - A ficticious chemical mentioned by Charlie Chan as being "most deadly when inhaled with smoke from cigarette." 
Charlie Chan in Panama - Charlie Chan: "Poison called boanide
 
boner - (slang) A blunder or an error.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Joe Arnold: "Pull another boner like that and I'll losen up that thick skull of yours."
 
Bourbon - A whiskey distilled from a fermented mash containing not less than 51 percent corn in addition to malt and rye.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Wally Burke: "I'll stick to Bourbon."
 
Bourse - The stock exchange in Paris, France.
Charlie Chan at Monte Carlo - Jules Joubert: "They are the enemies on the Bourse as well as in the casino."
 
bracelets - (slang) Handcuffs. 
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Sgt. Kelly: "Listen, young fella, she's lucky I haven't got the bracelets on her." 
 
Brandenburg Arch (Brandenburg Gate) - Located on the Pariser Platz, the Brandenburg Gate is the only remaining one of the series of gates through which one entered Berlin. One block to its north lies the Reichstag. It was commissioned by Friedrich Wilhelm II as a sign of peace and built by Karl Gotthard Langhans from 1788 to 1791.
Charlie Chan at the Olympics - Text of a note sent to Charlie Chan: "Be at the Brandenburg Arch at six o'clock with the device."
 
Brandenburg Gate
 
brig - A jail or prison on board a U.S. Navy or Coast Guard vessel. 
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Steward: "...as soon as I get my hands on him, into the brig he goes!"
 
broke - To be without money or to go into bankruptcy.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Dr. Ainsley: "...I thought he was broke."
 
bub - (slang) Used as a term of familiar address, especially for a man or boy.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Tombstone Fletcher: "Wht's your name, bub?"
 
bubonic plague - A contagious, often fatal epidemic disease caused by the bacterium Yersinia pestis, transmitted from person to person or by the bite of fleas from an infected rodent, especially a rat, and characterized by chills, fever, vomiting, diarrhea, and the formation of buboes.
Charlie Chan in Panama - Jimmy Chan: "Bubonic plague!"
 
buffaloed - (slang) (1) To intimidate, as by a display of confidence or authority. (2) To deceive; hoodwink. (3) To confuse; bewilder.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Pete Lewis: "...you might have her buffaloed, but you don't fool me!"
 
bulldogged - Having thrown a calf or steer by seizing its horns and twisting its neck until the animal falls. 
Charlie Chan in Reno - Tombstone Fletcher: "...I've got him bulldogged!"
 
burn - To execute by electrocution.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Johnny Burke: "They'll never burn me for that."
 
B.V.D.'s - A trademark used for undershirts and underpants worn by men and boys.  This trademark sometimes occurs in print with a final 's.
Charlie Chan Carries On (script) - Max Minchin: "You seen what happened to Inspector Duff, didn't you? You better get yourself some iron underwear -- you know B.V.D.'s."
 
cablegram - A telegram sent by trans-oceanic cable.
Charlie Chan in Panama - Stewardess: "Cablegram for Dr. Grosser."
 
cahoots - (slang) Questionable collaboration; secret partnership.
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Lee Chan: "It's Chester and Fenton in cahoots."
 
Cain - In the Bible, the eldest son of Adam and Eve, who murdered his brother Abel out of jealousy and was condemned to be a fugitive.
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Charlie Chan: "But, Degan, true child of Cain, hate him."
 
camera hounds - (as used) Amateur camera enthusiasts.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Inspector Nelson:"Those ain't reporters, they're worse - camera hounds."
 
Canarsie - A part of Brooklyn, New York.
Murder Over New York - Lefty: "Well, this is 'Shorty' McCoy, the 'Canarsie Kid.'"
 
canary - (slang) A woman singer.
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Sgt. Kelly: (Derogatorily referering to Enrico Barelli) "I've got a personal grudge against that canary."
 
cannon - (slang) A gun.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Al Hogan: "...somebody drops this cannon down the ventilator."
 
chaise longue - (French: long chair)  An elongated seat or couch with a support for the back at one end and a seat long enough to support the legs and feet.
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Whitley: "I laid her on the chaise longue."
 
chamois - A soft leather made from the hide of this animal or other animals such as deer or sheep.  A chamois bag containing pebbles was found with victims of the killer in Charlie Chan Carries On.
Charlie Chan's Courage (script) - Charlie Chan: "Note chamois lined watch pocket."
 
Charlie McCarthy - A famous character created by ventriloquist Edgar Bergen (1903-1978).  Early performances were in vaudeville and one-reel movie shorts, but Bergen and Charlie McCarthy achieved greatest success on the radio.  He and Charlie were seen at a Hollywood party by Noel Coward, who recommended them for an appearance on Rudy Vallee's program.  Their appearance was so successful that the next year they were given their own show.  Under various sponsors, they were on the air from 1937 to 1956.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Charlie Chan: "Doctor excellent ventrilloquist - uncle maybe to Charlie McCarthy."
 
Charlie McCarthy and Edgar Bergen
 
chemin de fer - The French version of baccarat, chemin de fer is a casino game in which players bet on either of two hands dealt on the table: the "player" or the "banker."  The hand that comes closer to 9 wins.
Charlie Chan at Monte Carlo - Jules Joubert: "Perhaps you would like to play a little roulette or chemin de fer, no?"
 
cherchez la femme - (French) "Look for the woman."
Charlie Chan at Monte Carlo - Jules Joubert: "Cherchez la femme - always at the bottom of trouble is a woman."
City in Darkness - Charlie Chan: "Cherchez la Femme?"
 
Chicago fire - A disasterous fire that broke out on October 8, 1871, destroying much of the city of Chicago.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Murdock: "It'll make it hotter than the Chicago fire."
 
Chinaman - (today considered offensive) A person of Chinese descent.
Charlie Chan Carries On (script) - Pamela Potter: "The Chinaman in that shop pointed out Jim Everhard."
Charlie Chan in London - Charlie Chan: "No, not very good detective, just lucky old Chinaman."
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Grenock: "Get that Chinaman before he gets us."
 
Chinatown - A neighborhood or section of a city that is inhabited chiefly by Chinese people.  New York's Chinatown is the largest in the United States.
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Tour Conductor: "Next stop, Chinatown, the mysterious Orient in the heart of New York."
 
Chinese Pagoda - Called the Golden Pagoda of Chinatown, this structure was the prominant feature of the Chinese Village section of the Golden Gate International Exposition, held at Treasure Island in San Francisco from 1939 to 1940.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Jimmy Chan: "That's the Chinese Pagoda."
 
The Chinese Pagoda (Golden Pagoda of Chinatown)
 
chin fest - (slang) A lengthy conversation.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Deputy Chief J.J. Kilvane: "You and I are going to have an old fashioned chin fest, Charlie." 
 
Chink - (offensive slang) Used as a disparaging term for a person of Chinese birth or descent.
Charlie Chan Carries On (script) - Max Minchin: "Oh, hello Chink! How's the laundry business?"  (NOTE: Reliable information indicates that this line was not used in the final version of Charlie Chan Carries On.)
 
chlorine water - An aqueous solution of chlorine used as a bleaching agent.
Charlie Chan's Secret - The Substance used by Charlie Chan to determine the cause of the phosphorescent glow of Allen Colby's face during the séance.
 
chock-gee - (Chinese) Certificate proving legal resident status. Following the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, there were very strict immigration limits placed on the Chinese.  These laws, which were expanded, were in place until repealed in 1943.  During this era, it was not uncommon for persons of Chinese decent, even though they may have been born in the United States, to carry papers proving their legal status.
Charlie Chan's Courage (script) - Constable Brackett: "Let's see your chock-gee."
 
chop-chop - (Pidgin English) Right away; quickly.
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Lee Chan [posing as a Chinese cabin boy]: "Scat - chop-chop!"
 
chop suey - A Chinese-American dish consisting of small pieces of meat or chicken cooked with bean sprouts and other vegetables and served with rice. 
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Sgt. Kelly: (Derogatorily referering to Charlie Chan) "You haven't called Chop Suey in on the case, have you, Chief?"
 
cinch - A sure thing; a certainty.
Charlie Chan at the Circus - Lt. Macy: "It's a cinch."
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Lee Chan: "Why, it's a cinch!"
Murder Over New York - Jimmy Chan: "With Narvo's photograph and fingerprints, it'll be a cinch."
 
Cinderellas - (1) Those who have unexpectedly achieved recognition or success after a period of obscurity and neglect.  (2) (Cinderella) A fictional young girl who is saved from her stepmother and stepsisters by her fairy godmother and a handsome prince.
City in Darkness - Marcel Spivak: "I never saw so many Cinderellas."
 
clean bill - (as used) No evidence found to indicate guilt.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Reporter: "Did you give Burke a clean bill?"
 
Clipper - see: Pan American World Airways Clipper
 
cobwebs - Confusion; disorder.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Paul Essex: "This trip blew the cobwebs out of my head."
 
cockeyed - (slang) Foolish; ridiculous; absurd.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Joe Arnold [Mike Hannigan]: "Where do you get that cockeyed dope?"
 
Cockney - (1) A native of the East End of London. (2) The dialect or accent of the natives of the East End of London.  
Charlie Chan's Greatest Case (script) - Script direction notes: Brade, a Cockney provincial...
 
Cocktail de Bronx (Bronx Cocktail) - 1 oz vermouth, 1 oz gin, juice of 1/4 orange, 1 slice orange.  Shake all ingredients (except orange slice) with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. Add the orange slice and serve.  The Bronx Cocktail was supposedly invented by Johnnie Solon of the Waldorf-Astoria bar in Manhattan.
Charlie Chan at Monte Carlo - A "Cocktail de Bronx" was ordered by a couple at the bar in the Hotel Imperial.
 
Cognac - A high quality grape brandy distilled in the Cognac district of France.
City in Darkness - Charlie Chan: "Note, bottle of cognac recently disposed of."
 
cold turkey - (slang) As used: A cold fish.
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Sgt. Kelly: "I tell you, the dame is cold turkey."
 
conked - (slang) A blow, especially on the head. 
Murder Over New York - Jimmy Chan: "Just as I stepped in the elevator, he conked me!" 
 
con men - (slang) Confidence men.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Chief of Police King: "We'll show you the choicest collection of con men and crackpots you've ever seen."
 
cooking up - (idiom) Concocting.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Cab Driver: "Of course, now I know she was just sittin' back there cooking up the murder."
 
cop a sneak - (slang) Steal.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Johnny McCoy: "Who wouldn't try to cop a sneak with his hooks on 300 grand?"
 
copper - (slang) A police officer.
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Grenock: "...and won't that copper be surprised."
 
coot - (informal) An eccentric or crotchety person, especially an eccentric old man.
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Buttons: "Crazy coot."
 
cootie - (slang) A body louse.
City in Darkness - Antoine: "Did you pack cootie powder in your kit?"  
 
crackpots - Eccentric persons, especially those with bizarre ideas.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Chief of Police King: "We'll show you the choicest collection of con men and crackpots you've ever seen."
 
crime passionelle - (French) Crime of passion.
Charlie Chan at Monte Carlo - Lee Chan: "It's what the French newspapers call a crime passionelle."
 
Cristobal - A Panamanian port city located at the entrance of Limon Bay that leads to the entrance to the eastern side of the Panama Canal.
Charlie Chan in Panama - Governor D.C. Webster: "Here's our fleet, concentrated off Cristobal at the Atlantic gate."
 
Croix de Guerre - with Palms - A French military decoration for bravery in combat. A bronze palm is added for those cited att he army level.
City in Darkness - Marcel Spivac: "We will get the Croix de Guerre - with palms!"
 
crossed up - (slang) To have ruined or confused. 
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Speed Patten: "Yeah, but you crossed me up."
 
crowned - (informal) To have been hit on the head.
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Wilkie: "...somebody crowned me."
 
cuts no ice - (idiom) Making no effect or impression.
Charlie Chan in Panama - Military Police Officer: "That cuts no ice here."
 
D.A. - District Attorney.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Speed Patten: "...but does the D.A. know it?"
 
dame - (slang) A woman. 
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Sgt. Kelly: "I tell you, the dame is cold turkey."
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Inspector Nelson: "...a year ago, that little dame was so hot she had to skip the country."
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Joe Arnold: "You wouldn't be the first dame..."
 
danse Apache - (French) Ruffian dance. 
Charlie Chan in Paris - Master of Ceremonies: "And now, ladies and gentlemen, we're going to have that little star, whose interpretation of the danse Apache, I know will thrill you."
 
darn tootin' - (slang) Absolutely correct.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Tombstone Fletcher: "You're darn tootin' I'm hurt!"
 
death house - The cellblock in a prison where those condemned to death await execution.
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Steve McBirney: "Your evidence sticks me in the death house..." 
 
Decoration Day - Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, is a day to remember those who have died in our nation's service. After the Civil war many people in the North and South decorated graves of fallen soldiers with flflowers.  Decoration Day was officially proclaimed on May 5, 1868 by General John Logan and was first observed officially on May 30, 1868. The South did not observe Decoration Day, preferring to honor their dead on separate days until after World War I. In 1882, the name was changed to Memorial Day, and soldiers who had died in other wars were also honored. In 1971, Memorial Day was declared a national holiday to be held on the last Monday in May.
Charlie Chan at the Circus - Nellie Ferrell: "It was on May 30, 1935 - Decoration Day."
 
demi-tasse - (1) A small cup of strong black coffee or espresso. (2) The small cup used to serve this drink.
Charlie Chan Carries On (script) - Script direction notes: The Minchin dinner has reached the stage of demi-tasse and cigarettes.
 
deuce - (informal) Used as an intensive
Charlie Chan in London - Geoffrey Richmond: "What the deuce!" 
 
dick - (slang) A detective.
Charlie Chan Carries On (script) - Max Minchin: "What for? He's a dick, ain't he?"
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Gangster: "But, that Chinese dick is wise to the whole thing."
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Sgt. Kelly: "If that Chinese dick knows where he is..."
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Johnny McCoy: "You're acting just like a dick."
 
dictograph -A telephonic instrument for office or other similar use, having a sound-magnifying device enabling the ordinary mouthpiece to be dispensed with. Much use has been made of it for overhearing, or for recording, conversations for the purpose of obtaining evidence for use in litigation. 
Charlie Chan's Chance (script) - Script direction notes: "[Inspector Flannery] steps to dictograph at desk and speaks into it"
 
Dieppe - A city of northeast France on the English Channel north of Rouen. It is a port for channel steamers and a beach resort.
Charlie Chan Carries On (script) - Inspector Duff: "I've just time to catch the night boat to Dieppe."
 
dip - (slang) To pick pockets. 
Charlie Chan's Chance (script) - Inspector Flannery: "This is Benny the dip. He used to imagine he was a pick-pocket but he couldn't get his hand in and out of a sugar barrel."
 
diphenylamine - A colorless crystalline compound used as a stabilizer for plastics and in the manufacture of dyes, explosives, pesticides, and pharmaceuticals.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Police Chemist: "A solution of diphenylamine and sulfuric acid which reacts instantly to nitrates."
 
dive - (slang) A disreputable or run-down bar or nightclub.
Charlie Chan in Panama - Richard Cabot: "This is no place for you; why, it's just a dive."
 
dock - To withhold or deduct a part from one's salary or wages. Charlie Chan in Panama - Powerhouse Worker: Oh, they dock you, huh?"
 
dope - (slang) Information.
Charlie Chan at the Circus - Lee Chan: "I can give you the dope, Lieutenant Macy."
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Lee Chan: "I've got the inside dope."
Charlie Chan at the Olympics - New York police Teletype Officer: "Here comes the dope on that Honolulu tracer."
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Joe Arnold [Mike Hannigan]: "Where do you get that cockeyed dope?"
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Pete Lewis: All kinds of dope about all kinds of people."
 
doped out - (slang) Figured out. 
Charlie Chan in Reno - Jimmy Chan: "I haven't got it all doped out yet."
Charlie Chan in Panama - Jimmy Chan: "I have it all doped out."
 
do the town - (as used) To experience a city's nightlife.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Billie Bronson: "Well, you look like you're all dressed up to do the town tonight."
 
double cross - A deliberate betrayal; violation of a promise or obligation.  Originally, the term was used in sports gambling, referring to the duplicity of a contestant who breaks his word after illicitly promising to lose.
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Steve McBirney: "Hope you never double cross me, Doc."
 
dough - (slang) Money.
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Detective: What the kid means is to plank your dough on the nag's schnozzola..."
 
Dowager Empress of Siberia - Alexandra Fyodorovna, the wife of Tzar Nicholas III of Russia. She was de-facto in charge of the government business during her husband's time as commander-in-chief during World War I, but she obtained his endorsement of her decisions. In 1918 the whole family - including the four daughters and son were executed during the revolution. She was born as Princess Alix von Hessen und beim Rhein and lived 1872-1918. 
Charlie Chan's Courage (script) - Bob Crawford: "...I came down to meet the Dowager Empress of Siberia...but they tell me she's dead."
 
dragoman - A near eastern interpreter, agent, or guide for travelers. Charlie Chan in Egypt - Dragoman: "I best dragoman in Luxor!"
 
ducky - (slang) Fine; excellent.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Inspector Nelson: "Well that's just ducky!"
 
Dyak headhunters - The Dyak, once a fierce and feared people, were among the original inhabitants of the island of Borneo, located in the western Pacific north of Java.  In 1927, forensic doctor William Krohn set off for Borneo to collect ethnological specimens for Chicago’s Field Museum, living among the Dyak people, learning everything he could about their beliefs and way of life.  The results of his work were published in his book Among the Dyak Headhunters.
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Charlie Chan: "Tonga poison used by Dyak headhunters in Borneo."
 
ectoplasm - (1) The visible substance believed to emanate from the body of a spiritualistic medium during communication with the dead. (2) An immaterial or ethereal substance, especially the transparent corporeal presence of a spirit or ghost. 
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Charlie Chan: "Ectoplasm most interesting - ghost filled with hot air."
 
effendi - (Turkish) Master; sir; a title of a Turkish state official and man of learning, especially one learned in the law.
Charlie Chan in Egypt - Dragoman: "Ah, Effendi Snowshoes."
 
egg foo yung (egg fu yung) - A Chinese omelet containing onions and celery and chopped meat or fish.
Charlie Chan in Shanghai - Charlie Chan: "Will have coffee, rolls, marmalade, and very large omelet - foo yung."
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Sgt. Kelly: (Derogatorily referering to Charlie Chan) "Where's Regan and his pal...Egg Foo Yung?"
 
eggs - (slang) Persons.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Randolph: "...some of them are pretty tough eggs." 
 
fag - (slang) A cigarette. 
Charlie Chan's Greatest Case (script) - T.M. Brade: "'E said 'ow 'e was famished for a 'omey fag."
 
fan-tan (1) A Chinese betting game in which the players lay wagers on the number of counters that will remain when a hidden pile of them has been divided by four. (2) A card game in which sevens and their equivalent are played in sequence and the first player out of cards is the winner.
Charlie Chan at Monte Carlo - Charlie Chan: "Venerable grandparent once have large holdings in fan-tan house."
 
fast one - (informal) A shrewd trick of swindle; a deceitful or treacherous act.
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Seaman: "Trying to pull a fast one, eh?"
Murder Over New York - Inspector Vance: "I'm going to pull a fast one, Charlie."
 
Father Knickerbocker - Father Knickerbocker became a symbol for New York City in the early 1800s following the publication of Washington Irving's satirical "History of New York," which Irving attributed to "Diedrich Knickerbocker." A round, 17th century Dutch character, Father Knickerbocker reminded New Yorkers of their Colonial past. Wearing knickers, buckled shoes, and a white beard, Father Knickerbocker has been illustrated and depicted in many ways, often symbolizing changes in the city's politics. The image of Father Knickerbocker, a reminder of old New York, was prevalent until the 1950s when the modern city had securely taken hold. The name survives today, in abbreviated form, in the name of the New York Knicks basketball team.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Charlie Chan: "Most happy to have placed new broom in hands of Father Knickerbocker."
 
fence - (1) One who receives and sells stolen goods. (2) A place where stolen goods are received and sold.
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Charlie Chan: "...had sufficient evidence to convict Ross as fence."
 
ferricyanide of potassium (potassium ferricyanide) - red prussiate of potash; a dark, red, crystalline salt, K6(CN)12Fe2, consisting of the double cyanide of potassium and ferric iron. From it is derived the ferrous ferricyanate, Turnbull's blue. 
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Used by Charlie Chan along with hydrochloric acid to bring out the writing on a burnt florist card.
 
fifth column - A clandestine subversive organization working within a country to further an invading enemy's military and political aims.
Murder Over New York - Kieth Jeffery: "Probably some more of that fifth column work."
 
filibuster - An adventurer who engages in a private military action in a foreign country.
Charlie Chan at the Olympics - Hopkins: "He's a notorious filibuster..."
 
finger - (slang) (1) To inform on.  (2) To designate, especially as an intended victim.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Speed Patten: "It puts the finger right on Burke."
 
finger wave - A wave set into dampened hair using only the fingers and a comb.
Charlie Chan at the Olympics - Female Olympic Athelete: "Say, I wonder how you ask for a finger wave in German?"
 
firecracker - (slang) A fiesty person, usually a woman.
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Sgt. Kelley: "Who was that firecracker?"
 
fishing - (as used) Looking for clues or answers.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Johnny Burke: "...he's just fishin'." 
 
flivver - (slang) An automobile, especially one that is small, inexpensive, and old.
Charlie Chan's Courage (script) - Man [Will Holley]: "...it ain't no taxi...it's a flivver."
 
fluoroscope - A device equipped with a fluorescent screen on which the internal structures of an optically opaque object, such as the human body, may be continuously viewed as shadowy images formed by the differential transmission of x-rays through the object.
Charlie Chan at the Circus - Dr. Mead: "I sent for the fluoroscope..."
 
Fouche - (Joseph Fouche, 1763-1820) A former schoolteacher who became Napoleon Bonaparte's head of internal security. In 1799, Fouche became Minister of Police and used his increasingly powerful agent network to support the coup of Brumaire. Despite his assistance, Bonaparte was nervous of Fouche's power and he was removed from office for two years, before being re-employed as security chief.
Charlie Chan's Greatest Case (script) - Carlotta Egan: "I would have conquered the world, and Wellington, too, if it hadn't been for Fouche."
 
four-flusher - (slang) One who makes empty claims; a bluffer.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Pete Lewis: "Why, you cheap four-flusher..."
 
frame - (slang) Made up evidence or contrive events so as to falsely incriminate a person.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Randolf: "They were trying to frame her."
 
framing - (see: frame
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Judy Hayes: "It was a beautiful little piece of framing..."
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Willie Fern: "...didn't he knock off Butcher Degan for framin' you?"
 
Frankenstein - Frankenstein's monster, a character created in a novel by Mary Shelley.  In 1931, Universal Studios made a movie loosely based on Shelley’s story, but the film held only a passing resemblance to the original novel. The star of the movie was Frankenstein’s monster, played admirably by Boris Karloff. The monster Karloff portrayed made such an impression on the public that its image has remained fresh in the public mind ever since.  Due to the immense popularity of Karloff's portrayal of the monster, an "in-joke" reference was made in  the Charlie Chan movie in which he co-starred with Warner Oland, Charlie Chan at the Opera.
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Mr. Arnold: "...this opera is going on tonight even if Frankenstein walks in!"
 
fresh - Bold and saucy; impudent.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Inspector Nelson: "I knew there was something fresh around here, I thought it was the ocean air."
 
gag - A trick or practical joke.
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Jinmy Chan: "...Pop would be too smart to fall for that gag."
 
Gaillard Cut - The point at which the Panama Canal crosses the continental divide.  The Gaillard Cut was the scene of some of the most arduous work during the construction of the canal.
Charlie Chan in Panama - Governor D.C. Webster: "To reach battle stations in the Pacific, the fleet's full war compliment must pass through the Gatun Locks, the Gaillard Cut, the Pedro Miguel, and the Miraflores Locks,"
 
garçon - (French - pronounced: "gar-sohn") A waiter or attendant. 
Charlie Chan at Monte Carlo - Joan Karnoff: "Garçon, my wraps, please."
 
gat - (slang) A pistol. 
Murder Over New York - Jimmy Chan: "I'll never go on a case like this again without a gat."
 
Gatun Locks - A series of three locks at the eastern entrance to the Panama Canal.
Charlie Chan in Panama - Governor D.C. Webster: "To reach battle stations in the Pacific, the fleet's full war compliment must pass through the Gatun Locks, the Gaillard Cut, the Pedro Miguel, and the Miraflores Locks,"
 
gave...the slip - (slang) To escape the pursuit of.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Jimmy Chan: "Gregory gave me the slip at Customs."
City in Darkness - Belescu: "...I gave them the slip."
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Lt. Wilson: "...he gave me the slip just after he left the hotel." 
Murder Over New York - Inspector Vance: "Say, don't you think the guy that gave you the slip at Ramullah's could be Boggs?"
 
gendarme - A member of the French national police organization constituting a branch of the armed forces with responsibility for general law enforcement.
Charlie Chan Carries On (script) - Script Direction notes: Pam is holding animated conversation with bearded gendarme...
 
gilded lily - (as used) One who gives an often deceptively attractive or improved appearance.
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Charlie Chan: "Miss Lotus Kuang Toy evidently gilded lily."
 
Gin Rickey - An alcoholic beverage consisting of a mixture of gin, lime, and carbonated water.
Charlie Chan in Shanghai - James Andrews: "I'll join you at noon for a Gin Rickey."
 
G-man - Government man. A special law-enforcement agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. 
Charlie Chan in Shanghai - Charlie Chan: "You pretend to be G-man, now turn out to be 'NG'-man."
 
Golden Gate - The straight located at the opening of San Francisco Bay.  At the time of "Charlie Chan's Greatest Case," 1933, the Golden Gate Bridge, which today spans this straight, had not yet been built. 
Charlie Chan's Greatgest Case (script) - Second Man: "Most of the time you can see the Golden Gate and Mount Tamalpais."
 
Golden Gate International Exposition - Held on Treasure Island in San Francisco Bay from from February 18 through October 29, 1939 and from May 25 to October 29, 1940, the Golden Gate International Exposition demonstrated an eclectic blending of European, Eastern and Latin American architectural, landscape, and artistic styles. Evoking the exoticism of Pacific Rim cultures such as the Mayas, Incas, Malaysians, and Cambodians, many of the architectural structures reflected a nostalgic look at past civilizations. However, there were examples of a stream-lined, international style architecture, seemingly out of place with these other styles, but meant to reflect western nations along the Pacific Rim. Reinforcing this theme of modernism and technological innovation was the celebration of the earlier completion of the Golden Gate and San Francisco/Oakland Bay Bridges. 
 
The "West Coast World's Fair" created a distinctive environment, reflecting the dreams and aspirations of its time. Its theme, the "Pageant of the Pacific" allowed the exposition to look out beyond the continental United States to the Pacific Rim, not only accommodating these diverse cultures, but also making them the focus of the exhibition. This theme was developed in much of the programming, architectural design and realization of the fair. Architectural contributors included Arthur Brown, Jr., George Kelham, Lewis Hobart, William Merchant, Bernard Maybeck and Timothy L. Pflueger.

The Golden Gate International Exposition also took advantage of the high-tech developments, especially noted in the lighting of the fair. Jesse Stanton played the role of Jules Guerin as master colorist; and dramatic, indirect lighting, under the control of A.F. Dickerson, was used once again. Women played a prominent role in this exhibition, not only in helping with organization, but being focused upon as contributors to art exhibitions and to the special events at the fair.

The fair at Treasure Island, as with all international expositions, attempted to bring together the diverse populations of the world in peace. Situated on either side by two major difficult times, the Depression and World War II, the Golden Gate International Exposition was the last fair of this scale hosted by California.

Adapted from: Hard Times, High Expectations: Golden Gate International Exposition, www.bancroft.berkeley.edu.

Aerial view of Treasure Island

Graflex - A popular brand of camera through the first half of the twentieth century, a Graflex was stolen from the Rev. Upton, with circumstantial blame falling on John Quincy Winterslip in Charlie Chan's Greatest Case.
 
graflex.jpg
 
grand - (slang) A thousand dollars.
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - "Tip" Collins: "I thought my cut was going to be five grand."
 
Grant's Tomb - Officially designated as the General Grant National Memorial, Grant's Tomb stands as a tribute to Ulysses S. Grant, the principal author of Union victory during the Civil War and 18th president of the United States. Located in Riverside Park in Manhattan, this granite and marble monument is the final resting place of President Grant and his wife, Julia Dent Grant. It is also the second largest mausoleum in the Western Hemisphere.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Billie Bronson: "I want to see Grant's Tomb."
 
gravy - (slang) Money, profit, or benefit easily or illicitly gained. Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Lee Chan: "Want to get in the gravy, Pop?"
 
grilling - (slang) To question relentlessly; cross-examine.
Charlie Chan at the Circus - Lt. Macy: "We better round up the whole outfit and give them a grilling, Mr. Chan."
 
grip - A gripsack; a handbag; a satchel. 
Charlie Chan's Courage (script) - Script direction notes: Chan picks up his grip.
 
guillotined - To be beheaded with a guillotine, a device consisting of a heavy blade held aloft between upright guides and dropped to behead the victim below.
City in Darkness - Marcel Spivak: "His mother was guillotined."
 
gutter snipe - (slang) A neglected boy running at large; a street Arab.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Bessie Sibley: "Why, that jealous gutter snipe!" 
 
gyp - (slang) (1) A fraud or swindle. (2) One who defrauds; a swindler. 
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Pete lewis: "...I'll give you a blast in print that'll run you out of this town with your gyp fortune telling!"
 
hams - (slang) Performers who overact or exaggerate.
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Sgt. Kelly: "None of you hams are leaving the theater until this thing is cleared up."
 
Han dynasty - The Han dynasty lasted four hundred years, from 206 B.C. to 220 A.D. The Han dynasty is the East Asian counterpart of and contemporary with Rome in its golden age. During this dynasty, China officially became a Confucian state, prospered domestically, and extended its political and cultural influence over Vietnam, Central Asia, Mongolia, and Korea before finally collapsing under a mixture of domestic and external pressures.
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Professor Gordon: "Your beautiful game has suffered many changes since its introduction in the Han dynasty."
 
heavy sugar - (slang) Flattery from the opposite sex.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Joe Arnold: "You wouldn't be the first dame in the world to fall for heavy sugar."
 
heat - (slang) (1) An intensification of police activity in pursuing criminals. (2) The police. (Used with the.)
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Johnny Burke: "We'll lay low 'til the heat's off."
 
Hell's Kitchen - For decades after the Civil War, Hell's Kitchen on New York City's West Side between 14th and 52nd Streets, and Eighth Avenue and the waterfront, and the Tenderloin just to the east, glowed, simmered, and frequently boiled over with crime and corruption. Notorious gangs ruled the streets between the tenements, grog shops, slaughter houses, railroad yards, and gas works. In Hell's Kitchen, Bully Morrison pulled lamposts out of the sidewalk to use as shillelaghs. During prohibition Hell's Kitchen was the domain of Owney Madden and "Mad Dog" Coll who scared even the city's underworld.
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Dr. Cream: "A little boy from New York's Hell's Kitchen..."
 
Henri Désiré Landru - the Bluebeard of Paris - (1869-1922) An infamous murderer who, between the years 1914 and 1918 killed 11 victims, 10 women and the teenaged son of one of the women.  Landru would seduce the women who came to his Parisian villa and, after he been given access to their assets, he would kill them - probably by strangulation - and burn their dismembered bodies in his oven.
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Dr. Cream: "And here we have Henri Désiré Landru - the Bluebeard of Paris."
 
hep - (slang) Keenly aware of or knowledgeable about the latest trends or developments.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Joe Arnold: "If he ever gets hep that I'm Mike Hannigan..."
 
hick - (slang) A Provincial; an unsophisticated person.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Wally Burke: "Take your hands off me you big hick!"
 
high hat - A man's hat having a narrow brim and a tall cylindrical crown, usually made of silk.  Also called a top hat. 
Charlie Chan's Greatest Case (script) - Carlotta Egan: "What's in here...a high hat?"
 
Hindenburg - At 803.8 feet in length and 135.1 feet in diameter, the German passenger airship Hindenburg was the largest aircraft ever to fly.  The commercial flights of Hindenburg, along with Graf Zeppelin, pioneered the first transatlantic air service.  She carried hundreds of passengers and traveled thousands of miles before being destroyed in a tragic fire on May 6, 1937 at Lakehurst, New Jersey. 
 
Charlie Chan took the Hindenburg from Lakehurst, New Jersey across the Atlantic Ocean to Fredrickhaven, Germany in late July of 1936 as the last leg of his hurried trip from Honolulu to meet the ship Manhattan upon its arrival in Germany.
 
olyhindenburg.jpg
 
Hindu - (1) An adherent of Hinduism.  (2) A native of India, especially northern India.
Murder Over New York - Patricia West: "...his Hindu servant, Ramullah, arrived."
 
Hitler (Adolf Hitler) - (1889-1945) Austrian-born founder of the German Nazi Party and chancellor of the Third Reich (1933-1945). His fascist philosophy attracted widespread support, and after 1934 he ruled as an absolute dictator. Hitler's pursuit of aggressive nationalist policies resulted in the invasion of Poland (1939) and the subsequent outbreak of World War II. His regime was infamous for the extermination of millions of people, especially European Jews. He committed suicide when the collapse of the Third Reich was imminent.
City in Darkness - Narrator: "Hitler has pledged Germany to protect the Sudetens."
 
holding out - (as used) Witholding information.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Joan Wendell: "Say, you're not holding anything out on me, are you?"
 
home secretary - The British cabinet minister who is head of the Home Office.
Charlie Chan's Chance (script) - John Douglas: "Inspector, isn't it possible that if the British home secretary knew the facts of this case he would waive extradition?"
 
honey - (informal) Something remarably fine.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Joan Wendell: "...it's a honey."
 
honky-tonks - Cheap bars or dance halls.
Charlie Chan at the Circus - Lady Tiny: "He was only used to honky-tonks."
 
Honolulu - The capital and largest city of Hawaii, on the southeast coast of Oahu.  Honolulu's harbor was first entered by Europeans in 1794.  Settlement of the area began in 1816, and the city soon gained prominence as a whaling and sandalwood port.  Honolulu has been a major tourist center since the early twentieth century.  Population - 1930: 202,807; 1940: 257,696.
 
Honolulu was the home of Charlie Chan and his multitudinous family who lived on the slope of Punchbowl Hill.  This city is at least the starting point for a number of adventures, and, in two films, including Charlie Chan's Greatest Case and The Black Camel (filmed on location), serves as the backdrop for the entire film.  Other titles where at least some of the plot, if only implied, takes place in Honolulu include Charlie Chan Carries On, Charlie Chan's Secret, Charlie Chan at the Race Track, Charlie Chan in Honolulu, Charlie Chan in Reno, and Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise.
 
hook, line, and sinker - (informal) Without reservation; completely.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Pete Lewis: "Zodiac took it hook, line, and sinker."
 
hooks - (slang) Hands.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Johnny McCoy: "Who wouldn't try to cop a sneak with his hooks on 300 grand?"
 
hoo-mali-mali (ho'omalimali) - (Hawaiian, pronounced: "ho-oh-mah-lee-mah-lee") To flatter; to mollify with soft words or a gift; to soothe, quiet.
Charlie Chan's Courage (script) - Charlie Chan: "Hoo-mali-mali until mystery cleared away."
 
horsefeathers - Used to express disagreement or exasperation.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Tombstone Fletcher: "Horsefeathers!"
 
hot (1) - (slang) Wanted by the police.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Billie Bronson: "I'm not hot anymore, and you know it!"
 
hot (2) - Very good or impressive.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Vivian Wells: "...I must admit this doesn't look so hot."
 
hot seat - (slang) An electric chair.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Joe Arnold: "That's when I end up on the hot seat..."
 
Hottentot - (1) A Khoikhoin. (2) Any of the Khoisan languages spoken by the pastoral people of Namibia and South Africa.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Billie Bronson: "The Hottentot Club." 
 
humidor - A container designed for storing cigars or other tobacco products at a constant level of humidity. (Jimmy Chan: "Why, even this humidor has an English school emblem on it."
 
hunky-dory - (slang) Perfectly satisfactory; fine.
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Charlie Chan: "Happy to report Avalanche and jockey, as son Lee would say, 'hunky-dory.'"
 
hush money - (slang) A bribe paid to keep something secret.
Charlie Chan in London - Charlie Chan: "Hush money, given by murderer."
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Joan Wendell: "We'll blow some of this hush money..."
 
hydrochloric acid - A clear, colorless, fuming, poisonous, highly acidic aqueous solution of hydrogen chloride, HCl, used as a chemical intermediate and in petroleum production, ore reduction, food processing, pickling, and metal cleaning. It is found in the stomach in dilute form. 
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Used by Charlie Chan along with ferrocyanide of potassium to bring out the writing on a burnt florist card.
 
hypertrophic cirrhosis - A chronic disease of the liver, characterized by an increase in its connective tissue, a reduction in the size of the organ, and a degeneration of the parenchymatous constituents.
Charlie Chan's Courage (script) - Professor Gamble: "Probably hypertrophic cirrhosis."
 
in a jam - (slang) In a difficult, threatening, or embarrassing position; also, unable to solve a dilemma.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Johnny Burke: "Yeah, yeah, I'm in a jam."
Charlie Chan in Reno - Curtis Whitman: "Oh, she's in a jam."
 
inquisition - (1) A former tribunal of the Roman Catholic Church (1232-1820) created to discover and suppress heresy. (2) A severe interrogation, often violating the rights or privacy of individuals.
Charlie Chan's Secret - Alice Lowell: "Haven't we had enough of this inquisition?"
 
Intelligence Service - A unit responsible for gathering and interpreting information about an enemy.
City in Darkness - Prefect of Police Romaine: "Comrades of the Intelligence Service..."
 
in the doghouse - (slang) In great disfavor or trouble.
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Frederick Ross: "I guess that puts me in the doghouse."
 
in the red - Operating at a loss; in debt.
Charlie Chan at the Circus - Joe Kinney: "...the show went in the red."
 
Jack the Ripper - The name given to an unidentified serial killer (or killers) active in the Whitechapel area of London in the second half of 1888.  Although there have been numerous theories over the intervening decades, Jack the Ripper's identity may never be determined.
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Dr. Cream: "This is Jack the Ripper, London's mystery murderer of the year 1888."
 
Jake - (slang) Suitable or satisfactory; fine. 
Charlie Chan's Greatest Case (script) - Oswald Chan: "Everything's Jake."
 
Jap - (offensive slang) Used as a disparaging term for a person of Japanese birth or descent. Much used during World War II in reference to the Japanese.
The Black Camel - Wilkie Ballou: "This Jap has locked all the doors on us!"
 
Jesse - see: Owens, Jesse
 
Jiu Jitsu (or jiujitsu) - A Japanese method of self-defense without weapons in which holds and blows are supplemented by clever use of the attacker's own weight and strength.
Charlie Chan's Greatest Case (script) - Doctor: "This job was done by either a very powerful man or someone well versed in the Japanese art of Jiu Jitsu."
Charlie Chan's Courage (script) - Script direction notes: Chan is a little quicker, grabbing Delaney and doing a jiu-jitsu throw over his back.
 
job - (informal) A criminal act, especially a robbery.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Buzz Moran: "Everybody but the cops knows he pulled the job."
 
"Johnny-of-many-trades" (jack-of-all-trades) - A person who can do many different kinds of work.
Charlie Chan at the Circus - Charlie Chan: "Circus performer, like detective, must be Johnny-of-many-trades."
 
joint - (slang) (1) A cheap or disreputable gathering place. 
(2) A building or dwelling.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Joan Wendell: "Hey, what's the idea?  I can't get out of this joint?"
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Taxicab Driver: "I know this spook joint."
 
jug - (slang) A jail.
Charlie Chan at the Circus - Lt. Macy: "I'm going to give them a few hours in the jug..."
 
jump - (slang) To spring upon in a sudden attack, assault, or ambush.
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Jimmy Chan: "I didn't jump him."
 
kicked off - (slang) Died. 
Charlie Chan in Egypt - Tom Evans: "...he kicked off at the ripe old age of 78."
 
knock off - (slang) To kill or overcome.
Charlie Chan at the Circus - Lt. Macy: "He tried to knock her off."
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Willie Fern: "...didn't he knock off Butcher Degan for framin' you?"
 
kowtow - (1) To kneel and touch the forehead to the ground in expression of deep respect, worship, or submission, as formerly done in China. (2) To show servile deference.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Billie Bronson's supposed diary text, as read by Inspector Nelson: "It was sure funny to see everybody kowtow to Johnny and Buzz."
 
laid an egg - (informal) Having failed, especially in a public performance.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Fred Rhadini: "...since the first magician laid an egg."
 
lavalier - A jeweled pendant worn on a chain around the neck. 
Murder Over New York - Charlie Chan: "Very beautiful lavalier."
 
lay low -  (slang) Keep oneself or one's plans hidden; bide one's time to act.
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Bagley: "Now, get out of here and lay low."
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Johnny Burke: "We'll lay low 'til the heat's off."
 
lay...cards on the table - To make frank and clear revelation, as of one's motives or intentions.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Thomas Gregory: "Mr. Chan, I've come to lay my cards on the table."
 
lay off - (slang) To stop doing something; quit.
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Jimmy Chan: "Hey!  Tell him to lay off!)
 
layout - (informal) An establishment or property, especially a large residence or estate.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Pete Lewis: "Boy, what a layout."
 
League of Nations - A world organization established in 1920 to promote international cooperation and peace. It was first proposed in 1918 by President Woodrow Wilson, although the United States never joined the League. Essentially powerless, it was officially dissolved in 1946.
Charlie Chan in Shanghai - James Andrews: "...the Opium Committee of the League of Nations..."
 
Left Bank - A district of Paris on the southern, or left, bank of the Seine River. It has long been noted for its artistic and intellectual life.
City in Darkness - Belescu: "Take me over to the Left Bank."
 
lid - (slang) A hat.
Charlie Chan Carries On (script) - Elmer Benbow: "Just take off the benny, will you -- the lid, you know -- the hat."
 
live wire - (informal) A vivacious, alert, or energetic person. 
Charlie Chan's Chance (script) - Inspector Flannery: "This young lady is what we call a live wire."
 
Lone Ranger (The Lone Ranger) - The Lone Ranger was based on characters created by George W. Trendle and developed by writer Fran Striker. Their inspiration may have come from The Lone Star Ranger, a novel by Zane Grey. The basic premise is that the Lone Ranger is masked cowboy in the Old West who fights injustice, usually with the aid of an American Indian called Tonto. The Lone Ranger aired on radio for the first time on January 30, 1933 on WXYZ-AM radio in Detroit, Michigan and later on the Mutual Broadcasting System radio network. The Lone Ranger became one of the most successful properties on radio.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Charlie Chan: "This is Number Two Son, masquerading as Lone Ranger."
 
lorgnette - A pair of eyeglasses or opera glasses with a short handle. 
Charlie Chan's Greatest Case (script) - Barbara Winterslip: "Aunt Minerva once said something like that, but she traded her lorgnette for a ukelele [sic]."
 
Lovelock (John Lovelock) - Olympic runner representing New Zealand at the 1939 Olympic Games in Berlin who won the 1500 meter race at a time of 3:47.8.  This race and the awards ceremony can be seen in Charlie Chan at the Olympics.  The second-place finisher was Jack Cunningham (USA) with a time of 3:48.4, and third place went to Luigi Becalli of Italy (3:49.2).
Charlie Chan at the Olympics - Stadium Announcer: "1500 meter mile won by Lovelock, New Zealand..."
 
lowdown - (slang) The whole truth.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Speed Patten: "I'm going to see her tonight and get the lowdown."
 
Luger - A German semiautomatic pistol introduced before World War I and widely used by German troops in World War II.
City in Darkness - Charlie Chan: "Empty shell, ejected from Luger automatic pistol."
 
Luxor - The Luxor area of Upper Egypt was the Thebes of the ancient Egyptians - the capital of Egypt during the Middle and New Kingdoms. Today it is famous for its temples and the nearby Valley of the Kings.
Charlie Chan in Egypt - Carol Arnold: "No, he's in Luxor."
 
Maginot Line - A fortification built before World War II to protect France's eastern border; initially considered to be impregnable it was easily overrun by the Germans in 1940.
City in Darkness - Narrator: "Soldiers pour into the famous Maginot Line."
 
maharaja - (1) A king or prince in India ranking above a rajah, especially the sovereign of one of the former native states. (2) Used as a title for such a king or prince.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Speed Patton: "I got a swell human interest yarn on the Maharaja of Radfa today."
 
mahjong - A game of Chinese origin usually played by four persons with tiles resembling dominoes and bearing various designs, which are drawn and discarded until one player wins with a hand of four combinations of three tiles each and a pair of matching tiles.
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Charlie Chan: "Majong with two players?  Most unusual." 
 
Malacca stick (or Malacca cane) - A cane made from the stem of a rattan palm.
Charlie Chan Carries On (script) - Script Direction Notes: ...Ross with Malacca stick, head of which he taps against his lips and chin...
 
map - (slang) the human face.
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Steve McBirney: "Change this map.  Fix it so no cop will ever know me."
 
mapuchari - (Egyptian) Egyptian colloquial term for confection containing hashish.
Charlie Chan in Egypt - Charlie Chan: "Dr. Racine perhaps buy mapuchari here." 
 
Matsonia - Flagship steamer of the famous Matson Line.  For decades, the Matson Line carried passengers to and from Honolulu, Hawaii as well as other locations across the Pacific. 
Charlie Chan's Greatest Case (script) - Captain Arthur Temple Cope: "The Matsonia or the Australian boat..."
 
matsonia.jpg 
 
Matson Line - In 1882, Captain William Matson begun a shipping service between California and Hawaii.  Matson Navigation Company was incorporated in 1901.  The company's first passenger ship sailing was made by the steamer Lurline in 1908.  Larger passenger and freight vessels were built for the service over the next seven years.  During World War I WilhelminaMaui, and Matsonia were taken over by the Navy and not returned until 1920.

In 1926 Matson took over three ships, Sierra, Sonoma, and Ventura that had been sailing for the Oceanic Steamship Company in the Australian trade and reorganized as Matson-Oceanic Line.  In 1927 a new liner, Malolo, the most lavish yet seen on the west coast, joined the fleet and soon, three larger ships were ordered.  Matson took over its rival the Los Angeles Steamship Company, which had carried more passengers Hawaii in 1927 than Matson.  Briefly called Matson-Lassco Line, the San Francisco company set about, in the early 1930s, building three larger, faster, more luxurious ships, MariposaMonterey, and Lurline. Two ships sailed in Australian trade and two in Hawaiian replacing the older vessels.
 
Four Matson liners were used as war transports and served all over the worldmazingly.  After the war only the Matsonia re-entered the service to Hawaii but was sold in 1948 and replaced by the refitted Lurline.  The two remaining liners were sold but the Monterey was repurchased in the mid-1950s and renamed Matsonia to revive the weekly service to Hawaii.  In 1963 the Lurline was sold after engine problems and Matsonia took her name and continued in the Hawaiian trade.  By 1976 Matson had ended its passenger service and sold all remaining passenger ships.  Today, the Matson Line continues as a freight only line with a large fleet of container ships.
 
"Steamer Day, Honolulu"
 
Adapted from: Maritime Matters: Ocean liner history and cruise ship lines, www.maritimematters.com
 
meal ticket - A person or thing depended on as a source of financial support.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Vivian Wells: "...would he be stupid enough to hill his own meal ticket?"
 
Mephisto - The devil in the Faust legend to whom Faust sold his soul. Charlie Chan at the Opera - Gravelle: "The voice of Mephisto comes from the flames."
 
metallurgic - Of or pertaining to metallurgy or metals (in the case of bonds, probably relating to valuable metals such as gold or silver).
Charlie Chan at Monte Carlo - Gordon Chase: "$25,000 of the metallurgic bonds are missing."
 
Miraflores Locks - The locks located at the Pacific entrance to the Panama Canal.  The Miraflores Locks have the tallest gates in the Panama Canal system due to the great tidal fluctuation of the Pacific Ocean.
Charlie Chan in Panama - Governor D.C. Webster: "To reach battle stations in the Pacific, the fleet's full war compliment must pass through the Gatun Locks, the Gaillard Cut, the Pedro Miguel, and the Miraflores Locks,"
 
moon-faced - Having a round face.
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Steward: "Good luck to that moon-faced cabin boy."
 
Mount Tamalpais - A picturesque mountain on the opposite side of the bay from the city of San Francisco. 
Charlie Chan's Greatest Case (script) - Second Man: "Ever see Mount Tamalpais?"
 
mouse - (slang) A discolored swelling under the eye caused by a blow; a black eye.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Inspector Nelson: "Holy mackeral! Look!  Another mouse!"
 
MP - (abbreviation) Military police.  The branch of an armed force assigned to perform law enforcement duties, as on a military installation.
Charlie Chan in Panama - Notation on the arm band of the Military Police Officer: "MP"
 
mug - (as used - informal) The human face.
Murder Over New York - Inspector Vance: "We're going to start with a little cleansing of your mug."
 
mugs - Thugs, hoodlums.
Charlie Chan in Shanghai - Lee Chan: "Tell these mugs to lay off me..."
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Deputy Chief J.J. Kilvaine: "Now listen you two mugs..."
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Inspector O'Matthews: "Oh, he'll get five years for lifting mugs' maps."
 
Mussolini (Benito Mussolini) - (1883-1945) Led Italy from 1922 to 1943. He created a fascist state through the use of state terror and propaganda. His entry into World War II on the side of Nazi Germany made Italy a target for Allied attacks and ultimately led to his downfall and death.
City in Darkness - Narrator: "Rome parades her troops before Mussolini."
 
nag - (slang) A racehorse.
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Detective: What the kid means is to plank your dough on the nag's schnozola..."
 
nail - (slang) To stop and seize; catch.
The Black Camel - Chief of Police: "I'm going to nail that bird now!"
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Pete Lewis: "Now we can nail him." 
 
Napata - An ancient city of Nubia near the Fourth Cataract of the Nile River in modern-day Sudan. It flourished during the eighth century BC.
Charlie Chan in Egypt - Dr. Thurston: "Our last communication came from Napata."
 
nappy - (slang) Crazy, unpredictable, potentially dangerous.
Charlie Chan in London - Geoffrey Richmond: "She's [the horse Hellcat] nappy."
 
NG - (abbrevriation) No Good.
Charlie Chan in Shanghai - Charlie Chan: "You pretend to be G-man, now turn out to be 'NG'-man."
 
nicked - Cut short; checked.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Jimmy Chan: "...but we nicked this case."
 
nifty - (slang) First-rate; great.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Speed Patten: "Looks like Burke pulled a nifty on you."
Charlie Chan in Panama - Jimmy Chan: "Boy oh boy!  Why don't I think of nifties like that?"
 
nightcap - An alcoholic drink taken just before bedtime.
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Professor Gordon: "How about a nightcap, Doctor?" 
 
1936 Olympic Games - The International Olympic Committee had awarded the Games to Berlin in 1931 with no idea that Adolph Hitler was to take power in Germany two years later. By 1936, the Nazis had control over Germany and had already begun to implement their racist policies. There was international debate as to whether the 1936 Olympics in Nazi Germany should be boycotted. The United States was extremely close to boycotting but at the last minute decided to accept the invitation to attend.

The Nazis saw the event as a way to promote their ideology. They built four grandiose stadiums, swimming pools, an outdoor theater, a polo field, and an Olympic Village that had 150 cottages for the male athletes. Throughout the Games, the Olympic complex was covered in Nazi banners. These Games were the first ones televised and were the first to use telex transmissions of the results. Also debuting at these Olympics was the torch relay.

Jesse Owens, a black athlete from the United States, was the star of the 1936 Olympic Games, which began on August 1 and lasted for two weeks. Owens, called the "Tan Cyclone," brought home four gold medals: the 100-meter dash, the long jump (made an Olympic record), the 200-meter sprint around a turn (made a world record), and part of the team for the 400-meter relay, a race which can be seen in "Charlie Chan at the Olympics."

About 4,000 athletes, including Lee Chan, participated, representing 49 countries.

1936 Olympic Games

nitric acid - A transparent, colorless to yellowish, fuming corrosive liquid that is a highly reactive oxidizing agent.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Jimmy Chan: "Nitric acid leaves a nasty burn."
City in Darkness - Charlie Chan: "...nitric acid used in making printing plates."
 
nitroglycerin - A liquid appearing like a heavy oil, colorless or yellowish, and consisting of a mixture of several glycerin salts of nitric acid, and hence more properly called glycerin nitrate. It is made by the action of nitric acid on glycerin in the presence of sulphuric acid. It is extremely unstable and terribly explosive.
Charlie Chan in Panama - Miss Finch: "...I wondered if we could use a small portion of that nitroglycerin and blast our way out of here."
 
nuts - (slang) Crazy or eccentric.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Police Officer: "And suspected of being nuts."
 
Oakland - A city of western California on San Francisco Bay opposite San Francisco.
Charlie Chan: "Message from Oakland airport."

Oceanic - A supposed ship in the Matson Line of Pacific steamers, the S.S. Oceanic was seen in Charlie Chan at the Race Track.  The name of this vessel could be a reference to the Oceanic Steamship Company, which was bought out in 1926 by Matson.

Olympic Stadium, Berlin -  For the 1936 Summer Olympics, and to satisfy his own political plans, Hitler's National-Socialist (Nazi) Party built the Olympiastadion surrounded by the massive Olympischer Platz.  For the 1936 Summer Olympics, and to satisfy his own political plans, Hitler's National-Socialist (Nazi) Party built the Olympiastadion surrounded by the massive Olympischer Platz.

Berlin Olympic Stadium 

once-over - (slang) A swift cursory examination or inspection

Charlie Chan at the Circus - Lt. Macy: Go ahead, fellas, give the place the once-over."

one-horse - Very small or insignificant.
Charlie Chan's Courage (script) - Bob Crawford: "I'm sorry that you have to put up at that one-horse hotel."
 
on ice - (slang) Away from the public.  (as used: In jail.)
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Inspector Nelson: "And that's all I need to put that guy on ice."
 
on the lam - (slang) Running away, especially from the police.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Inspector Nelson: "...a couple of minutes after Burke took it on the lam..."
 
on the level - (slang) Without deception; honest.
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Lee Chan: "Pop, this is on the level."
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Murdock: "How do I know it's on the level?"
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Jimmy Chan: "Let's call up the Granville Insurance Company and find out if Gregory's on the level."
 
on the spot - (idiom) In a difficult situation.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Marie Collins: "They had Johnny on the spot..."
City in Darkness - Belescu: "You're not going to put me on the spot for murder!"
 
on the up and up - (slang) The truth.
Charlie Chan at the Circus - Lt. Macy: "This marriage certificate's on the up and up."
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Joe Arnold: "Do you think she's on the up and up?" 
 
Ouija board - A board with the alphabet on it; used with a planchette to spell out supernatural messages.
Charlie Chan's Secret - Henrietta Lowell regularly used a Ouija board, usually with the assistance of her butler, Baxter.
 
overture - An instrumental composition intended especially as an introduction to an extended work, such as an opera or oratorio. 
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Mr. Arnold: "There's the overture!"
 
Owens, Jesse - A black athlete from the United States, Jesse Owens (1913 - 1980) was the star of the 1936 Olympic Games, which began on August 1 and lasted for two weeks. Owens, called the "Tan Cyclone," won four gold medals: the 100-meter dash, the long jump (set an Olympic record), the 200-meter sprint around a turn (set a world record), and part of the team for the 400-meter relay, a race which can be seen in Charlie Chan at the Olympics.
Charlie Chan at the Olympics - Betty Adams: "Come on, Jesse, open up that lead!"
 
 
Jesse Owens
 
 
Panama Canal Zone - A strip of land, about 10 milkes (16 km) wide, across the Isthmus of Panama. Formerly administered by the United States for the operation of the Panama Canal, it was turned over to Panama in 1979.
Charlie Chan in Panama - Sign: "MILITARY RESERVATION PANAMA CANAL ZONE"
 
Panama City - The capital and largest city of Panama.
Charlie Chan in Panama - Emil Manolo: "You know, you will like Panama City."
 
Panamas (Panama hats) - Natural-colored, hand-plaited hats made from leaves of the jipijapa plant of South and Central America.  These hats come in many styles.
Charlie Chan in Panama - R.J. Godley: "They tell me this fellow makes great Panamas."
 
Pan American World Airways Clipper - On November 11, 1935, Pan American Airway's China Clipper, a Martin M-130 flying boat, made the first transpacific airmail flight from San Francisco to Honolulu, Midway Island, Wake Island, Guam, and Manila in the Philippines.
 
The China Clipper was the largest flying boat ever, and gave passengers the opportunity to fly in airborne luxury. The Clipper had a spacious lounge which was wider than a Pullman club car.  In the lounge, passengers could sit in broad armchairs, and they could dine on food served on china.

Following the route pioneered by Captain Musick, Pan American World Airways Clippers flew on a schedule of stops that stretched from San Francisco to Manila.  Hong Kong was soon added as the final leg of a journey that would allow passengers to fly all the way from the U.S. mainland to China. 

Although the Clippers were each named for their destinations, that is, "Hawaii," "Philippine," and "China," they were commonly referred to as "China Clippers."  The China Clipper cruised at about 160 miles per hour and had a range of 3,200 miles.  Later models that were added to the Clipper fleet could cruise at just over 180 miles per hour at a range of about 3,500 miles.  A flight between San Francisco and Honolulu cost passengers a hefty $720 and would take between 18 and 20 hours, flying at an altitude of about 8,000 feet. 

Regular Clipper service between Honolulu and the mainland continued throughout the 1930s and into the start of the next decade until the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.

Charlie Chan made fairly regular use of the Clipper route between Honolulu and San Francisco, flying on the plane to the mainland in Charlie Chan's SecretCharlie Chan at the Olympics, Charlie Chan in Reno, and Charlie Chan at Treasure Island.

Charlie Chan at the Olympics - Hopkins: "The Clipper left here Wednesday at two o'clock."                                                  Charlie Chan in Reno - Curtis Whitman: "I've reserved seats on the Clipper for both of us." 

clipperpostcard.jpg

paraffin test - A chemical test that is used to indicate the presence of nitrates, which are found in gunpowder.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Charlie Chan: "Perhaps paraffin test better alibi, if negative."
 
payoff - (informal) The climax of a narrative or sequence of events.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Speed Patten: 'You mean it's the payoff?"
 
Pedro Miguel - The second-to-last lock encountered by ships heading toward the Pacific along the Panama Canal.
Charlie Chan in Panama - Governor D.C. Webster: "To reach battle stations in the Pacific, the fleet's full war compliment must pass through the Gatun Locks, the Gaillard Cut, the Pedro Miguel, and the Miraflores Locks,"
 
pegged - (informal) To classify; categorize.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Jimmy Chan: "Gee, Pop, I certainly had him pegged wrong."
 
Pentonville prison - Opened in 1840 in London, England, Pentonville prison became the model for British prisons.  Between 1902 and 1961, 120 men were hanged at Pentonville, and this prison remains a major London prison to this day.  In Charlie Chan in London, Paul Gray was scheduled to be hanged at Pentonville prison.  His sister, Pamela, enlisted the aid of Charlie Chan to save her brother's life by finding evidence to prove his innocense.
 
pin - (slang) To attribute a crime to someone. 
Charlie Chan at the Olympics - Arthur Hughes: You can't pin that shooting on me!"
Charlie Chan in Reno - Wally Burke: "This is the second time you've tried to pin this thing on me!"
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Jimmy Chan: "Boy, am I going to pin it on him."
 
pinch - (slang) To take into custody; arrest.
Charlie Chan at the Circus - Lt. Macy: "We've got enough on him now to make a pinch."
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Detective: "This is a pinch."
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Joe Arnold: "I ought to pinch you for impersonating an officer!"
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Charlie Chan: "Would favorite son like to make personal pinch?"
 
pip - (informal) Someone or something wonderful. 
Charlie Chan in Shanghai - Lee Chan: "Yeah, it's a pip, too." 
 
pipe down - (slang) To stop talking; quiet down.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Inspector Nelson: "Pipe down!"
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Randolph: "Pipe down, all of you!" 
 
plunger - Someone who risks losses for the possibility of considerable gains.
Charlie Chan's Courage (script) - Sally Jordan: "You mean the Wall Street plunger?"
 
police blotter - The daily written record of events (as arrests) in a police station.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Pete Lewis: "...ever since I started covering the police blotter at the old Powell Street station."
 
poppycock - Senseless talk: nonsense. 
Charlie Chan's Greatest Case (script) - Minerva Winterslip: "This is all poppycock."
 
pounding pavement - (slang) Traveling the streets on foot; walking a particular route over and over, as a policeman who pounds a beat.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Deputy Chief J.J. Kilvaine: "Well, Charlie, if this don't send me back to Billy Goat Hill pounding pavement, I'm an Eskimo!"
 
Powell Street - A major street on San Francisco, California which traverses much of the city and crossing near to the western boundary of Chinatown.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Pete Lewis: "...ever since I started covering the police blotter at the old Powell Street station."
 
President Benes (Eduard Benes) - (1884-1948) Czechoslovakian politician who was foreign minister (1918-1935) and president (1935-1938) until the German occupation forced him to flee the country. On his return he was again elected president (1946) but resigned after refusing to sign a Communist constitution (1948).
City in Darkness - Narrator: "President Benes urges the Czechs to defy the Nazi demands."
 
President Pierce - Built in 1921, one of the ships in the Dollar Steamsip Line (later, the American Presidents Line0 that carried passengers to and from Honolulu, throughout the Pacific, and around-the-world during much of the twentieth century.
Charlie Chan's Courage (script) - Sally Jordan: "Thursday morning, on the President Pierce."
 
President Tyler - A ship based on the ships named after Amrican presidents of the Dollar Steamship Line (later, the American Presidents Line) that carried passengers to and from Honolulu, throughout the Pacific, and around-the-world during much of the twentieth century.
Charlie Chan's Greatest Case (script) - Captain Arthur Temple Cope: "I've changed my mind about the President Tyler."
 
prima donna - (1) The leading woman soloist in an opera company. (2) A temperamental, conceited person. 
Charlie Chan at the Opera - A poster advertising the San Marco Opera Company's production of Carnival features prima donna Lilli Rochelle.
 
Prime Minister Chamberlain (Neville Chamberlain) - (1869-1940) British politician and prime minister (1937-1940) who advocated a policy of appeasement toward the fascist regimes of Europe. He was forced to declare war on Germany after its invasion of Poland in 1939.
City in Darkness - Narrator: "...Prime Minister Chamberlain rushes by plane to Hitler for a last-minute plea to avert war."
 
pseudologia fantastica - An elaborate and often fantastic account of exploits that is false but that the teller believes to be true.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Charlie Chan: "He is man of great ego with disease known to science as pseudologia fantastica." 
(Charlie Chan continues, reading from History of Psychiatry by Kahne: 'Pathological liars and swindlers suffer from exaggerated fantasy, unleashed vanity, and great ambition which robs them of caution known to saner men.'")
 
Puccini - (Giaccomo Puccini, 1858-1924) Italian operatic composer whose works include La Bohème (1896) and Madame Butterfly (1904).
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Mr. Arnold: "For the sake of Puccini, Verdi, Wagner, and me, get on that stage!"
 
pump - (slang) To question closely or persistently.
Charlie Chan in Panama - Sailor: "This girl here, she's trying to pump me about the fleet."
 
Queen of Sheba - The Biblical queen who met with King Solomon of Israel (thought to have occurred around 950-930 B.C.). On hearing of his wisdom, II Chronicles 9 says that the Queen made the journey north to Solomon's courts "to test him with hard questions." The conference proved a success, culminating in the two monarchs bestowing wealth and good favor on each other.
Charlie Chan's Courage (script) - Constable Brackett: "And I'm the Queen of Sheba."
 
queer - (slang) To ruin or thwart.
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Steve McBirney: "You queer this, and you're both through."
 
quinine sulphate - A medicine that is mainly used for reducing the occurrence of nocturnal leg cramps, although it is also used against malaria, unknown infective species, and myotonia. 
Charlie Chan's Secret - Charlie Chan: "Quinine sulphate, when exposed to rays of ultraviolet lamp, produce mysterious light which accompany apparition."
 
racket - (slang) A business or occupation.
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Gangster: "Stuck your snoot in the wrong racket this time, didn't you?"
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Joe Arnold: "Yeah, what's your racket?"
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Pete Lewis: "...to write a story about the spook racket?"
Charlie Chan at thew Wax Museum - Steve McBirney: "Well, you got a great racket."
 
radio - Short for radiogram.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Paul Essex: I've got to send a radio."
 
radiogram - A message transmitted by wireless telegraphy.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Steward: "Radiogram for you, Mr. Essex."
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Jimmy Chan: "Did he send a radiogram before he was murdered?"
 
rain check - A promise that an unaccepted offer will be renewed in the future. This term comes from baseball, where in the 1880s it became the practice to offer paying spectators a rain check entitling them to future admission for a game that was postponed or ended early owing to bad weather. By the early 1900s the term was transferred to tickets for other kinds of entertainment, and later to a coupon entitling a customer to buy, at a later date and at the same price, a sale item temporarily out of stock. 
Charlie Chan in Panama - Charlie Chan: "...must ask for rain check."
 
Rameses Dynasty - Probable reference to the lengthy reign of Rameses II, also known as Rameses the Great, who was an Egyptian pharaoh of the nineteenth dynasty.  He was born circa 1302 BC and became pharaoh in his early 20s.  Rameses II reigned a total of 66 years.  He was once said to have lived to be 99 years old, but it is more likely that he died in his ninetieth year.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Charlie Chan: "Table lamp of ancient Egypt - Rameses Dynasty
 
rap - (slang) A sentence to serve time in prison.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Inspector Nelson:"He'll let you take the rap!"
 
rifling - (1) To search with intent to steal. (2) To ransack or plunder; pillage. (3) To rob.
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Jeramiah Walters: "Will you be so kind to tell me why your son was rifling my cabin?"
 
Rifs - Berber people of Morocco with whom the French had fought.
Charlie Chan's Secret - Charlie Chan: "Was taken prisoner by Rifs."
 
road house (or roadhouse) - An inn, restaurant, or nightclub located on a road outside a town or city. 
Charlie Chan's Chance (script) - Script direction notes:...WIDE SHOT EXTERIOR ROAD HOUSE CAFE NIGHT.
 
rogues' gallery - A collection of pictures of known and suspected criminals maintained in police files and used for making identifications.
Charlie Chan's Chance (script) - Inspector Flannery: "This is our Rogues' Gallery."
 
Rotary Club - a group of businessmen in a town organized as a service club and to promote world peace.
The Black Camel - Charlie Chan: "I attend Rotary Club banquet here at hotel."
 
roulette - A gambling game in which the players bet on which slot of a rotating disk a small ball will come to rest in. 
Charlie Chan at Monte Carlo - Jules Joubert: "Perhaps you would like to play a little roulette or chemin de fer, no?"
 
Royal Hawaiian - The Royal Hawaiian Hotel, which opened on February 1, 1927, was built by the Matson Navigation Company at a cost of $4 million. Constructed on 15 acres of beautiful Waikiki beach frontage, the luxurious pink Moorish-style hotel, was promoted world-wide as a premier visitor destination. The romance that had made Waikiki so attractive in the past contributed to insure that the "Pink Palace" was a favorite of both visitors and local residents, which it has remained for decades. 
Charlie Chan's Greatest Case (script) - Arlene Compton: "...that darling emerald necklace we saw in the arcade of the Royal Hawaiian."
 
royalhawaiian.jpg
 
rubbed out - (slang)  Killed, murdered.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Meeker: "I want to know the time Mitchell was rubbed out."
 
rubber - (1) A series of games of which two out of three or three out of five must be won to terminate the play. (2) An odd game played to break a tie.
Charlie Chan's Chance (script) - Kenneth Dunwood: "But you left the room just after we lost the third rubber..."
 
rumba (1) A dance of Cuban origin, combining complex footwork with a pronounced movement of the hips. (2) A modern ballroom adaptation of this dance. (3) Music for this dance or in this style. 
Charlie Chan at the Circus - Lee Chan: "Oh, boy, I'll bet you can shake a mean rumba."
 
St. Francis Hotel - An historic San Francisco hotel, located at 335 Powell Street.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Charlie Chan: "Engage rooms at St. Francis Hotel."

 



Hotel St. Francis, ca. 1940.

 
sap - (slang) A gullible person; a dupe.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Joe Arnold: "...that Chan guy is no sap."
Charlie Chan in Reno - Jeanne Bentley: "Is it my fault that you're sap enough to trail me wherever I go?"
 
sarsaparilla - Any of several tropical American plants of the genus Smilax, having fragrant roots used as a flavoring. The dried roots of any of these plants. A sweet soft drink flavored with these roots.
Charlie Chan in Shanghai - Charlie Chan: "Sarsapirilla." [Ordered by Chan at the Cafe Versailles]
 
Sauromalus ater - A common chuckwalla.
Charlie Chan's Courage (script) - Professor Gamble: "Did you ever study the Sauromalus Ater?"
 
scabbard - A sheath, as for a dagger or sword.
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Charlie Chan: "Also, madman would not use Barelli's knife, having one in his own scabbard."
 
scoop - (slang) An exclusive news story acquired by luck or initiative before a competitor.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Speed Patten: "Nice scoop, kid."
 
Scotland Yard - The detective department of the metropolitan police force of London.
Charlie Chan Carries On (script) - Script direction notes: SUPERIMPOSE TITLE "SCOTLAND YARD"
Murder Over New York - Charlie Chan: "...how does Scotland Yard excuse your honorable absence?"
 
schnozola - (slang) Nose.
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Detective: "What the kid means is to plank your dough on the nag's schnozola..."
 
scram - (slang) To leave a scene at once; go abruptly.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Vivian Wells: "...never have I been so politely been told to scram."
 
screwy - (slang)  (1) Eccentric; crazy.  (2) Ludicrously odd, unlikely, or inappropriate.
Charlie Chan in Panama - Jimmy Chan: "Sounds all screwy to me."
 
sea legs - The ability to adjust one's balance to the motion of a ship, especially in rough seas.
Charlie Chan in Shanghai - James Andrews: "...see if I can get rid of these sea legs."
 
Sekhmet - Ancient Egyptian goddess. Sekhmet means "The Mighty One," and she was one of the most powerful of the gods and goddesses. She was the goddess who carried out divine punishment to the enemies of the gods and of the pharaoh.
Charlie Chan in Egypt - Dr. Thurston: "That is Sekhmet, Goddess of Vengeance."
 
serrurier - (French) Locksmith.
City in Darkness - Sign: "LOUIS SANTELLE SERRURIER"
 
setup - The gathering and organization of the equipment needed for an operation, procedure, or task.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Pete Lewis: "Boy, what a setup."
 
shadowing - Following, especially in secret; trailing.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Jimmy Chan: "Are you shadowing someone?"
 
shake a leg - (idiom - as used) Hurry up. 
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Tour Conductor: "Shake a leg, folks."
 
shakeup - (as used) A jail.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Charlie Chan: "...while we have big volcano, you have biggest shakeup."
 
Shang dynasty - The Shang dynasty (1766 B.C. to 1027 B.C.), considered by many to be the earliest Chinese dynasty, ruled parts of northern and central China. Its capital city was located at Anyang near the border of Henan from about 1384 B.C. This dynasty was based on agriculture; millet, wheat, and barley were the primary crops grown. Aside from their agricultural prowess, the Shang dynasty was also advanced in metallurgy. Bronze ships, weapons, and tools were found from that era. 
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Charlie Chan: "Golden era Shang dynasty, north China." 
 
Shanghai - A city of eastern China at the mouth of the Chang Jiang (Yangtze River) southeast of Nanjing.  The largest city in the country, Shanghai was opened to foreign trade by the Treaty of Nanking (1842) and quickly prospered.  France, Great Britain, and the United States all held large concessions in the city until the early 20th century.
The city visited by Charlie Chan in Charlie Chan in Shanghai.
 
Sherlock - A detective, from the famous fictional sleuth, Sherlock Holmes, created by Arthur Conan Doyle.
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Charlie Chan: "Miniature Sherlock now suspect worthy Doctor?"
 
showup - A presentation of a criminal defendant or arrestee individually to a witness for identification.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Chief of Police King: "...I'm on my way to the showup."
 
shyster - (slang) An unethical, unscrupulous practitioner, especially of law.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Inspector Nelson: "Get out of here, Burke, and take that shyster with you!"
 
singe bleu - (French) Blue monkey. (Pronounced: "sange bluh") 
Charlie Chan in Paris - Charlie Chan: "Have heard so much about thrilling dancer at Le Singe Bleu."
 
Sing Sing Prison - Opened in 1828 on the Hudson River about 30 miles north of New York City (hence the phrase "up the river" used to denote being sent to prison), and named after the Sint Sinck Indians, Sing Sing Prison has housed some of the country's most notorious criminals during its long history.  Sing Sing will always be associated with the electric chair, which was used between the 1890s and 1963 to execute  613 men and women.
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Judge: "...you are hereby sentenced to the punnishment of death, to be executed upon you at Sing Sing Prison..."
 
sister - (informal) Used as a form of address for a woman or girl.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Police Officer: "Take it easy, sister."
Charlie Chan in Panama - Military Police Officer: "Is that all you had on your mind, sister?"
 
sit-down strike - A strike in which workers refuse to leave the workplace until a settlement is reached.
Charlie Chan at Monte Carlo - Charlie Chan: "Perhaps like own taxi, on sit-down strike."
 
skip - (slang) To leave hastily.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Inspector Nelson: "A year ago, that little dame was so hot she had to skip the country."
 
Skippy - A popular cartoon character created by Percy Crosby in 1923. 
Charlie Chan's Chance (script) - Script direction notes: He looks like a Chinese Skippy.
 
skippy.jpg
 
slumming - (slang) to "go out on the town." 
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Joan Wendell: "...just slumming."
 
smackers - (slang) Dollars.
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Detective: I'll take a chance - ten smackers."
 
snappy - (slang) Lively or energetic; brisk. 
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Charlie Chan: "Make short and most snappy, please."
Charlie Chan in Reno - Mack: "All right, come on in you guys and make it snappy."
 
snoot - (slang) Nose.
Charlie Chan at the Race Track - Gangster: "Stuck your snoot in the wrong racket this time, didn't you?"
 
socked - (see: sock)
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Wilkie: "Say, somebody socked me."
 
sock - To hit or strike forcefully; punch.
Charlie Chan at the Olympics - Lee Chan: "...if I have to sock Hopkins myself."
 
socked - see: sock 
Murder Over New York - Jimmy Chan: "Somebody socked me on the head and stole the briefcase!" 
 
soprano - (1) The highest singing voice of a woman or young boy.  (2) A person singing in such a voice.
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Pop: "Anita Barelli, second soprano."
 
soup and fish - (slang) A tuxedo or other men's eveningwear. The earliest citation for "soup and fish" in the Oxford English Dictionary comes from a P.G. Wodehouse story in 1918, but it may be assumed that the phrase was in common use for some time, probably at least since the 19th century, before Wodehouse invoked it.
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Charlie Chan: "Please, do not need soup and fish."
 
spill - (slang) To disclose, divulge. 
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Speed Patten: "...she didn't spill anything."
 
spill the beans - (slang) To disclose a secret.
The Black Camel - Charlie Chan's Oldest Daughter: "C'mon, Pop, spill the beans!"
 
sprung - (slang) To cause to be released from prison or other confinement.
Murder Over New York - Inspector Vance: "And to think I had that guy sprung."
 
squeezing - (slang) (1) Extracting by dishonest means; extorting. (2) Pressuring or intimidating (someone) to comply with a demand, as to make an extortion payment.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Deputy Chief J.J. Kilvane: "Was he squeezing Paul Essex?"
 
squirt - (slang) A small or young person.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Captain Johnson: "...who is this young squirt."
 
S.S. Manhattan - The S.S. Manhattan, which the members of the United States Olympic team, including Lee Chan, took from New York City to Hamburg, Germany for the 1936 Berlin Olympic Games had an interesting history.
 
A product of New York Shipbuilding Corporation, the S.S. Manhattan, a ship of the United States Lines, was launched at Camden, New Jersey, in 1931. Her maiden voyage on August 10, 1932 was from New York City to Hamburg, Germany with calls at Cobh, Plymouth, and Le Havre outbound, and Le Havre, Southampton, and Cobh inbound. She remained on this route until World War II began in September 1939.
 
S.S. 'Manhattan'
 
stateroom - A private cabin or compartment with sleeping accommodations on a ship or train.
Charlie Chan at the Circus - Tom Holt: "Mr. Gaines never let it out of his stateroom."
 
state's evidence - Evidence for the prosecution in criminal proceedings.
Charlie Chan's Secret - Morton: "You can save yourself a lot of grief by turning state's evidence."
 
steer - (slang) To direct the course of.
Charlie Chan at the Circus - Lt. Macy: "You sure got a bright kid, he just gave me a good steer."
 
stem to stern - (nautical slang) Front to back, throughout.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Joe Arnold: "I've been around this tub from stem to stern..."
 
step on it - (informal) To go faster; hurry.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Johnny Burke: "Step on it."
 
stevedores - Workers who are employed in the loading or unloading of ships.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Captain Johnson: "We've just docked and a gang of stevedores will be on board any minute."
 
stick - (informal) Remain.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Deputy Chief J.J. Kilvaine: "I'm in this with you, I might as well stick."
 
stiffs - (slang) Corpses. 
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Coroner: "Well, I know none of those stiffs in there took it!"
 
stir bug - (slang) A prisoner.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Joe Arnold: "Wait'll I get my hands on that stir bug!"
 
stub - (as used) The small unused part of something, especially the end of a cigarette that is left after smoking.
Charlie Chan's Greatest Case (script) - Charlie Chan: "Stub found here that night, Virginian."
 
Sudeten Zone (Sudetenland) - An historical region of northern Czech Republic along the Polish border. Long inhabited by ethnic Germans, it was seized by the Nazis in September 1938 and was restored to Czechoslovakia in 1945, after which the German population was expelled.
City in Darkness - Narrator: "Prague places the Sudeten Zone under marshall law."
 
sugar daddy - (slang) A wealthy, usually older man who gives expensive gifts to a young person in return for sexual favors or companionship.
City in Darkness - Charlie Chan: "Quite evident sugar daddy attract many butterflies."
 
sulphuric acid - A heavy, corrosive, oily liquid, colorless when pure, but usually yellowish or brownish, produced by the combined action of sulphur dioxide, oxygen (from the air), steam, and nitric fumes. It attacks and dissolves many metals and other intractable substances, sets free most acids from their salts, and is used in the manufacture of hydrochloric and nitric acids, of soda, of bleaching powders, etc. It is also powerful dehydrating agent, having a strong affinity for water, and eating and corroding paper, wood, clothing, etc. It is thus used in the manufacture of ether, of imitation parchment, and of nitroglycerin. It is also used in etching iron, in removing iron scale from forgings, in petroleum refining, etc., and in general its manufacture is the most important and fundamental of all the chemical industries.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Police Chemist: "A solution of "A solution of diphenylamine and sulfuric acid which reacts instantly to nitrates." and sulfuric acid which reacts instantly to nitrates."
 
swell head (swelled head) - (idiom) To be overly self-confident or conceited.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Jimmy Chan: "Or, as Pop would put it: 'Swell head gives owner more trouble than indigestion.'"
 
tailed - (slang) Followed.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Johnny Burke: "...and see that you're not tailed."
 
take a powder - (idiom) To make a quick departure; run away.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Joe Arnold: "Trying to take a powder on me, eh?"
 
talking through your hat - (idiom) To talk nonsense.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Deputy Chief J.J. Kilvaine: "Aw, you're talking through your hat."
 
Teletype - Trademark name of a device that can send typed messages over telephone lines to a receiving device.
Charlie Chan at the Opera - The Teletype was used to send a message from the Los Angeles Bulletin to the Chigago Sun requesting information on Gravelle.
 
The Great War - World War I; a war between the allies (Russia, France, British Empire, Italy, United States, Japan, Rumania, Serbia, Belgium, Greece, Portugal, Montenegro) and the central powers (Germany, Austria-Hungary, Turkey, Bulgaria) from 1914 to 1918.
City in Darkness - Narrator: "Calling for the greatest movement of armed forces since the close of The Great War..."
 
the river - (slang) In prison.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Speed Patten: "You'll get a swell view of it - from the river."
 
thirty-eight - A .38 caliber revolver.
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Frederick Ross: "Thirty-eight, ugly weapon."
 
thirty pieces of silver - In the Bible (Matthew 26:15), the amount that Judas was paid for his portrayal of Jesus.
Murder Over New York - Charlie Chan: "Thirty pieces of silver...Symbol of ancient betrayal." 
 
tomfoolery - (1) Foolish behavior. (2) Something trivial or foolish; nonsense.
Charlie Chan in London - Major Jardine: "If you think I'm going on with this tomfoolery..."
 
tommyrot - (slang) Utter foolishness; nonsense.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Captain Johnson: "I've listened to enough of this tommyrot!"
 
tonga - The name of the poison mentioned by Charlie Chan that was supposedly used by the Dyak headhunters of Borneo on the tips of their blow-gun darts.
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Charlie Chan: "Tonga, poison used by Dyak headhunters of Borneo."
 
Tonopah - A small Nevada town located 345 miles southeast of Reno.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Chief of Police King: "Tombstone's on the way to Tonopah to pick him up."
 
took a powder - (idiom) Having made a quick departure; ran away.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Inspector Nelson: "What were you going to show me when Burke took a powder?"
 
Tower of the Sun - A 400-foot-tall structure that was the dominant feature and centerpiece of the Golden Gate Internation Exposition at Treasure Island in San Francisco.  The "West Coast World's Fair" ran from February 18 through October 29, 1939 and from May 25 to September 29, 1940.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Passenger: "No, that's the Tower of the Sun"
 
Tower of the Sun
 
tracer - An investigation or inquiry organized to trace missing goods or persons.
Charlie Chan at the Olympics - San Francisco Police Department Radio Officer: "San Francisco Police - reporting tracer on Richard Masters and Yvonne Roland..."
 
Treasure Island - An artificial island in the San Francisco Bay between San Francisco and Oakland. It is connected by a small isthmus to Yerba Buena Island, a naturally formed island. It was created in 1939 for the Golden Gate International Exposition by dredging up dirt from the bay.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Steward: "There's the World's Fair, Treasure Island."
 
trunk line - A direct line between two telephone switchboards.
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Edwards: "Quiet, please, the studio's testing the trunk line."
 
tub - (slang) A wide, clumsy, slow-moving boat.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Joe Arnold: "I've been around this tub from stem to stern..."
 
twenty-two - A .22 caliber firearm (pistol or rifle).
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Paul Essex: "When he wasn't annoying me, he was shooting little birds with a twenty-two."
 
two-franc piece - A French monetary coin.
City in Darkness - Charlie Chan: Prodigal two-franc piece find odd resting place."
 




Two-franc coin, as the one found by Chan.

 
200-inch telescope - (as used) At the time of Charlie Chan at the Olympics, the proposed 200-inch telescope that was to sit atop Mount Palomar in San Diego County in California was still in the early preparatory stages.  Daunting work to precisely grind the 200-inch mirror for the telescope began in the mid-1930s, and the working telescope itself was not completed until 1949.  Evidently, the prospect of peering deeply into the universe by means of this telescope was, for those alive during Charlie Chan's time, something much akin to how we, today, consider the orbiting Hubble telescope.
Charlie Chan at the Olympics - Charlie Chan: "Could not be more clear if seen through 200-inch telescope."
 
two-timing - (slang) The act of being unfaithful to a spouse or lover.
Charlie Chan at the Circus - Lt. Macy: "The Norman girl must have found out he was two-timing her..."
 
understudies - To study or know a role so as to be able to replace the regular performer or performers when required.
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Mr. Arnold: "Are the understudies ready?"
 
University of Southern California - Also known as USC, 'SC, Southern California and Southern Cal, California's oldest private research university, is located in the urban center of Los Angeles, California.
Charlie Chan in Reno - Insert: University of Southern California (the college attended by Jimmy Chan).
 
up your alley - (informal) Compatible with one's interests or qualifications.
City in Darkness - Charlie Chan: "As Number Two Son would say, 'This is right up your alley.'"
 
up your sleeve - (idiom) Something hidden, but ready to be used.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Reporter: "What have you got up your sleeve, Mr. Chan?"
 
vaudeville - Stage entertainment offering a variety of short acts such as slapstick turns, song-and-dance routines, and juggling performances.  A theatrical performance of this kind; a variety show.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Bessie Sibley: "She used to be in vaudeville."
 
veranda - A porch or balcony, usually roofed and often partly enclosed, extending along the outside of a building.
Charlie Chan's Greatest Case - Script direction notes: ...on the outside of a veranda.
Charlie Chan's Courage (script) - Script direction notes: They walk onto the deserted hotel veranda.
 
Verdi - (Giuseppe Verdi, 1813-1901) Italian composer of operas, including La Traviata (1853), Aïda (1871), and Otello (1887). He is credited with raising Italian opera to its fullest artistic form.
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Mr. Arnold: "For the sake of Puccini, Verdi, Wagner, and me, get on that stage!"
 
Verdun - A city of northeast France on the Meuse River west of Metz. Dating to Roman times and an important Carolingian commercial center, it was the site of a prolonged World War I battle (February-December 1916) in which French forces repelled a massive German offensive. The total casualties have been estimated at more than 700,000. The city was rebuilt after the war.
City in Darkness - Antoine: "Verdun, sir."
 
Vichy - A small city in central France southeast of Paris noted for its spa and hot mineral springs.
Charlie Chan at Monte Carlo - Jules Joubert: "Since employed as bartender in Vichy and Monte Carlo."
 
Wagner - (Richard Wagner, 1813-1883) German composer known especially for his romantic operas, often based on Germanic legends. Among his works are Tannhäuser (1845) and the tetralogy Der Ring des Nibelungen (1853-1874).
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Mr. Arnold: "For the sake of Puccini, Verdi, Wagner, and me, get on that stage!"
 
washed up - To be eliminated or be eliminated as unsatisfactory.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Captain Johnson: "I'd like to get this case washed up as soon as possible."
 
washes up - (see: washed up)
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Wally Burke: "Well, that washes me up."
 
Wellington (Duke of Wellington) - British general and politician (1769-1852).  Commander of British troops during the peninsular War (1808-1814) he defeated Napoleon at Waterloo (1815), thus ending the Napoleonic Wars.
Charlie Chan's Greatest Case (script) - Carlotta Egan: "I would have conquered the world, and Wellington, too, if it hadn't been for Fouche."
 
what do you know? - (early 1900s) What a surprise.
Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise - Jimmy Chan and Willie Chan: "Hello Pop.  What do you know?"
 
whodunit - (informal) A story dealing with a crime and its solution; a detective story.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Paul Essex: "...the real mystery in this whodunit is how I ever finished it."
 
Wirephoto - A trademark used for a photograph electrically transmitted over telephone wires.
Charlie Chan at the Opera - A Wirephoto image of Gravelle was sent from the Chigago Sun to the Los Angeles Bulletin.
 
wise up - (1) Get wise to.  (2) Cause someone to become aware of something. 
Charlie Chan at the Opera - Sgt. Kelly: "Say, how did you wise up to that?"
 
World's Fair (New York) - Countries around the world took part in creating the biggest international event since World War I, and on April 30, 1939, the fair had its grand opening, with 200,000 people in attendance.

One of the most famous exhibits was a time capsule, which was not to be opened until 6939 A.D.  The time capsule was a tube containing writings by Albert Einstein and Thomas Mann, copies of Life magazine, a kewpie doll, a dollar in change, a pack of Camel cigarettes, millions of pages of text on microfilm, and much, much more.

Other exhibits included the Chrysler Air-flow, a streamlined pencil sharpener,a futuristic car based city by General Motors, and one of the first televisions.  There was also a huge globe/planetarium located near the center of the fair.  Bell Labs' Voder, a keyboard-operated speech synthesizer, was demonstrated at the Fair.

The fair was open for two seasons, and was officially closed forever on October 27, 1940. It attracted over 45 million visitors

Murder Over New York - Jimmy Chan: "...he asked me to come along to see the World's Fair."

World's Fair (San Francisco) - (see: Golden Gate International Exposition)
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Steward: "There's the World's Fair, Treasure Island."
 
yammering - (informal) (1) Complaining peevishly or whimperingly; whine. (2) Talking volubly and loudly.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Captain Johnson: "I have enough trouble without all this yammering."
 
Yang Tze - The Yang Tze (or Yangtze) River is one of the world's great rivers.  The Yang Tze valley is home to about one-third of China's population.  Shanghai is known as the gateway of the Yang Tze, and, for two centuries, the Yang Tze has served as a transportation and commercial thouroughfare. 
Charlie Chan in Shanghai - Missionary: "...in the Yang Tze Valley."
Charlie Chan in Honolulu - Charlie Chan: "...recovered from Yang Tze River in China ten days ago."
 
yarn - (informal) A long, often elaborate narrative of real or fictitious adventures; an entertaining tale.
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Speed Patton: "I got a swell human interest yarn on the Maharaja of Radfa today."
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island - Paul Essex: "I'm on the last chapter of this yarn."
Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum - Mary Bolton: "What a yarn."
 
your goose is cooked - (as used) You are finished. 
Charlie Chan on Broadway - Johnny Burke: "Watch those chemicals, Burke.  If they turn blue, your goose is cooked."
 
yowza - (slang interjection; became current circa 1932) An exclamation of delight or approval; yes, sir; also: yowzah or youzer.
Charlie Chan in Paris - Tom Evans: "...one of these days I'm going to send home for some jazz - the old maestro stuff, yousa!"
 
YWCA - Young Women's Christian Association, which provided services, including inexpensive lodging, for women.
Charlie Chan's Murder CruiseSuzie Watson: "You can always find me, Mr. Chan, at the YWCA, day or night."
 
zero hour - The scheduled time for the start of an operation or action, especially a combat operation of great size.
City in Darkness - Charlie Chan: "...reunion to celebrate end of one war, finds us waiting zero hour..."

 
 

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