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Mystery!; American Collection: Coyote Waits

American Mystery! Coyote Waits, Tape 1 of 2

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American Collection: Coyote Waits
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Series Description

Premiered in 1980 -- offshoot of MASTERPIECE THEATRE. Showcase for the best of British drama in the mystery genre. Current producer, Rebecca Eaton. See individual episode titles for more information. Host: 1980: Gene Shalit; 1981-1989: Vincent Price; 1989-present: Diana Rigg Series release date: 1980

Program Description

The title is taken from a traditional Navajo proverb: "Coyote is always out there waiting, and Coyote is always hungry." "Coyote Waits" opens with the tragic death of Chee's good friend and fellow officer Delbert Nez in a senseless roadside shooting. Chee, first on the scene, picks up the only suspect in sight: a liquored-up Navajo shaman named Ashie Pinto, who has the murder weapon under his belt. Although Pinto confesses to being "ashamed," he doesn't say anything else and he doesn't confess to the crime. Even so, the case against him is persuasive -- except Pinto happens to be a kinsman of Leaphorn's wife, Emma, who wants her husband to check out puzzling leads that may prove his innocence. Meanwhile, Chee is also investigating, convinced that he could have prevented Delbert's murder and is determined to reach closure in the case -- not to mention closure with Janet Pete, a public defender whose romantic interest in Chee is hampered by the fact that she is representing Pinto. The questions become all the more urgent as bodies mount and as the spirit of Coyote, the Navajo specter of evil, malice and chaos, awaits its next victim.



Asset Type

Broadcast program

Media Type


Eaton, Rebecca (Producer)
Chicago: “Mystery!; American Collection: Coyote Waits,” GBH Archives, accessed October 3, 2023,
MLA: “Mystery!; American Collection: Coyote Waits.” GBH Archives. Web. October 3, 2023. <>.
APA: Mystery!; American Collection: Coyote Waits. Boston, MA: GBH Archives. Retrieved from
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