TV UK TV

Armchair Thriller: The Chelsea Murders (ITV 1981, Dave King, David Yip)

The Chelsea Murders

In The Chelsea Murders a pair of detectives investigate the murder of an Artist’s model in the upmarket London area of Chelsea which leads them to discover links to two previous murders. It looks like a serial killer is on the loose, one who is using the paths trodden by long dead literary greats who were local to the area. Just what though are the links between a local reporter and a trio of film students trying to finish off their magnus opus.

A strange one this, still part of the Armchair Thriller canon, but only just, the last one in the series. It was made as a six parter but never transmitted during the AT run, it later aired in 1981 as a two hour feature. The highlight of The Chelsea Murders though the world weary performance of comic actor Dave King as Inspector Warton, the overall impression is rather surreal with the murderer wearing a face mask, similar to those being used by the film students on their movie, in fact some of the imagery is downright unpleasant. There is also some very archly camp acting from a couple of the cast that really grates.

The six episode version was released in the UK by Network on DVD in conjunction with the feature length version.

production details
UK / ITV Network – Thames / 1×120 minute episode / Broadcast 30 December 1981 @ 10.30pm

Armchair Thriller / 12th and final story

Writer: Jonathan Hales / Novel: Lionel Davidson / Choreographer: Alan Harding / Incidental Music: Anthony Isaac / Production Design: Allan Cameron / Executive Producer: Joan Rodker / Producer: Brenda Ennis / Director: Derek Bennett

cast
DAVE KING as Warton
ANTONY CARRICK as Summers
MICHAEL FEAST as Steve
GUY GREGORY as Artie
MIRANDA BELL as Mary
RICHARD HAMPTON as Chris
DEREK BROOME as PC Nutter
DAVID YIP as Denny
CHRIS GANNON as Logan
PENNY LEATHERBARROW as Mrs Honey
DARIEN ANGADI as Abo
DAVID GANT as Frank
CHRISTOPHER BRAMWELL as Mason
DOUGLAS SHELDON as Otto
FIONA MATHIESON as Brenda
LUCY GRIFFITHS as Mrs Bulstrode
ISHAQ BUX as Servant
MARYANN TURNER as Landlady
ROBIN PARKINSON as Ruddle
IAN LISTON as Policeman
HAROLD REESE as Mr Tyzack
TIMOTHY EARLE, SUSIE JENKINSON, PHILIP COMPTON, CAROLINE FUNNELL, VYVIAN HALL, ANDREW JOHNS, CHRISTOPHER LAWRENCE, VERNON NURSE, GEORGINA PROVAN

The Individual Episode Titles Were
1. Three Lillies in Her Hand
2. Dance Upon The Air
3. Sing Bah To You
4. Hoppity Hoppity… Hop
5. Every Time She Shouted Fire
6. Good Night Fair Maid