Hugely important ITV anthology of single plays, Armchair Theatre really came into it’s own under the leadership of Canadian producer Sydney Newman who brought the same sense of kitchen sink realism to the small screen that was then currently cutting a swathe across British cinema and theatre.
Via Newman there was a steady stream of contemporary productions featuring work from the likes of Alun Owen (who would go on to write the screenplay for the first Beatles movie A Hard Days Night) and Robert Muller.
In 1963 the BBC poached Newman and his story editing team of Irene Shubik and Peter Luke – an act which would pay dividends for the BBC with the arrival soon after of The Wednesday Play and then Play For Today. Shubik would also take charge of the superb BBC sci-fi/horror anthology Out of the Unknown.
The series was produced by ABC until their franchise ran out in 1968 and Thames took up the reigns.
In 1960 and then 1964-1965 there were 34 episodes that were broadcast as Armchair Mystery Theatre. 1959 saw episodes broadcast as Summer Armchair Theatre.
1967 saw five episodes broadcast under the title Armchair Thriller (no relation to the late 1970’s anthology of the same name, this ran from 22 Apr – 20 May 67)
1973 (10 episodes 11 April – 4 Dec) saw a run of half hour episodes that were broadcast under the title Armchair Thirty. In 1974 (28 May – 26 Nov) there were six shot on 16mm film productions broadcast under the Armchair Cinema banner.
One episode ran foul of the ITA (Independent Television Authority). Three of a Gas Ring made in 1959 for broadcast in 1960 was banned because of it’s portrayal of an unmarried mother. This was the first TV play to be banned by the ITA.
UK / ITV – ABC – Thames / 452 episodes of varying lengths but mostly fifty minutes / Broadcast 8 July 1956 – 9 July 1974
72. WHERE I LIVE (10 Jan 60)
10. THE ESCAPE CLUB
6. DETECTIVE WAITING (14 Sep 71)
and this just in
The Innocent Man: Snow Storm (S1EP6 Netflix Fri 14 Dec 2018)
Snow Storm: Tommy’s attorneys prepare a new appeal. John Grisham speaks about what drew him to the stories surrounding the...
The Innocent Man: Smoking Guns (S1EP5 Netflix Fri 14 Dec 2018)
Smoking Guns: While investigating the other possible suspects in Denice’s murder, a reporter learns that getting people to talk can...
The Innocent Man: Corpus Delicti (S1EP4 Netflix Fri 14 Dec 2018)
Corpus Delicti: An autopsy reveals a stunning contradiction to Tommy and Karl’s confession. Also, an investigative reporter canvases Ada for...
The Innocent Man: Rotten to the Core (S1EP3 Netflix Fri 14 Dec 2018)
Rotten to the Core: Citing new and previously withheld evidence, lawyers from the Innocence Project appeal the murder convictions of...
The Innocent Man: In Dreams (S1EP2 Netflix Fri 14 Dec 2018)
In Dreams: Tommy recounts his conversation with police about Denice’s disappearance. Authorities pursue leads in Debbie’s murder while her mom...
The Innocent Man: Debbie and Denice (S1EP1 Netflix Fri 14 Dec 2018)
Debbie and Denice: A young woman is found brutally murdered in 1982 in Ada, Oklahoma. Two years later, another woman...
Tidelands: Don’t Trust Humans (S1EP4 Netflix 14 Dec 2018)
Don’t Trust Humans: Adrielle grants Cal permission to stay at L’Attente. Augie grows desperate to find a new buyer who...
Tidelands: The Calling (S1EP5 Netflix 14 Dec 2018)
The Calling: Violca gives Colton some shocking news, while Adrielle consults an expert to decipher the new shard. Cal confronts...
For Better, for Worse (1954, Dirk Bogarde, Susan Stephen)
Charming British comedy about a young couple (DIRK BOGARDE, SUSAN STEPHEN) who struggle to make ends meet as they embark...
The Lady from Shanghai (1947, Rita Hayworth, Orson Welles)
It’s safe to assume that Columbia Pictures boss Harry Cohn was not ORSON WELLES’ biggest fan, particularly after the auteur...
Storm Center (1956, Bette Davis, Brian Keith)
Drama starring Bette Davis as a widowed librarian in a small town in New England who becomes the victim of...