Playhouse 90

CBS (ended 1960)
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  • Episode Guide
  • S 4 : Ep 16

    In the Presence of Mine Enemies

    Aired 5/18/60

  • S 4 : Ep 15

    The Shape of the River

    Aired 5/2/60

  • S 4 : Ep 14

    Journey to the Day

    Aired 4/22/60

  • S 4 : Ep 13

    Alas, Babylon

    Aired 4/3/60

  • S 4 : Ep 12

    The Hiding Place

    Aired 3/22/60

  • Cast & Crew
  • Dick Joy


  • Mike Todd (II)


  • Dennis Patrick

    George "Bugs" Moran

  • Hoagy Carmichael

    Marty Dix

  • Frank Silvera

    Nick Serrello

  • show Description
  • The most ambitious and acclaimed of all the anthology series', Playhouse 90 was in a league of its own. "Requiem of a Heavyweight," written by Rod Serling, garnered numerous Emmys and remains one of the best live dramas. Each week the series aired a complete 90 minute live drama. The list of talents is amazing: John Frankenheimer, Arthur Hiller, John Brahm, Arthur Penn were a few of the directors. Every angle and every shot left an impact on the viewing public. It was a treasure of a show, that rare gem that lives on.moreless

  • Top Contributor
  • AprilFox

    User Score: 2232


  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (12)

    • Grace: We handle alot of placements here. I'm sure we'll be able to find something for you. Mountain: Yeah I know but I don't fit in all these holes here. I mean like here, Why did you leave your last job? State the reason. Grace: Oh that's question 9, you see Mr. Clintock what that means ... Mountain: Oh I know what it means, but what do I write down? What I write down wouldn't make any sense. I left my last job because I got hit so much I was on my way to punchy land and I probably go blind! Grace: Punchy Land? Mountain: Well sure, you fight so long you walk around on your heels and listen to the bells go ding. That's what happens to me. Doc looks at my eyes says one or two more fights I'll go blind. It's just a bum break, it's just not fair. You know in 1948 they ranked me number 5.

    • (Tending to a beat up Mountain) Doc: No more, Mountain and I will both retire this week. Rennick: What do you mean? Doc: No more. He's thru. Rennick: I, I can let him rest up, I have nothing scheduled for him. Doc: He can rest up for the rest of his life. Rennick: What are you talking about he spends fourteen years in the ring and suddenly he gets a little cut and you're going to put him out to pasture!? Doc: Suddenly, doesn't go fourteen years and then suddenly, from one cut it's fourteen years of cuts. Yeah write me a book all about my gladiator friend. You two can become pathological in 38 years of relatively easy living.

    • Woman: Is everything clear? Is there anything you don't understand? Girl: Babies. Woman: But we've been all over that. Girl: Oh, I know where they come from and how and all that, but what do they look like? I've never seen a baby.

    • Annie: Helen's worst handicap isn't blindness, it's your love and pity.

    • The Admiral spoke, very carefully, " Now Randy, I'm not trying to outrank you. You're the Captain. You're in command and its your decison."

    • Life was ebbing from its last set of batteries. He feared the day when it would no longer pick up even the strongest signal, or give any sound whatsoever, and the day could not be far distant.

    • It takes two to make peace but only one to make a war. So all we could do while vowing not to strike first, was line up our lead soldiers.

    • Censorship and thought control can only exist in secrecy and darkness

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    Notes (102)

    • The play was performed in five acts. Commercial breaks between the acts provided the only opportunity for viewers to catch their breath. Each act ended on a peak of suspense, leaving the audience hanging on the ropes.

    • The resolution of the story was later (intentionally?) picked up by Adam Hall (d.i. Elleston Trevor) in his third Quiller novel, THE STRIKER PORTFOLIO (1969), albeit as a minor revelation in the overall plot.

    • It was Playhouse 90´s stated intention to present the best television had to offer, regarding actors, stories and production values. Its debut show did little to fulfill this ambitious claim. Pat Frank´s cold war novel made for a less than brillant adaptation by Rod Serling.

    • Mountain McClintock was renamed Mountain Rivera in the 1962 film possibly because Anthony Quinn was of Hispanic descent.

    • When this episode was filmed as a theatrical movie in 1962 Anthony Quinn played Mountain, Jackie Gleason played Rennick, Mickey Rooney played Army, and Julie Harris played Grace. A young Muhammad Ali also appeared in the film as himself.

    • This episode put Playhouse 90 on the map. It won six Emmy Awards (Best Program; Best New Series; Best Single Performance [Palance]; Best Teleplay Writing [hour or more]; Best Direction [hour or more]; Best Art Direction).

    • Elick Moll later adapted this teleplay into the novel SEIDMAN AND SON (Putnam, 1958).

    • Roberta Shore was credited as Jymme Shore.

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    Trivia (47)

    • "Forbidden Area" was a carefully plotted Russian sneak attack on the United States, with its initial step the grounding of Strategic Air Command bombers. The suspenseful build-up to the detection of the plot was at times harrowing. Rod Sterling's script, in maintaining, suspense and pace, was as faithful a dramatization as television possibly could offer of the Pat Frank novel. The significant aspect of "Forbidden Area" however, is the fact that it could not have been dramatized as convincingly in 60 minutes of TV time as in the 90 minutes it received on "Playhouse 90." The TV drama maintained two parallel storylines: Of the Russian spy posing as an Air Force enlisted man at a bomber base and of the high level Washington Intelligence group which was supposed to spark command decisions. Two storylines are not necessarily better than one. But before the advent of 90 minute TV drama the stories have generally been confined to one line of development and often a truncated line at that. "Playhouse 90" also freely and judiciously interspliced film into its "Forbidden Area" production to give, both depth and width to the story. Many first-rate live TV drama producers shun filmed sequences, as if it's a form of cheating. Last Thursday's production indicated it was not, at least in the case of a drama involving the air and the sea.

    • This play, like several individual episodes of Playhouse 90, was later turned into a feature film.

    • Carl & Helen Doss appeared on a 1954 episode of You Bet Your Life with Groucho Marx, and spoke about their experience and the children.

    • James Olson who played Carl Doss in the made for TV movie, phoned his father in Hebron, Illinois, where Carl once preached and asked his father if he remembered him. His father replied, "That crazy guy", his father shouted "he's the one who adopted all those kids".

    • One of the most controversial incidents in Colorado's robust past was the Massacre at Sand Creek in 1864, when the U.S. cavalry efficiently wiped out up to 800 unsuspecting Cheyenne men, women and children. The Cheyennes under Chief Black Kettle had camped at Sand Creek, near Fort Lyon, Colo., under a friendly officer's promise of protection. But the regional cavalry commander, Colonel J.M. Chivington, was a man dedicated to eradicating Indians, and his order to the troops was "Kill all, little and big." Chivington's raiders took no prisoners and carried 100 Indian scalps back to show off in a Denver theater. The massacre fired the Plains Indians to renewed warfare against the white man and shocked the East.

    • Review on Snowshoes: "There are these racetrack types down and out in Miami and they get a race horse and then somebody thinks of Bridey Murphy and a hypnotist makes the horse think he's Man o' War, or does he? and then ... Well, that was the way it went. Trendex gave Snowshoes a high rating, which ought to make Playhouse 90, its sponsors and its network worry."

    • Piper Laurie received rave reviews for her portrayal of the young girl, Ruth.

    • Maxwell Anderson's 1937 play is mentioned in a book by Paul J. Nahin titled "Time Machines: Time Travel in Physics, Metaphysics and Science Fiction" as being one of the first mentions of time travel.

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    Allusions (1)

    • Based on the old adage, "Be careful what you ask for; you may get it."

  • Fan Reviews (1)
  • One of the greatest TV shows ever produced.

    By gideonbernstein, Aug 20, 2007

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