Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Watch episodes of Kraft Mystery Theatre.

I've been trawling the online archives of the Museum of Broadcast Communications (available with a free registration) for episodes of the Kraft Mystery Theatre (a series that began as the Kraft Television Theatre and had a name change under producer David Susskind). The Mystery Theatre had two incarnations: one in the 1950s and one in 1961–63.

Robert Lansing in
"Death for Sale,"
Kraft Mystery Theatre
The episodes available for viewing online have an impressive roster of actors and include:

•"Catch Fear by the Throat" (with Bradford Dillman and Steve Forrest; a state government official cannot remember the events of the previous night)

 • "Death for Sale" (with Robert Lansing, based on the book by Henry Kane; a cuckolded husband hires a hitman with unexpected results)

• "Death of a Dream" (with Robert Vaughn, dir. Robert Altman; a wife has an unexpected visitor: her on-the-lam husband)

• "The Fugitive Eye" (with Charlton Heston; a man witnesses a murder)

• "The Man Who Didn't Fly" (with William Shatner; three men take a plane, but only two emerge)

• "Presumption of Innocence" (with Colleen Dewhurst; a lawyer defends a man accused of killing his mentor)

Sadly, "The 87th Precinct" and "Killer's Choice," which are based on the work of Ed McBain/Evan Hunter, are not available for viewing.

And of course, there are all the Kraft recipes during the commercial breaks (e.g., frosted honeydew melon with jellied fruit filling. The "frosting" is cream cheese).

Update (9-6-11): Have been advised by the museum that the online archive is down for probably the next few months. Will update this post when I know more.

Update (11-23-11): Looks like the online archive is back up.

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