Tales of the Unexpected (TV Series 1979–1988) Poster


Episode List



1 Mar. 1980
Royal Jelly
Bee-keeper Albert Taylor and his wife Mabel are concerned that their baby daughter is underweight and seems reluctant to take any nourishment until, that is, Albert decides to feed her on Royal Jelly from his hives. He feeds himself on it as well, becoming almost addicted to it and with very macabre results.
8 Mar. 1980
In post-war Paris Drioli, an elderly down-and-out, sees a painting for sale by his old friend Soutine, who is now a best-selling artist. Thirty years earlier Soutine tattooed a portrait of Drioli's wife onto his back and it has become extremely valuable. But it is on his back and therefore worthless. How come it is eventually on public exhibition?
15 Mar. 1980
Galloping Foxley
On a train journey William Perkins is convinced that the passenger seated opposite him is 'Galloping' Foxley, who made his life a misery when they were at school together and relives the unpleasant experience before the stranger identifies himself.
22 Mar. 1980
The Hitch-Hiker
Flash American Paul Duveen stops to give elderly Irish vagrant Michael Fish a lift in his new BMW. Michael is a pickpocket, which comes in very handy after his encouragement to Paul to break the speed limit has attracted the attention of a traffic cop on a motor-bike, who waves them over. After the cop has gone Michael shows a happy Paul that he stole the cop's notebook and evidence but before long Paul will be anything but happy.
29 Mar. 1980
Harry, a young teacher working in India but about to return home is petrified when a poisonous snake creeps into his bed and sits on his belly. His friend Timber happens by and they call a local doctor. The snake is parted from Harry's body and the others leave but...
5 Apr. 1980
Fat Chance
Mary Burge's figure has ballooned over the years since she first married her pharmacist husband John because she is a great comfort eater. John is tired of her and turns to legal secretary Frances, who becomes his mistress. Mary, however, will not divorce him and Frances is issuing an ultimatum. He decides to put his pharmaceutical skills into play and poison his wife's chocolates. However, not everything will go to plan.
12 Apr. 1980
Richard Pratt, a pretentious wine expert, is one of several dinner party guests at the home of stockbroker Mike Schofield. Pratt claims to be able to identify any wine from its bouquet but Schofield has picked a really rare wine that he is so convinced Pratt will fail to recognize, that he includes his house and his daughter in the wager to everyone else's horror -- particularly when Pratt guesses it right. Fortunately for the rest of the family the dutiful housekeeper has discovered Mr. Pratt's glasses in a room where they should not be.
19 Apr. 1980
My Lady Love, My Dove
Pamela and Arthur Beauchamp invite a younger married couple, the Snapes, for the weekend, during which they will play cards for money. Before they arrive prurient Pamela gets her reluctant husband to bug the Snapes' room so she can hear them in bed. The Snapes clean their hosts out at cards and a bigger surprise awaits when Pamela listens to their bedroom conversation.
26 Apr. 1980
Georgy Porgy
Following an unconventional upbringing by his mother George Duckworth, now a vicar, has an odd attitude to women. He visualizes his female parishioners undressed but is scared of physical contact. When the seductive Julia joins his congregation she turns out to be a man-eater in every sense.
3 May 1980
Depart in Peace
Hearing from his old friend Gladys Ponsonby of the talented if unconventional artist John Roydon, art dealer Lionel gets Roydon to visualize Lionel's fiancee Janet nude and paint her accordingly. Janet, however, does not see the joke, for which Lionel pays bitterly, in the literal sense.
10 May 1980
The Umbrella Man
An elderly con-man works a scam whereby he steals an umbrella from a rack in a public building and sells it to another person, who needs it to shield them from the rain. In the process, a mix-up with the umbrellas means that he exposes a couple who are cheating on the woman's husband and leads to fisticuffs.
17 May 1980
Genesis & Catastrophe
In 1889 Austrian customs officer Alois is desperate that his wife Klara will pull through a difficult labour and that she and her baby son will survive. They do. They call the child Adolf.
24 May 1980
Mr Botibol's First Love
Mr. Botibol has built a small concert hall in his house where he conducts imaginary recitals to gramophone records. In a music shop he meets Irene, a fellow music lover, and invites her to join in one of his concerts. Unfortunately, she can genuinely play the piano, which sours the mood for Mr. Botibol. Imagination is all to him.
31 May 1980
Back for Christmas
Orchid-loving doctor Carpenter is married to Hermione but in love with the younger Samantha. He and his wife are due to fly to America, so that when he kills Hermione and cuts her up and buries her in the garden, he believes that her disappearance will be covered. Unfortunately for him, she is able to avenge herself even from the grave.
7 Jun. 1980
The Orderly World of Mr. Appleby
Arthur Appleby is something of a Bluebeard. He has killed his previous wives and used the insurance money to open a succession of antique shops, each one in a new town. When he meets Martha he marks her down as his next victim. However, she is not stupid and tells him that if anything untoward happens to her she has left instructions that Appleby is to be dealt with. Unfortunately something is about to happen which, for once, is not his fault.
14 Jun. 1980
The Man at the Top
Hardy, a young sailor down on his luck, is left stranded when his ship sails without him so he robs a man but accidentally kills him. His girlfriend Diane informs him that the one man who can help him, the 'man at the top' is Sam Madrid. However, Hardy is in for a shock when he realizes that he has already met Madrid.
9 Aug. 1980
The Flypaper
The police are dragging the marshes for a missing school-girl and a sinister man is approaching other young girls. When he tries to accost young Sylvia on a bus, Sylvia is relieved when a motherly middle-aged woman comes to her rescue and sends him away. Sylvia goes back to the woman's trailer home to have tea with her. Unfortunately this woman is not a nice person at all and Sylvia is caught like a fly on a fly-paper.
16 Aug. 1980
A Picture of a Place
Con artist Merv Pottinger travels the East Anglian countryside, telling unsuspecting elderly people that their valuable art treasure is fairly worthless and that he will do them a favour by taking it off their hands. However, when he meets Hazel, whose son is struggling to keep on their run-down old farm, he thinks that he can get her to part with an Old Master for pea-nuts. In fact she is a far better confidence trickster than him.
23 Aug. 1980
Proof of Guilt
George Stamford has come to avenge himself on Mr. Chillingham and is discovered in the latter's locked office with Chillingham dead of a gun-shot wound. However, there is no gun to be found and no apparent means of disposing of one. Inspector Walters has to work out how it was done and if George really is a man with an iron constitution.
30 Aug. 1980
Vengeance Is Mine Inc.
Tired of freezing in their room and living out of tins, enterprising lads Tom and George set up Vengeance Is Mine, Inc. For a small fee they will punch anyone their client feels deserves it. Former actress Mrs. Wilbur wants them to attack snooty critic Lionel Brewster and even gives them disguises and helps them plan it. Could she perhaps have an ulterior motive in wanting to incriminate someone else in the assault on Brewster?
A Girl Can't Always Have Everything
Suzy Starr and Pat Lewis are struggling actresses in a provincial touring production of 'The Importance of Being Earnest'. Herbert, a middle-aged widower, who has become rich via manufacturing toys, puts money into the production and falls for Suzy, who snaps up the expensive gifts he gives her. They get married but she is only using him and is having affairs with other men, leading Herbert to request a divorce. Suzy wants the best of both worlds and asks for Pat's help, not realizing that this is Pat's perfect opportunity to teach her that a girl can't have ...
Parson's Pleasure
Crooked antique expert Cyril Boggis dresses as a vicar and calls on Suffolk farmsteads offering to take old furniture off the occupants' hands for a fee. Of course, he knows when the furniture is valuable and none more so than the dresser he sees at Farmer Rummins' run-down place. So as not to create suspicion he tells Rummins that he is only interested in the legs. This is a bad plan on his part because Rummins and his lads have difficulty getting the object of Cyril's greed through the door and decide on drastic action.
The Stinker
Meek accountant Harold Tinker, despised by his ambitious, younger wife Phyl, meets Jack Cutler, an old school contemporary. Cutler used to call Harold 'Stinker Tinker' and generally made his life a misery. Now, with little recollection of the past, Cutler offers Harold a well-paid job, which he takes, chiefly for Phyl's sake. But Cutler still calls him 'Stinker' and, at a dinner party with the two men and their wives, Harold is convinced by her behaviour that Phyl is having an affair with his boss. It is time for the worm to turn, with fatal results.
14 Dec. 1980
I'll Be Seeing You
Roland Trent is in love with Anna, who is gradually losing her sight but could have an operation to save it. Unfortunately it is not cheap. Roland is married to Vivienne but she is no more in love with him than he is with her. Furthermore she controls the purse-strings and is initially not keen to help the Other Woman, though eventually she agrees to finance the operation, but only if Roland never sees Anna again. Roland, however, has other ideas to get the best of both worlds.
The Party
It is coming up to Christmas and Henry Knox, manager of Peckham's toy factory, is doubly incensed. First, he has heard a rumour that the factory will be subject to a take-over by a foreign firm who will not want to keep him. Then he learns that young Leighton, another employee, is organizing a staff disco the night before the works' Christmas party that Henry has always arranged. Wandering into the empty room in the pub where the disco is due to be held Henry finds it is laid out for a formal dinner, and imagining that it is in honour of the in-comers he sets fire to ...

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See also

Episode Cast | Rated Episodes (by date / vote)| TV Schedule

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