The Plainclothesman (1949–1954)

TV Series  -   -  Crime | Drama | Mystery
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A crime program, with a twist - The Lieutenant (Ken Lynch) was never seen on camera, as the program used the subjective first-person camera technique as did the 1947 film "Lady in the Lake".

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Episodes

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2   1  
1950   1949  
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Cast

Series cast summary:
Jack Orrison ...
 Sgt Brady / ... (6 episodes, 1950)
...
 Lieutenant (5 episodes, 1950)
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Storyline

A crime program, with a twist - The Lieutenant (Ken Lynch) was never seen on camera, as the program used the subjective first-person camera technique as did the 1947 film "Lady in the Lake".

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12 October 1949 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Trivia

This long-running live series aired over the DuMont Television Network at 9:00 pm EST on Wednesday nights in its first season (1949), at 9:30 pm EST on Wednesdays in the 1950 season, and thence at 9:30 pm EST on Sunday evenings. The last broadcast was September 12, 1954. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Effective early police TV.
26 October 2009 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

Crime-Fighter ---- While going through one of my boxes of untitled television episodes, I stumbled on a real little gem from the days of live TV. The episode starts with a gun and a police badge sitting on a table. Then a voice booms out with, " Hero without uniform, unknown, unsung, but always on guard protecting you from crime".

The story is set in a small grocery market called Alfredo's Food Market. It is closing time and the owner and his daughter are adding up the days take. "It's not enough to pay the man" says the owner. "You should not give him a dime papa! He is just a crook and you should call the cops!" The daughter then leaves. The camera does a fade out and we flashback several months to when the store was just opening. The owner and his daughter have worked long and hard to get their business up and running. The door opens and in walks a rather nasty looking gentleman. "I'm collecting for the neighbourhood business owners association". The old man asks why he should join. The thug answers with. "You wouldn't what something bad to happen to your nice new store now, would you? 100 dollars every first of the month will take care of things."

We then jump flash back to the present. A police detective gets a late night call from his Lieutenant to report to him at the scene of a murder. He asks where and is told Alfredo's Food Market. It seems the owner has been killed. The detective walks in and has a look at the body. He then starts talking to the camera. "Well Lieutenant? Do you think it was a robbery?" "Could be." A voice answers. "There is still cash in the till though." The voice asks the daughter if she knew how much in cash and checks had been in the till. "$78 cash and no checks" The detective then holds up a Veterans Dividend check and asks. "Then what is this?" The daughter looks at the name ands says. "I should have known! That is the name of the man who is doing the shakedown on my father!" The cops soon put the grab onto "Charlie' the thug and deliver him to the interrogation room. The cops show him the check and ask just how stupid is he? Charlie throws the check back and laughs. "I was in prison during the war and never was in the army. " He of course denies the shakedown and the cops are forced to let him go. A new lead quickly develops when several dozen phony Vet checks show up. The police catch a break and follow a man home after he is seen cashing a phony Veterans check in a bar. The police kick in the door and grab up a husband and wife team who are printing up bad checks. A little bit of third degree and the man soon caves and spills the goods. The wife picks names from the phone book, prints up the fakes while he does the cashing bit. They hit small businesses late in the day because they have cash then. He never has a problem because everyone wants to help a vet. That was till the old man. The phony he tried to cash had the shakedown artist's name on it. The old man knew it was a fake and made to call the police, hence the murder. Case closed.

Needless to say this is better than I make it sound. Shades of "Lady in the Lake" here with the unseen but heard Police Lt. It works very well and moves the story right along. I really like the hurried look these live shows sometimes had. Nothing smooth, just like in real life


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