A hard-working carpenter is about to be extradited to the state of New York and executed for a murder he was convicted of committing 19 years earlier. Ironside races against time to prove the man's innocence.

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Cast

Episode cast overview:
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Wally Stowe
Don Galloway ...
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Don Mitchell ...
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Tom Stowe
Jill Donohue ...
Phyllis Chase
Gene Lyons ...
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Mrs. Chase
Jean Inness ...
Dee Stowe
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Malcolm Henderson
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Dr. Michaels
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Attorney Whittier
Chester Jones ...
Butler
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Secretary
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Storyline

A hard-working carpenter is about to be extradited to the state of New York and executed for a murder he was convicted of committing 19 years earlier. Ironside races against time to prove the man's innocence.

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Crime | Drama | Mystery

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Release Date:

7 December 1967 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Trivia

Per the title, "What's past is prologue" is a quote from Shakespeare's play The Tempest meaning that history repeats itself and continually influences the present. See more »

Quotes

Det.Sgt. Ed Brown: Chief, is it true that you're ruthless?
Robert T. Ironside: Only when I want something.
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User Reviews

 
There's only one version of the truth.
18 January 2015 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is a classic episode from a classic series. Not a minute of unnecessary script. Ironside cannot waste a moment as he desperately tries to save a man's life by proving he was wrongly convicted 19 years earlier. Repeated great scenes as the chief, with his no-holds-barred, cynical questioning of all those standing in his way, manages to draw out critical info from his hostile witnesses anyway, while jabbing them for placing self interest above the truth. Even the manner in which he gets his friend, the former convict now facing death row, to speak and thus reveal his true innocence, is masterful. There are also a few delicious scenes in which he has his way with the Commissioner, and a few in which he shrewdly uses the media for his purposes. Fine, aw-shucks acting from Victor Jory (who sounds eerily close to Jimmy Stewart) in the starring role, and the extra pleasure of seeing a young Harrison Ford as the suspect's son. It is all topped off by superb detective work, that is almost stumped by a stubborn admission of the suspect that threatens to doom his defense, until Ironside breaks it with a brilliant solution in the middle of the night. Finally, a slew of great one liners from the chief. They don't make 'em like this anymore.


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