Kraft Suspense Theatre: Season 1, Episode 7

The Machine That Played God (5 Dec. 1963)

TV Episode  -   -  Crime | Drama | Mystery
7.4
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 27 users  
Reviews: 1 user

A seemingly happy married couple have a fatal car crash. The husband dies and the surviving wife is suspected by the police of intentionally causing the accident. She tries to "prove" her ... See full summary »

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(teleplay), (story), 1 more credit »
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Title: The Machine That Played God (05 Dec 1963)

The Machine That Played God (05 Dec 1963) on IMDb 7.4/10

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
...
Peggy Merritt
...
Mark Jordan
Josephine Hutchinson ...
Mrs. Blanchard
...
L. J. West
Edmon Ryan ...
Dr. Davis
...
Mrs. Pike
Tol Avery ...
The 3rd Judge
Robert Brubaker ...
William Boyett ...
Dan Frazer ...
Mr. Chilton
Davis Roberts ...
The Police Polygraph Expert
...
The Doctor
Peter Adams ...
Mike Merritt
William Kendis ...
Phillip Conyers (as Bill Kendis)
Charles Alvin Bell ...
The 1st Judge (as C. Alvin Bell)
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Storyline

A seemingly happy married couple have a fatal car crash. The husband dies and the surviving wife is suspected by the police of intentionally causing the accident. She tries to "prove" her innocence by taking two polygraph tests. The results confuse her and she comes to believe the "lie detector machines" know the real truth. Written by dubchi

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

polygraph | lie detector

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Mystery

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Release Date:

5 December 1963 (USA)  »

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(Pathé)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

 
This woman confessed to a crime only because two machines said that she did it!
28 October 2011 | by (Brooklyn NY USA) – See all my reviews

(Some Spoilers) Based on a true story and very likely the reason that results of polygraph or lie detector tests are not used in convicting or exoneration persons that are on trial because you just can't trust the damn things!

After making a wrong turn on the freeway Peggy Merritt, Anne Francis, slammed her car into on oncoming 18 wheeler killing her husband Mike, Peter Adams, who was with her. Back home recovering from her injuries Peggy is visited by two members of the police's special investigation unit and told that she's to be indited in Mike's murder! The reason for that is that Peggy purposely drove the car into a truck, and jumped out seconds before impact, in order to kill Mike and collect the $100,000.00 insurance policy on him! Also Peggy's seven year old step-son (from Mike's first marriage) Andy, Morgan Mason, was also taken away from her and given into the custody of his grandmother Mrs. Blanchard, Josephine Hutchison, who for some reason or another had no use for her step-daughter Peggy Merritt.

Getting the late Mike's best friend defense attorney Mark Jordan,Garry Merrill,to take her case Peggy also goes on her own to get a polygraph test in order to prove her innocence. Even though Mark told her that these tests are not admissible as evidence by the court. Failing the test Peggy still feeling that she didn't kill Mike takes another one at the main police department building where she fails it again! Failing both test that were, in Peggy's mind, supposed to prove her innocence Peggy soon herself believes against all the evidence in her favor, including being an eye witness at her husband's accident, that she in fact did porously kill her husband and confesses to the local D.A L, J West, Mlachi Thrane,he crime!

***SPOILERS*** Having his hands full in proving his client Innocent despite her voluntarily confessing to the crime Mark takes the role more of a prosecutor then an defense attorney! But the person he's prosecuting is not his client Peggy Merritt but the two polygraph or lie detector machines that in fact convicted her! That's in failing Peggy and,by her mindlessly believing them, forcing her to admit to a crime that she didn't commit!

In a defense that even Perry Mason would envy Mark despite his client's noncooperation did exonerate her of the crime, 1st degree murder, that she was on trail for. Thats by Mark proving a number of the answers that Peggy gave that were deem to be untrue by the machines where in fact true. Mark also proved that not only are polygraph tests faulty but in some cases can send a innocent man or woman to the electric chair or life behind bars by convincing him or her,like Peggy Merritt,that they committed a crime by them themselves believing them! Despite their own eyes ad experiences as well as just plain common sense in knowing full well that they didn't!


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