Studio One in Hollywood: Season 4, Episode 35

They Came to Baghdad (12 May 1952)
"Studio One" They Came to Baghdad (original title)

TV Episode  -   -  Drama
6.0
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Title: They Came to Baghdad (12 May 1952)

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Cast

Episode credited cast:
...
Marcus
Stuart Burge ...
Bootblack
June Dayton ...
Victoria Jones
Jacqueline deWit ...
Mrs. Clipp
Elaine Ellis ...
Anna Scheele
Bramwell Fletcher
...
Herself - Commercial Spokeswoman
Basil Howes ...
Fitzsimmons
Robert Dale Martin ...
Carmichael
...
Edward Goring
Forrest Wood ...
Policeman
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Drama

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12 May 1952 (USA)  »

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User Reviews

 
unremarkable TV version of Agatha Christie Story
8 September 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

They Came to Baghdad was made for TV in the U.S. as part of the Studio One anthology series. It was shown on May 12, 1952, and was based on the novel Christie wrote the previous year.

Story opens with a rather unconvincing murder attempt that goes awry, followed by a newspaper headline with a warning from Winston Churchill. Anna Scheele, Richard Baker, and Inspector Dakin are working for the "good guys," the free nations of the world. The plans of a new secret weapon has been obtained by a man called Carmichael who is supposed to meet the trio in Baghdad.

Enemy agents discover a girl, one Victoria Jones, who bears such a resemblance to Miss Scheele that they dupe her (Jones that is) into accompanying them to Baghdad. Edward Goring, the chief bad guy, has gained the trust of Miss Jones, and when she arrives at the Baghdad hotel she discovers a hotbed of spies and intrigue. Carmichael shows up, is fatally shot by the bad guys, but not before he leaves a cryptic clue with Miss Jones-thinking she is Anna Scheele. When Baker, Dakin, Jones and Scheele all get together at the end, they discover the clue is actually a coded message in the stitching of Carmichael's scarf.

This convoluted and confusing adaptation does little justice to a somewhat brilliant novel by the Queen of Crime. Performances in general are average, and June Dayton is often irritating and at times unbelievable. Only Bramwell Fletcher as Inspector Dakin gives a decent performance. An interesting curio this, perhaps in part due to the fact that it's the only attempt to ever put this novel on either large or small screen (maybe someone will do it again sometime, especially since nearly 60 years have passed).


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