Suspense: Season 5, Episode 27

F.O.B. Vienna (28 Apr. 1953)

TV Episode  |   |  Drama, Mystery, Thriller
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Ratings: 5.6/10 from 7 users  
Reviews: 1 user | 1 critic

Lawrence Stevens, an American engineer, accompanies a shipment of lathes to an electrical factory in Vienna. A female reporter tells him about the huge black market for industrial machinery... See full summary »



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Title: F.O.B. Vienna (28 Apr 1953)

F.O.B. Vienna (28 Apr 1953) on IMDb 5.6/10

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Episode credited cast:
Clement Fowler ...
Kremer (as Clem Fowler)
Mike Kellin ...
Herr Wohler
E.A. Krumschmidt ...
Herr Ploss
Lawrence Stevens
Helen Brady
James Forsythe


Lawrence Stevens, an American engineer, accompanies a shipment of lathes to an electrical factory in Vienna. A female reporter tells him about the huge black market for industrial machinery from the West. Corrupt businessmen are only too happy to sell products to the Communists and that his lathes are heading behind the iron Curtain to Poland. Written by Jay Phelps <>

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Release Date:

28 April 1953 (USA)  »

Filming Locations:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

FOB Suspense
10 February 2008 | by (N Syracuse NY) – See all my reviews

(Note: FOB stands for "Free On Board". Indicating "FOB" means that the seller pays for transportation of the goods to the port of shipment, plus loading costs. The buyer pays freight, insurance, unloading costs and transportation from the arrival port to the final destination. The passing of risks occurs when the goods pass the ship's rail at the port of shipment. Internationally the term specifies the port of loading, e.g., "FOB New York" or "FOB Vancouver." –per Wikipedia)

This a half-hour live, (kinoscoped), suspense drama that looks a lot like the first couple seasons of the Avengers. It all is shot in a TV studio and everything seems to be taking place at night. Each scene ends with a close-up of an actor's face as he reacts to something. It gives you the feeling of being next to the actors, rather than watching them through a telescope. In this case you are next to a very young Walter Matthau as a manufacturing executive who accompanies a shipment of lathes to Vienna where is he selling them to a supposedly reputable firm that is in fact selling materials to the Communist block. The lathes are on their way to Warsaw, as Walter finds out. He finds he can't trust anyone as he encounters fake cops and diplomats in his efforts to retrieve the shipment, which he winds up destroying so the Commies can't get them. The one person it turns out he can trust is a reporter played by Jane Meadows. And even younger looking Mike Kellin and Robert Webber are the chief bad guys.

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