IMDb > "Tales of Tomorrow" Past Tense (1953)

"Tales of Tomorrow" Past Tense (1953)

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Willie Gilbert (teleplay)
Jack Weinstock (teleplay)
View company contact information for Past Tense on IMDbPro.
Original Air Date:
3 April 1953 (Season 2, Episode 30)
Physician invents a time machine to go back in time and make a fortune by selling penicillin to a pharmaceutical firm... See more » | Add synopsis »
User Reviews:
TALES OF TOMORROW: Past Tense {TV} (Don Medford, 1953) *** See more (3 total) »


 (Episode Cast)

Boris Karloff ... Dr. Henry Marco
John McGovern ... Dr. Laskey
Katherine Meskill ... Jane
Allen Nourse ... Bonzy

Robert F. Simon ... Dr. Giles

Episode Crew
Directed by
Don Medford 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Willie Gilbert  teleplay
Robert F. Lewine  story
Jack Weinstock  teleplay

Sound Department
Nick Carbonaro .... sound
Other crew
Walter Kubilus .... technical director

Series Crew
These people are regular crew members. Were they in this episode?
Directed by
Franklin J. Schaffner 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Mann Rubin  (episode "Tomb of King Tarus, The")

Original Music by
Bobby Christian 
Irving Robbin  (as Binnie Robbins)
Art Department
Danny Terrill .... stagehand
Camera and Electrical Department
Imero Fiorentino .... lighting director
Music Department
Bobby Christian .... conductor
Sergei Prokofiev .... composer: theme "Romeo and Juliet"
Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

30 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:


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TALES OF TOMORROW: Past Tense {TV} (Don Medford, 1953) ***, 24 October 2013
Author: MARIO GAUCI ( from Naxxar, Malta

This is another good entry in this interesting series: linking it to the recently-viewed H.G. Wells adaptation THE CRYSTAL EGG (1951) is the fact that, here, we deal with the invention of a time machine (obviously the title of one of the most popular works by that visionary author). The star of the episode under review, then, is a veritable genre icon i.e. Boris Karloff; he plays an altruistic scientist who decides to go back a few decades in time so as to give to the world the benefits of penicillin, in the hope that untreatable sickness can be cured and lives saved…or, so he thinks, since the elderly man's plea for his drug to be tested on terminal cases is misunderstood at every turn! Even worse, Karloff's shrewish wife looks with equal mistrust upon his time-travelling device and threatens to destroy it; that said, the protagonist's own motive is not above simple profiteering – and, while the viewer is apt to sympathize with his plight, one also feels that the doctor's ultimate fate is a bit his own doing, given that he would not take no for an answer! In spite of the repetition (Karloff's arguments with his wife and his striving to convince unenlightened 'colleagues' about both the 'miraculous' remedy he is promoting and his own 'unrecorded' origins) and studio-bound look (for obvious reasons, never do we venture outdoors), the premise is sufficiently engaging throughout – and, needless to say, Karloff's commanding presence (and soft-spoken delivery) always constitutes a pleasure to the undersigned. Amusingly, this being a live telecast, an actor badly flubs a line early on and – boldly – keeps repeating it until he manages to get the correct wording across!

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