True crime stories and their investigations are dramatized.

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Episodes

Seasons


Years



2   1   Unknown  
1955   1952   Unknown  

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Cast

Series cast summary:
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 Second Guard / ... 6 episodes, 1952
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 Police Officer / ... 6 episodes, 1952
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 John Dillinger / ... 6 episodes, 1952
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 Det. Lt. Walsh / ... 5 episodes, 1952
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 Wayne Long / ... 5 episodes, 1952
Rusty Wescoatt ...
Don Marlowe ...
 Andrews / ... 4 episodes, 1952
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 Homer Van Meter / ... 4 episodes, 1952
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 Norma Breighlee / ... 4 episodes, 1952
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 Truck Driver 4 episodes, 1952
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 Det. Fuller / ... 4 episodes, 1952
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 Willie Sutton 3 episodes, 1952
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 Det. O'Reilly 3 episodes, 1952
Eddie Marr ...
 Det. Burlin 3 episodes, 1952
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 Marcus G. Bassett 3 episodes, 1952
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 Detective Ed / ... 3 episodes, 1952
Paul Dubov ...
 Alvin Karpis / ... 3 episodes, 1952
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 Bank Guard 3 episodes, 1952
Jack George ...
 Manager Gross 3 episodes, 1952
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Max Palmer ...
 Nick Mandaro - the Phantom / ... 3 episodes, 1952
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 Capt. Armstrong / ... 3 episodes, 1952-1955
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 Eleanor Jarman / ... 3 episodes, 1952-1955
Michael Mark ...
 Drunk / ... 3 episodes, 1952
Robert Kendall ...
 Baby Face Nelson 3 episodes, 1952
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 Al Rocco / ... 3 episodes, 1952-1955
Phillips Lord ...
 Narrator / ... 3 episodes, 1952
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 Dr. Hall 3 episodes, 1952
Ed Hinton ...
 First Guard 3 episodes, 1952
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 Girl in Car 3 episodes, 1952
William Justine ...
Kate MacKenna ...
 Aunt Jenny 3 episodes, 1952
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 Slug Bennett 3 episodes, 1952
Charles Victor ...
 Police Officer Rondeau 3 episodes, 1952
Alan Reynolds ...
 Lt. Dane / ... 2 episodes, 1952
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 Hazel / ... 2 episodes, 1952
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 Lt. Fenton / ... 2 episodes, 1952
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 Dr. Guelife / ... 2 episodes, 1952
Peter Davis ...
 Burk / ... 2 episodes, 1952
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 Prison Trustee / ... 2 episodes, 1952
Thomas Browne Henry ...
 Frank Pasqua / ... 2 episodes, 1952
Scott Douglas ...
 Special Agent Lt. Clifton 2 episodes, 1952
Hal Gerard ...
 Henri Boilat / ... 2 episodes, 1952
Joseph J. Greene ...
 Arthur Troser / ... 2 episodes, 1952
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 Joe Rollins / ... 2 episodes, 1952
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 Ordville Adkins / ... 2 episodes, 1952
Russ Whitney ...
 Dr. Jertel / ... 2 episodes
Helen Van Tuyl ...
 Governor of Texas / ... 2 episodes, 1952
Jean Harvey ...
 Ma Barker 2 episodes, 1952
Robert Vanselow ...
 John Hamilton 2 episodes, 1952
Tony Dante ...
 2nd. Trooper / ... 2 episodes, 1952
Stanley Farrar ...
 Grocery Store Manager / ... 2 episodes, 1952
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 Bartender / ... 2 episodes, 1952
Harry Arnie ...
 Pete Dudero / ... 2 episodes, 1952
Connie Cezon ...
 Alice / ... 2 episodes, 1952
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 Bessie / ... 2 episodes, 1952
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 Olga Trapani 2 episodes, 1952-1955
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 Miss Reggirt 2 episodes, 1952-1955
Brad Trumbull ...
 Ranger / ... 2 episodes, 1952
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 Reverend James I. Seder 2 episodes, 1952
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 Harry Farris / ... 2 episodes, 1952
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 Det. Lawrence Kohrtney / ... 2 episodes, 1952
Tyler McVey ...
 Detective Brinken / ... 2 episodes, 1952
Jennifer Goddard ...
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 Captain Gorman / ... 2 episodes, 1952
Paul Norby ...
 Landlord / ... 2 episodes, 1952
Paul Harbee ...
 Capt. John Wright 2 episodes, 1952
Ted Hecht
Sydney Mason ...
 Lt. Quince 2 episodes, 1952
Paul Maxey
Tony Michaels
Irene Vernon
Bob Wilke
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Storyline

The format of the series were action-packed stories on the apprehension of major criminals, taken from actual police and FBI files. The stories were presented in semi-documentary style. There was no continuing cast, but creator and writer Phillips H. Lord narrated each show. Written by Anonymous

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Genres:

Crime | Drama

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Details

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Release Date:

20 March 1952 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Captured  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The series ran on alternate weeks with Dragnet (1951) on NBC on Thursday nights for a little more than a season. It was the highest rated show at the time NBC decided to cancel it, in favor of airing "Dragnet" weekly. The NBC episodes appeared in syndication in 1953 under the title "Captured", hosted by Chester Morris. In 1955, new first-run episodes under the original "Gang Busters" title were released in syndication by General Teleradio, following their release of the theatrical feature Gang Busters (1955). See more »

Connections

Edited into Gang Busters (1955) See more »

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User Reviews

 
From pioneering radio to TV bench hitter
13 March 2007 | by See all my reviews

"Gang Busters" was a pioneering radio series detailing the activities of the nation's most notorious crime figures of the day. It was unique in that at the end of every episode, the announcer would inform listeners to call the local police or "Gang Busters" for information on wanted criminals still on the loose. In that respect, it was definitely a precursor of today's reality shows like "America's Most Wanted".

The television version, which premiered in 1952, stayed true to the radio format, telling stories of legendary scum like John Dillinger, Willie "The Actor" Sutton, etc. And just as on radio, viewers were informed of criminals still on the loose, and were encouraged to contact the show or the police. Yet, what worked so well on radio just didn't jell on the small screen. Despite series creator Phillips H. Lord's total involvement in the production, it all looked so disjointed and cheap, judging from the four episodes I have on DVD.

NBC obviously knew this as well, for despite very high ratings, they regarded this show as a stop gap filler for the equally successful "Dragnet" during its early years as a bi-weekly show. When Jack Webb filmed enough episodes for a weekly slot, "Gang Busters", one of the highest rated series of the 1952 season, had to go. So, what could have been a potential landmark in television history, as it was on radio, was merely a low-budget bench-hitter during the early days of TV. New episodes, however, were made for syndication under the title "Captured", apparently as not to tarnish the name that helped to pioneer the reality show. Today, the show has fallen into public domain, and has only now received a small cult status as one of crime TV's earliest offerings.

"Gang Busters" is a Phillips H. Lord Production, filmed by Visual Drama, Inc. for NBC-TV. 26 episodes were filmed, as well as a feature-length episode specially made for theaters in 1954. That, too, is in public domain.


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