Armchair Thriller

1 9 7 8 (UK)
26 x 30 minute episodes
armchairthriller_0031 9 8 0 (UK)
28 x 30 minute episodes

Armchair Thriller screened twice weekly in 1978 and 1980, with each story spread over four or six 30 minute episodes - Some were excellent, some were very average.

The series was mainly made by Thames TV, but Southern TV also got in on the act and made a couple of stories.

The title sequence was excellent and the theme was by Andy Mackay of Roxy Music and Rock Follies fame. There were eleven stories in total;

RACHEL IN DANGER
11-year old Rachel (Della Low) travels from Scotland to spend a summer with her father, whom she has not seen for many years. Arriving at Euston, she finds herself involved in a murder, with herself possibly the next victim. It turns out that terrorists who are planning an assassination at a Royal garden party have killed Rachel's long-absent father - but she didn't recognise the body and mistakenly believes that he is the murderer.

A DOG'S RANSOM
Anonymous letters are straining the nerves of Edward and Gina Reynolds (Benjamin Whitrow and Zena Walker), but they are unprepared for the nightmare that follows when Edward takes their poodle for a walk. Constable Duhamel (Brian Stirner) tries to help find the dog but runs foul of the CID and becomes a murder suspect.

THE GIRL WHO WALKED QUICKLY
A brilliant and conscientious student disappears. His girlfriend and tutor try to solve the mystery and the investigation turns into a manhunt. The plot involves bombs around London, a terrorist group intent on overthrowing democracy, and a claustrophobic hero.

QUIET AS A NUN
A nun dies of starvation after locking herself in a convent tower. Jemima Shore (Maria Aitken), a former pupil at the convent school and now a television interviewer, is asked to investigate. Jemima is surprised to discover that the death of the nun is connected with her own television programme. Meanwhile, tales begin to circulate about a ghostly Black Nun. Cast includes Patsy Kensit.

THE LIMBO CONNECTION
Film writer Mark Omney (James Bolam) drinks too much, has endless rows with his wife Clare (Suzanne Bertish), and cannot make a living any more. Simply put, his life is falling apart. Following a drunken car crash, Clare goes missing. Mark tracks her down to Meadowbank Clinic and attempts to prove his theories about the nightmare in which he is caught, but the police have evidence that seems to cast doubts on his state of mind.

THE VICTIM
Sue Craig (Lorna Yabsley), 14-years old, is kidnapped and her father, Vincent (John Shrapnel), negotiates with the kidnapper. He ultimately refuses to pay the ransom and instead goes on the hunt for the kidnapper. He gets into an attack with George Neecham (Bernard Kay) , the man he thinks is responsible for his daughter's kidnapping, while she slowly grows attached to her jailer, Frankie Martin (David Beckett). But Martin is a psychopathic killer . . .

DEAD MAN'S KIT
The Master at Arms of a British Ship (Freddie Fletcher) discovers a foreign exchange officer losing heavily in a casino; the following day the master is knocked unconscious and thrown overboard. When a verdict of accidental death is brought, Chalky White (Larry Lamb) accuses the Navy of a cover up. Chalky and the Master's widow (Victoria Fairborther) try to find Kobahal (Maurice Colbourne) who they believe is responsible for the murders of the Master at Arms and Zoe Summers ("Little" Nell Campbell of Rocky Horror Picture Show fame), but Kobahal plans to use them as hostages to get back on to a Russian warship.

DYING DAY
Anthony Skipling (Ian McKellen) meets eccentric naturalist Foster (David Howey) on a train. Foster apparently forgets one of his tape-recordings and leaves it behind. But when Skipling plays it, it reveals a different story - a plot to kill him. Skipling goes to the police but they won't believe him, so he turns to the Samaritans for help. He also turns to his ex-wife (Gwyneth Powell) for help, but learns that she is now "married" to an eccentric millionaire, with a voice just like the one heard on the tape. In his search for the truth he is befriended by Susie (Kate Coleridge) who used to council him at the Samaritans when his wife left him.

The day on which Mr Skipling is apparently supposed to die - according to the tape - arrives and he tries valiantly to behave as if everything is normal. But when presented with Doris' "husband" on a railway platform he lashes out and accidentally knocks him into the path of an oncoming train. Mr Skipling is sent to Broadmoor Prison for murder, while Doris, her chauffeur (actually Foster!) and Susie celebrate the success of their plan. They have framed Mr Skipling and will inherit a vast fortune.

FEAR OF GOD
Reporter Paul Marriott (Bryan Marshall) sees a girl fall past his window and rushes outside to find she is dead. He discovers the girl - called Rosamund (Susan Sheridan) - had been squatting in his attic, and becomes suspicious when Special Branch turn up. He discovers the dead girl belonged to a sect called `The Regiment of God'.

HIGH TIDE
After serving a four year sentence for manslaughter, Peter Curtis (Ian McShane) is heading for the South coast to buy a boat. He notices a man following him and starts to discover the truth about what happened four years ago - a mystery which takes him to the coastal village of Leremouth.

THE CIRCLE COMPLEX
Tom Foreman (Trevor Martin) has hidden £400,000-worth of jewellery from a robbery and is now in prison. His wife, Val (Beth Morris), has a plan for aiding Tom's escape. In Prison, Tom's health begins to deteriorate and he is diagnosed with a brain tumour. His prison-mate Ollie Milton (Alan David) kills him and tries to frame Cat Devlin (Michael Deeks) while he goes slowly mad trying to decipher the meaning behind Tom's last words on the whereabouts of the loot . . .

RACHEL IN DANGER
Della Low
Neville Jason
David Cook
Stephen Greif
Eiko Nakamura
Struan Rodger
George Waring
Anna Fox

A DOG'S RANSOM
Benjamin Whitrow
Zena Walker
Leon Eagles
Brian Stirner
Paul Angelis
Susie Blake

THE GIRL WHO WALKED QUICKLY
Derek Benfield
Phyllida Nash
Margery Mason
Clive Merrison
Denis Lawson
Barry Stanton
John Gregg
Rowena Cooper
Colin McCormack

QUIET AS A NUN
Maria Aitken
Kate Binchy
David Burke
James Appleby
Renée Asherson
Brenda Bruce
Doran Godwin
Linda Slater
Sarah Webb
Michele Winstanley
Patsy Kensit
Margaret D'Arcy
James Laurenson
Mary Healey
Susan Engel
Sylvia Coleridge

THE LIMBO CONNECTION
James Bolam
Suzanne Bertish
Michael Culver
Beatrix Lehmann
Rosalind Ayres
James Berwick
Georgine Anderson
Graham Rowe
Patricia Lawrence
Tricia George
Isabelle Amyes
Tony Mathews
Vass Anderson
Alan Ford
Yvonne Edgell
Christopher Benjamin
Sam Sewell
Arthur Blake

THE VICTIM
John Shrapnel
Paul Jerricho
Gerald Sim
David Beckett
Lorna Yabsley
Steve Morley
Meg Ritchie
Godfrey James
Edward Burnham
Lyndsay Durant
Bernard Kay
Alan Downer
Priscilla Morgan

DEAD MAN'S KIT
Maurice Colbourne
Philip Locke
Larry Lamb
Victoria Fairbrother
Angela Morant
Paul Kember
Clive Merrison
Robert Oates
Freddie Fletcher
Nell Campbell
Cherie Lunghi
Richard Kane

DYING DAY
Ian McKellen
David Howey
Maurice Kaufmann
Prentis Hancock
Anton Phillips
Patrick Malahide
Michael Troughton
Kate Coleridge
Peter Childs
Joan Scott
Gwyneth Powell

FEAR OF GOD
Bryan Marshall
Lynn Clayton
Michael Watkins
Alun Armstrong
Madeline Hinde
Susan Sheridan
Peter Settelen
Helen Cooper
Peter Cellier
Chris Jenkinson
Madeline Church
Garrick Hagon
Kevin Costello
David Healy
Roger Brierley
Michael Sheard

HIGH TIDE
Ian McShane
Terence Rigby
Wendy Morgan
Malcolm Terris
Anna Fox
Kika Markham
John Bird
Mike McKevitt

THE CIRCLE COMPLEX
Trevor Martin
Beth Morris
Michael Deeks
Alan David
James Hazeldine
Geoffrey Colville
Maggie Wilkinson
Eric Francis
Gareth Forwood
Derek Ware
Tony Scannell