Saturday, August 23, 2008

Flashback Of The Day: "A Quinn Martin Production"

Anyone who grew up in the 70s will remember the phrase, "a Quinn Martin production." Martin was a prolific TV series producer, the man behind shows like Barnaby Jones, The Streets of San Francisco and more.

From Wikipedia:

The eponymously-named Quinn Martin Productions produced a string of hit television series during the 1960s and 1970s, including The Fugitive, Twelve O'Clock High, The F.B.I., The Invaders, The Streets of San Francisco, Cannon, and Barnaby Jones. His series were known for their highly stylized format: a prologue featuring a stern-voice narrator to establish the premise; explicitly announced Acts I, II, III, and IV; and an epilogue, again featuring the narrator.

They fail to mention the best part of "a Quinn Martin production": the episode titles. These were always laughably dramatic titles that:

1) used words like "gambit," "crucible," "caper" and others that no normal person ever used;

2) referenced mythological, literary or Biblical figures (Judas, Damocles, Herod, Minerva);

3) used corny,
clich├ęd metaphors (Web of Deceit, Nest of Scorpions);

4) frequently followed this simple formula: (noun) + "of" + (emotion) = score! (Triangle of Fear, Conspiracy of Terror).

Here are some QM show opens, followed by a list of some actual episodes from the various series. If I wore a hat, it would be off to Steve Hatchett for the great idea.

Real episode titles from various QM shows:

Perchance To Kill
See Some Evil, Do Some Evil
The Day
Of The Viper
The Deadly Jinx
Rendezvous With Terror
Blueprint For A Caper
Web Of Deceit
For Two
Of Fear
Honeymoon With Death

Dangerous Gambit
Of Thy Father
Of Evil
Of Thieves
The Deadly Charade
Of Treachery
The Damocles Gun
Of Fear
The Devil's Handmaiden
Uninvited Peril
Of Scorpions
Dance With Death
Homecoming For A Dead Man
Death Is The Punchline
Of Silence
The Girl
In The Electric Coffin
The Nowhere Man
Devil's Playground
Blood On
The Vine
Cain's Mark
Bitter Legion
Nobody Beats
The House
The Dead Samaritan
To Ride A Tiger
He Who Digs
A Grave
Hounds Of Hell
Of the Damned
Conspiracy Of Corruption
Arena Of Fear
Triangle Of Terror
Voice From
The Grave
Coffin Corner
The Iceman
A Touch Of Venom
The Games Children Play
The Quasar Kill
Image In A Cracked Mirror
To Free My Enemy
The Plague Merchant
Passage Into Fear
For Betrayal
Wind It Up And It Betrays You
Caesar's Wife
Of Silence
Antennae Of Death
Of Terror
The Minerva Tapes
Judas Goat
Arrangement With Terror
Escape To Nowhere
A Game
Of Chess
Holiday with Terror
A Gathering
Of Sharks
The Loper Gambit
The Year Of The Locusts
A Collection
Of Eagles
Of The Serpent
Of The Lost
Chapel Of The Damned
A String
Of Puppets
Of Prey
Mister Nobody
Murder By Proxy
For Murder
Clown Of Death


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