Deadline (1959 TV series)

Deadline is a 1959–61 American television drama series that re-enacted famous newspaper stories from the past.[1][2] Hosted and narrated by Paul Stewart, the syndicated series was produced by Arnold Perl. Guest stars included Peter Falk, Will Kuluva, Diane Ladd, Robert Lansing, George Maharis, Simon Oakland, Edgar Stehli, and Paul Stevens. Thirty-nine 30-minute episodes were produced.[3] Deadline, a syndicated anthology series, scored high by making its plot lines secondary to its violent action content. It was an Official Films production.

In November of 2019, Film Chest studios acquired and restored all 39 episodes for release on DVD as a complete collection for the first time.


Episode # Episode Title Episode Synposis Original Headline
1 Victor Reisel Victor Riesel was one of the most famous labor union investigative reporters, and public enemy number one to crooked union bosses, with syndication to over 356 papers. This episode takes us inside his story until he was attacked with acid on a NYC street by a union gangster. Hall Syndicate Column- Victor Reisel
2 State Scandal Reporter George Thiem is caught between friendship and a scandal involving embezzled funds. Chicago Daily News -

E. George Thiem

3 Pickup An unlikely book salesman is the suspect in the murder of two women, and an obstinate newsman (Albert Morgenstern) is convinced he is the killer. The Wyoming Eagle -

Vern Lechliter

4 The Neon Touch Two teens, one wildly in love and the other using that to her advantage, go on a bad check spree and end up way over their heads. Alexandria Daily Town TalkWallace Beene
5 Extortion A local respected doctor becomes the target of an extortionist, and the perpetrator may be a lot closer than he thinks. The Montgomery Advertiser -

Joseph Azbell

6 The Accusing Finger Reporter Ed Mowery (Lee Bergers) tries to re-open a case when it becomes clear that the accused is a case of mistaken identity. New York World Telegram - Ed Mowery
7 Mass Murder (Flight 169) When a plane explodes mid-flight, leaving no passengers behind, it is up to the detectives and a local journalist to find justice. The Denver Post -

George McWilliams

& Zeke Scher

8 The Case of the Stranger When a local man tries to frame himself a hero, an inquisitive journalist feels that there is more to the story… to the tune of a double murder. Chicago Herald American-                      Harry Romanoff
9 Charm Boy When a young coed is missing and turns up dead, the hunt for her killer proves harder than they thought due to an airtight alibi. The Denver Post -

Gene Lowell

10 Old Man Lost A reporter, Don Hogan (James Monks) of the Boston Post, tries to help a fallen amnesiac veteran discover who he is. The Boston Post-

Don Hogan

11 The Human Storm A prison riot breaks out as inmates petition for better treatment. Detroit Times-          

Al Kaufmann

12 Hot Stuff Editor Trudy Prokop (Jayne Heller) gets too close to the underworld when she infiltrates a shoplifting ring in an effort to expose their racket. Philadelphia Daily News - Trudy Prokop
13 The Face of a Thief A reporter steps in and pairs with a witty detective to help a man convicted of a string of robberies he didn’t commit, despite a trail of circumstantial evidence. The Sharon Herald-

Ray Fulton

14 Murderess A troubled yet beautiful woman stakes claim that no prison can hold her, and proves it with a string of daring escapes. LA Daily News -

Joe Saldana

15 Chain Reaction After experiencing the horrors of war, a pilot becomes tortured by his mental illness brought on by witnessing first-hand the bombing of Hiroshima. The Fort Worth Star Telegram-

Jim Vachule

16 Clean Kill Gene Lindsey of the Phoenix Gazette (Arizona) solves a murder by slowly piecing together purchases made by the killer. The Phoenix Gazette - Eugene Lindsey
17 Lonely Hearts Killer A murderous couple stalks their victims through a romance column, preying on their desperation to find love. With the help of two journalists, they are caught after they claim their third victim.   Chicago Sun Times -

Art Petacque

18 Return to Murder On the eve of a peace treaty between two rival teen gangs, a former member is released from prison and sabotages the pact with a new war. The San Francisco Examiner -

Stuart McClure

19 Scramble When a small Texan town begins to feel overrun by unruly airmen, a voice of reason, reporter Matt Conklin, enters to bring the town together. The Sherman Democrat - Matt Conklin
20 Massacre A desperate criminal kills an entire family for money with hopes to flee to Mexico before he is caught. The San Francisco Call-Bulletin-

John Keyes

21 The Blue Dahlia When a young soldier awakes from a blackout with clues to a murder on his hands, he turns himself into police for the brutal killing of a young woman. When a local reporter (Jack Lotto) tries to make sense of the case, he is convinced that the soldier is not the man he thinks he is. New York Mirror -

Jack Lotto

22 Checkmate Police and reporters try to break a man suspected of having murdered a 15-year-o1d girl. The San Francisco Examiner-

Ed Montgomery &

Bob Bryant

23 Jailbreak Convicts cunningly plan their escape from a maximum security prison by mastering the warden’s signature and penning their own pardons. The Houston Press-

Harry McCormick

24 The Mad Bomber George Metesky, also known as the “Mad Bomber,” terrorized New York City for a decade, detonating explosives all throughout the city. This episode tells the story of how the journalists at The Journal-American sought him out with the aid of criminal profiling. The Journal-American - Seymor Berkson
25 Character Witness Reporter Leo Sheridan (Peter Brandon) must testify as a character witness for his friend who stands accused of murdering a young woman. The Johnstown Democrat - Leo Sheridan
26 Dumb Kid When a rookie reporter (Malcolm Brodrick) tries to earn his stripes chasing two career criminals, he gets more than he bargains for. The South Bend Tribune - Fred Wegner Jr.
27 A Story for Christmas A despondent young girl sets off a domino effect of misfortune when she is victimized at her job by a quick change artist. Things take a turn for the worse on Christmas Eve until a journalists steps in to write her story. The Washington Post -

Bill Key

28 Birthday Present When a father and son discover a dead woman buried under their porch, the finger points towards a very unsuspecting character with a double life. The Wichita Beacon -

Bill Linden

29 Suspicion of a Murder Bernice Freeman (Edith Meiser) stands by a friend she believes is wrongfully accused of murder, only to find out that she may be in over her head. The San Francisco Chronicle- Bernice Freeman
30 Thesis for Murder A young student is convinced he has found the recipe for the perfect murder. But, when he puts his plan into play, things go terribly awry.                      The Arizona Republic-

Gene McLain

31 Exposure A photo studio in Columbus, Ohio is running a scam on the local citizens by extorting them for their portraits to the tune of a few million. The Columbus Citizen -

Rip Manning

32 Pig Woman Once the owner of a greasy spoon finds out she is the sole beneficiary to her handyman’s life insurance, she plots to murder him with the aid of her unwilling employee. The Oneonta Star-

Gerald Gunthrup

33 To Move a Mountain During the war, a journalist is nursed back to health with the aid of two Burmese nurses. When he finds out that they may be deported he does everything in his power to intervene. Newark Star Ledger-

John McDowell

34 One Tall, One Short Two phantom bandits seem to be stalking towns and taking all they can within their reach, but no one can seem to identify the men until Reporter Clayton Darrow enters the investigation. Idaho Daily Statesman - Clayton Darrow
35 The Cave When a reporter spots a car sitting outside of an old cave, he has a hunch that someone may be trapped inside. The Pendelton Times-

Robert Billeter

36 The Two Ounce Trap A seemingly innocent convalescence home proves to be hiding a very sinister agenda. The Columbus Citizen-

Paul Quick

37 The Last Knockout Reporter Ed Reid (Fred Scollay), a sea captain, goes missing with a night club singer, a boxer, and a boxing coach as the most likely suspects. The Oregon Journal-

Edward Reid

38 Wetback A journalist goes undercover to witness the operations of smuggling “coyotes” in Mexico. The San Diego Union-

Gene Fuson

39 Smoke Screen When a series of suspicious fires wrack the Erie, PA fire department, the most likely suspect seems to be a young teen boy with a terribly misguided mission. The Erie Dispatch-

Arthur Brooks


  1. ^ Amarillo Sunday News Globe, September 27, 1959, page 2C.
  2. ^ Amarillo Globe Times February 22, 1960, page 21.
  3. ^ "Deadline". Classic TV Archive. Retrieved 2014-11-15.

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