7.1/10
22
2 user

The Best of Broadway 

Reviews

Episodes

Seasons


Years



1  
1955   1954  
Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. See more awards »

Photos

Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?

Learn more

More Like This 

The Iceman Cometh (TV Movie 1960)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Theodore Hickman, a hardware salesman, makes by-yearly visits to Harry Hope's 1910-era waterfront bar for his periodical drinking binges. But on this visit he has decided to try to save the bar's patrons from their "lying pipe dreams."

Director: Sidney Lumet
Stars: Jason Robards, Myron McCormick, Tom Pedi
Danger (1950–1955)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Live psychological and murder mystery dramas, and one of the first U.S. television dramas to make effective use of background music.

Stars: Dick Stark, Edward Binns, Joseph Anthony
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

The lawyer Federico Fendi has reasons to believe that his wife Carla in secret is Rome's highest paid prostitute.

Director: Sidney Lumet
Stars: Omar Sharif, Anouk Aimée, Didi Perego
Tightrope (1959–1960)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Mike Connors played an unnamed police undercover Agent who infiltrated organized crime to expose the leaders and their plots. His name changed with each episode in order to protect him. ... See full summary »

Stars: Mike Connors, Jesse White, Ted de Corsia
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

The Robinson family are spending two weeks of summer vacation at a resort in the Catskills. Older daughter Patti vies with her friend, Valeria, for the affections of Demi Armendez but Patti... See full summary »

Director: Roy Rowland
Stars: Jane Powell, Ricardo Montalban, Louis Calhern
Stage Struck (1958)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A young woman arrives in New York City determined to become a great theatrical star, but discovers that her goal may not be as easily attainable as she had hoped.

Director: Sidney Lumet
Stars: Henry Fonda, Susan Strasberg, Joan Greenwood
The Elgin Hour (1954–1955)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A drama series that ran every other week, attracted top notch actors and actresses, and was broadcast from New York City.

Stars: John Cassavetes, Gertrude Berg, Polly Bergen
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

In 1944, on a Miami to New York train, two paratroopers on furlough meet and fall in love with two 'kept women' who are on their way to meet their 'sugar-daddies'.

Director: Sidney Lumet
Stars: Sophia Loren, Tab Hunter, Jack Warden
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

Four Jewish intellectuals carpool to the funeral of their old friend Leslie Braverman, who died suddenly at age 41.

Director: Sidney Lumet
Stars: George Segal, Jack Warden, Jessica Walter
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Eddie Carbone, a Brooklyn longshoreman is unhappily married to Beatrice and unconsciously in love with Catherine, the niece that they have raised from childhood. Into his house come two ... See full summary »

Director: Sidney Lumet
Stars: Raf Vallone, Jean Sorel, Maureen Stapleton
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

After winning a game show contest, a newlywed couple travels to New Orleans where the husband seeks to reclaim his ancestral plantation mansion from his biracial stepbrother.

Director: Sidney Lumet
Stars: James Coburn, Lynn Redgrave, Robert Hooks
Rashomon (TV Movie 1960)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A looser adaptation of the same story that Kurosawa covered in his classic. Every player in the story has their own version of how a crime played out.

Director: Sidney Lumet
Stars: Osceola Archer, Michael Higgins, Oskar Homolka
Edit

Cast

Complete series cast summary:
Claudette Colbert ...  Actress / ... 2 episodes, 1954-1955
Reginald Gardiner ...  Beverly Carlton / ... 2 episodes, 1954-1955
Margaret Hamilton ...  Sarah / ... 2 episodes, 1954-1955
Helen Hayes ...  Abby Brewster / ... 2 episodes, 1954-1955
Betty Furness ...  Herself / ... 2 episodes, 1955
Edit

Storyline

Add Full Plot | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

anthology | See All (1) »

Taglines:

Originating live from Color Studios 72, New York See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Musical

Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

15 September 1954 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Karloff owns this role

"The Best of Broadway" was a short-lived anthology series, in which well-known actors performed live versions of popular Broadway dramas and comedies. This series was in colour at a time when most American TV shows (and all British ones) were in black and white. Each episode was an hour long (including credits and commercials), so any full-length play was necessarily subjected to drastic cutting. The format favoured one-set comedies and light dramas with small casts.

The January 5, 1955 episode of "The Best of Broadway" was a potted version of the 1940s comedy "Arsenic and Old Lace". Although drastically cut down, this episode is vitally important because it stars Boris Karloff in his Broadway role as Jonathan Brewster, the homicidal maniac who is a lookalike for Boris Karloff. The 1944 movie version of "Arsenic and Old Lace" (directed by Frank Capra) was filmed in Hollywood during the play's original Broadway run; Capra managed to borrow several of the Broadway cast members (who were understudied on Broadway during the film's shooting schedule), but he was unable to obtain Karloff ... the actor whose name on the marquee sold tickets. This kinescope of "The Best of Broadway", filmed more than ten years after his Broadway run, was Karloff's only chance to preserve his performance.

Unfortunately, by 1955 Karloff was too old to play Jonathan Brewster.

He's supposed to be playing a menace, but by this time in his career he's too heavy and sedate for monster roles. Still, Karloff *OWNS* the role of Jonathan Brewster. Jonathan is a hair-trigger psychotic who looks like Boris Karloff, and who goes homicidal whenever anybody mentions the resemblance ... so the *REAL* Karloff adds a layer of significance to this role which no other actor could possibly match.

In this same production, Mortimer Brewster is played by Orson Bean: he's good in the role, but the age discrepancy between Bean and Karloff is fatal. Mortimer and Jonathan are supposed to be brothers (or at least stepbrothers), but Karloff is old enough to be Bean's father.

Two actors in this production repeat their roles from the movie version: Peter Lorre is excellent as Doctor Einstein, and he clearly relishes this chance to work with Karloff. Edward Everett Horton is slightly less effective as Witherspoon, the director of the Happy Dale insane asylum.

In this production, the two dotty old aunts are played by Helen Hayes (Aunt Abby) and Billie Burke (Aunt Martha). Hayes would repeat her role in 1969, in a full-length TV production of this play. Billie Burke (an extremely annoying actress) does the same fluttery scatterbrained routine here which she used in most of her film roles.

This production of "Arsenic and Old Lace" features very static camera-work, typical for 1950s television. The colour photography is surprisingly good, but "Arsenic and Old Lace" is a story that really works better in shades of grey.

I met Orson Bean in the 1970s, when he and I were both living in Australia, and he arranged for me to view a kinescope of this version of "Arsenic and Old Lace". I hope that it becomes more widely available.

It's a shame that Karloff wasn't able to preserve his performance in the 1944 movie version of "Arsenic and Old Lace", when he was still young enough to bring some genuine menace to the role.


7 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 2 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows to Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse all our free movies and TV series



Recently Viewed