Saturday, February 18, 2012

Checkmate (1961)

1 comment:

Michael Powers said...

Sebastian Cabot remains one of the most charmingly enjoyable actors to watch and it's a shame that he was trapped in the horrific sitcom "A Family Affair" for as long as he was. Doug McClure was so irritating at this stage that you want someone to graft him at the shoulder to Troy Donahue. I'm not exactly sure why a psych teacher, if that what he was (on 2nd thought, maybe he's a criminologist--he did mention that psychology was a hobby) would have a chemical laboratory (or maybe Cabot's character had a slew of doctorates, like Doc Savage) but it sure was lucky he'd mislabeled that vial the day before! Jeffrey Hunter was pretty good in this in that I more or less believed his performance in this enviable showcase (I wish Lee Marvin had played this one). I have an old friend who looks quite like Hunter who's almost as crazy as his character in this, in fact, which added a lot to the verisimilitude for me personally. "Checkmate" is one of those television series, like "The Rogues" (with David Niven, Charles Boyer, and Gig Young) that should've lasted longer. McClure got lucky later although he admittedly was no Walter Huston as Trampas, but Cabot wound up with those moppets in the aforementioned sitcom while I don't recall seeing the chiseled features of Anthony George afterward although I suppose I did and don't remember. A good and unusual episode of a fine TV series.