MARK SABER

All series starred Donald Gray.
Click Series Number for details
Series 1
+ Michael Balfour & Theresa Thorne
Series 2
with Diana Decker
Series 3
+ Neil McCallum/ Gordon Tanner
Series 4
with Robert Arden
Series 5
with Garry Thorne

The Danzigers' flagship British-made show, made at their New Elstree Studios.
Shooting started in Autumn 1955, when the long running anthology series 'The Vise' was taken over by stories exclusively about detective Mark Saber. Ex-BBC announcer Donald Gray played the title role. In America, the series continued to be shown as 'The Vise.' In Britain the Saber stories made their debut on ITV as 'Mark Saber'. From series 3, with a change of station in USA, the show's title was altered to Saber of London. Actual production finished early 1959 by which time Saber had solved an amazing total of 156 cases. None of the stories have been transmitted on British terrestrial tv since Granada aired some episodes in 1969, though in the late 1980s satellite channel Bravo screened 40 stories ad infinitum until 1996.
Mark Saber was certainly a huge financial success, yet it won little critical acclaim: "the corniest programme on tv," was the verdict of one critic. But to reject the Saber series outright would miss you a few real treasures! One reason, Brian Clemens was chief scriptwriter, cutting his teeth on tv drama with Mark Saber.

This still shows Michael Balfour in drag in #1.13 There's Danger in Beauty (!). Inspector Chester looks bemused

Click here for Brief Biographies of the main actors in this series.
For Memories by Robert Arden ('Bob Page' in series 4) .
More on the pioneering Danziger brothers.

Missing episodes that I haven't seen: if you can add any additional information, your email will receive my appreciative reply.
Also, if you have any details to add to my Brief Biographies page of Diana Decker, Garry Thorne and John Martin.
If anyone has a contact for these, or for anyone else still around who was involved in this series, I'd love to hear from you.

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MARK SABER - Series 1

1 A LADY IS MISSING
2 DIAMOND CUT DIAMOND
3 A COFFIN FOR JOHNNY
5 DEADLINE FOR MURDER
6 MANHUNT
7 DEATH HAS THREE FACES
9 THE CAPTIVE BRAIN
10 DEATH NEEDS NO CANE
11 FIND A BODY
13 THERE'S DANGER IN BEAUTY
14 THE GIRL FROM ROME
15 HEAR NO EVIL
17 WALK SOFTLY FOR MURDER
18 MURDER BY DESIGN
19 MURDER FOR GAIN
20 THE NIGHT HAS SECRETS
21 NO REPLY FROM ROOM 17
23 NO SHROUD FOR A LADY
24 IT'S ONLY MINK
25 THE LONG WAIT

The first series of 26 stories starred Donald Gray as the private detective, with Michael Balfour as Barney, and Theresa Thorne as secretary Judy.
It was screened in USA from December 1955 as "The Vise" and later repeated as "Uncovered."
From 1957 it was shown on ITV as "Mark Saber," screened generally after series 2.

In Series 1 Saber's office is situated above a large music store (WJ Elliott Ltd, probably in St Albans), one shot shows the name 'Rigby House.' He drives a modest saloon car PLC961. At the start of series 2 his office has a view of the Houses of Parliament from the other side of the Thames, though he is soon in an office in Little George Street closer to Big Ben, and takes to driving an open top sports car, PGY450. Then during the early stories of Saber of London, Saber's office moves round the corner to Great George Street, Big Ben clearly to be seen, and Saber drives a flash Porsche 356A T1 Cabriolet, TGP 668. This was Donald Gray's own which he purchased in November 1956.
My favourite episode: 15 Hear No Evil, the best of a fairly ordinary bunch.
Best moment: How about Leslie Phillips' mini-part in #14?
Dud episode: 9 The Captive Brain, one of the episodes shown on Bravo is definitely poor, but it's not the only one
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A LADY IS MISSING
A simple first story with nice banter between Saber and his associates. Interesting that Saber refers back to his earlier work, "when I was a police force inspector I couldn't be choosey, now I'm on my own, I'm particular who I work for."
This remark is to brash Eddie Crane (Robert Ayres) who has burst into Saber's office asking him to find his wife: "I'm looking for a girl," is how he puts it. "Who isn't?" jokes Barney.
Crane offers Saber a hefty wad of cash. Mark takes the case! Judy sums up his American wife's character from a photo, "sophisticated, attractive, good taste." Crane thinks she might have gone to their holiday chalet in Norfolk, so Mark and Barney drive there and discover a corpse under a bed, her face unrecognisable. Looking around, Saber has a gut feeling that something doesn't quite fit. Or, as Inspector Price puts it, "something stinks!" The obvious suspect is Crane himself, especially since he took out an insurance policy on his wife only 4 months ago. But how could he be guilty when his alibi is that he was in America at the time of the death? "You can't push his alibi over with a bulldozer."
Some sleuthing from Barney reveals Crane had employed several maids. All had been sacked. One, Jessie Rawlings has, oddly, disappeared. But from a photo she looks rather like Mrs Crane. Saber realises what was bothering him. The shoes on the corpse were size 7, too big for a woman who wore only size 5. Also, they were black but she was wearing a brown suit. "What woman," asks Saber, "would wear black shoes with brown?" Elementary my dear Saber. Though how we were supposed to see that, I do not know, unless these films were originally made in colour!

The Yard Inspector is Price (Trevor Reid), who plays it in his best deadpan style, asking suspiciously at one point, "are you holding anything back, Saber?" Saber's car is PLC961

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DIAMOND CUT DIAMOND

In this mundane story, Mark Saber is working on behalf of the International Insurance Agency charged with trying to recover the stolen de Winter diamond.
Barney had been trailing Dawson the thief when the chap unfortunately gets himself killed. However he thoughtfully leaves behind a clue, our old friend the matchbox, with the name The Purple Shade Nightclub on the label. Mark and Barney visit there to enjoy a Scotch. In charge is the fence Nichol (Eric Pohlmann), whom they follow as he collects his booty.
Barney "the gorilla" has a fight in a pub, while Mark follows Nichol back to his club, where he hands the diamond to his girl Linda (Sandra Dorne), "femme fatale." Her job is to take the diamond out of the country to Lisbon. Mark attempts to deal with Nichol but Mario his bodyguard gives Mark a hard time, until Barney arrives fresh from his other punchup.
All that remains is for them to dash to London Airport and catch Linda who is all ready to board Flight 279. She is relieved of her jewels.

Notes The cast lists Inspector Price but he's not seen or heard, though his help at London Airport is mentioned. However, uncredited extras are the no-expense-spared 4 piece band. Also the barman (George A Cooper), a customs official, and Mario (Arthur Mullard), who actually seems to enjoy bashing the hell out of nice Mr Saber

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A COFFIN FOR JOHNNY
As Barney remarks, "this is the screwiest case I've ever handled."
A graveyard worker at Pinehurst Cemetry, called Durvey (John Longden) is worried because an explosion had caused some of his graves to fall in. He had discovered one coffin was empty, except for a heap of sand. It is that of John Dillon, buried September 12th last year, his body flown in from Africa where he'd been an engineer prospecting for uranium. His brothers Peter (Neil Hallett) and Fred (Colin Croft) had made the arrangements for the burial. Durvey wants to know what has happened.
That night an intruder breaks into John's empty coffin. Durvey is disturbed and goes to investigate, receiving a cosh on the head for his trouble. But he manages to phone Saber, who discovers that the plans of the cemetry have been burnt and the brass plate on John's coffin stolen.
Saber approaches the vicar (Patrick Holt) for the only other plans of the graveyard. But the 'vicar' gives himself away by falling for Saber's neat trap. He agrees with Saber that the fifth commandment is Thou Shalt Not Steal, maybe such ignorance justifies Saber in punching this vicar on the nose. But he is no man of the cloth at all, really John Dillon. Mark explains how he knew, a story of customs evasion. Dillon had discovered gold (obviously not the uranium for which he had been prospecting) and had used the coffin to smuggle the gold into England.
Saber: "Ashes to ashes, dust to dust,
Judy: "Instead of John in the coffin,
Barney: "Gold dust."
Notes- the story is ripe for the usual graveyard jokes, such as the place is "pretty quiet."
Inspector Parker is mentioned in this story but not seen

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DEADLINE FOR MURDER
"I am going to kill you. Your days are numbered." Thus reads a printed letter to George Baxter (John Stuart). He's joint owner of a jewellery business, and though the letter is anonymous, he suspects his partner and erstwhile friend Charles Donaldson of sending this, the latest in a series of threatening notes. He disappeared a couple of weeks ago, after accusing George of falsifying the company accounts.
Barney decides George must be nuts. Why hasn't he called the police? Because they were friends, is the explanation.
Saber suspects Donaldson's wife Diana (Sandra Dorne), an ex-actress, who is sure her husband has not run off with Another Woman. Though she claims she doesn't know where he is, we see her later phoning him at a hunting lodge, so that must prove how wise Detective Saber really is.
Barney checks out her background, while Judy is set to tail her. That is pleasant enough as Judy dines at a swish restaurant, all in the line of business, though then somehow Diana manages to shake her off.
Someone shoots at Baxter at his home. Urgently he summons Saber. Mark examines the room and spots, what we can see also, that the broken glass through which the bullet had been fired, is on the outside.
Mark finds a clue to Donaldson's whereabouts. He's at this lodge on the east coast, 50 miles out of town. But when Mark and Barney get there, they learn their man has checked out and gone back to town.
Another shot! Donaldson is lying dead of the floor at Baxter's home when our detectives burst in. According to George, his partner had attempted to kill him, they had struggled and his assailant's gun had gone off in the struggle. But it seemed Mark Saber knew all this was going to occur, and had already called the cops. He reveals the two fatal mistakes Baxter had made.
Diana draws a gun to make a quick exit with George, only to land in Inspector Parker's clutches.
There's a good twist, though several earlier scenes are really too incidental to the plot.
"You forgot the last act of your play, Mrs Donaldson," Mark tells the ex-actress, "the criminal always gets caught." Those were the days.

Saber's car is PLC 961.
The credits call the inspector 'Inspector Pike', though twice in the story Mark and later Judy refer to him as Inspector Parker- he is played as ever by Colin Tapley.
Uncredited speaking parts: the receptionist at the lodge (John Martin, three speaking scenes). A wine waiter

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MANHUNT
Two crooks knock out a lorry driver, stealing two crates. They make off in a van driven by their accomplice.
Since Inspector Chester is utterly baffled, he appeals to Mark Saber for help. This is the ninth similar robbery in the past two months. He does know that Michael Lamont (Alan Tilvern) is the boss of the gang, but this ex-Chicago gangster is so elusive, improbably no police force has any photo of him. But Barney had once met him in the old days.
So Mark asks Barney to try and get in with the mob. Inspector Chester poses a nice little scene in the police station in front of the two thieves who have been caught, Karl and Benny. The pair are so impressed by Barney's apparent mastery of the policeman, this is Barney's ticket to be invited to join them.
Their hideout is Joe's Cafe, but Barney is disappointed to learn that nobody ever sees the boss. All his instructions are sent my mail with a final phone call to advise of the lorry to be robbed. They are paid by mail also.
Be ready for the next job! Barney goes to another cafe to tell Mark's secretary Judy what he knows. But Karl tails him and Barney has to pretend to be her girl friend, kissing her and so on.
Now the location is phoned through, Talber's Yard. Masked men ram a van and steal parcels. Barney drives the getaway van, but police swoop, and make their arrests, though allowing Barney to escape to make for the drop off, a warehouse.
There's no sign of Lamont, but the assigned police undercover agent Sgt Marley joins Barney there to wait for Lamont to collect the loot. But Marley shoots Barney, obviously he is Lamont with a beard for a disguise. He had killed the real Marley.
Barney had seen through the beard and Lamont had only shot a dummy. After a struggle, Lamont grabs his gun and prepares to shoot Barney properly. Fortunately Mark is on hand to stop such unpleasantness.
Notes: Gaffe- as Barney talks to Judy in the cafe he calls Inspector Chester 'Price,' the name of another Yard inspector in some other stories. Uncredited speaking extras: Police doctor (John Martin). Chester's assistant. The driver of the van at Talber's Yard. His passenger. The crooks' van is NYN162
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DEATH HAS THREE FACES

Poor acting does occasionally occur in the series! In the opening scene, an actor, pretending to have a knife wound in his lungs, staggers unconvincingly round the set of a dark alley. He's not given a screen credit!
Saber omits to tell Inspector Chester that the man, Johnny Stevens, in his death throes, handed him a packet. This contains three photos from a Fleet Street 'Scandal Section'. Barney gets his "chance to show his initiative" by going with Judy to interview the man in charge of the photo section of the Daily Courier.
He is very helpful, telling them the first photo is of Tony Lawson, who's currently lying low suspected of smuggling in Amsterdam. The second is of Harold J Larkin, who'd been involved with doubtful companies that folded up back in the 20's. Last year he shot a burglar in his apartment. Finally there' Lili Martin, a night club singer who had perjured herself five years ago.

Visits follow to the trio. Lily proves to be inebriate, a sad pathetic figure.
"I don't like you!" she informs Mark and Barney in her stupor. "Not so much a woman," Barney later tells Judy, "as a walking distillery."
Lawson is as uncooperative as Lily, though he at least admits he knew the dead man. He threatens our detectives, "People who stick their noses in my affairs usually end up with them broke." A tough character, pronounces Mark.
Larkin is far too busy even to know if he ever knew Stevens and he curtly shows Saber and Barney the door. "My charm's slipping!" declares Barney.
Saber sets a trap by pretending to blackmail the killer, inviting that person to come to his office to discuss terms. As the murderer enters, Donald Gray talks to the camera while we try and guess which of the three it is. Inspector Chester hides in the outer office to overhear the confession. But surely Mr Saber should be warned that in Britain we don't just go shooting blackmailers, even in the arm!

Saber drives PLC961. Uncredited speaking part: Johnny Stevens. Also in a walk on non speaking part is John Martin, whose photo is later shown in the background to the one of Larkin
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THE CAPTIVE BRAIN

Mark and Barney are putting golf balls in the office, when Mrs Sanson (Jenny Laird) arrives to consult Mark about her husband Karl who has disappeared "without a word." She has unearthed a book of his in code which makes her wonder if he has "a secret life." He appears to have been spending vast sums of money.
He worked as a bookkeeper, and Mark asks his boss if any of their money has gone missing. It is discovered that £10,000 is unaccoutned for from the safe, but though Sanson possessed a key, scratch marks suggest a forced entry.
After searching his home, Mark discoveres an unknown key, and his suspicions centre on "another woman." A receipt for £1,000 for a fur, takes Mark and Barney to a fashion shop where they learn the payment had been for a stole for a Julia (Jan Holden) at 15 Ashton Court.
They find her, but in her bedroom is another lover, named Hugo Berber (Gerard Heinz).
Berber: "You've caught me gentlemen, in a flagrante delicto."
Barney: "Flagrante, eh? What does that mean?"
Mark: "In the arms of love, Barney."
The key is for Julia's flat. When Berber tries to persuade Mrs Sanson to take Mark off the case, Mark realises that it has all been a plot to blacken Karl Sanson's name. "This is all very confusing," admits his employer.
One puzzle remains, why is Karl so important to anyone? In Sanson's home are some obscure books which show he used to be a nuclear scientist. Has he changed his name? Did he work for the Nazis in the war? Inspector Price is able to help by finding out Berber has a history of politically motivated crimes.
So Mark arranges to meet Berber again. He naughtily pretends to blackmail him- he does very well out of it!
After their meeting, it's simple. Berber is followed to where Sanson is being held prisoner, the captive brain.
"Nice shooting Mark!" Saber lectures Sanson sternly on using his talent for the common good then absorbs Berber's uttered threat of vengeance. Not for ten years, he scoffs.
Uncredited speaking extra: the employee at the fashion house. The clerk at Sanson's office does not speak but is played by John Martin

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DEATH NEEDS NO CANE
Counterfeit £5 notes are flooding London. The mastermind eliminates all evidence by killing the printers, starting with French forger Pierre, shot dead in Paris. A similar fate awaits McMichael in Edinburgh.
Inspector Parker is of course baffled, these forgeries are almost undetectable. Numerous descriptions of the crook vary, but all agree he's a middle aged man walking with a limp, and he uses a cane.
Joe Stewart, the driver who had delivered the notes from Scotland to London is traced, but too late, he has been silenced. However his employee is able to confirm the description of the man who had paid Joe for the job... he had a limp, and walked with a cane.
Miss Dolly Day (Sandra Dorne) is caught spending £200 of the notes. In a nice line, Saber sums up her innocent but dumb character. She doesn't realise they are forged notes and her boyfriend is traced, Willie Peabody. Yes he walks with a limp and uses a cane. But he denies all knowledge of the notes. So under Mark's persuasive questioning, she is persuaded to reveal from where she got the cash... a "Mr.Smith" (surprise!) in Eaton Gardens.
Saber gets Barney to break in to Smith's flat, right under the nose of Inspector Parker and much to his chagrin. But there was no need to break in, for once inside they find a George Bartholomew (Patrick Holt) no sign of a cane or even a limp. He is a librarian working for Smith, who has left for Paris. Bartholomew is about to take his leave when the ever suspicious Saber rumbles the villain. This is Smith. Inspector Parker looks suitably bewildered. But it is Smith, for he makes a dash for it. Quick as a flash, not entirely in keeping with British law and order, Saber shoots the crook.
Saber drives his Ford. The credits state the Yard man is Inspector, but Saber correctly calls him Inspector Parker. Uncredited speaking roles: Pierre the forger (Jacques Cey). McMichael the Scots forger. The PC in Joe's room. The police doctor (John Martin). PC in Parker's office- in three scenes. A Bartender
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FIND A BODY
Eating supper at home, Albert Towner (Basil Dignam) suffers from food poisoning. Taking a medicine in the dark, he takes the wrong pill, swallowing some poison. Then there's a sniper's bullet! Three events that persuade him to come and seek Saber's protection.
However at the appointed hour, he fails to meet up with Saber. He was last heard of by his wife (a sympathetic role for Catherine Finn) when he phoned at 5pm, just before catching a train for a weekend shoot at Stainton Lodge in Chester. Barney's theory: the wife's the murderer, "it's all over her kisser, murder in neon lights." And her motive? The £5,000 insurance money, plus perhaps her young lodger, Kirk Bannister.
Mrs Towner however gives her side of the story. She'd been locked for 11 years in a loveless marriage, her husband is/was a strange man: in a locked room he maintained a shrine to Alice Coats, his first love. While Saber talks to her, Bannister, an aspiring writer, is interviewed by "the orang outang" Barney and Judy. He tells them the Towners "lived in a climate of violence, mutual dislike, mutual hatred." Dramatically he produces a blood-stained knife which he'd just found hidden in his room.
Saber notices Towner hadn't taken his gun on the shoot and spots some signs of blood in the Towner's sitting room and on a cushion. It's high time to call in the Yard. Mrs Towner is immediately arrested and all that's left to do is Find the Body. But Saber could "almost believe" Mrs Towner innocent, especially when she attempts suicide. So it's off to find Alice, a piano teacher in Sussex to solve the case!

Footnotes- A typical Danziger economy is the scene outside the Towner's residence. There are a couple of trees either side of the door, with Christmas decorations on them, even though no other evidence of the festive season in the story.
The Inspector (played by Colin Tapley) is unnamed in this particular episode. They keep calling him simply "Inspector."
Amazingly on his way down from London to Sussex, Saber travels on a pre-war streamlined LMS train. A rare first sighting of the Coronation Scot south of the Thames!

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THERE'S DANGER IN BEAUTY

Not for the first time, business is a little slack in Mark Saber's office above WJ Elliott's store. Mark is cleaning out his old files, including one titled 'Broken Honeymoon' (a Vise story he wasn't actually seen in).
At Henri's Beauty Salon in New Bond Street, co-owner Maxine Hughes (Paula Byrne) is receiving a complaint from customer Mrs Taylor about her hair-do. This is the latest sabotage in a string of problems that threaten to ruin the business that she had inherited from her uncle, along with her partner, the "very cute" Miss Emily Swanson (Mary Laura Woods). Maxine calls in Saber.
Barney noses round the joint, enjoying his little chats with the female employees, in a nice comedy routine "in a lion's den." In one nice throwaway, a beauty therapist tells him simply, "facial rejuvenation down the hall." But he does spot a jar of ether, an odd item in a beauty parlour. However Judy explains that away, "this is a job for a woman."
Mark is inclined to agree, so Judy books an appointment, Mark and Barney stumping up half the cash each. She has the works, beauty bath, hair wash, for starters, then after lunch a massage from Miss Swanson. Judy spies her tampering with the new Radiation Wave Machine (sounds dangerous!), her reward is a dose of ether from Miss Swanson.
As the new treatment isn't working, bookings have to be cancelled. The business is going downhill rapidly.
Another new customer! Barney, to find out why Judy hasn't returned to the office, announces himself at the salon in drag. He enjoys some more fun moments. He discovers Judy hidden away in a store.
The case against Miss Swanson is proven and she gets arrested. Barney gets some more ribbing about his unladylike appearance.

Uncredited speaking roles: the receptionist at Henri's. Mary, an assistant. Another assistant that Barney talks to. Another assistant (Jennifer Jayne)- in two scenes. Mrs Taylor, an irate customer. A waiter. A technician for the wave machine (John Martin).
Saber's car: Ford. The Police Inspector: named Chester in the titles, though Saber only calls him 'Inspector'

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THE GIRL FROM ROME
In a park at night, Mark fends off a thug who is attacking a girl. But then he is knocked out by a second villain. Waking from unconsciousness he finds her knifed. Saber is curious about her, "that's what killed the cat," Barney tells him. "Not until the nine lives were up," retorts Saber and he discovers that the girl was an Italian and had been a maid at the Park Lane home of Mr CF Johnson. This man engages Saber to track down the killer.
Meanwhile, Inspector Chester has detained Benson (Leslie Phillips in a one scene part) who'd been in love with Maria. It was his knife in her back. But Saber is sure Benson was not one of his attackers, he's been framed!
Johnson tells Saber about the Continental Employment Agency who supplied this au pair.
Mark then meets another girl employed by the agency, Tina (Dorothy Gordon) but she is bumped off before she can tell anything. However Mark finds a letter among her possessions from a friend, a new agency recruit, whom she'd been due to meet at Victoria Station, so Saber meets her instead.
The two thugs capture them, taking them at gunpoint to the boss in a warehouse. The reason now becomes apparent why girls are being brought from Rome. They were carrying unawares in their luggage, counterfeit money.
Unusually the story ends with a full scale punch up. Inspector Chester weighs in and somehow gets an old car tyre wrapped round his neck, giving Saber the opportunity to end with a nice corny punchline.

Saber drives PLC961.
Uncredited speaking parts: a policeman interrogating with Chester. Later: another constable in Chester's office. Two customers in a cafe

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HEAR NO EVIL
Screams! In a large house near Bentley Heath, an old lady, Miriam Booth (Iris Vandeleur), thinks she sees a prowler from her sickbed. "They're just waiting and watching, waiting for me to die," she tells her nurse Julia (Nanette Newman). "The old witch" has several relations living with her, just waiting to inherit-
* Helen (Catherine Finn)- "sour faced" because Miriam years ago married her boyfriend.
* Andrew (John Stone) her nephew, a "worthess" heavy gambler who has just lost £500,
* Howard (Alastair Hunter)- who has "a chip on his shoulder" since his business collapsed, and
* Jessica (Shirley Lawrence) her sister who, says Miriam, is "harmless enough." So she'll be the murderer then!
Mark decides that Miriam is a neurotic old woman with a vivid imagination. She's certainly forthright with the Saber team- Judy is told she has "too much make-up" while Barney looks like "the missing link!"
So can Mark discover who's "helping her on her way?" He can't see any concrete proof to suggest her life's in danger so he refuses the case. "I should have sent for a better detective," she tells Mark. Replies Barney, "you don't need a detective, you need a psychiatrist."
For once Mark's not on the ball, as Mrs Booth is found dead, having fallen over the banisters. "Obviously an accident," declares Andrew.
Mark questions the household but with no evidence he tries a big bluff as he's sure it's murder. With Inspector Parker mysteriously not around, he reconstructs the crime. "You can't prove anything," says the murderer.
There's a final smile for nurse Julia and a kiss. It's a well written plot by Brian Clemens, even if a few lines of dialogue ring wooden.
Notes: Saber drives PLC961. Surprisingly, there are no police in sight in this story at all
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WALK SOFTLY FOR MURDER
Terribly upset, wartime heroine of the Resistance Miss Emma Crow (Lucy Mannheim) bursts into Mark Saber's office. The recent death of Ernst Lomack, with whom she'd worked as an Anti-Nazi underground agent is the reason for her call. She says she knows who killed him, she'd seen this tall dark American bent over the corpse. She fears she'll be next on the list.
Emma now works as personal interpreter to millionaire Robert Hillyer (Alan Gifford). In a panic when the American wants to meet her, she tells Saber, who insists on taking her place at the rendezvous, a coffee house in Chelsea. But the police warn Saber to lay off the case, something political.
Mark doesn't, naturally. The American isn't too cooperative, even though he claims he knows the murderer. Forget about Emma Crow, is his advice. Barney tails the American, but loses him. For no clear reason, the American changes his mind and says he'll meet Saber at, of all places, a bus stop.
This story is far too full of dialogue, until we actually see a quick murder, for, no shocks here, the American is done in, shot dead. But he does manage to find a dying word for our detectives, Chips.
Police are not amused by Saber's meddling. The dead man is Jack Sloan, a renowned OSS agent during the war. But he'd taken to blackmail. Among his clients is Hillyer, whom Saber accuses of murder. Some convoluted motive of political money laundering. Saber's verbose denouement completes this tedious case.
"What's going on here?" requests the baffled inspector. It'd take too long to explain, sir.

Notes- no car seen, but Saber says he's off to the Motor Show tomorrow.
The policeman is Inspector Chester who has one nice line, "I'm a policeman, we're not as stupid as people think"

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MURDER BY DESIGN

Mona Fitch is billed as a sensational blues singer, though we don't actually hear her sing. "She's rather nice," that's the opinion of Mark Saber. He is wining his secretary Judy at a club where the singer appears. As he is short of clients just at present, it's a good job he doesn't have to pay the bill. Owner of the club, Jim Lacey, asks Mark to do a favour in return, act as a middleman and pay off Richie Bonsell (Bill Nagy), an ex-croupier at the club who is just out of jail. Give him £1,000 and a boat ticket to get out of England.
Mark takes along Barney to complete this easy job. They find Richie drunk, but after he has sobered up, he refuses to take the cash or leave the country.
You could guess the next scene, Lacey is found dead. He has been shot, and his safe emptied.
Richie is only one of the suspects however.
There is also Mona, with whom Lacey in love.
Lacey's jealous wife Stella knew of all this.
Suraki (Marne Maitland) used to own the club, but now is only a menial manager here. He was also in love with Mona.
Johnny Halop, the club comic, had Lacey as his agent. Rumours are a big contract is lined up in Las Vegas for him.
All are questioned. Mark's theory, always right, is that the robbery of the safe is key. Were incriminating papers of some sort inside? Mark tries an old ruse, he has the rumour spread around that incriminating papers have come to light.
Soon these 'documents' are stolen and this brings us to another stock scene, all the suspects gathered together in the club, in the presence of the Yard inspector, who of course takes a back seat to Mark Saber. The evidence is clear, and a confession follows.
"Neatest murder I ever saw," admits Barney, though the story isn't that at all. It ends with a joke about Judy's hat.

Saber's car is nowhere in sight in this story. Saber makes one gaffe when speaking to Lacey about Bonsell, calling him "Bonsero"

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MURDER FOR GAIN

Mark is playing darts with Barney when a lawyer called Farell (Lloyd Lamble) calls. He represents Priscilla Wright who a few days ago committed suicide in hospital. She had taken a fatal dose of cyanide. But he suspects foul play as her three cousins are set to inherit her £500,000. Besides, she'd been cheerful enough when he'd seen her, indeed she was getting better.
Inspector Parker is convinced it's suicide. Traces of cyanide have been found on her tongue, but oddly little on her lips. Goodness knows where it had come from.
All three cousins had been to the hospital to see her. Mark visits the room where she died which is five floors up. He sees a broken glass by the bedside, a fountain pen and writing paper, a few cosmetics and a bowl of fruit. This had been brought by Jimmy Ward (Kenneth Luckman) but no sign any of it had been eaten. He is a research chemist, and Mark spots a bottle of cyanide in his lab. Yes, he had brought her the apples But maybe one of his cousins 'borrowed' some poison when they visited him recently?
In Flat 374 lives Miss Norma Ward (Gene Anderson) who'd seen Priscilla the day prior to the suicide. She'd taken candies and some stationery for her. Barney meets Edward "Fatso" Ward (David Horne) who is having a massage. He'd taken flowers.
From the head nurse (Catherine Finn) Mark discovers that just before Priscilla Wright died she had been writing a letter which the nurse had kindly posted. It had been addressed to Jimmy. When Jimmy is asked about it, he admits he had received it, and shows it to Mark. It asks Jimmy to get her house ready for when she comes home. Hardly a suicide note!
So in front of all the suspects, Saber reconstructs the crime in the hospital room. He proves how exactly it was done and gets the suspect to re-enact it. Of course, at the critical moment he coaxes a confession. Poor Inspector Parker, whom Saber says he loves "like a brother," looks on, amazed. So much for the suicide theory!

Note: Saber drives PLC961
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THE NIGHT HAS SECRETS

Saber is about to close his office for the night when a man staggers into his office. His name is George Whitney (John Stone), ex-racing driver, who had to retire when he got these blackouts. He had married Jane who had been divorced from Tony Wright, a crooked night club owner. The latter had been blackmailing her, and intending to kill Tony, George had gone to his flat, no 247, only to black out. So he cannot recall what happened next, only what he does remember next is coming round and finding Tony's corpse on the floor, a knife in his chest. "Boy, are you in a spot," observes Barney rather obviously.
Before informing the Yard, Mark and Barney give the body the once over. After a search of the flat they do ring Inspector Price, who is naturally angry at not being phoned earlier. They learn from the manager of the building, Allison, that Wright had lived there a few years, and the new hall porter Murray, who has a police record, confirms that Wright had received only one visitor that evening, and that was George. It's now 4.30am, and Inspector Price books George for murder.
In Wright's apartment, Price very kindly watches on his as Mark reconstructs the crime, in the presence of all the main characters, a classic crime motif. An elastic band is the vital clue. The line is that, as he entered the flat, George had been knocked out by someone who was being blackmailed by Tony, "it all fits." The killer draws a gun, neatly Judy distracts him and an arrest is made.
A simple case, an early Brian Clemens thriller

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NO REPLY FROM ROOM 17

In a hotel room Mrs Wilson Floyd III is robbed of her jewellery and murdered, "strangled with her own silk stocking."
Mark is retained by the Continental Insurance Company to recover her missing jewellery. She's the ninth in a long line of visitors to London who has been robbed in similar circumstances.
By the corpse is a hat labelled 'Madame Rita', real name the less exotic Mrs Lilian Grant. Mr Grant (Pat Holt) contacts Saber when he believes his wife has gone missing after travelling to Paris on business, to stay at the Hotel Centrale. He's very worried because the hotel say she never booked in there!
So Mark flies to Paris hoping to solve both mysteries, but he makes little progress. However he does talk to the wife of Brois the late porter at the hotel, who knows Mrs Grant had asked her husband to post postcards to Mr Grant.
Back in London, Saber and Grant search through her possessions to find some clue as to her possible whereabouts.
All this time Barney is keeping watch on her shop, Madame Rita's. After questioning Kranz the caretaker, Barney is tied up. Sp when he doesn't report back Saber breaks in to the shop and rescues poor Barney. There are the Floyd jewels plus one corpse. Mark solves the case whilst the clueless Inspector Chester looks on in admiration: "what beats me Saber, how did you get on to all this?" Perhaps he'd read the rather feeble script in advance!

The inspector in this story is Inspector Chester.
Uncredited speaking roles- Grand Hotel telephonist. A maid. The police photographer. The police doctor (John Martin). The sergeant with Chester

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NO SHROUD FOR A LADY
Judy is perusing Detective Monthly while Mark plays darts with Barney. Theatrical producer Miles Baxter intterupts them, asking Mark to find Belle Adams, the famous actress, whom he is hoping to lure out of her retirment.
Dr Eldridge is surprisingly open about Belle, whom her brother Ralph (Basil Dignam) had placed in his sanatorium because she is "not completely rational." Mark is permitted to see her, listening to some long classical speeches before leaving her.
Barney chats with Ralph, who resents Saber's interference. He says Belle had become eccentric, wearing her old acting costumes to meals, and even trying to kill herself.
Her estranged daughter Deborah (Kay Callard) is earning her living as a waitress, despite her mother having a small fortune. She despises her mother for being vain and egotistical.
Her lawyer Vance issues a petition for Belle to be declared insane. This angers Ralph who takes Belle away from the sanatorium, back home.
Ralph phones to warn Mark that Belle has locked herself in her room. When Mark breaks down the door, he enters the room alone, there she is dead on her bed. A suicide note he does not believe- it's murder.
As usual, suspects are gathered, "is this some kind of game?" Yes it is, for Mark doesn't reveal that Belle is dead, and by such a simple trick, the killer is exposed.

Note: Saber drives PLC961

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IT'S ONLY MINK (aka The Tall Dark Man)

At a party, a torch singer Carol Lomand (Kay Callard) sees a tall dark man stealing a haul of furs, including Mrs Fraser's mink coat worth over £5,000. She informs Mark Saber that the thief was wearing gloves as he struck her. Under the window, from which he made his getaway, Saber finds a distinctive small skull, an inch and a half across, weight two ounces and made of solid gold. But he is, very unconvincingly knocked out. After questioning numerous jewellers, Barney finally traces the shop which had made this unique item. It had been made for a playboy called Miles Robinson (Robert Ayres), who lives at 62 Kingsland Court. He is definitely tall and dark! But he claims he had lost his skull. Barney tails him and his socialite friend to the Purple Shade Club, where the smart set meet and where Carol sings. Off zips Mark to the club to meet the lovely Carol in her dressing room!
Another party is taking place, Miles is going and there will be a choice collection of minks. Secretary Judy is given a mink by Mark, but disappointingly for her, it has only been hired. It's Mark's trap to catch the thief. Accompanied by Barney in a dress suit, Judy goes to the party. Saber of course is lying in wait and catches an accomplice red handed receiving coats being passed through a window by the thief. No tall dark man to be seen!

Notes: The credits refer to Inspector "Chester" though Saber calls him" Parker". Uncredited speaking roles: two male guests and one female guest. The sergeant with the inspector. A jeweller (John Martin). A female customer in his shop. The blonde hostess at the second party and her balding husband. A female guest in the room where the coats are kept. A guest dancing with Judy. The thief's accomplice
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THE LONG WAIT
For 7 long years Mrs Westcott (Katharine Page) has been searching for John Collins. She had been placing numerous adverts in the personal columns of papers, with the result that the kindly Barney and Judy invite her to meet Mark Saber. She explains that this Collins was a witness to a shooting for which her son Jerry has been imprisoned.
"The police don't often make mistakes," Mark solemnly informs the poor woman. But surely, he'd never had said that later in his career! As it is, he agrees to take the case without payment, or as Barney remarks, "for laughs."
Yesterday she got her first break when someone called Tom Deeley contacted her, claiming to know of Collins' whereabouts. Until recently he had been in the same digs as Deeley. For a consideration he tells Barney, who goes to see the man at Darwell Court. He is indeed there, but he is dead. In the room Barney finds the inevitable clue, a notepad on which can just be discerned S Davies 5 Creswell Mansions. It's on Western Avenue.
Mark joins Barney to meet Sam Davies, who says he had met this John Collins in a bar two weeks ago.
Fortunately something "just clicks" for Saber, "something I'd overlooked." With the connivance of Inspector Parker (billed erroneously in the credits as Inspector Price,) Mark tells his suspect he knows everything and demands £10,000 for his silence. Of course it's a cunning plan to get a confession, and Parker has been listening in on the telephone, "an old trick, but very effective," Mark informs the killer.

Note: Garry Thorne obviously got typecast as a suspected murderer, as this happens again in 'The Missing Hours' (series 3) - still he eventually made good, becoming Saber's assistant!
Uncredited role: John Martin as Collins (non speaking)

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MARK SABER - Series 2

My reviews:

1 FILE IT UNDER MURDER
2 IF THIS BE MURDER
6 RECEIPT FOR MURDER
10 A DRAM OF DEATH
12 A HATFUL OF TROUBLE
13 RETURN TO DANGER
14 BULLETS FOR SABER

15 CRY WOLF
16 ROOT OF EVIL
17 THE VERY LAST WITNESS
18 THE WRONG FACE
22 SIGNATURE FOR MURDER
24 MURDER BY ERROR
25 MAN ON A CLIFF
26 SOUND OF DEATH
27 DIAMOND JUBILEE
28 A COIN'S WORTH OF MURDER
29 FAREWELL TO MRS FOREST
30 DEATH IN A FLASK
31 HI-JACKED
33 YOU CAN'T LIVE TWICE
36 BISHOPS SOMETIMES BITE
37 SHORT DARK and HANDSOME
38 THE HOSTAGE
39 THE PINK SCARF

This series of 39 stories starred Donald Gray with Diana Decker as Stephanie Ames, or Stevie for short, Mark's new secretary... but she's more than just that, for she accompanies him on his cases, and, yes, let's face it, she's in love with him! In File It Under Murder, she describes him as "good looking, what a doll!" A reviewer in 1957 wrote, "I like the characters of Mark and Stevie who are good foils for one another... it's such a pleasure to hear the rich, manly voice of Donald Gray speaking the Queen's English, as it should be spoken."
This was a superior series to the first, though it's a shame the cheery Michael Balfour wasn't retained from the earlier cast. Diana Decker gives her role a nice shade of femininity making this final "The Vise" series quite watchable. This was the first British tv crime series to feature a woman in a prominent role. But the experiment didn't last, and for future stories the programme was renamed Saber of London.
In the first story we meet Stevie, who says she had come from America as a journalist, but had been unable to find work. Mark needs a secretary as, he explains, Judy his old secretary had "betrayed him," that is she had left to get married. No explanation of why Barney has disappeared!

My favourite episode: 12 A Hatful of Trouble, is 'different'- I love it
Best moment: Jack Watling in 15 Cry Wolf, when he realises he really is going to be the murder victim
Dud episode: Perhaps 18 The Wrong Face, a very muddled effort

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FILE IT UNDER MURDER
Mark Saber is attempting quite badly to do his own typing, since his secretary Judy has quit. Enter a lady, "looking for a job." She says her name is Gwen Lawrence, she's out of work and starving, but they are interrupted by a possible client, and while Mark chats with him, she rifles his filing cabinet. When he comes back, she informs him she doesn't want the job after all.
In a pub, she meets up with the 'client' Harry Towner (Hal Osmond), who refuses to pay her the £100 she was promised for stealing a file from Saber's office. It's a file on Dirk Ewing, and a gun ensures he obtains it, now he's in a position to blackmail Ewing.
When Mark finds this file is missing, he goes to the Yard to ask Inspector Patrick Brady what is known of this villain. He was wanted for forgery eight years ago in 1948, but we see that he is now respectable, using the alias of Richard Osborne.
Via the employment agency, Mark traces the girl, her name is Stephanie Ames. When he confronts her, she admits nothing. "Come and see me again, Mark," is her parting shot.
Osborne alias Ewing (Ronald Leigh-Hunt) won't pay up, he calmly informs Harry. He phones Saber, who had nearly nailed him eight years previously. But Harry shoots Ewing dead, Mark listening in on the phone to the murder. He informs Inspector Brady.
They find the corpse in a house in Hampstead Road. Stephanie is already there skulking in the kitchen, having come to warn Ewing of Harry's blackmail plot. "It doesn't look too good, does it?"
Brady can't swallow her story so charges her with the murder.
Of course Saber is wiser and searches out Harry in the pub. Towner flees, Mark draws his gun (in a pub!) but Harry charges out straight into the path of a car, an unconvincingly done scene. The gun found on Harry proves he was the killer.
Stephanie, Stevie for short, is guilty of theft, but if she is actually Saber's secretary, she couldn't have been stealing, could she? So runs Mark's tortuous logic, and this is how she becomes his secretary

Uncredited speaking extra: Man serving in the pub

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IF THIS BE MURDER
Stevie is reading If This be Murder by England's Greatest Mystery Writer, Oliver Moon. Enter the great detecive. An ex-journalist, Stevie tells him she's studying "as Mark Saber's new secretary," having been with him "a whole week," adding, "but it's kinda different from the real thing." In the story, the hero gets hit on the head in every chapter!
Tony Latham, Oliver Moon's secretary, comes to the office- two nights ago his fiancee Nancy was killed. A suspect Alfred Turek, a janitor in the building where she lived, was questioned and released by those "fools" the police. Tony knows he's guilty as he had the only other key to her flat. Enter another customer. He compliments Stevie on her excellent choice of literature. No wonder as it's Mr Moon (Basil Dignam with goatee-type beard) himself. As Tony's employer, he insists Tony leaves, which he does.
Saber decides to take on this case. In Tony's flat, he digs out the fact that impoverished Tony is actually shadow writing for Moon, allowing Moon to "wallow in the lap of luxury." Mark surmises that Nancy might well have told Tony to write on his own account which might have made Moon so mad "he might have killed Nancy."
Turek is blackmailing Moon, having found a cufflink belonging to Moon in Nancy's flat. He demands £50 a week. Moon persuades Tony that as the police are not going to prosecute Turek, he must take the law into his own hands. At least Tony does start to think for himself- why should Moon suggest this? But he wants revenge and having been plied with drink by Moon, he's also supplied with a gun, just right to shoot Turek with. Double crossing Moon tips off Saber what Tony's up to. "Great Scot!" responds our detective. He grabs Stevie and heads for the showdown. Too late however, Alfred's dead and Tony unconscious in a nearby alley. Enter Moon with his predictable "if only I could have got here sooner!" Tony comes to. He can't recall the deed, but is sure he must have killed Turek. Nice Mr Moon says he'll stand by Tony.
It's Saber who saves the day and exposes this "deplorable affair." He summons Inspector Brady (Patrick Holt), who pays him the compliment, "you grow more brilliant by the moment, Saber!"

Notes:
1. Big Ben outside Saber's office-twice we hear it chiming the hour. 2. Saber's car: PLC961. 3. Police are represented by Inspector Brady (though he's only called inspector in the story). 4. The tv programme journal KFMP is in Saber's office, how is he able to watch American TV?

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RECEIPT FOR MURDER
Director: Kieron Moore (the actor).

On the Liverpool to London express, two men struggle. The dead man's attache case, chained to his wrist is stolen. It's a very quiet train, as the killer, Allen (Denis Shaw) is able unnoticed to dump the corpse out of the door in the corridor.
Arriving at the terminus, a fellow passenger, Albert 'Popsy' Bishop (Bill Fraser) takes Allen's case by mistake , offering more of a "surprise" than he expects for his 'daughter' Jackie (Jennifer Jayne)- inside is a bloodstained shirt and a knife. Allen gets a surprise too, a case full of ladies' nightwear.
A worried Bishop contacts Mark Saber's office. The detective has left to play squash with Dave, thus Bishop finds only Miss Stephanie Ames on the phone to her friend Alice. Quickly, she recalls the great detective.
Bishop is anxious his wife doesn't get to hear of this escapade, but Mark insists he cannot withhold any evidence from police for more than a day, so goes off to see Jackie. But Allen has already got to her. Bishop is there too falsely telling the murderer he'd dumped the case in the canal. He's shot dead. So is Jackie.
Left minding the office again, Stevie finds a pawn ticket in the case dated 25/2/56 (note British notation). Off her own bat, against Mark's orders, she makes for the pawnbroker.
Allen is here, he'd passed the jewellery he'd stolen from dead man Brian Miller on to Carr the pawnbroker. Stevie pretends she wants to pawn her watch, but Allen panics. Stevie is about to get what Bishop and Jackie have got, lucky that Mark turns up at the shop and recognises the watch that Stevie has brought in to pawn. Before Allen can shoot him, Mark calmly shoots Allen.

Notes: 1. Big Ben outside Saber's office- no time showing: the hands must be up for repair!
2. Saber's car: PGY450- seen in traffic and leaving the office (RYN38 is drawing up behind him).
3. No police in this story.
4. Uncredited speaking parts: Man waiting at telephone kiosk. Man at squash courts. George (I think this is Danziger regular John Martin) the squash court attendant. Pageboy at the hotel. Landlady at 24 Point Street.
The train shots are confusing! Firstly we see a LNER freight train, then another East Coast locomotive, 60115, with an express passenger, followed by a different passenger train (at York?), before the final shot of a correct train arriving at Euston

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A DRAM OF DEATH
Tony Hollister has been given this bottle by his cousin Angela Hollister (Patricia Driscoll). But he suspects her motives, since she will inherit if he happens to die. So he asks Mark Saber to have the brandy tested.
But he is robbed on his way to Saber's office. Dagby, a disreputable tramp who has been booted out of a pub, seizes it, and shares it with another old lag Daisy, back at his lodgings. But on his first sip, Dagby collapses and dies, proving the brandy has been tampered with. But Daisy assumes Dagby has had a heart attack and grabs the bottle, swapping it with Harry the friendly barman (Tony Quinn) for a double gin.
Mark questions Angela who maintains the bottle only contains brandy. However as soon as Saber takes his leave, she orders her maid Lila to pack their bags.
Sir Cyril Prescott, who happens to be a neighbour of Angela's, calls at the pub, and forks out £25 for the rare brandy. Saber, who has been joined by Inspector Chester, has traced the brandy to the pub, after Dagby's corpse has been reported to the police. But they are too late to catch Sir Cyril there.
Arthur Stoddard is the Prescott butler, and he decants some of the brandy, giving that portion of it to impress his girl friend, the maid Lila.
Thus Saber and Chester find the plot has turned full circle as they dash in to prevent Sir Cyril swigging the remains of brandy, which has been watered down by the butler. Lila's handsome gift impresses Angela, and she sips a dram. Saber and Chester enter too late, for she has collapsed, the poisoner poisoned. An ironic conclusion to a neat little tale.
Uncredited speaking extras: a male customer in the pub. A policeman on the beat

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A HATFUL OF TROUBLE
Rather different, this one. I love this fascinating little tale. Full marks to the scriptwriter Carol Warner Gluck, whom the Danzigers failed to recognise as a talent since she contributed no more to their output.
Little Peggy (Lesley Dudley) runs away from her nurse Nancy to seek Mark Saber's help as her daddy, who works for the government, says he's "the best detective in the world." She believes her stepmother is a spy as she saw her passing papers to a "little man with glasses." As she's being sent away to school in Switzerland, she wants Mr Saber to help. Enter Stevie, to find Peggy in tears, so she upbraids the great detective as a "hard-hearted Hannah" in putting it all down to Peggy's imagination.
With so much feminine pressure, Mark agrees to escort Peggy home where Peggy's stepmother insists, "she's just being naughty." But he kindly takes the blame for Peggy running away, and then gets a shock, for he does spot this person in glasses- he is keeping watch on her house. When secret documents at Peggy's home go missing, hidden in her hat, Mark takes up the trail. While Stevie checks all who enter and leave the house, Mark goes over the large building with a toothcomb. "I wish there were somebody to call out 'hot' or 'cold' for me," he jokes.
But though clever Saber isn't quite so good at hide and seek, he's shrewd enough to tail Peggy when she's taken for a walk in the park by nursie (Dulcie Bowman). The spies have hidden the papers in the rim of Peggy's hat and when the little old man tries to snatch it, Peggy runs for her life. Deep into the bushes goes the lengthy chase. Mark gives chase with Stevie - in the first shots they are actually holding hands!- until Mark finally catches the spy. Rather needlessly he punches the little man with glasses.
Peggy enjoys afternoon tea with Stevie, before Mark returns. She realises she owes the detective a fee. Mark decides he will keep her hat.
Uncredited speaking roles: Mother with pram. Police constable in park. Mark drives PGY450, arriving at his office, and twice leaving. Unusually, the car is also seen twice on the studio set of the street outside Peggy's house- once the car even moves
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RETURN TO DANGER (made 1956)

Saber scares secretary Stevie with his mask- he explains he is going to a fancy dress party dressed as Satan.
John Wilton (Denis Quilley) has come from Australia to find out his real name. He asks Saber to help. His story is that when his father Tom was dying in Brisbane, he told him that his real name was not Wilton. A locket was handed to John- this has the coat of arms of Burnaby Hall in Wiltshire.
Frank Burnaby (John Longden) is the owner, living there with his wife Stella (Noel Dyson) and their faithful old butler Phillips (Oliver Johnston).
After tracing a Tom Burnaby who emigrated down under in November 1923, Burnaby's solicitor Hilyer (Peter Bathurst) informs Mark that Tom inherited Burnaby Hall, but despite extensive advertising he was never found. It was known he had been wanted for fraud.
Fingerprint evidence proves Wilton was indeed Burnaby.
A worried Frank tries to persuade Hilyer to destroy all copies of his father's will. The solicitor informs Mark, who in turn tells the Yard.
An increasingly desperate Frank invites John to Burnaby Hall, where John spots the likeness between his late father and his brother. Calmly, Frank announces he must kill John. He draws his gun, but Saber arrives in the nick of time, the police in his wake of course.
The pathetic figure of Frank is taken away, and Frank inherits the estate.

The inspector is played by Frank Hawkins. He is Inspector Pike, and he handles the case as we are informed Inspector Chester is "away." Slightly confusing, since Frank Hawkins usually plays Chester!
PGY450 is Saber's car, seen once arriving outside the office with two clerics walking in the background, a frequently used stock shot. Also familiar is the shot of Mark leaving the office on two occasions- both times the same group of pedestrians can be seen on the pavement! There's also one shot of the car turning into Whitehall.
Small uncredited speaking parts: Lady with a dog. Hotel receptionist

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BULLETS FOR SABER
After some padding with scenes of London nightlife and the docks, the scene moves inside an East End pub where barman Tom Wright (Tony Quinn) is resisting a protection racket and is shot dead. Conveniently Saber is on the spot and literally one handedly captures the unpleasant murderer, Freddy Keppel (Garry Thorne later to become an assistant to the detective!).
Chris, the gang leader is a "criminal with a brain" (Robert Ayres) and he has a soft spot for Freddy since he is his kid brother. To get him released, he decides the best way is to eliminate the key witness.... ie Saber. With his photo in the papers it's all too easy for him to be identified!
But Mark faces the possible danger with remarkable good humour, even when Keppel shoots at him outside his office. Thankfully the only holes made are in Saber's hat!
With Saber under police surveillance, Keppel changes his plan and as she posts the mail, Stevie is kidnapped. She shows remarkable coolness in Chris' presence, and tells him he's got "a bit of a mouth!"
Mark is ordered to meet Keppel at 10.30pm. He has to comply, and of course it's a trap. In a lonely spot Saber is "a sitting duck" and is shot three times. He's dead. Well, at least according to Keppel he is.....

Notes: Continuity: as Saber gets out of his car in front of WJ Elliott, a second camera angle shows him by a different vehicle! (Perhaps the reason is this shop had originally been the location for Saber's office in the first series.)
Mark drives DLT426. The crooks' car is RJJ501. The inspector is Inspector Parker.
Big Ben shows 10.45, later in the office 3.15.
Uncredited speaking parts: A customer at Tom's bar. A policeman in Parker's office. A court attendant. A policeman outside the court. A press photographer

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CRY WOLF

In Flat 104 in the posh Alhambra Apartments, Kent Murphy (Jack Watling) fires three bullets through his windows, before phoning the police. "Must have been a poor marksman," drily observes the inspector (Kenneth Edwards this time). He has noted Kent is acting far too calmly, so doesn't believe his story. In any case, Kent has made that classic blunder, the shattered glass proves the shots were fired from inside the flat. Thus it can only be a publicity stunt. Kent excitedly informs the Echo reporter that he'll give the whole story on his TV show tomorrow night at 8pm. (An early example of Reality TV no doubt?)
In a cafe near the tv studios, Kent is planning his latest gimmick, a hidden microphone attached to a tape recorder that can be used for his series As Others Don't See Us. As he plays back the conversations he has recorded, he hears talk of a Down Payment for "killing a guy," soon after 9 o'clock in the shower. There's a nice camera shot as Kent and his agent Charley listen to the tape. Inspector Edwards, of course, decides it's another "cheap stunt" so Mr Saber is called in.
Mark wonders if it's only someone taking Kent for a ride. But if it's genuine, it's a real problem: "a murder has been arranged, but we don't know by whom, we don't know who the victim is going to be, or why...."
Stevie is sent to the cafe to see if she can learn anything. She sits, unknowingly, opposite Vince (Victor Maddern) who, she later tells Mark, gave her the creeps. Mark is phoned by Kent, who has become scared that it may be him who is to be killed. Mark promises to come round. Enter the killer Vince. Four times Kent is shot. But not in the shower. Enter Mark and Stevie too late. For once our detective has failed.
Mark replays the recording to see if there is a clue he's missed. The name 'Pepper' is mentioned in the talk. Kent hadn't identified anyone of that name however. But Saber's pretty astute - remember that schoolboy habit of nicknames? Mr Minter (Denis Quilley) had been a tv show host until Kent had replaced him! Pepper - Mint - got it? Off to the studios! There Vince is expecting his payment from Minter. A gun is turned on Mark, but a conveniently sited spotlight is turned on the killer.

One of Brian Clemens' best early stories.
Uncredited speaking roles: Inspector Edwards' assistant. The newspaper reporter. A girl dancer who is with the credited Jennifer Jayne. A man and woman in the cafe. A sound technician (John Martin) who appears in two brief scenes.
Outside Saber's office, Big Ben shows 7.30

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ROOT OF EVIL

The opening scene shows Benny (Hal Osmond) cracking a printer's safe. All too easy, a fine haul of banknotes.
The next day, secretary Miss Jean Perry (Jean Aubrey) gets rather a shock. But her boss Mr Wilson (John Longden) doesn't call the police, as he says nothing of value has been stolen. But Miss Perry knows there had been plenty of cash in that safe, and consults Mark Saber, since she had definitely seen fivers worth at least £10,000.
Benny is hiding out with his pal Pat O'Donnell (Tony Quinn), who notices that all the banknotes have the same serial number.... counterfeit! But they are excellent forgeries, and the two crooks hatch a scheme. Benny phones the anxious Wilson to fix a meeting at 5.30 at his apartment in Room 104 the Gladstone Hotel, off Earls Court Road.
Stevie is assigned to follow Wilson, who leaves his office driving a smart car, Stevie following in a taxi. She waits in the lobby, and thus she misses the meeting between Benny and Wilson. The thief demands a share of this golden goose, and what choice has Wilson? They agree a deal, drink on it, then Wilson shoots Benny, and finds Pat's address in Benny's wallet.
Seeing him leave, Stevie takes the opportunity to search his flat. What she finds is a dying Benny who just has the strength to mumble something about telling Pat, Manfred Hall.
It must be time to bring in Mark. Quickly he drives round, but Benny's body has gone. Blood on the carpet proves the corpse must have been dragged to the service stairs. Clearly Wilson must have come round the back way to remove the body.
They look in the phone book to find where Manfred Hall lives. But noone of that name and then the penny clicks, it's a building. It's in Wilton Street, off Edgware Road.
Wilson is already there, tracking down O'Donnell. He finds him. The cash is handed over, then Wilson forces the scared Pat to leave his room with him. He's going to reunite him with Benny, he says.
Mark and Stevie arrive as they are descending the stairs, and there's a fight. With amazing strength, Mark throws Wilson out of the window to his death.
Henry the landlord (Charles Lamb) seems to enjoy watching the scrap, a nice cameo, as the camera fades with a shot of him.

Saber drives PGY450. Wilson's car is MMJ135 (which Saber himself drives in some other films!).
Uncredited speaking role: the hotel receptionist. There is no Scotland Yard inspector in this story. In the credits the secretary is named as Betty, and Pat is listed as Mac.
One gaffe is when Mark says, "Wilson took the dead man's car," when in fact we've see Wilson driving his own!

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THE VERY LAST WITNESS

Only Bernard Sharp still is living, who can testify against Oscar Brand, a successful financier (George Coulouris). Sharp is now down and out but he's lying low somewhere, out of Brand's clutches.
Brand wants a man to find Sharp, whom Sharp can trust, and who better than Mark Saber? He's "intelligent, respectable, has integrity." So Saber is spun some tale and is sent for an expenses paid trip with Stevie by plane to France. Paris is first stop where an antique dealer says he thinks Sharp's hiding in Marseilles.
There, in the Order of St Peter, where free soup is dished out, you know you have to actually be in France. Why? - because the St Peter nameboard is in French, and serving in the soup kitchen is that perennial Frenchman André Maranne, playing Father Paul.
In this dead end place, Father Paul's assistant, Andre (Gerard Heinz) knows where Sharp can be found. For the simple reason, he IS Sharp. But he's turned over a new leaf and is now helping the priest in his charitable work.
Mark informs the delighted Brand, who immediately charters a plane and at dead of night pays his nocturnal visit to Sharp and bashes him on the head. Switching on the unlit gas fire makes it appear like suicide. Next morning he hypoctitically accompanies Saber who is to formally introduce them. Knocking at the door Brand's sidekick Ferris (Marne Maitland) rather rashly attempts to light a fag. Brand hastily stops him. He maes a good show of being cut up about the fate of his "dear old friend."
Later, Brand tells Ferris Sharp wasn't the VERY last witness. Ferris knows too much. But Saber is, as has been remarked, "intelligent," and is angry that he has been used as "a pawn in your dirty game of murder."
So Saber proves to be the very very last witness against Oscar Brand, since Saber's testimony helps send Brand to the "guillotine." Well this is France.

Uncredited speaking parts: An American tourist and his wife in the antique shop. A French lady carrying a dog. A hotel porter

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THE WRONG FACE
At the Lafayette Art Gallery in Paris, two crooks steal a painting "worth a million." They employ an actor named Anton (Michael Brill) to smuggle it to a London dealer who will take it without asking any questions. How's he going to manage that?
Returning from the previous case ('The Very Last Witness') in Marseilles, at the Cresta Hotel in Paris, Stevie is chatted up by Gerard Purnell, a diplomatic attache.
Later, the robbers kidnap him and Anton takes his place. But on the Channel crossing, as Stevie relaxes, she is amazed to hear a man addressed as Purnell, but he is not the same as her admirer! Mark is unconvinced.
Another old friend of Gerard's named Matthews realises it's not him either. In Cabin 54, the imposter Purnell's cabin, he is shot dead and pushed overboard out of the porthole.
Matthew's disappearance makes Mark suspicious Stevie might be right after all. Learning of the stolen painting "worth a quarter of a million," they decide to follow the 'diplomat,' who has got through customs on his diplomatic immunity. Alighting from the boat train in London, he boards a taxi. In a backstreet room the man rejoins his confederates. Stevie fetches the police while Mark points his gun at the three of them. Rather dangerous as he's outnumbered. He shoots but the police arrive in time.
"You did a good job," Stevie is told. "You know," Mark tells her as she reminds him of how nice Gerard was to her, "I ought to be more romantic from now on!"

Uncredited speaking extras: An admirer of the painting in the art gallery (John Martin). The real Purnell. A customs officer

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SIGNATURE FOR MURDER

The clock in Mark Saber always stands at 4pm. certainly it does at the start of Saber of London, and also in this story that is what Big Ben is chiming, as Saber listens to an art expert, Prof Wilson declare a painting recently purchased by Mr Merrit for £5,000 is not a Lejour but a forgery by Eric Bishop (John Stone).
Saber is commissioned to "get" the New Bond Street woman dealer, Mme Nicole Veroff (Martine Alexis) who sold it. Other art experts, however, in typical fashion, claim that the painting is a genuine Lejour.
Merrit demands his money back from the art dealer. But she calls his bluff, warning him, "if you hired Mark Saber, you're throwing your money away." Surely not!
Now we meet the artist Bishop. He's fed up with having to paint like Lejour. Why can't he exhibit one of his own paintings? But that might give away the truth about his copies of the forged Lejours. Nicole cheers him up by offering to go away to France with him. She dictates a letter that he writes to his mother, but it could read also like a suicide note. She shoots him.
Mark needs to talk to this Bishop, a tall order now he's dead! But Mark is so wise: he knows that Nicole must know where he is. Miss Stevie Ames, Mark's jealous secretary, is worried Mark might fall victim to the art dealer's wiles, "you might end up as another scalp, another picture in her gallery."
Bishop's corpse is found. Suicide, declares the confident Scotland Yard. But Mark looks round his bare studio- where are all his paintings?
Probably in the dealer's gallery somewhere. Mark pays a brusque visit to Mme Nicole. "I like a man who is rude when he wants to be," she tells a smirking Mark. He invites her to dinner at her favourite restaurant, the Savoy. Naturally this makes Stevie even more jealous. But Mark admits he has no intention of keeping this date.
Instead, as she waits for him to show up, he snoops round her art gallery. The missing paintings are there, but Nicole returns to catch Mark. She shoots him as a common prowler. But Mark is one jump ahead of her. He had earlier removed the bullets. An anxious Stevie arrives to rescue him from this "femme fatale."
An entertaining story, with Martine Alexis excellent as the scheming art dealer.

Uncredited speaking roles: Professor Wilson (John Martin). A customer with a cigarette at Nicole's gallery. Allen, another client. Inspector Parker (in this story played by Kenneth Edwards)- in two scenes

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MURDER BY ERROR

Vera Baxter (Sarah Lawson) overhears Clyde her older husband (John Stuart) talking to his blackmailer. She meets Mark Saber in secret, at the Crown Museum of Arts, and for £50, retains his services. Mark starts by following Clyde to a dingy building where he removes a brick in the wall to hide a package inside the cavity. Seconds later Benjy (Hal Osmond) removes it, but is quickly stopped by Saber. Over £1,000 in the parcel, but another man at the point of a gun, snatches the parcel from Mark and warns him not to go on with this case.
Not he! With Stevie, Mark questions Mr Baxter. He claims the blackmail is over his innocent relationship with a young girl, but he will not reveal her name. However, this is a simple job for a great detective, and he soon by other means discovers that she is Barbara Wiley (Sandra Dorne) and that she lives as 36 Gower Street.
Her luggage is packed, off on a world tour. as Mark meets her. Benjy is there too and when Mark draws his gun, he has little option but to reveal the identity of the man who snatched the money. It's Robert Haley.
His flat is rather seedy, and he has been shot dead. There's a clue... that old standby a cigarette, and a very expensive brand at that. Also found is the package Clyde had put behind the brick, plus a gold cuff link with his initials on. But Mark Saber, he doesn't jump to conclusions. It is a frame on Baxter.
The police inspector has Barbara and Benjy as his top suspects, but he still agrees to a trap proposed by Saber. They lure Baxter to Hardy's flat, and he starts shooting wildly at Hardy's bed. That dramatic interlude proves he did not know his blackmailer was already dead. He breaks down and admits what the blackmail had really been all about.
There's one more twist as it transpires that Haley was only murdered 'by error.'
The final scene is back at Mark's office. Not a nice person in this case, declares Stevie, but as she's eyeing that money in the package, maybe not even her!

Notes: Saber's car: PGY450- two clergymen are walking on the pavement as Saber drives along Parliament Square, then does a U turn into the road outside his office. The policeman is billed in the credits as Inspector, but Saber calls him Inspector Edwards (played by Kenneth Edwards). 36 Gower Street is a block that is part of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicines. A paper Stevie holds, The Daily Telegraph, carries the headlines Hungary To Ask Russians to Quit, which suggests a date for this story of late in 1956.

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MAN ON A CLIFF

The headlines read, "Wealthy Banker takes his Life." Mark knew Peter Kenyon pretty well and doesn't believe it. He pays a call on Mrs Kenyon (Sandra Dorne), who says Peter appeared preoccupied recently. He'd changed. Question: was there another woman? "There are as many possibilities as there are women."
Well one, anyway. Mrs Edna Barnes, Kenyon's personal secretary for the past eleven years. She is convinced it was murder. He was no playboy, she is sure of that.
A trip to the cliff where Peter was supposed to have jumped, or was pushed, is helpful. It seems to Mark that Peter could easily have grabbed on to something as he fell. He asks Stevie to run from behind and try and push him over....
Police cannot maintain their theory of suicide, when a tramp, Harry Caldwell, confesses to helping himself to Kenyon's wallet. Crucially, he had seen another person by the corpse.
Next task is a search of Kenyon's office. Mrs Barnes has now resigned officially, but unofficially Mark catches her snooping through her desk. She has retrieved a book she's foolishly forgotten. It's the office diary with details of some mysterious appointments.
Stevie has the task of checking out some of the names. From one, Mrs Case (Katherine Page) she is told that "Peter was born to disaster." From boss Mr Murchison (John Stuart) she hears that Kenyon had recently been offered a partnership. "This is all the thanks I get for it." Pearce, who blames his getting sacked on Kenyon, callously comments, "I'm glad he's dead."
Mark meets Dr Lyman, a psychiatrist (Ronald Leigh-Hunt), whom Kenyon had been consulting. He might have done himself in but "I don't think he would have killed himself the way the police said he did." Why not? Simple, he had a fear of heights!
To the secretary and the wife Saber announces he's revisiting the scene of the crime. "You're putting your life in jeopardy," he's warned. He certainly is as it's very dark. A woman creeps up behind him, but Saber is ready for it. Of course it is she who topples over the cliff.

Notes: Saber drives a saloon car. "Inspector" in the credits is called Inspector Parker in the story. Catherine Finn who plays Edna, is in the credits as "Katherine Flinn"!

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SOUND OF DEATH
Small town intimidation is the theme of this story. On a foggy night, a woman is attacked and bundled into a car.
Norma Farrington was the daughter of a wealthy local Kingsbrook businessman. Her secret fiance Dan has been arrested for her murder. Rosie Temple, his mother, a chambermaid at the hotel where Mark Saber is spending a peaceful holiday, asks for the great detective's assistance. She's very worried because villagers have already condemned him for this crime which she knows her son did not commit. A lynch mob may well try to kill him. Feelings are running high in the village.
Mark is persuaded to give up his vacation, and talks to Dan in jail. Dan explains he had been driving Norma home when his car had got a puncture, and she had walked the last few yards home. But she never reached there. His engagement had been kept a secret as her parents did not approve of their liaison. Dirk Sloan was their preferred choice, but Norma had broken off her engagement with Dirk some months ago.
Mark gets the hostile treatment also, in the pub, as the burly Mike starts an argument with him, while another customer, Dirk no less, strongly advises him to get out of town.
Stevie joins Mark on holiday, and accompanies him to interview Mr and Mrs Farrington, and on the way a car nearly runs them both over.
The parents' explanation of their daughter's murder is that Dan had been jealous of Dirk. Farrington also echoes the sinister threat to quit town.
But Mark is no quitter. Through Stevie, Dirk asks if Mark could find some letters he'd written to Norma. Clearly they must have some significance for the murder case. So in the pub, Mark chats with Dirk over a cider, implying he has found these threatening letters.
He also lectures the locals sternly on their shamefaced persecution of the Temple family, and when he leaves the pub, Dirk strikes again, holding a gun, demanding those letters. "She deserved to die," Dirk says of Norma, but he hasn't realised Stevie has followed with the angry villagers. The truth is out!
Final scenes- Dan and his mother enjoy a happy cup of tea with Mark and Stevie. Then Mark resumes his holiday, fishing off the pier, with some joy.

Uncredited speaking extra: Mike the pub rough. Also uncredited is the barman in two scenes, though he never speaks, nor do the other pub customers, even though Mark bites their heads off, cheap extras! No Scotland Yard inspector in this. Dirk's car is MMJ135, one other car is seen in the studio KMC347

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DIAMOND JUBILEE
One of three episodes directed by film star Kieron Moore.

Before his arrest, Mac (Robert Ayres) had hidden the Olney Diamonds he had stolen. Both the police and Mark Saber, working on behalf of the insurance firm, follow Mac, when he's released after serving his ten year sentence.
He makes for a block of flats, Quadrant Court, and his one time girl friend in a negligee, Jackie. She is still a dancer at the Flamingo Club run by Lew (John Loder), Mac's old job. She lends him some money so he can retrieve those diamonds that were never recovered.
Lew is very jumpy when Mac shows up at the club, but the cleaner Aggie (Olive Sloane), "once a star," is more effusive. Willie the pianist isn't unfriendly either.
Inspector Parker and Mark happily sit through Jackie's dance act.
Mac is sure that no-one has discovered where he had hidden the stolen jewels, and at dead of night, he breaks into the club to pull up part of the flooring. Nothing there. Where are they? he demands of Lew. He spins Mac a yarn about Willie having come into a fortune. Willie's claims he won it on the races, though in fact his cash came from shopping a crook.
So where are the diamonds, who has them?
The answer is found in Aggie's tiny room, where she sits in secret and relives her past glories wearing the diamonds she had found by chance. It's a touching little cameo. Mac and Lew show up to repossess them but shoot each other. When Saber reaches Aggie, she's surrounded by the dead bodies of the greedy Lew and Mac.

'Inspector' in the credits is the familiar Parker. The police car is MGF287.
Uncredited speaking roles: The prison warder. The head waiter at the Flamingo. A cleaner. Rodney the chauffeur bodyguard of Lew

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A COIN'S WORTH OF MURDER

Writer Johnny is straight, his playboy cousin Tony (Dennis Quilley) is not. Uncle has altered his will in favour of the former, since Tony is so indisciplined. However, should Johnny die, then it would be all right for Tony. But as Johnny's only 26 and unlikely to die in the near future, Tony decides to renew their lapsed friendship=.
Tony pays his cousin a call. They enjoy a celebratory drink in Johnny's flat. And another. Johnny explains he's now happily engaged to Sally (Ann Stephens). Now Johnny is stoned. Tony asks the big question: could Johnny sign him a cheque for £1,000 to pay off his pressing creditors? When Johnny refuses, they pair fight and Johnny is accidentally killed. Tony fixes the gas meter to make it look like suicide, even typing a farewell note to "Dearest Sally," but even Inspector Parker can spot that this "could be murder."
Sally engages Mr Saber. She tells him Johnny had no reason to commit suicide. Anyway, he would never have addressed her as Dearest Sally and besides he never drank a lot. Mark promises to ask Inspector Parker nicely, and try and substantiate Sally's intuition that Johnny must have been forced into drinking so much. Parker does have his suspicions of Tony, he has a good enough motive, but where's the evidence?
"Slimy, like a well dressed vulture," is Stevie's verdict on Tony, after a visit to him. Tony's planning to get away to the Mediterranean.
Mark ponders. Has he thought of something the killer overlooked? No fingerprints had been left in the room, but the gas meter would have been fed with a coin..... He summons poor old Parker who watches on ("this is against the law,") as Mark breaks the meter and empties it. It had only been emptied that morning, so inside is only one coin. It's taken to the lab and examined. An enlarged photo of the shilling is shown to Saber, and there's a fingerprint on it.
Tony is preparing to leave for the airport. But Sally arrives to tell him he can't leave. She draws a gun to back up her point. Fortunately Saber appears just in time. He shows Tony the photo of the coin. On it is Tony's print. Now it's Tony who points the gun. But that's not going to help him elude justice. With poetic justice, though very unlawfully, Saber shoots him.

Uncredited speaking extras: the police fingerprint expert. A lab man (John Martin)

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FAREWELL TO MRS FOREST

Mark takes Stevie to the Blake Hotel as oil tycoon Jack Forest (John Stone) wants to see him. His wife Kay (Patricia Driscoll) tells Mark about her slight indiscretion with a Russian Prince Pavlov, but when she broke it off, he began writing blackmail notes to her.
Mark confronts him at the "flush" Arcadia Roof Terrace. The Prince is now with his new blonde "little chicken" Tanya and pretends to know nothing about Kay. But later he admits to Saber that he had sent a threatening letter to Kay and apologises.
Back at his office Saber gets a call from Inspector Parker with the surprise news that Mrs Forest has been found drowned in the hotel swimming pool. Parker feels it might be suicide so it's obviously not that! In fact it's Stevie, "Miss Sherlock Holmes" as Mark describes her, who asks the pertinent question, "why would she put a bathing suit on to commit suicide?" (A similar argument in #5.7.) Of course it's no accident, so surely it must be murder.
Saber comforts Jack, and Prince Pavlov and friend take advantage of his absence to root through papers of "Mr Sarber", as they call him, searching for the blackmail letter. But Mark returns and calls in the police. Faithful Inspector Parker interrogates them while Mark, apparently with a free run of the police labs, finds the evidence that it definitely was murder by examination of a packet of Golden Lotus bath salts. Thus he can prove who did it.
Apart from this sombre conclusion, there's a lot more clowning around in this story, a bit too hammed up. Ferdy Mayne is at his most ebullient as Prince Pavlov and the last scene shows us Stevie getting her reward for her perception as Mark gives her a deerstalker hat and pipe which she dons a la Sherlock Holmes.

Notes: When Harry Lee Danziger himself was asked about this, his directorial debut, he stated that it wasn't him! He said this and two other stories (2.28 A Coin's Worth of Murder, and 2.36 Death Wears a Coronet) attributed to him, were in fact directed by a "famous director," whom he declined to name.
Uncredited speaking extra: a man on the phone in the hotel reception. Also as in the previous story, John Martin plays a police lab technician, it's a non speaking part in which for ten seconds he fiddles with bath salts as Saber watches on. Mark drives MMJ135

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DEATH IN A FLASK
Inspector Parker is questioning Mrs Alice Barnes about the murder of her husband Philip. This policeman's job is made nice and easy when she confesses. But poor Parker has to contend with Mark Saber ("Mr Snooper") and Stevie ("et tu Miss Ames"). They have been retained by Alice's father who wants Saber to dig up all the dirt he can on Alice's swine of a husband. He'd turned her into a nervous wreck.
Saber discovers that Barnes had been living way beyond his means. Stevie finds a useful clue in his diary, a list of contacts. But Parker quickly grabs it, in return he informs Mark that Barnes had apparently been killed by a flask, doctored with sleeping pills, and to cap it all, his wife had been prescribed sleeping pills!
Mark however has been a little devious, he hasn't given Parker that diary, but an old birthday card from Stevie. A close inspection of the diary reveals the following:
Jan 1st: Dorothy, Blue Orchd Club Jan 5th Payment Due- this is a recurring feature every month. Mark is keen to check out the phone numbers, the first being a flirty blonde named Dorothy Green (Joy Webster). Barnes seems to have dated her a lot at the Blue Orchid. She takes a shine to our detective, as we meet them in a slightly compromising position, though he is admittedly beating a hasty retreat.
Stevie calls on a second name, Dr Marsden (John Barron) but he is very unforthcoming.
Enter Joe who provides the breakthrough in this case. He had been promised money by Barnes after he had been knocked down on his bicycle by the now dead man. As a temporary gesture he'd been given this flask. As Joe is still breathing it seems clear that the flask could not have contained anything dangerous. (Hal Osmond plays Joe with his usual pleasant touch of humour.) Alice's doctor confirms that actually he had prescribed placebos for Alice, so though she thinks she killed him, she couldn't have.
Stevie, keen to be a detective in her own right, is sent to talk again to the evasive Dr Marsden. She informs him she has brought some papers Mark had discovered in Barnes' house. Marsden offers her a Martini, into which we see him add a tablet. Then Stevie spots a signet ring in his room, with the initials PB. Another Martini and suddenly she's feeling faint. He carries the unconscious girl into his consulting room.
Seconds later Mark and Inspector Parker are knocking at his door. They have found out Marsden had been the benficiary of a lot of valuable legacies from his late patients. Evidently Marsden had been blackmailed by Barnes.
Marsden's cover is blown when Stevie interrupts the questioning. She'd only been pretending. The crook tries to make a break for it, but he's stopped and arrested. Mark thanks Stevie for her assistance, admitting he'd sent her on too dangerous an assignment.

This story has a nice flow, one of a group directed by a young Richard Lester. There's plenty of humour, such as Joe's greeting to the long suffering inspector: "who are you, the undertaker?" As for Saber, he feigns not to recognise Parker, "do we know this man?" he asks Stevie blankly.

Two shots of Saber in PGY450 outside his office, and one driving through London traffic

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HI-JACKED
One of a select group of Mark Saber stories that is played more for laughs. It's not really done in the style of an American gangster film, though it owes quite a lot to contemporary British supporting films, with its dark lighting, and reliance for padding on cabaret.
Mark Saber is on a difficult case involving the disappearance of luxury cars, stolen to order and exported abroad. The gang is run by racketeer Joe Pinker, who, at night, hangs out at Charlie's Sirloin Club. This gives Mark and Stevie the opportunity to relax there, on the lookout for Joe, and watch the cabaret.
But though Pinker doesn't show up, one customer "no good gambler" Sheik Babson (Patrick Holt) causes a ruckus when he duffs up his own bodyguard, Bang Bang (Rick Rydon) who has allowed Babson's "new baby" to be stolen, his Bentley that is. Bang Bang is ordered to get it back fast. "If there's one little scratch, there's gonna be real trouble."
Bang Bang can guess who has nicked the auto, and goes straight to Pinker's garage. Joe is remonstrating with Dizzy Wilcox for stealing such a highly individual car as Babson's. Asks the worried Dizzy what he should do. "Drop dead," comes the reply.
So the Bentley is returned, but the incompetent Dizzy has badly scratched the rear wheel arch, which infuriates Sheik Babson.
Dizzy has indeed dropped dead. Mark Saber of course has worked out the whole plot, and goes to question Babson, Inspector Parker trailing forlornly along as usual. Babson is arrested on suspicion, but in no time he's sprung.
Straight to Pinker drives Babson, and he and Bang Bang do Joe over. Mark finds him the worse for wear, but he won't squeal. But Joe has his own ideas of revenge.
Babson's baby is tampered with, and when the proud owner steps in to drive it, a booby trap causes it to explode, though naturally such an expensive tragedy is off screen. End of Babson. "No loss to society," comments the one armed detective very honestly.
Now Bang Bang is fighting with Joe. Enter Saber with the police. Faced with a possible murder rap, Joe admits running the stolen car racket. He knows Babson killed Dizzy because he scratched the Bentley. And it's proved Bang Bang did kill Babson 'cos "he needled once too often."

Uncredited speaking roles: the floor show is performed uncredited by Anthony Newley, who does a comedy cookery routine lasting nearly two minutes. One other uncredited part: an interfering waiter. There are three clips of Saber's sports car PGY450 leaving his office: 1 with RYN38 drawing up (same clip already used in 2.6 Receipt for Murder), 2 Saber driving off with Stevie, 3 Saber leaving alone.

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YOU CAN'T LIVE TWICE

At the Old Bailey, witness Vince Mayo (Philip Friend), an innocent bystander, identifies the killer of a payroll messenger. As £20,000 is still missing and her husband has received threats, Nora Mayo asks for Saber's protection. Mark and Stevie agree to accompany the couple as they drive to a ship that will take them to a new life in Canada. Once on board Vince stages a fake killing of himself, jumping overboard. As he is a champion swimmer, he reaches shore easily.
The ship has to return to port in order for the inspector (Colin Tapley) to investigate. He suspects the wife, and optimistically waits for the corpse to turn up. That's the last we see of him.
Of course no dead body turns up. In his cottage in West Grinstead, Vince is changing his appearance. Rita his girl friend (Jennifer Jayne) moves in. "Do you know Rita," he tells her, "I've never really lived at all, until the day I died!"
Nora is cracking up. Stevie kindly drives her to The Shack, the family retreat, where, coincidentally, Vince has hid the loot. In the dark she thinks she sees Vince. Poor old Mark Saber is awakened at 12.45am to come quickly. He and Stevie try to persuade Nora she must be seeing things. Try a psychiatrist is Mark's advice. They return together to London, leaving the cottage conveniently empty so Vince can pop in and collect his money at last. But on the way back Mark stops for petrol (obviously they had 24 hour garages even in the 1950s) and Nora nicks his car and drives back to The Shack. She discovers Vince retrieving £20,000 from under the floorboards. "We're all washed up," is all he can utter. Mark and Stevie somehow get to the Shack. Too late. But ever observant, Mark notices the floorboards have been moved. "Stevie, I've been an absolute imbecile," he declares. You may wish to add your own comment here.
Rita and Vince are planning Nora's 'suicide.' Their plan thankfully goes awry as Rita is the worse for booze.
The finale as Vince does the foul murder is predictable, but in general this is a well done little tale.
Concludes Mark with a touch of the obvious: "Your attempt to live twice Mayo, didn't work."

Uncredited speaking extras: The Judge. The ship's doctor. The captain. The owner of the garage (John Martin). Man behind the counter in a cafe

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BISHOPS SOMETIMES BITE
In a dingy Liverpool terrace, Miller (Victor Maddern) receives his instructions for travelling to London to kill Harry Ward. He goes to the station where he's paid by Robert Jennings, who explains Ward is staying at the Mount Hotel.
Now it just so happens that the Bishop of Tricester (Campbell Cotts) overhears the plot, and he's something of a keen amateur detective. The 9.30 London train departs with the Bishop immersed in the lurid novel Dames Die Squawking, accompanied by his anxious secretary Homer Prinn.
Asks fellow passenger Miller, awaking from a doze, "where are we?"
"King's Cross," replies Prinn, though that is clearly incorrect.
Leaving the express, His Grace follows the potential killer- from filmed shots the station is clearly Euston with its famous Doric Portico.
Miller takes a taxi to the Mount Hotel, Leicester Square, where he waits in the foyer. The bishop closely follows, rather enjoying this 'caper.'
However Prinn is worried his boss is getting in too deep and wisely calls in Mark Saber to help.
So is the bishop going out of his mind? He fills in Mr Saber but while they talk, Miller has had time to call at Room 247 and shoot his victim dead. So when Saber calls there, he's a bit late.
The Bishop scours the Yard's files in vain to identify Miller. He takes Mark and Stevie Ames back to his home, which happens to be in the shadow of the Mount Hotel. Mulling over the case, they spot a possible clue. The pay off money had been in an envelope that Miller had discarded. Could it still be in the litter basket at Liverpool Station? (You see, Miller was evidently a very tidy crook.) The answer is yes, and Inspector Parker is triumphant, for there's even a most helpful name on the envelope, Robert Jennings & Co. It soon comes to light that Jennings is going to be tried for fraud, and Ward was his accountant.
Saber proposes a subterfuge, to which naturally Inspector Parker readily agrees. It's a good way of making Jennings come out into the open, if he thinks Ward is still alive. The improbable story fed to the press is that Ward fled injured to the bishop's home, and is being given sanctuary there.
That draws Miller to make another murderous attempt, but he fails when the bishop's crozier knocks him out.
Some satisfying moments in this Brian Clemens tale which ends with Mark returning to the activity we first met him doing, trying to play a flute, to Stevie's great annoyance. He finishes by performing a snake charming routine. It's a foretaste of some of Clemens' later Avengers' finales.
Uncredited speaking roles: A customer buying Origin of Man at WH Smith in Liverpool. Mount Hotel receptionist (John Martin). A waiter at the hotel. Harry Ward. A police doctor. A police inspector in Liverpool
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SHORT, DARK AND HANDSOME

An interesting opening scene at an open air swimming pool. Jean Tracy (Sandra Dorne) and Vince Gibbons (Patrick Holt) are putting the final touches to their crooked scheme.
Tommy Wilson (Ian Whittaker) is being played for a sucker by them. She tells the gullible boy that her sister is being blackmailed by photographer Paul Gibbons, so as he is obsessed by her, he offers to help her retrieve the offending pictures.
But Vince has already broken in to the studio and killed his cousin Paul. Then Tommy and Jean come in, Vince fights with Tommy. Vince seems to be knocked out. Jean informs Tommy he must have killed him. In a panic they hurriedly leave.
Mrs Amy Wilson, Tommy's mum, calls in Saber. He'd been about to go out for dinner with Stevie, but work comes first and he listens to Tommy's story, which is a pack of lies. Tommy doesn't mention Jean.
Inspector Parker, ever on the ball, finds Tommy's wallet at the scene of the crime, and makes his arrest. Tommy doesn't tell the police the truth either.
Mark spots a photo of Jean in Vince's flat. He'd already found another in among Tommy's possessions. But she denies even knowing Tommy.
As per tradition, Mark gathers the suspects at 10.30pm at the scene of the crime, even Tommy is allowed to attend. Reconstruction of the killing by Saber. Tommy explains how he'd fought with his attacker. But with a clever piece of deduction, Mark proves he could not possibly have killed that man. Jean rashly denies having any hand in it, that makes Vince, who would have inherited his cousin's estate, fall out with her and the whole truth comes out.

Uncredited speaking extras: The model at Gibbons' studio. Smith, a plain clothes policeman with Insp Parker in two scenes. A police sergeant in the studio- he utters one word off camera
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THE HOSTAGE (1957)

A pre-Fagin Ron Moody appears as The Great Savrin, 'Imitator of Voice and Action,' whom Stevie admires at a variety show. Returning to a quiet afternoon in Saber's office, she tells her boss, "he can make you believe he's anybody!"

A highly strung Miss Alicia Stone (inevitably played by Dorothy Gordon) phones threatening to kill herself unless Mark comes round within half an hour. Stevie persuades Mark to go and tags along herself.
Miss Stone explains her husband had died last year in a car crash. Neurotic in the worst Armchair Theatre-manner, she shoots when Mark says the wrong thing, fortunately missing. She offers Mark £500 to find her new boy friend who's jilted on her. Roger Hawkins must be found! If not, "there'll be a murder," Stevie's that is, "and a suicide." She gives Mark just four hours. Stevie must remain with her as hostage. "Keep her calm," Mark advises Stevie, as he sets to work.
Last known address 22 Brighton Road Square, where the caretaker has been paid not to reveal where Roger's disappeared to. He'd been worried "that crazy woman'd come after him." Try his mother! Roger's mother's house is 23 Chatsworth Road. Mrs Hawkins (Olive Stone) does a fine comedy turn explaining how delicate her Roger is. He's gone to the Royal Hotel. Bad news! He really was delicate- he's just died of a heart attack in his hotel room.
How to rescue Stevie now? In a flash of genius Mark recalls Stevie's afternoon off watching the Great Savrin. It's "a million to one chance," but Savrin agrees to help by learning via the caretaker of all people how Roger used to speak. So Mark phones the loony to say Roger is in hospital, that he's had a heart attack. 'Roger' speaks to her on the phone and Miss Stone is convinced - well partly at least. She wavers. No... Yes, it is Roger! I must say I didn't find this scene entirely convincing either, though Dorothy Gordon gives a fine performance as the demented woman.
So Stevie is safe, and is glad she didn't know the real truth, "people don't know how much courage they have until they test it." A very different story, that's the best I can say for it.
Mark drives PGY450. Big Ben shows 5.30 when Savrin goes to Saber's office. Uncredited speaking parts: the hotel receptionist. The theatre boy.
During the story, Stevie reminds Mark about 'The Barnes Case,'- that must be a reference back to the story Death in A Flask

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THE PINK SCARF

"You'd get everything if she died suddenly."
"Yes, yes, and we'd be a team again."
Thus Alec Ware (Patrick Holt) and his attractive 'cousin' (Sandra Dorne). They're talking about his rich nagging wife, the fusty Emma.

Emma is to drive to Reading to see her brother Charles. Alec bids her "have a nice trip," asking if she could kindly drop off a contract to one of his clients, "just off the main Reading highway(!)"
The address is in Tonnington. He gives her directions, then slips off there via a short cut. "I'll be there, waiting," he grins at his blonde cousin, who is, in case you haven't guessed, really his girl friend.
At a shop called Mavis, Emma stops briefly and buys an Indian silk scarf since it matches well her gloves. Then she makes her detour to drop off Alec's contract. In a deserted cottage she is strangled.

The plan is to slip away, but her brother Charles unexpectedly turns up and is so worried about Emma he calls in Mark Saber. Alec describes what Emma was wearing, "pink gloves and a scarf to match and a diamond clip."
In a rare moment of humour, Saber calls up Inspector Parker asking him trace her car, "I'm trying to locate a car," he informs the policeman. Parker responds, "What's the matter? Somebody pinched yours?"
Nevertheless, the might of the Yard soon discovers the Ford Consul YJH 676... plus the corpse. As Emma's diamond clip is missing Parker makes a typical bungle, concluding it must be robbery. He surmises she must have picked someone up in her car, who then relieved her of the clip. Stevie, on the other hand, scents "romance", believing she might have run away with another man.
It's Saber, who else?, who spots the flaw in Alec's story. His description of his wife with a "pink scarf" must relate to his recollection of her in the cottage. "You can't prove it," Alec shouts at Saber, when confronted with this discrepancy. But apparently Parker, as usual, is easily satisfied: "I've heard enough" he tells the cunning plotters.

Uncredited speaking part: a policeman at the scene of the crime

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Saber of London - The third Danziger series of stories about Mark Saber

With Neil McCallum as Pete
2 HANDS ACROSS THE SEA
3 DEEP IN THE HEART OF CHELSEA
5 THE MISSING HOURS
6 THE PENNY BLACK
7 GIRLS AND DIAMONDS
8 MURDER SHALL SPEAK
10 HOUR OF DECISION
11 LUGER FOR CHESSER
12 THE LAW AND THE LAWLESS
13 HIDDEN MONEY
14 FAST CARS AND GIRLS
15 SABER'S BOW AND ARROW
17 SABER AT SEA
18 CHEATING CHEATERS
19 SIX MONTHS TO TALK
21 THE MAID WAS CURIOUS
22 THE CASE OF MR SHORE
25 THE VISITOR
26 STRONG MAN OUT
. . with Gordon Tanner as Larry
27 POWER OF SUGGESTION
28 THE MAN WHO WAS TWICE
29 DEAD MAN'S HANDS
30 DIAMOND FOLLIES
31 A DIPLOMATIC AFFAIR
32 BLACK PAWN, WHITE PAWN
34 THE WHITE CANE
35 BEYOND FEAR
36 DON'T LOSE YOUR SHIRT
37 WEAKNESS DOESN'T PAY
38 FIELD GOAL
39 THE CORPSE CRIED MURDER
Special review of 1 THE CAPTAIN AND THE KILLERS

Made in 1957/8, as the show changed stations in America. it was given the new title Saber of London. The opening sequence shows police cars racing round the London streets (MGF287, NLN820, KXR761), before introducing the great detective, standing in front of Big Ben which is chiming 4 o'clock, announcing, "Good Evening. I'm Mark Saber, and this is London."
Saber's office telephone number is WHITEHALL 0011.
In this series, Saber is assisted by Pete (Neil McCallum), who left in mid-series, replaced by Larry (Gordon Tanner). Mark's secretaries have vanished! Someone call the Yard! Perhaps some belated explanation may be forthcoming of Saber's lack of any female in his office in #4.24, in which Mark comments on why he had to let his receptionist go. Apparently she kept making eyes at Mark's assistant! However in #3.29 we do meet Mrs Biggs, who cooks a meal for Saber at his office.

My favourite episode: 19 Six Months to Talk
Best moment: In 31 When Saber faces up to the evil Virnoff
Dud episode: Perhaps 38 Field Goal is the dullest story, but all are at the least watchable.
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THE CAPTAIN AND THE KILLERS

At the Fishery Inn, Firth (Philip Saville) and his mate Digby are keeping their eyes on Peters, who is enjoying a drink at the bar. When he leaves, they follow him and kindly offer a lift to the railway station. But their actual destination is a lonely spot, where they rob him. Accidentally he is killed. The pair argue over what to do, before Firth drives to the river and in a shady area pushes the corpse into the water.
It so happens that a retired sailor, Captain Edge, using his telescope, spots what they are up to. He phones the police, and the stolid local bobby PC Perkins slowly cycles over to the captain's riverside house. However he is utterly sceptical, and even Janice, the captain's daughter is hardly convinced. However, on the way back to the station, Perkins does stop off at the pub for a drink, and chats to the barman who remembers Peters. Firth and his mate are listening in, and they return to the river bank to remove the dead body and bury it nearby.
Mark Saber's new assistant Pete takes the phone call, and he is soon being driven by Mark to meet the captain. Janice does warn them that her father is apt to get confused, before taking them upstairs to the captain's room, where his telescope is. The less positive Pete receives the sharp end of Edge's tongue, but Mark is impressed enough to take a peep through the telescope. He sees the spot where the incident had taken place, identified by a No Fishing warning sign. They drive to this location and with a pole poke around the river. Neither find anything, but by chance Mark notices a blood stain at the foot of the board warning No Fishing. Mark reconstructs what might have occurred, and they search around for another clue. Pete finds it.
The corpse is now resting, suitably covered, at the police station. Inspector Parker is summoned and Mark fills him in.
Firth and Digby are in the pub as usual, as PC Perkins proudly relates to all and sundry the startling goings-on. They are particularly worried about what Edge might have witnessed. It's a trap. Mark and Pete are waiting with Janice, having persuaded Edge to act as a decoy. Brandishing a crowbar, Firth with his pal drives to the captain's house. Into the captain's room they creep threateningly, but Mark and Pete are ready for them.

Uncredited speaking extras: male and female customers in pub. Mark drives TNM286. The killers drive Ford Consul YJH676 (also used in the last story, 2.39 The Pink Scarf).
My notes for this story taken from a silent print

Series 3 of Saber of London
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HANDS ACROSS THE SEA
The story begins at a nightclub with an unnamed calypso group performing 'Please come back to Jamaica,' and 'Sunshine.' It's interesting that Saber introduces Pete as "a recently acquired assistant," to Inspector Parker. He drives TNM286.

At The Rendezvous Club (though an outside shot shows Le Pavilion), an American sergeant offers his girlfriend Betty Allen a drink of 30 year old brandy, that he has smuggled into the club. At once, she collapses. She dies. Poor Ron Baker (Graydon Gould) sneaks a quick call to his friend Pete at Saber's office before running away. Mark and Pete arrive at the club to learn that Betty had died of cyanide poisoning.
As Pete used to be an army buddy of Ron's, he thinks he can locate Ron at one of his old haunts, a Soho pub. Pete convinces Ron to talk to Mark.
His story is, that he'd known Betty for two months. She had no enemies, of course! The brandy he brought into the club had been given him by a complete stranger, not a story that would hold up very well in a courtroom. Ron is able to describe the stranger. He was aged 38-40, curly brown hair and glasses. They'd bumped into each other near Marble Arch.
"Didn't it strike you as odd," quizzes Mark with a knack for the obvious, "a strange man giving you a bottle of expensive brandy?"
But Mark decides the story is so incredible, it just has to be true.
The taxi the stranger had taken is traced, this leads Mark to the man, an artist named Benton (Philip Saville) in a Chelsea studio. Benton tries to make a bolt for it, but Pete is waiting for him! He claims he didn't know the brandy was poisoned, it had been given him by an old flame as a "sentimental gesture" when he had broken off their relationship. On a generous impulse he'd given the soldier the bottle.
At the police station, Benton's ex-girl admits all. "I'd made up my mind if he didn't come back, noone else was going to have him ever."
In the final scene, Mark leaves the office with his date, a blonde on his arm.

Uncredited speaking parts: 1 the singer at the club. 2 The manager at the club. 3 The police doctor. 4 Mark's girl friend.
Jan Holden is billed as 'Salesgirl,' her character is called Linda

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DEEP IN THE HEART OF CHELSEA
Honor Blackman plays the unlikely named Syd Lewis, art expert.

In a fashionable Chelsea art gallery a smooth talking American tourist named Dugan (John McClaren) is "hornswoggled" into buying a fake painting.
Big Ben is showing 10.05 as his taxi drives up to Saber's office. Mark Saber decides to set up a scheme to trap Chelsea dealer Albert Martine. Neil McCallum as Mark's new assistant Pete has the chance for some fun posing as a wealthy Texan. "Gary Cooper'd better look to his laurels," declares Syd, it's all over the top by Pete who keeps calling his adviser Saber, who's posing as a Mr Cornwall, "Cornball."
Mark agrees a fiddle with Albert, selling the Texan these alleged originals for £7,500. A little reluctantly, but in order to secure the deal, certificates of authenticity are promised.
Albert brings the paintings to a Mayfair hotel where police arrest him. He admits nothing. Syd wants the forger caught, and deduces that the fakes are so good they must have been copied from the originals. These are owned by a rich man named Goodrich in Hampstead and somehow Mark Saber persuades Inspector Parker to release Martine, so he can be followed to the forger.
The story now nicely changes mood, the forger is young Jeanie Banks (Barbara Brown), her father Goodrich's gardener. She had painted copies not knowing the use to which they were being made. Uncovered, Martine draws his gun. But now it's time for Inspector Parker to put in his appearance, also improbably carrying a gun. Case closed. But Jeanie, who'd only been earning a few honest pennies with her paintings is promised work by Syd. As for Pete, he's smoked too many expensive cigars to keep up his part, and he's too unwell to keep his eagerly anticipated date with Syd. Mark however happily steps into the breech.

Saber is driving TNM286. Uncredited speaking roles: Standish, an art expert. Johnson, a plain clothes policeman. Albert Martine is in the credits as "Ambroise"

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THE MISSING HOURS
Ken Mills (Garry Thorne- in the on screen credits as 'Cary') emerges into consciousness on wasteland as the police swoop. A girl's corpse is beside him, a blood stained knife in his hand.
At Brixton police station it's no a shock when he is charged with murder. Miss Dorothy Mills (Norma Parnell) is certain the usual "terrible mistake" has been made, somehow persuading Mark Saber to investigate. Trouble is Ken can't remember much - he remembers taking a taxi at 4.15pm, then squeaking brakes.... walking down a street... a door with a knocker like a lion's head... a scream!... a cone shaped hat... a glass coin.
Some sleuthing reveals a collison had occured at 4.30 corner of West Street and Garret Gardens. Pete tracks down Johnson the cabbie (Bernard Cribbins). The trail leads to... a door in Lindstorm Mews with the aforementioned knocker! Conveniently the door is ajar, the house deserted, inside they find a stain. Blood? "That, or someone's been careless with the ketchup!"
The odd shaped hat leads them to a Mrs Ella Cartney (Noel Dyson) and Saber spots Charles her husband (Ernest Clark) has a glass coin, well, actually an eyeglass. All the evidence supports Ken Mills' statement and to prove it, Mark gets Miss Mills to act out a little charade. She pretends she is a friend of the dead girl, who was Hilda Blake, who had been due to come into a fortune, but could not be found, thus allowing Ella to get rich quick.
It looks though Dorothy will have to be bumped off, but of course Saber is waiting with the police. Even though Charles draws a gun, somehow Saber disarms him.

Notes: Saber drives TNM286. The police car is KXR761. Uncredited speaking roles: the man behind the counter in the cafe. A man from Scotland Yard delivering a report to Saber's office
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THE PENNY BLACK

In error, the wife of John Roberts (Basil Dignam) had sold collector Ferrari (Eric Pohlmann) a rare Penny Black stamp with a printer's error. Roberts wants it back, and meeting a refusal threatens to kill Ferrari.
Sims, Ferrari's butler (Gordon Jackson), shows Inspector Parker his master's corpse, a hunting knife in his back, and police quickly issue a warrant for Roberts' arrest.
He seeks sanctuary in Saber's office and asks Saber to prove his innocence. His story is, that he had been talking with Ferrari when a knife was thrown from the garden through the open French windows and Ferrari had collapsed at his feet. Sims the butler had found him thus. Roberts had run away in a panic. He had not stolen the Penny Black, although it is now missing. Mark agrees to take the case, as long as Roberts gives himself up to the police.
Mrs Roberts enlightens Saber as to how the stamp got sold by mistake to Ferrari. But she says noone else knew her husband even had the stamp. Even rival collector Turner didn't.
But when Mark checks with Turner (Robert Ayres), somehow he had found out. Then Turner is phoned by a woman who offers him the stamp.
Mark's assistant Pete has to follow Turner, who waits outside a cafe for a long time until a blonde (Jan Holden) joins him. She's selling, he's buying, Pete informs Mark. She is tailed to a house where Mark joins Pete. Rosie Stack is the woman, and she is a friend of Ferrari's son.
Her accomplice is soon exposed by Mark, with a very little help from Inspector Parker as Mark renacts the crime in front of the whole cast. "This is fantastic!" The murderer is promptly arrested, but where's the proof against him? Rosie has confessed, so the case is watertight. "All this for one postage stamp!"

Uncredited speaking roles: Rosie's landlady. A police sergeant. Though in the credits as 'Farley' both Roberts and Sims call the stamp collector 'Ferrari.'
Police car is NLN820. Saber and later Pete drive a Vauxhall (TNM286), so this is clearly an early story before Saber gets his Porsche. Indeed in one scene Saber even arrives by taxi!

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GIRLS AND DIAMONDS

Ralph Williams dials 999 after two men steal his brand new Vauxhall (TNM 286). Since this had previously been driven by Saber, maybe someone should start asking questions about how Williams owns the car.
Big Ben shows 3.15pm outside Saber's office. Inside Pete is reading How To Be A Detective, when John Harris (Arnold Bell) asks for help. He's worried about his daughter Shirley and her girl friend May. "Two girls involved?" asks Mark, looking at Pete, "sounds like just his kind of case." So since Mark has an imminent appointment with a government minister, Pete is given his opportunity. He happily chats to the girls. "Just give me the facts," he asks, in the best Dragnet tradition. The girls tell him they had been picked up by two men who'd taken them to a roadhouse in Kingston. However when they spotted the police they had cut and run, so the girls knew there was something fishy about the pair. But Shirley had foolishly left her purse in the car, but worse Ralph Williams had left £5,000 worth of jewellery on the back seat!
So Pete has a race to find the crooks before the police charge the girls with being accessories to theft.
He arrives at the hotel where the crooks were staying to discover they've just checked out. Off to the Star Hotel (even though it says Milton House on the door!) where Bess the receptionist (Roberta Huby) is an eager ally helping Pete get of one of them. The other, Lester, escapes in another stolen auto.
At the Yard, Inspector Parker does not look entirely impressed with Pete's detective work. They return to the Star to find Bess hysterical. Breathing heavily all over Pete she tells of her ordeal. "You're steaming my glasses," Pete complains, which is odd as he isn't wearing any. She blurts out that Lester had returned for a key. Parker extracts the detail that the key had a fob, on it the name Murphy's Lockup, which is in Bayswater. Pete "earns himself a citation" as they finally catch the thief.
Neil McCallum plays his part as so often with some humour. Mark returns to the office to find Pete in the arms of the two swooning girls boasting to them that it hadn't been as tough as some of his cases.

Police car is KXR761. Uncredited speaking roles: The sergeant in Inspector Parker's office (2 scenes). A hotel guest

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MURDER SHALL SPEAK
"Murder, though it has no tongue,
Shall Speak with a most miraculous organ."

Saber is even spouting Shakespeare's Hamlet now!
Silvia Herklots, who later acted as Silvia Francis, plays Joan Marsh who is phoning her fiance Bob on Knightsgate 8767. As the line is continuously engaged, anxious, she leaves her SW1 flat goes to his flat. Next, of course, a scream. Invalid Bob Ogilvy had been on the phone to Carl Blanco (Ferdy Mayne) who'd rung him up from Brighton. They'd had an argument over who Joan was to marry, since Carl thinks he'd make a much more suitable husband. He had begged Bob to give her up Joan as he's such a sick man, adding ominously, "I love her and I'd rather see her dead than marry an invalid like you." No wonder Bob collapsed with a heart attack!
Joan asks Mark to pin the murder on the "vicious" Blanco. "There's no law against arguing with sick people," he points out to her. But he does his best, though he can find nothing suspicious in the murder "weapon," effectively the telephone. Tongue in cheek, the humorous Pete suggests Cupid might have shot him.
Saber and Pete talk to Blanco, a widower and chemical engineer of the Ajax Company. This prompts Mark to swan off to the British Museum delving into blowpipes, and then hitting on the desperate scheme of persuading Joan to act a part and see Carl, hintting she knows how Carl did Bob in.
Carl Blanco thinks she's softening but she disabuses him, "I'd rather marry a rattlesnake."
Thus Carl decides to repeat his 'murder by telephone' routine, using the old Indian blowpipe method, but Mark is wise to him. While Saber, as he obviously daren't phone a warning to her, races through London to her flat, the police follow after his speeding Porsche.
They eventually stop Mark at the end of Lancaster Gate, but then escort him to Joan's, arriving in the nick of time to warn Joan not use touch that phone. So Blanco resolves to bump off Joan personally, but he meets with poetic justice as he falls on his own poisoned dart.

Big Ben is chiming 2pm when Joan engages Mark Saber. Inspector Parker is the Yard man. Saber drives TGP668. Joan's taxi is KYP959.
Uncredited speaking roles: The Police doctor (John Martin?). PC Jackson in Parker's office. Blanco's secretary. The London Telephone company clerk. Mrs O'Brien, Joan's landlady.
One gaffe: After the interview with Carl Blanco, Pete asks,
"What do you think of Burnico, Mark?" (he means Blanco.)
Mark, after a moment's pause, ad libs nicely, "oh, the chap we've just seen."

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HOUR OF DECISION
4.30pm. Pete's in an armlock, somehow Saber himself has bettered him! Then he's thrown to the floor, but everything's back to normal for their client, a Martin Blane (Robert Arden) who poses this peculiar question, "Who am I?"
In 1944 he had been found badly injured on a North African battlefield. No memory of his previous life. Since that time, he has built up a successful business in America under the name of Blane. He'd consulted a Viennese shrink who said he was suffering from "traumatic amnesia." Under hypnosis he had recalled his name was Philip and mentioned his mother and Alice.
Although Pete wonders if stirring up the past mightn't be a good thing, and even 'Philip' himself has a premonition his past might disturb him, he's firmly resolved to learn his identity.
So Pete begins by inspecting the Red Cross files, obtaining names of several possible 'Philip's. Checking them out, he meets your friendly barman (Hal Osmond) who recalls Philip Pyle, a petty thief until he joined up and became a war hero. Alice Foster had been his girl friend, but she later married an American soldier. Also at this same bar is an embittered customer, Kellino, who had spent eight years in jail because of Pyle, who had shopped him, "wherever he is, I hope he burns."
The sad Mrs Pyle (Katharine Page) "lives in the memory of her dead son." Mark and Pete have a deep conversation with the old lady.
Blane alias Pyle is told the fruits of their work. Pyle "lived as a scoundrel and died as a hero." Good luck, Saber wishes Philip when he resolves to visit his 'home.' Yet Saber's work isn't quite finished. He asks the Yard for details of the 1942 jewel robbery for which Kellino was convicted.
Pyle has walked into trouble. In a back alley, Kellino attacks him. Pyle is too strong. He walks into his old home. In a rather moving scene his sister Margaret finally decides "he's not at all like Philip." After a kiss to Mrs Pyle, he leaves.
Back at the Saber office Pyle calls in to say that he is not Pyle, and he's going to stay as Blane. But Saber, he knows the truth, and so do we, because surely he was really Bob Page, future assistant to Mark Saber!
A rather non-standard story by John Roeburt, well told, verging on the sentimental. Robert Arden does a number of location shots for the American viewer, at London tourist spots- Buckingham Palace, Tower of London, and Trafalgar Square.

Saber drives TNM286. Uncredited speaking role: Paul at the Scotland Yard Bureau of Identification
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LUGER FOR CHESSER
A limping scavenger unearths a corpse under a heap of street rubbish.
Pete is smooching with his girlfriend Marie (Shirley Lawrence), "I'd walk from here to Birmingham barefoot through chewing gum to see you!" But he never gets the chance for they are interrupted by a phone call. His boss needs him.
Pete joins Mark Saber at Lincoln's Inn Fields WC2,where Shaw, a lawyer, tells them that the corpse, Jack Chesser, a real estate man, was in the process of suing Maria his estranged wife (Sarah Lawson), who was 30 years his junior. While they had been married, he'd given her all his property to prove to her he loved her. But he soon found out she had only married him for his money. Chesser wanted some of his property back. (Note: The lawyer asks Mark if he had found anything in Chesser's apartment. "Not a thing," is the reply, which is no surprise as it's the next scene when we see his visit to this apartment!)
Mark sees the new widow at her room in Devonshire Street. Initially evasive, she's even more frosty when Mark tells her she benefits most from Chesser's death. However she does supply an alibi, she was at the Metro Hotel Brighton at the time of the killing.
Pete learns from a ballistics expert (Denis Shaw in an unusually intellectual role), that the bullet markings exactly match those also fired from a gun over a year ago by one John Dillon. No connection between him and Chesser can be found. However Mark and Pete visit the Dillon home and learn that after his last trouble John is behaving himself and has recently married. Oh, and they live at Devonshire Court and his wife's in property.
Mark rounds up Inspector Parker, and loads his gun as they knock at the door of Dillon's flat.....

Saber drives TNM286. Uncredited speaking role- a man in the ballistics department (John Martin)
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THE LAW AND THE LAWLESS

Mrs White (Amy Dalby) hasn't seen her daughter Jean, who left her Leicester home six months ago, and hasn't been heard from her for the last two months. Oddly however, Mrs White is being sent money but she doesn't recognise the handwriting on the envelope. From a photo of Jean, we see it's Sandra Dorne.
Pete checks out the flat where Jean had stayed. Landlady, Miss Tracey Davis (in the credits as Betty), said she was friendly with a chap called Billy. An expert at the Yard (Denis Shaw) notes down Billy's description from which a criminal, Billy O'Brien (Robert Ayres) is identified. Pete and Mark call at his last known address.
He denies knowing her. But faced with being transported off to the Yard, he does admit he knew her, but had ended their friendship. He'd met her through Doris Sands an "up and coming model" (Patricia English). Being keen to meet Doris, Pete eagerly goes to interview her and learns that Jean was going to marry Leonard Arthur (Neil Hallett), "very rich," living in Curzon Street Mayfair.
But Mr Arthur says his wife isn't named Jean. Doris however identifies him as the one Jean was planning to marry. That makes Arthur admit that he was going to run away to South America with Jean, but she never kept their tryst at the airport. He'd used a private investigator (obviously not Saber!) who had been unable to find any trace of Jean. A description of the private eye shows he was actually Billy O'Brien! But O'Brien has now flown his nest.
Benny, a useful contact of Saber's, tells him Billy is now living in Graham Street Camden Town. Mark bursts in with Pete close on his heels. And there is Jean! She had to be in the programme! But tragedy has happened to her. Her face has been burnt by acid. Mrs Arthur had done it when she'd discovered about her hubby's affair. But at least Jean's bad fortune had ended happily as Billy has now reformed and is looking after her.

Notes- "I must apologised to you," mumbles Saber in a rare muffed line. He also makes another gaffe when he meets Leonard Arthur: "are you Arthur Leonard?" he asks. "Er, yes," comes the awkward reply.
Saber and Pete are driving TNM286. In one shot it is seen driving up outside Saber's old office from series 2!
Big Ben shows 10.25 when Saber leaves for the Yard. The inspector is Parker (credits only as "Inspector.")
Uncredited speaking role: A theatrical manager where Doris works

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HIDDEN MONEY
The opening scene - an armchair being slashed, money taken from its interior. The thief is interrupted. He kills Maria Benton.
She had just taken out a double indemnity insurance. Her son, taxi driver Alfred (Michael Kelly) is the beneficiary, "everything points to him," pronounces our dim Yard Inspector.
Very shrewd, and he's also on safe ground with his next comment, "I'll stake my reputation that the old lady didn't ask anyone to murder her!"
Saber is retained by the insurance firm. He learns that Alfred was based at Waterloo and at 4am, the time of the crime, had driven a passenger to Holland Park, and was only "one street away from your house." Against all the odds Saber believes Alfred! Despite the fact that Pete finds out from an old friend, Mrs Jenkins, that Alfred frequently rowed with his mother about money.
Alfred says his mother used to visit his father's grave a lot, and would spill out her woes to all and sundry. So Saber and Pete visit the cemetry and trace a Mrs Hayes (Noel Dyson) who'd met Maria there just before the killing. With a third woman they'd walked from one grave to another. Mrs Hayes manages to remember where this was, showing Saber where the grave of this third person was, it is that of an Alec Grady. Pete learns that this man's wife had remarried and is now known as Mrs Bowman, and that she had recently bought an expensive shop.
A visit there ends in Mark being struck unconscious and Pete in a knife fight, a crowd of two gathering to watch on as Pete is nearly stabbed. A confession follows.

Uncredited speaking parts: Maria Benton. Police Doctor. Mark drives TNM286, though at the cemetry he is in 675LMY. Big Ben shows 9.45 as Alfred reaches Saber's office. The Yard inspector is simply called and billed as Inspector (John Stuart)

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FAST CARS AND GIRLS
The title might disappoint, though it is just about relevant as Pete visits Silverstone.
Colonel March (John Loder), though not THE Colonel March as portrayed by Boris Karloff, has a job for his old pal Mark Saber. You can tell they are friends since both are wearing the same cricket club tie. The garrulous March wants Mark to find the Major, a lifelong wheelchair bound friend, whom he has not seen for three days. His niece Marsha (Adrienne Corri), a big spending student, is away at Silverstone with her fiance Tim Mills.
Mark and Pete take on the case. Mark starts at the major's empty flat, where the landlady Mrs Shepherd reveals she had heard him arguing with the colonel recently. Then Mark interviews Tim, who is in town, not at the races, and he also reckons the two old men used to argue a lot. He hadn't gone with Marsha to Silverstone, as he doesn't entirely see eye to eye with the fast crowd she hangs around with down there.
Pete has the plum job of finding Marsha at the race track. He searches the crowd watching the race, but after grinning entertainingly at several girls, he gives up the quest. He questions Professor Ryman (Jack Melford) of Marsha's college, but learns she has been absent for some days. Even though she is a fine student, her main weakness is her expensive dresses.
Col March admits there had been an argument, they had plenty over their card games, he reckons his friend always cheated.
Then some revelations. The day the major disappeared, a forged cheque had been presented in his name. Then Tim admits he had requested that Marsha break off their engagement, on account of her lavish tastes.
And then Marsha materialises. She is unaware of where her uncle might be. She had enjoyed a jolly good time down at Silverstone with three friends. But not really watching the racing, for she exhibits a singular lack of knowledge about the results. So Pete checks out her friends. One of the fast set is Patricia, to whom Pete, to impress her confides, "Mark wouldn't make a move without me!"
She admits, under Mark's questioning, that Marsha never went to Silverstone. Marsha's fast living has got the better of her. She's the one who had passed that forged cheque. She breaks down. She had met her uncle near the Thames in his wheelchair, you can imagine the rest.
Mark's car is TNM286. In one shot Pete drives up to the office with Patricia and as this happens in Little George Street, the location of his series 2 office, this must be an early story.
There's no inspector in this one. Big Ben is at 10.30.
Uncredited speaking role: Mills' servant (John Martin) in three brief scenes, in two he speaks one line

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SABER'S BOW AND ARROW

Linda (Ann Stephens), aged 19, wants to marry 26 year old Frank Regan (Michael Bryant). She's too young to get married, declares her stern father (Vincent Holman), who has "checked" her boyfriend out, and has come to the conclusion that Frank hasn't proved himself good at anything in his life. So at dead of night they elope.
Mark Saber is summoned to Gregson's mansion. The note Linda has left, and the fact that she has not taken her passport, suggests to Saber she is probably heading for Gretna Green.
My hunch was right, Saber tells us viewers, but what the elopers don't know is the law that runaways could be married at Gretna was repealed a few years ago.
So the couple have to take rooms at the local inn, awaiting the three weeks before they can be legally married.
However two guests Tom (Denis Shaw) and Freddy (Geoffrey Hibbert) spot the multi-millionaire's daughter, and a chance to make some easy money. They snatch Linda, minutes before Saber, assistant Pete and Gregson check in at the inn. "Excuse me madam!" says Pete spotting the kilted innkeeper (John Stuart).... ooops!
Frank who had been knocked out in the kidnap, tells Gregson that the men he sent have already taken Linda away. But a phone call from Tom soon enlightens them as to the true situation, as he demands £50,000 for Linda's safe return.
Good old Saber, alert as ever, hears bagpipes in the background from where Tom is phoning and traces the call to James Street Edinburgh, where, says the innkeeper the Pipe Bands are rehearsing for the Tattoo.
Mark and Pete with Frank drive there to keep watch on the call box in James Street. Pete listens in as callers use the box and finally they catch Freddy, and force him to take them to Linda. A fight in which Frank proves his bravery enables Gregson to admit that Frank has now proved he can do something good in his life.
Linda invites Mark to their wedding, "and Pete too." By way of thanks Pete dons a kilt and plays the pipes!

Note: though Mark allegedly drives to Edinburgh, he clearly parks his car TGP668 near a London Transport bus stop! Frank drives TUL820. Uncredited speaking part: John Martin plays Harry, Gregson's manservant

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SABER AT SEA

Set entirely on board a Union Castle liner, where Julie Forbes (Ann Stephens) is recuperating from a traumatic car crash. As she has had a breakdown, it seems a trifle odd why she is travelling alone. Also on board from Southampton, on holiday to Naples, are Mark Saber and Pete. This proves to be very fortuitous.
In an adjoining cabin to hers, 405, Julie sees a man being murdered. But by the time she's summoned help, the captain asking Saber's for professional assistance, the corpse has disappeared. No sign of any struggle and in fact, the body then appears, very much alive! It's a Mr Vance (Robert Arden) who's naturally rather bemused by Julie's story. "Maybe you were dreaming," suggests Pete to Julie.
It happens again, the case of the disappearing dead man! A shocked Julie had gone to her cabin 404 for a lie down. She screams, for the corpse is there! Or, it certainly had been there.
"We can't have any more of this," declares the irritated captain. But this time Saber's detecting skills notice "a dark spot on the carpet." More blood is discovered on the rail of the upper deck. He is positive that there really has been a murder. So while Pete "sits back and awaits developments," in others words chatting up Julie, Mark sends a cable to Toronto, to get the background on Canadian Vance.
Julie rashly, and improbably, snoops in Vance's cabin. Of course he catches her there. But the truth is out: she has found a photo of him, with a man who looks exactly like him.
Vance is to inherit his uncle's small fortune. But there are actually two Vances, Preston and Paul, "the black sheep of the family," and they are identical. Or rather were, as naughty Paul had pushed his brother's corpse in the sea

Uncredited speaking roles: a steward (several scenes). A male passenger. A female passenger.

Series 3 of Saber of London
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CHEATING CHEATERS

Meet upper class swindler Oscar (an untypical role for Denis Shaw) and his fairly silent, indeed dim manservant who goes by the improbable name of Polonius. Bernard Bresslaw plays him as though auditioning for Lurch in the Addams Family.
Together they seek out John, a vagrant down on his luck (Robert Raikes). The magnanimous Oscar declares that he is prepared to help this tramp. In return he wants him to masquerade as a Mr Paul Barnard, who's the missing heir to the "substantial" estate of Allan Barnard. There's only an uncle (played sympathetically by Ian Fleming) to impress, and he's nearly blind.
The Barnard lawyer asks Mark Saber to check up on the man claiming to be Paul. Mark arranges for Pete to turn up as Mike, allegedly an old buddy of Paul's to see "the benevolent uncle and the malevolent nephew." It's soon obvious to Pete that Paul isn't bona fide. So Oscar has only one choice, and orders Polonius to kill Pete off, "make it an atrocious murder," he grins.
However st the reading of the will they are trapped. It transpires the estate amounts to "less than nothing." The crooks fall out and Inspector Parker bursts in to arrest them. But in fact it's a happy finish, as Mark was only cheating the cheaters, as really the estate was solvent and dear old Uncle Stephen inherits the lot.

Note: During the reading of the will, the estate is of "John Foster Barnard." Earlier however we had been told the dead man was Allan Barnard

Series 3 of Saber of London
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SIX MONTHS TO TALK
Saber's legwork in this one story is done by a "Bob Lane," who is seconded from the Yard as, we are informed, Pete's away in Paris. This is one of the most fascinating of stories, containing as it does a small cameo by the great comedian Leslie Henson, very shortly before he died. He plays a police sergeant to whom Bob has to apply for a licence to dig on the Heath, "a bit out of the ordinary." Though looking old and tired, Leslie injects lots of nice little touches into his minute long scene.

Big Ben is showing 1pm as John Bayes (Geoffrey Hibbert) strolls along the street and into Saber's office, with the startling information that he wants to report a murder. It was committed last November and it's now April, so shouldn't the title be "5 Months to Talk"?
Roger had had an argument over watered down beer with Alex (Edwin Richfield). He was kicked in the head and "didn't get up." They took him in a truck and buried him on Hampstead Heath. So, the big question- why hasn't he reported it sooner? Answer- John is scared of Alex.
Bob Lane calls on Alex's wife, then Marshall, Roger's boss at a stone yard ('Underwood'), both of whom state Roger has moved away to Liverpool. Alex says Roger even phoned him from there after Christmas. But on Hampstead Heath, after official authority has been granted, Roger's remains are dug up.
Saber questions Alex who says it was John who took the truck when it had burnt out. John however claims it had had to be destroyed as there was blood in it. It's his word against Alex's. How can Saber prove who's the killer?
A thin piece of wire with the egend Armistice Day is sufficient to reveal the truth.
Notes: uncredited speaking parts: amazingly Bob (Howard Pays) is not in the credits. Also Mavis, Marshall's secretary. Only Bob Lane's car is seen. I think it's a Triumph Mayflower
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THE MAID WAS CURIOUS
Not really a whodunnit, as the plot never develops any real suspects, but it shows our detective, as irregular as ever with Scotland Yard, with the invaluable help of his assistant, solving a murder with only the thinnest of clues as a starting point.

In Room 23 of the Coburg Court Hotel, Sarah the maid (Jan Holden) opens a large trunk.... and screams.
In his office, Big Ben showing 3.20, Mark Saber is asked by the hotel management if he could discreetly solve the crime. He examines the badly mutilated corpse of an unknown man in his early thirties. Watkins, the resident manager (Robert Dorning), says the man was a sailor who had booked in as George Peters. His trunk had been brought up to his room later. But the manager can't be sure that the body is that of Peters.
Inside the trunk there's a piece of paper which Pete thinks could be the names of horses, but wise old Saber believes are restaurants. So he enjoys lunch at one of them, Cater's Edge, learning that the notes emanated from a shop where pastry is sold, Rosemary Baker of Langton Street. Receipts were signed by Harry Quinn.
Pete chats with young Alice at this bakery, learning she had been engaged to Harry, whom she hasn't seen for a while as he's a cook's assistant on board The Silver Queen. The couple had been about to settle down and buy their own pastry shop, partly with money from a friend whose name she does not know. What cash Harry had himself, was kept in their joint account, but all the money had been withdrawn yesterday.
Inspector Parker complains about Mark's "highly irregular" actions, but in return for all Mark's help in the past, kindly overlooks his behaviour. The Yard lab inspects the body, but positive identification is not possible. Is it Quinn? The best that can be said is that the dead man had no criminal record.
In the Trafalgar Square offices of the Burston Shipping Company, Pete pores over their files. Quinn had signed up for The Silver Queen's next voyage- but is his signature genuine? On no less than Inspector Parker's authority, its departure is delayed for an hour.
A speedy drive to the docks by the Tower of London, and Mark is talking to the captain. In the galley he's introduced to the chef. Quinn has not yet reported for duty. Assistant chef Tobin is evasive, "I knew him." Mark picks up on the past tense. That's the cue for Mark to accuse him of murder. Tobin had robbed Harry, having been the 'friend' who had promised to give him the money to help buy his shop.

Notes: Uncredited speaking roles: a girl carrying a tray at Rosemary Baker's. The sergeant in Parker's office. Mark drives TGP668.

Series 3 of Saber of London
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THE CASE OF MR SHORE

Enjoying a walk in the park, Pete is offered a package, untidily wrapped in newspaper, by a man sitting on the park bench. He's Roger Shore (Peter Reynolds), who tells Pete that he cannot go to the police. Pete takes him to see his boss.
Shore explains he's a widower, the cash inside the parcel is ransom money for his eight year old son Peter who has been kidnapped. As the kidnappers had not contacted him at 10.30 in the park, as arranged, he has to go to a pub and wait.
Mark Saber goes there, posing as Mr Shore. A phone call orders him to go to a newsagents. However the kidnapper's voice is a dead giveaway, though great detective as he is, Mark Saber doesn't notice.
A "hoodlum" follows Mark inside the shop and hands him a message to go to Waterloo Station. Pete who has been tailing Mark, gets Inspector Parker to arrest the yob, but it seems he was an innocent dupe who had been paid a fiver to deliver the note.
At Waterloo, a British Railways inspector tries to arrest Mark for stealing the package! Pete has to break cover and reveal who the great detective is.
Anther phone call sends Mark to Piccadilly Underground, in this grand tour of London's sites.
But nothing happens there, and a disconsolate Mark is about to report back to Inspector Parker, when he hears Roger Shore's voice in a phone booth. "You've been calling You," Mark twigs at last.
Men in white coats take Shore by ambulance to hospital where a doctor (Ian Fleming) unravels Shore's sad story. His son Peter had been knocked down by a truck that morning, dying of his injuries. Shore had created this "fantasy" to convince himself his son would return home. "Sounds insane," comments the unsympathetic Parker. There follows a sad conversation with Mr Shore in his bed. Mark does not tell Shore the terrible truth, leaving him lying there happily, temporarily at least. This is an unusually sympathetic scene. "Poor chap," concludes Parker.

Mark drives TNM286. Uncredited roles: 2 boys in the park make some incomprehensible noises

Series 3 of Saber of London
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THE VISITOR
A frightened Maureen Grady phones Mark as a matter of urgency, but is murdered.
Mark and Pete drive round to 22 Park Street and find she's been strangled. A photo "with love Henri" has been hastily ripped from its frame. Another clue scattered on the floor is a book of matches labelled Crescent Hotel. Mark leaves Pete looking after Maureen's unco-operative room mate Sheila Conway (Shirley Lawrence), while he confronts Henri Rivier (John Loder) at the hotel. He claims he doesn't know Miss Grady.
Henri has already packed, leaving with his wife (Mila Parely) to catch the 1600 Sabena flight for Brussels. In haste they rush off, so Mark phones Inspector Parker. Even though there's no evidence, Inspector Parker is a mere pawn, and obeys Mark's order to stop the couple at London Airport. This gives the opportunity for several minutes of interesting 1957 location work in and around a much quieter Heathrow than nowadays.
Henri and his wife arrive by taxi, then as they walk on to the tarmac, police detain them. Mark then Parker show up, and while the latter worries about the legality of proceedings, Mark "plays a long shot" and phones Brussels.
He shows Henri the rest of the torn photo which he'd found in the hotel room waste paper basket. Henri takes some cyanide.
The Brussels phone call exposes the complexity of the murderer's cunning. Parker listens incredulously adding at the end "you'd better tell the truth...." We watch a flashback of what actually occurred. Then a final dramatic twist.
.Notes- Mark drives TGP668. Police cars: NLN820, KXR761. Uncredited speaking extras: Mr Kenny the manager of the hotel. A hotel porter. A hotel maid. The airport announcer. The policeman in Parker's car. Two plain clothes policemen. Laurent Chapelle (John Gabriel)

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STRONG MAN OUT
Daring daylight robbery of Diamond Manufacturing Company's payroll!
Mark Saber is called in to assist Inspector Stewart, and of course takes charge. An enjoyable opening scene has the pair questioning the manager, who never gets a word in beside his garrulous secretary Dorothy (Totti Truman Taylor). £8,000 payroll money has been nicked, serial numbers of the notes all known. One employee John Rogers (though Saber calls him Roger Sloane once in his narration) is under suspicion as he has a police record, one offence in 1935, "22 years ago." However when Pete calls on him, after a poignant conversation about the difficulties of gaining employment of an ex-prisoner, he is eliminated, as he is now blind.
Mark has more luck with a photo cut out of the Daily Mirror, a photo of Rita Miller (Sandra Dorne), a dancer at the Mayfair nightclub. Mark finds her singing at the midnight floor show, and afterwards indulges in some cosy small talk with her. She did have a friend, Peter Bond, who also has a record, but "he's as cold as yesterday's boiled potato!" That is, he is in Wormwood Scrubs.
Mark and Pete talk with the 'warden' here, then Mark calls on Bond in his cell, they are old enemies. He did the robbery but had been crossed by his two accomplices (how he did it while in jail, I'm not sure).
Two dead men are found in Sloane Square, on them are notes from the robbery. Bond has just been released from jail. Then more of the notes are deposited in a bank by Ben, who owns a Paddington cafe. He claims the cash came from a compatriot of his, this man happens to be in the cafe and makes a bolt for it, name of Sardi. He'd got the cash from Sloane Square, after a tip off from Bond. He puts Mark on to the hitherto unseen mastermind, the suave killer Serge (Ferdy Mayne), who gives us a fine dying line, regret at not making Dorothy's day by kissing her!

Notes: Inspector Stewart is played by John Stuart (sic), not as spelt in the credits. Ben Chou is listed in the credits as played by 'Martin Benson,' but the actor is definitely Warren Mitchell.
Saber drives no less than four different cars in the 25 minutes- his Porsche (twice), but also TNM258, TNM286, and 675LMY

Series 3 of Saber of London
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POWER OF SUGGESTION
As Larry shakes hands with Inspector Parker, Saber introduces him as "my new assistant."

The story of two business partners who drink a poisoned bottle of wine. John Bellville (Neil Hallett), in agony, telephones Mark Saber and then collapses dramatically. AMB4159, Mark tries to reconnect. No luck, so he rushes round to find Mrs Bellville dead and her husband being wheeled off to hospital.
The wine had been brought by his partner Kane (John Stone) who asks Mark what possible reason he could have for trying to kill his dearest friend. But Inspector Parker is quite convinced that Kane is guilty, leading to a running joke in the program, "If Kane is innocent, I'm the King of Siam!"
Mark questions Kane. He admits he did love Mrs Bellville but claims John is trying to frame him. His story is checked out "carefully and thoroughly," with the result that Mark is convinced that Kane had neither time or opportunity to put any poison in the wine bottle.
Police reveal Bellville has enough arsenic in his body "to kill five men." So how is he still alive?! A doctor confirms that Bellville might have built up an immunity. But how to prove this? And how did he then introduce poison into that wine bottle unnoticed? The answers are found in Bellville's chemist shop, thanks to a bit of surreptitious breaking and entering by Mark and Larry.
Mark's unorthodox method of obtaining the truth, dubiously sanctioned by Inspector Parker, involves adminstering an 'arsenic' tablet to his suspect! In reality this is only aspirin, but 'the power of suggestion' is enough to evince the truth.
Uncredited small speaking roles: John Martin as the warder at the police station. A nurse. Mark drives his old Vauxhall in this story
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THE MAN WHO WAS TWICE

George Rodney (Ian Fleming) is manager of Westcotts Frozen Foods and has the unpleasant task of interviewing employee Peter Wells (Robert Raikes), who wears a moustache. Peter is accused of tampering with the accounts. It was only a loan, is his time-worn excuse. Kind Mr Rodney gives him until Monday to repay.
Peter ponders his next move. After a drink at a club, he returns home, on the way bumping into a stranger who has collapsed in the street. He helps him up and takes him to his Notting Hill basement flat. The sick man says he doesn't want a doctor. Indeed, after Wells pours him some brandy, he dies. Peter searches his wallet and comes up with a plane ticket in the name of John Brading from London to Barcelona for 13th Jan 1958.
Now we see why Peter Wells had a moustache! Shaved off, Peter Wells can pass himself off as John Brading. A key to Room 210 at the Park Court Hotel gives him a hiding place until it's time for his flight. So having doused his flat, as well as the body, with kerosene, he takes his leave.

Saber is being engaged by Mrs Brading's sister to find Mrs Marian Brading. She has disappeared. A note had come from John, stating that his work isn't finished yet, but it will be. Does he mean he's going to kill their two children just as he is suspected of killing his wife? Mark starts his search, not knowing of course, that he's wasting his time.
Brading Mark II, aka Peter Wells, is enjoying himself at his hotel. Barcelona, here he comes! Saber has tracked him down to the hotel, but just misses him. Brading II has made for Blackbush Airport.
The receptionist (Pat English) spots who Brading is, and he is kept waiting. He realises something is wrong and does a runner. Through the staff room he exits, and, better warn airport security about this, he's found a short cut avoiding customs and can reach his plane! But the flight gets airborne without him and he is knocked down by it- very unconvincingly. Saber catches the dazed man, and awaits his confession. Except Saber is waiting for one to a different murder! "Doesn't sound very plausible," he comments, as Wells gives his explanation, but then you could say that of this whole Brian Clemens script.

Saber drives TGP668, but is also seen in TNM286. Uncredited speaking parts: hotel bellboy. Second airport official
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DEAD MAN'S HANDS

Inspector Parker at Scotland Yard is baffled, nothing new about that! But with good reason, for a dead crook's fingerprints have been found at the scenes of six recent robberies. They are those of the late Albert Penney, who had died six months previously of a heart attack. But the evidence suggests he is now committing these crimes.
After being pestered by the Yard, Mrs Penney consults Mark Saber, convinced her husband really is dead. He had been a petty thief, and these robberies are certainly unlike anything he had previously committed.
Dr Curtis (John Stuart) assures Saber's assistant Larry that Albert really is dead, for he had been with him when he died. At the doctor's surgery Larry happens to bump into Helen Andrews (Jill Melford), an old flame. As they enjoy a coffee together, she happens to say that Curtis is very tired and overworked, and has been ever since his partner Dr Turner quit their practice six months ago. From Mrs Penney Larry learns that this Dr Turner had treated Albert privately in his new Harley Street practice.
Dr R Mowbray Turner (Jack Melford, father of Jill who plays Helen), is obviously concerned Larry is getting too close to the facts. Confidently he tells Larry that the police will never solve this case, and nor will Larry since the doctor administers an injection. When Larry comes to, he is tied up. Helpfully the evil doctor shows Larry the special gloves containing exact replicas of Albert's fingerprints that he had made up specially. The thefts are to finance his experiments, about which he speaks passionately. He needs a new set of prints to continue his robberies, and Larry's fit the bill!
As Mark dozes in a room adjacent to his office, Turner breaks in searching for Mark's file with Larry's prints, so that he can destroy all evidence of them. Saber awakens and watches with interest. On foot, he follows Turner back to Harley Street.
Turner prepares to make an impression of Larry's fingers, prior to disposing of him. But Saber breaks in and after a brief struggle, rather sadistically, Saber allows Turner to topple out of the first floor window to his death.

Larry drives 675LMY. Saber's car: TGP668, though he does walk to Scotland Yard from his office. Gaffes: Saber turns off his radio, but the music continues playing for a couple of seconds. The music also starts early, when he switches it back on! Uncredited speaking extras: The fingerprint man in Parker's office. The lady in Dr Curtis' waiting room. His receptionist. A waitress in the cafe. Mrs Biggs, Saber's housekeeper who cooks him a meal
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DIAMOND FOLLIES
Larry is raving about "the girl I met when we interviewed those French newspaper people." She's "a combination between Gino Lollobrigida, Marilyn Monroe...", although no Saber plot matches the above information. Saber asks Larry if it was that "red head with cute dimples, and that remarkable figure?" But the case takes up nearly all their time so Larry (and we) never see her. "Absence makes the heart grow fonder," Mark reminds Larry, who complains "but I don't want her to get fond of my absence."

Oh yes, the case. It's 10.25am when Sergeant Lacey call at Mark's office to inform him that Katherine Lansing the sister of Jean (Jan Holden), an old friend of Mark's, has been killed in a car accident. Except it was no accident as the brakes had been tampered with. On her corpse was a twelve carat diamond, worth more than she could ever afford as a chorus girl.
Kathy's fiance, Tom Weeks, an importer and exporter of novelties, owned the crashed car. The plot thickens when Mark and Larry travel to Watford and meet up wth a Mrs Weeks. Their travels also take them to Charles Andrews, a dealer in costume jewellery and Neil Bancroft, the producer of the show Kathy was in.
Tom phones, agreeing to make a clean breast of it all, as he's been using the girls to smuggle diamonds. Mark and Larry go to his flat to hear his confession, only to find Inspector Parker examining Tom's corpse. However Tom had left a written statement about the smuggling, and accusing Andrews of killing Kathy, who was an innocent pawn. But Parker's boffins prove that the name Andrews on the written note was added by a later hand. Mark compares handwriting and meets up with Jean at London Airport, to bring her up to date. She's wearing a cheap diamond given to her by Bancroft, which Larry asks to "borrow". It proves to be a real diamond!
Mark solves the case with one of his underhand tricks. "Know what a scholar's mate and a fool's mate is?" he asks Larry, adding by way of explanation, ""if you put your opponent off guard...." He goes to his suspect seeking his backing for a play he's allegedly written which he's entitled Diamond Follies. He explains the plot, which sounds remarkably like this story!

Mark drives TNM286

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A DIPLOMATIC AFFAIR

At long last, Professor Tomulkin (John le Mesurier) will be reunited with his daughter Petra. Walking down Lancaster Gate they are about to meet when he is snatched away by a passing car.
"It seems incredible," observes Larry, "that such a thing could happen in the open street in broad daylight."
He's taken to a foreign embassy and interrogated, in other words tortured into providing "the names."
With Inspector Parker's hands tied, Petra appeals to Mark Saber for help. As she had noticed her country's diplomatic plate on the car, he visits the embassy, and whilst waiting snoops around and bumps into Major Virnoff (played with style by Philip Saville). The major is no fool, and recognises Mark as the famous "dangerous" detective. Certainly he is all that, for in a highly unorthodox move, the embassy cooks are chloroformed and he and Larry infiltrate the building having borrowed the chefs' overalls. It's quite easy to get into the embassy, but how to get out?
At gunpoint, Virnoff is forced to take Saber and Larry to his prisoner. The major however proves a worthy opponent, as he stops all exits by ordering the bars to come down on all doors and windows.
Mark locks Virnoff in the cell, and sounds the fire alarm, starting a small fire in the major's office. The fire brigade must needs come to the rescue, and the professor is happily taken away.
Saber drives TGP668. Uncredited speaking part: the second cook. One gaffe: the second cook goes from the kitchen to the dustbin and is knocked out. Saber then glances into the kitchen, but still sees two cooks there
Series 3 of Saber of London
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BLACK PAWN WHITE PAWN
Ten years back, the Third National Bank had been robbed by Frank Charleston (Basil Dignam) and Ben Greer (Denis Shaw). Greer is arrested when the alarm goes off, though Frank escapes and, with the proceeds turns himself into a country gent. Now he is engaged to Norma, and has become county chess champion.
Mark is retained by the Amalgamated Insurance Company to find the missing money and trail Greer who's now out of jail after "8 years." Some faulty mathematics there! Perhaps this is why Mark can't find Greer! There's also a scene outside the bank, and the plaque clearly doesn't identify it as Third National Bank!
But we see what Greer's up to. He's traced Frank, now calling himself Frank Chester, and accepts the £5,000 offered with a promise for more. But Ben wants to resume the partnership and sees a golden opprtunity to steal from Frank's new and wealthy acquaintances. Greer believes he has "all the aces," but not quite all, for Frank shoots him. Greer's corpse is taken by car and dumped in a field near Hayward's Heath.
All Mark's searching has failed to find Ben, "it's like looking for a ghost!" declares Larry prophetically. Inspector Parker tells them that Greer's been found, "good old Parker!"
The corpse was clutching an unusual white pawn, so Mark travels to the local chess club to ask Keats the club secretary (a bearded Robert Raglan) about it. Surprisingly he can't help, but Larry finds the pub where Greer had been staying. In his room at The White Swan, is found a photo of Frank. Off to meet the chess champ, who has a piece of his unique Chinese chess set missing.
"This is one game you've lost," teases Mark.
Mark's car: TGP668
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THE WHITE CANE

Mary Dale (Jennifer Jayne) appeals to Mark for help as her dad, a licensed beggar, has been killed. Of course, she has no confidence in Inspector Parker! The police are completely satisfied that he had died in an accident.
Mary tells Saber the facts. At 1.30am near Piccadilly Circus a taxi had run down her father, Harvey. He had run into the road, but Mary thinks he had been pushed.
Mark discovers the blind man's white cane was not at the scene of the accident, and talks to the taxi driver who says a newspaper vendor, Terence Grayston, alias Tippy, was a bitter enemy of Dale. His wife had recently separated from him. At a home for derelicts, Tippy (Hal Osmond) is tracked down, with scratches and blood stains on his face. He claims he had been at Danny's pub at the time, but the discovery of a white cane in his room looks frightfully suspicious. But it proves not to belong to the dead man, and the blood is accounted for by the fact he had been involved in a fight in the pub.
Miss Dale shows Mark the diary that her dad was clutching when he died. Using the schedule in the diary Mark and Larry go to his 7.30pm pitch, and have a friendly chat with Crane, a man they find begging there. Crane (Edwin Richfield) claims Dale was an "old chiseller" who had pinched his patch. Apparently he'd discovered Crane wasn't really blind and was blackmailing him.
There are some loose ends in this weak story. But the message appears to be, 'no honour amongst thieves'.

Note: Jennifer Jayne must have impressed the producers as the next story sees her take on the different part of Ann, Mark's girl friend.
Big Ben is at 4.25 when Mary Dale visits Saber's office. Saber drives TGP668, while Larry drives TNM286

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BEYOND FEAR

Harold Lang always played his baddies with a sneering menace. Typical is this role as a "noose-free, fear-free" criminal.
This dramatic story by George St George has an inauspicious start when a disembodied voice (anyone know who?) proclaims, "the place of detention for the most hardened criminal." At this jail, Jenkins is receiving the "usual farewell lecture" when the prison doctor suddenly reveals Jenkins has a rare disease and has only a week at most to live. The prisoner ponders, then, enjoys himself insulting the governor. The Voice returns: "Jenkins was a free man. With 7 days to live, in a way he was freer than he'd ever been in his life. Nothing could harm him any longer, neither jail, nor the gallows. Noone could cause him any fear."
Jenkins wants to put the fear of God into the man who'd put him behind bars, Saber. Is Saber scared? Well, he doesn't show it, he just lights his pipe.
Jenkins cold bloodedly shoots two of his old buddies, the third Hawkins (Edwin Richfield) is forced to help execute Jenkins' plan of revenge.
Saber is dancing at a club with his girl friend Ann Chertsey. Watching is Jenkins. "I want you to stop sleeping at night," he confides to Saber with a leer. Ann thinks Mark looks "worried." It's a war of nerves: "if you need a good undertaker...!"
That night, Ann is settling down into bed when a phone call causes her to leave her home at once. She's met by a "doctor" who chloroforms her.
Jenkins is a master forger, and Mark is embarrassed when Larry tells him his pay cheque has bounced. The manager shows Saber a wad of cheques, including one payable to "St Pancras Cemetry, a down payment on a burial plot." Clever forgeries by you know who.
Then Inspector Parker gets very worked up by a nasty phone complaint from Saber- of course it's Jenkins who can apparently also mimic Saber's voice.
Saber plans to put "fear back into his diseased mind." A confident Jenkins arrives at the office to complete his own plan. He demands Saber goes with him- if he wants to see Ann ever again. "I want to watch you squirm!"
But of course it's Mark who succeeds in turning Jenkins back into "the scared rat that you really are." And of course he rescues Ann.

Notes: Big Ben shows 1.30 as Mark drives up to his office. Inside, much later we have a night scene at 10.05pm, and next day another with Big Ben showing 4.45.
Uncredited speaking roles: the two members of Jenkins' gang, The Lizard, and Greasner

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DON'T LOSE YOUR SHIRT
Plenty of humour in this slight but enjoyable tale by Eldon Howard.

A game of cards leads to an accusation of cheating and one of the two players being killed. Dead man Fred Bassett had borrowed the flat of close friend Tim Shute (Patrick Holt). When Tim returns home he goes straight, not to the police, but to Saber, who, in turn goes straight to the scene of the crime. He talks with "true blue" Herbert, the manservant (Hal Osmond) who had regrettably never met the other card player as he arrived "after my bedtime... about 11.30."
For some reason the killer had left his shirt behind. Laundry marks are useful clues, but with 36,000 laundries to choose from, it's time for the Yard to be called in. Thus Larry finds himself with the happy task of calling at a laundry where a forward "unattached" assistant (Ann Lynn) chats him up, as well as giving the details that the shirt was brought in by Mr Paul Emory 37 Court Lane. "Remember me next time anyone takes your shirt," is the enigmatic riposte.
Larry learns Paul was "always out drinking and dancing," according to a comedy chat with his dear old dad. But he's now "at the undertakers." Larry perks up at this news, but it proves to be only his workplace.
Mrs Bassett is interviewed by Mark in a brief scene in which he asks for details of Fred's shirt. It seems to have been added to make the film up to the required length.
Mark and Larry go together to the funeral directors. Paul (Jack Melford) admits it is his shirt. He was all alone last night. He then adds the startling detail that "this shirt was on the back of a corpse, buried from here last week." The nightwatchman Old Henry had died suddenly last week of a heart attack and Paul had given Jules from "downstairs" this shirt to cover him with. Call Jules (Michael Ripper). He unwisely makes a run for it, but Larry fells him with a good tackle.
Larry drives TNM286, Saber his Porsche. At the end of the story Big Ben indicates 6.05.
Uncredited speaking parts: Fred (David Lander). Police forensic man (John Martin). Man with Laundry Basket

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WEAKNESS DOESN'T PAY

Scene 1 - On the phone, Saber arranges to meet girl friend Ann for dinner. That's the last we hear of that!
Bert Pool (John Longden) wants Saber's help. His young blonde wife wants to kill herself. She has an incurable illness. As Pool has to go away to Paris, he wants Mark to guard his wife. He points her out to Mark, she's sitting outside in Pool's sports car wearing a headscarf.
Before going to Mrs Pool's home, depite the fact that Pool's plane leaves at 10.45am, Mark and Larry carelessly decide to take an "early" (very early) lunch at the Paree Cafe. Larry says he knows a waitress there, Dominique, "a doll, a real pinup gal." They finally reach Mrs Poole, only of course to find her dead in front of the gas fire. But was this the same woman they had seen earlier sitting in Mr Pool's car, whom they had been told was his wife?
A consultation with Dr Green finds him surprised to hear of the suicide. She'd recently seen a consultant who had offered a more "encouraging" prognosis.
Informed of the tragedy, Pool hurries home and tells Mark his wife had not seen any other doctor. As Mark chats with him, Larry examines Pool's car and notices a hairpin. Caught in it, a strand of hair... from a wig! So our detectives cherchez la femme- the one who had posed as Mrs Pool at the start of the case. Larry also found in Pool's sports car an airline brochure with Flight 739 next Friday underlined. And Pool is booked on it! Mark examines the passenger list and narrows the femme down to two possibles. Larry interviews Lucille (Jay Webster- a saucy part) who is a cigarette girl at a Mayfair cabaret. She gets a bit fresh. Larry tells Mark she was very "cooperative." Mark of course found the real femme, Anita (Carol Marsh) who gets very jumpy when Pool is mentioned.
But there's no concrete proof, so Inspector Parker, poor old thing, finally agrees to Mark setting one of his traps, "if he tries to shoot you, don't stop him!" Parker tells Mark. "In case I never see you again...." retorts Mark as he sets off to revisit Pool Larry and Mark meet Anita at Pool's and demand Pool confesses. Anita looks worried again. Pool loses his nerve and tries a getaway, but Larry's neat trick halts him. Enter Parker to make his arrest. How did you manage it? he asks them. Mark promises to demonstrate to Parker. He pulls the roll of carpet from under poor Parker. The end.
Note - I'm not sure what 'proof' Parker found from all this, to get Poole convicted!

Big Ben shows 9.25, and later 11.25. Larry drives TNM286, Saber his Porsche, and Pool's car is UXU603
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FIELD GOAL
Larry is listening to 'football' on AFN when his "good friend" Miss Ellen Winters phones asking for his help. Her brother-in-law Herbert Radford has been killed. Larry finds a button at the scene of the murder, an unusual make, it transpires it came from a driving glove of Italian origin. Was the motive robbery, as Mrs Radford (Marion Mathie) maintains, since missing are a diamond ring, a platinum watch and a knife? An "exorbitant" insurance with a payout of £150,000 including double indemnity is another possible motive.
As Saber is busy, Larry tackles the case. He learns an Italian sports car 80PDJ has been seen nearby, which is traced to ..... yes! An Italian! Vittorio Russo (John Gabriel).
As this is getting a trifle complicated, Larry and Mark summarise the story so far, at the start of Part Two. News comes that Mrs Radford is getting ready to go abroad to recuperate. But she's clearly worried about "errand boy" Larry's persistence and persuades poor old Inspector Parker to slap a restraining order on Saber's firm. What to do next? Saber has the answer, "Larry, we're knee deep in trouble.... have a cigarette!"
It proves to be, as Saber declares another case of Cheating The Cheaters. For although Russo is booked to accompany Mrs Radford, Larry uncovers the fact that he has also bought a one-way ticket to South America. Scoring a "field goal," Larry tackles the murderer.

Big Ben shows 10.35 at the start of the story. Mark drives TGP668. Larry drives TNM286. Uncredited speaking role: a plain clothes policeman at the scene of the murder. Also in a non-speaking part: John Martin, who identifies the glove in a shop window. Donald Gray makes one slight gaffe when he calls the insurance firm the Blakewell Insurance Company. Moments later he calls it, as it is in all other instances, the Blackwell Insurance Company
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THE CORPSE CRIED MURDER
In a dark alley, Mark Saber is beaten up, and warned to keep off the Pickard Case. Dr Evans patches him up, and phones Larry to come to the surgery. All Mark can recall, is that one of his attackers had been called Pogo, which means a man with a limp.
Inspector Parker summons Mark as an actress, apparently a client of Saber's named Amy Pickard, has been shot with her own gun. Suicide says Parker. Never seen her before, Mark informs him.
Tom Harrow, at the Yard's file department, helps Mark track down Pogo, whom Saber has conveniently omitted to mention to the inspector. Name of Jeff, he hangs out at the Blue Flamingo in Soho.
Mark phones Ann to put off their date so he can go to the club. But then he receives a surprise visit from Jean, Amy's sister, who explains Amy had got in with the wrong crowd, including one Aussie called Bluey.
Pogo is at the club and gets jittery when Mark and Larry turn up. Boss of the club is Ben (Denis Shaw), an old enemy of Saber's, who claims he is now, allegedly, going straight. Further, the barman is an Aussie, and he's a red head, so we are informed.
Saber is again attacked in the street, but this time he wreaks his revenge, "I'm going to teach you a lesson," promises Mark, rather unprofessionally. Incredible that he is able to overpower two thugs. But even the cowering crooks don't confess, though at the club Inspector Parker stands by admiringly as Mark bluffs his way into exposing the murderee.

Mark drives TGP668. Uncredited speaking extras: A messenger at the Yard (John Martin). A male customer at the Blue Flamingo. Note: When Jean Pickard calls at Saber's office Big Ben shows 11.35. Several scenes later it is still showing the same time! Had it stopped?!
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SABER of LONDON
Series 4 with Robert Arden as Bob Page

1 CURSE OF DEATH
2 THE KILLER AND THE KID
3 PAID OFF
4 TRAP FOR MURDER
6 BACKGROUND FOR MURDER
7 WHERE THERE'S A WILL
8 TOAST TO DEATH
9 IT WALKS AT NIGHT
10 THE LADY DOESN'T SCARE
11 UNCLE WILLIAM
12 THE BLACK WIDOW
13 HOUR OF RECKONING
14 DOUBLE TAKE
16 DARK MOMENTS
17 PLATINUM MURDER
18 SILENT ACCUSATION
19 UNDER SUSPICION
21 DILEMMA FOR HARRY
22 OPERATION ARSON
23 COME OUT FIGHTING
24 TIME ALIBI FOR MURDER
25 OUT OF THE PAST
26 INCIDENT IN SOHO
27 JOCKEY MISSING
28 DEATH HIDES OUT
29 SWITCH TO MURDER
31 ARENA FOR FRAUD
33 THE OPPORTUNISTS
34 DEATH AT HIS FINGERTIPS
35 MURDER FOR REVENGE
36 DEAD BEFORE ARRIVAL
38 FIRE!
39 FULL MOON
39 stories were made in 1958 and early 1959. By now Donald Gray had settled comfily into his role and arguably the series reached its zenith with these stories that also featured Robert Arden.
I am grateful to the late Robert Arden for writing some happy
memories of the series.
In the final story 4.39, Mark's girlfriend Ann asks him: "What happened to Bob (Page)?" Mark's reply is: "Well he suddenly decided to get married- went to America."

My favourite episode: 11 Uncle William- a nicely sinister tale. 39 Full Moon is pleasing also, perhaps they'd underspent on the budget for it shows some (almost) lavish (for the Danzigers) touches! 16 Dark Moments is a slightly more serious study in depression.
Best moment: In 10 The Lady Doesn't Scare, perhaps excited by Honor Blackman's appearance, the script gets in a right muddle over Bob Page's identity
Dud episode: 24 Come Out Fighting is an easy choice

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CURSE OF DEATH
The story begins in darkest Kenya, alias The Elstree Jungle, where a 'rhinoceros' is killed by white men. Saber's narration later calls it a sacred buffalo, but the fact is Sam Brody (Howard Pays) has shot an animal worshipped by a native tribe, and a witch doctor solemnly pronounces a curse on the white hunter. "A lot of superstitious nonsense," claims Sam's cousin Martin Fleming (Robert Raikes).
Back in England, a spear in Sam's car makes Sam feel there really might be a Curse. This marks the beginning of a war of nerves which continues with a devil's mask on his front door. The culmination is some nutter in long hair threatening Sam and his fiancee Peggy, and this persuades him- at long last- to call for help. The contrast between the happy wedding preparations and the painted loony who keeps popping up in the bushes is well done.
Bob Page listens to the "ridiculous" story. He believes Sam, and checks all the recent African arrivals into the country, while Saber interviews Martin, a barrister, who shows Mark similar weird objects he had received, but he's not at all perturbed by them.
With Saber on the case, the mystery is soon solved of course. Peggy utters a scream. There's a man lurking in the bushes! Mark chases him and eventually catches up with him. "Me no savvy," the man cries. Some gentle pressure however gets him to reveal he was sent by that well known villain, a stranger in the pub. He'd been ordered to go to a house and play this joke. His instructions were printed on the back of an old book. Very careless of someone! Because this helps Saber accuse the baddie of trying to drive Sam insane, while Bob Page never comes back from his African inquiries.
Inspector Parker is phoned by Saber, but never seen. Mark drives TGP668. Bob takes a taxi OGT344. Uncredited speaking roles: A native on the safari. Charles the barman (Hal Osmond). A customer at the pub (Walter Horsbrugh?). Sam's housekeeper

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THE KILLER AND THE KID

The setting is the tiny town of Netheravon on the Thames.
William Masters (Harry Fowler), wanted for a dockland stabbing, has been spotted by Sgt Wilson (Harold Lang). With Inspector Forbes, he proceeds to the boarding house where Masters is hiding and the pair arrest him. But Masters grabs his rifle and shoots Wilson dead. Though handcuffed, he flees, finding a place of refuge on a deserted barge. A boy named Bobby Clayton (Richard Williams) comes on board what he sees as his own pirate ship, and bumps into Masters.
The murderer plays up to the gullible lad, convincing him he had been put in irons because he was a "real pirate." Bobby, hoping he might to get a free trip with Captain Kidd (wow!!) promises to bring food and clothes, plus a gun and hacksaw.
Mark Saber and Bob are called in when Mark's old pal Barney Clayton (Patrick Holt) notices one of his shotguns is missing, "I was reluctant to call in the police to apprehend my own boy!" In a kindly tone Mark attempts to question Bobby, who reveals nothing of his secret.
Back at his office, Mark spots the cap badge Bobby is wearing is exactly like that on the wanted poster of Masters. He informs Inspector Forbes and a search is started for Bobby who has gone missing.
"Your son may be in grave danger," are the conforting words Forbes tells the worried father.
Bob finds a toy knife the lad had thoughtfully dropped. Mark reaches the barge just as Bobby completes his sawing off of Masters' handcuffs. Using Bobby as a shield, Masters threatens Saber. Saber yields, but this disillusions young Bobby on the lines of "he threw down his gun....," so Masters ought to have done the same. Of course the lad is mightily impressed when Mark gets the better of the villain.
Thus Bobby resolves to give up a future life on the seas to become, like Saber, a "vestigator". There's a final sermon from Mark promising "if you're always a good boy, I'll make you one of my assistants."

Possibly this comment suggests a 1972 Danziger Mark Saber series was here in the planning stage!
A well constructed story by Brian Clemens.

Inspector Parker on holiday for this one, only local Inspector Forbes is seen. Big Ben shows 10.35 at the start of the story. Mark drives TGP668. Of the police cars seen, I recognised 892FPC and MLN820. One uncredited speaking role: another sergeant with Inspector Forbes

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PAID OFF

This story takes place on (Thursday) 12th June 1958. It begins at Victoria Station, London.
Off the Paris-Londres boat train avec un small fortune in stolen diamonds arrives Pierre, who is met by Freddie Benson and promptly stabbed. Wounded, he nevertheless manages to hail a taxi, giving his destination, "9 'Obart Place". There he brandishes a gun at the owner but collapses and dies. He has come to the home of George Royston, an ex-embezzler, who never knew the man, or so he says. With his record, George decides to phone Saber, the man who sent him up "in 50," and who is now relaxing to the Moonlight Sonata on the radio.
Mark and Bob drive swiftly to Obart Place where George insists he's innocent, he had never seen the man before. All the stranger had said, a la James Cagney, was "you dirty rat!" But examination of his possessions shows he wasn't American at all, but French. Saber has to bring in the police, and, with George's record, how can Inspector Parker fail to arrest the unfortunate George for murder? Of course he can't!
Outside the house, Bob finds a ticket dated today, from Paris-Londres, first class. It must have been dropped by the dead man, for it is stained with blood. Charlie Mather (Hal Osmond) is the taxi driver who had driven Pierre, who had seemed sick or drunk and had a strong French accent. So the murder was done at Victoria. Saber tips off Parker who identifies a telephone booth complete with blood stains.
Mark tries out his theory, as George had only recently moved to this house, maybe the previous owner was the person Pierre had gone to visit. Mr King is in a wheelchair, so this proves a red herring, or a way of filling out the 25 minutes of the film! But eventually Mark spots the crucial clue, it's how French speak English. 'Obart Place is really Hobart Place! A brilliant piece of deduction(?) Or to put it technically as Saber does, the French can't pronounce their aspirates. At 9 Hobart Place Mark and Bob interrupt Freddie and his pal Henry Carter, who are awaiting payment for cutting up the diamonds.

Saber drives TGP668. Bob drives TNM286, but also uses a taxi (MLT232?). Parker's car is 894FPC.
For once the steam train seen at Victoria isn't incorrect, King Arthur class 30781 is glimpsed.
Uncredited speaking role: Mr King's assistant.
Quote: Mark tells his client that Inspector Parker, "he's a friend of mine"

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TRAP FOR MURDER
On his beat on June 10th, Constable Prior spots a white cane by the side of the road, then a man with a fractured skull lying nearby on a construction site. What's he to do? Blow his police whistle of course! Inspector Parker decides that this licensed blind beggar, Jim Ferguson, had been accidentally killed. In tears, the beggar's daughter convinces Bob Page this was no accident. This is a role just made for Dorothy Gordon. In a touching scene with Bob Page, she tells how last night her dad had gone to The Retreat in Bayswater, to play checkers with his friend Fred. She's sure Inspector Parker is wrong in thinking her dad died accidentally, and of course we are sure too, as we know how dim Inspector Parker is!
When Mark has heard the story, he drives Bob to Bayswater to question blind Fred Bailey (Robert Dorning), the last man to have seen Jim alive. Mark hits on the vital clue: Jim was a tall chap but the cane by the corpse was much shorter. Just the size of cane Fred would carry! Bailey breaks down and confesses that he and Jim were being forced to take part in illegal street betting. Jim had tried to refuse this "tall heavy man who talks like a tough character wearing a tweed suit."
To entrap him, Bob is given the thankless task of posing as a blind beggar. But he needn't be afraid. Parker, who's now seen the error of his ways, provides the latest technology, giving Bob a tape recorder. "Don't waste it," he is warned, "it only records for 15 minutes."
Bob gets punched in the groin by the villain, Flanagan, but at least the recorder is OK and the gang is rounded up. Mark rewards Bob with a penny in his begging tin.
A nicely directed film by Godfrey Grayson, with good picture compositions, and some fine close-ups.
Big Ben is at 8.10 in Saber's office. Returning from Bayswater it shows 4.55. Later it shows 1pm. Saber drives TGP668.
Though there are no uncredited extras with speaking parts, PC Prior does blow his whistle, and there's one female passer by who thanks 'Blind' Bob

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BACKGROUND FOR MURDER
Inspector Parker is investigating the murder of Howard Armstrong in his Suffolk mansion. At Victoria Station police make their arrest, their man is John Perry who has just stepped off a train (from Suffolk??) to kiss Julia, the dead man's niece.
Mark Saber is painting. Bob Page admires, though Mark confesses he got a better result in terms of modern art by sitting on his painting. Their banter is interrupted when Julia requests the great detective's help, and almost at once our detectives are quizzing poor Parker at the Yard. It's an open and shut case, the confident inspector explains, for Armstrong had been heard to shout Perry You Murderer in the hearing of the staff, Hawkins the butler, the dour housekeeper Mrs Frost, and Betty the maid.
In jail, Perry does admit that Armstrong loathed him, for the possessive old man believed Perry was taking his niece away from him. In a flashback, he relates the fatal meeting with the deceased. John had been offered £5,000 to keep away from Julia, but naturally he had refused.
Mark and Bob examine the room where the murder had taken place. Mrs Frost is sure Perry is the guilty man, he's a fast living fast cars type, she claims.
Mark can only report to Julia that the evidence is irrefutable, but she won't be persuaded. So Mark agrees to try once more.
Dr J Westcott treated Armstrong. He reveals Armstrong had only six months at most to live, only Mrs Frost knew of this. She is questioned by Inspector Parker, but Saber soon takes control, as usual. He puts it to her that she'd performed what we call a mercy killing. But she denies it and in another flashback explains what really happened. It had been suicide, he had shot himself, blaming Perry for his unhappiness, hence those fatal words he uttered.
Thanks to Mark and Bob from John and Julia. Mark resumes his painting. Bob sits on it.

At the start Big Ben shows 12.58 outside, but then 10.35 in Saber's office. It's at 12.58 also at the end, but once inside it's showing 11.50.
Saber is driving TGP668- as he drives up to Armstrong's house, it is clearly seen to be his old assistant Pete who is in the passenger seat!
Uncredited speaking roles: a passenger hurrying at Victoria. The arresting police officer. The police sergeant with Inspector Parker (2 scenes)

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WHERE THERE'S A WILL
Mrs Kraft chases after her naughty cat Alfred in her garden. It runs away next door, behind a bush, where lies a dead body, that of Mrs Ridley, companion to the late owner of the house, Mrs Verity.
Mark Saber is called in by Mrs Kraft. To start, it's a trifle difficult as the corpse has disappeared, but bloodstains suggest the old lady is not wandering in her mind. Indeed Mrs Kraft outthinks the great detective and discovers the corpse buried in the compost heap.
Scotland Yard are on the scene in the shape of good old Inspector Parker. Mrs Verity's two children have been staying in the neighbourhood, while they sort through their late mother's possessions. Peter Verity (Peter Reynolds) and his sister Cecilia Potter are expecting to inherit, though as yet the will has not yet been read. Cecilia's 25 year old son is Lionel, "a feeble moron without muscles"- Ian Whittaker plays him with an accent that owes much to American gangster movies. He is the only other person likely to benefit from the will. All three claim they were together at the time Mrs Ridley died. Lionel believes it's a good thing she is dead, because she was only after her mistress' money. Out of the mouths....?
The corpse had clearly been dropped from the roof of the house. Saber spots a blood stained brick on the roof. The murder weapon. A half eaten pear is lying nearby. And some split matches. Now Lionel has an odd habit of splitting matches. Lionel admits he had been on the roof, but alone. How odd that Inspector Parker failed to spot these clues!
Analysis back at the Yard shows some silver nitrate on the half eaten pear, that suggests someone using a mouthwash. But who?
Bob checks at the Falmouth Arms where the three are staying. A bloodstained jacket belonging to Peter Verity had been sent for dry cleaning.
When Bob returns to Mrs Verity's home, there are Peter and Lionel fighting. Bob splits them. Mummy comforts her baby. Apparently Peter had accused Lionel of hiding Mrs Ridley's body in the compost heap. That's true, admits Lionel, for he was worried the corpse might delay the reading of the will, he wants his share of the inheritance as soon as possible.
Inspector Parker runs over the motives for each of the three killing Mrs Ridley. Saber soon chips in, indeed takes over. There was this brick. The edge of the roof. Then a clever trick. But can Saber prove his words? Yes, that pear is his evidence.
Parker steps in for the confession. It seems Mrs Ridley had been going to inherit everything. The killer knew that, and tears end the story.

Mike drives TGP668. Uncredited speaking role: John Martin plays 'Cecil,' the policeman in Parker's office. Mark asks him how his family is, that suggests he knows him well
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TOAST TO DEATH
Heiress Miss Sylvia Holloway's mother Christine (Noel Dyson) is a rich widow who has just married Prince Pancracio Dariani (Philip Saville), 20 years her junior. Even though she too "reeks with money," Sylvia (Kay Callard) is worried he's after her mother's fortune, and consults Mark Saber.
Bob checks up on the Prince, while Mark drives down to their country home in Buckingham. posing as Miss Holloway's fiance Lord Percy, "born," says Mark, "with a silver umbrella in my mouth!" The role gives Donald Gray the chance to play some comedy as he takes on the part of an upper class twit ("just call me Your Lordship"). "How do you do Prince?" is his opening gambit off-stage as he arrives at the luxury home. The Prince is rather put out since he's on his honeymoon! 'Lord Percy' enters complete with monocle, an inane grin, plus that upper crust accent. Just one goodnight kiss is allowed with his slightly reluctant fiancee before he retires to his room to recite from Romeo and Juliet. He sends a Cupid's dart to his beloved on which is inscribed asn invitation to join him in the kitchen at 2am.
At the appointed hour they have their tryst, "stop this idiotic comedy," she orders him. So, sobering up, Mark tells Sylvia she is right to suspect the Prince. Bob has uncovered the fact that his two previous wives both died suddenly, one in Luxor, the other in Karachi. He's a male Lucrezia Borgia. "Play along with me," Mark asks her, as the Prince enters the kitchen, suspicious. Mark reveals that he has in fact already married Sylvia. "Father!" he adds slyly.
They all enjoy a celebratory champagne. Mark proposes a toast....
"Turnips are white, Socks are green,
The king is all right, But God save the Queen."
Down goes the drink, but, in the words of the title, it's a Toast to Death. While the Prince drops his glass, undrunk, Percy collapses dying in Sylvia's arms. "Kiss me Sylvia," says the besotted Lord Percy. And good news. "That kiss has bought me back to life." The Prince is exposed but no thanks from Countess Dariani, "you brute!" she raves at Percy. But Mark explains, though she still finds it hard to swallow.

This is a mild comedy. One wonders just how much normally staid writer George St George actually contributed. Director Max Varnel too, doesn't normally have such a light touch. The set of Prince Dariani's sitting room with its central fire built round a luxury flue, is the same as that used in the Danziger film The Great Van Robbery, in which Philip Saville and Kay Callard also appear.
Postscript: Girl friend Ann gets a mention when Bob is requested to cancel their dinner date, but she does not appear- just as well!!
Mark drives TGP668
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IT WALKS AT NIGHT
The title might suggest a horror tale, but in this you'd be disappointed.
A stormy night, rain lashing down, dogs howling, old Sir Thomas Winters (Ian Fleming) is so frightened he orders his loyal manservant Jaya (Francis Mathews) to take a note to Mark Saber begging his help.
Big Ben is at 10.10pm when he reaches Saber's office. Saber is beating Bob Page at chess. They hurry to Sir Thomas' mansion.
Winters believes The Curse of the Stone had been placed on him whilst out in India. It had been stolen from India and is now in the British Museum. 'Dmata Rhundi' was written on a mysterious note that Sir Thomas had received, then an audible warning to prepare for death. None of his family had heard such a threatening voice.
They are, Oscar, the brother who is gambling away the family fortune. Then there is "cold tomato" Toni, the daughter, engaged to John Allen, who lives beyond his means.
Toni is sure her father is losing his mind, sadly. In the grounds of the house next day Oscar is met, carrying a rifle.
Inspector Parker is seen briefly, when he phones Mark to warn him that Sir Thomas is in arrears with his tax payments.
All these red herrings are unnecessary. Saber springs his trap, as he calls it, taking Sir Thomas' place in his favourite chair, Bob keeping watch behind an armchair. It's raining heavily yet again when footsteps approach. But they go not to scare Saber, but the real Sir Thomas. Someone had known of the plan. Who has been playing ghost?
Phosphorus helped the vision glow. Mark exposes the guilty party, who is exhibiting traces of it on their hands. "I don't believe it."

Minor Gaffe: As Mark and Bob talk about a maharajah, Donald Gray once says "Mayerajah."
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THE LADY DOESN'T SCARE

Flying into London Airport is the star, like in any self respecting B film of the era. But this passenger is Sally Evans (Honor Blackman) from South Africa on Flight 421. The receptionist (Rolf Harris) informs her that journalist friend Bill Turner is unable to meet her, so could she go to the Penguin Club in Old Compton Street Soho.
Here, the time is 7.10pm and Mark and Bob are enjoying a quiet drink, served by Fredy (Hal Osmond) your friendly barman. But then two gunshots and another customer, Bill Turner, is dead. He'd flown in from Johannesburg two days ago and had been waiting eagerly for Sally with a bunch of flowers. Maybe all this excitement explains the confusion when Inspector Parker and Saber both call Bob "Larry," presumably the script had been intended for Series 3:
Parker (to Saber): "You and Larry were sitting at the bar all the time?"
Saber: "I went to the man who was shot and Larry had a look outside."
Seconds later however Parker asks "did Bob get a look at it (a passing car)?" I suppose it's only surprising that overall there were so few continuity gaffes, given the speed of production. Ironically, Parker continues by remarking to Fredy "I say, I want to get this story straight....!"
Sally had run off whilst all this was happening, so Mark and 'Bob' go to Miramar Hotel. She tells them Bill was working on a big diamond smuggling story. Sally was bringing him the last piece of evidence he needed. It read "Honey Meadow Morgan Light Bright Harvest." Sally goes to the florists from where the flowers had come, a Tom Moore-Gantry in Portwell Road London E2. She goes without Mark. In charge at the shop is Tom. Anyone with any sense would now realise it's best not to tell HIM too much as the owner is played by hefty Denis Shaw. But Sally does.
Saber however has been using his brains. A visit to the British Museum tells him the words on Bill's evidence are all roses, only issued by special firms. He races to the florists in time to rescue Sally from her fate.
The boss meanwhile has kindly told Sally all about his smuggling. The roses are refrigerated (!) in South Africa and sent in crates, the box with the underlined name contains the contraband diamonds.

Reused footage department: the shot of Mark and Bob driving up to The Penguin Club is exactly the same, since each time another car vacates a space for TGP668. Sally uses a taxi LYL914 no less than for four journeys. Airport bus MLL759 is seen in one sequence.
Uncredited speaking roles: Frank, a police photographer (Frank Hawkins). A police inspector with Inspector Parker. A clerk at the British Museum

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UNCLE WILLIAM
Joe Kelly (Robert Ayres) draws up at a posh mansion. He has come to find out why his fiancee Jane (sometimes called Jean) had killed herself. Her Uncle William (Jack Melford) had written to Joe with the terrible news. He had brought up Jane and her older sister Kathleen (Silvia Francis) as their parents had been killed in a car crash.
She gives Joe the painful details. Apparently Jane had met a married man who had left her to go to Bermuda. Joe simply cannot accept it was suicide, or that she loved anyone else.
"Darling, I can't explain," that's what her suicide note had said, but it sounds phoney to Joe, not the kind of words Jane would ever use. But the police are satisfied with the suicide verdict.
Joe recounts the tragic story to Mark Saber, who advises him the case can't just be reopened simply because he feels something is wrong. But Mark agrees to take the case, and goes over the sad events with Kathleen. She explains that Uncle William looks after the sisters' trust fund of £50,000 each, until they marry. Jane had been working for her uncle, writing from a French book as she was fluent in that language.
Mark gets Kathleen to reconstruct that painful day when Jane died. Jane had been working in the study, when her uncle had returned home. Kathleen had been with him in the drawing room when the shot was fired. Uncle William had rushed into the study, but it was too late.
It is murder, decides Saber. He gets Joe to break this information to Kathleen. Joe quietly tells Kathleen her uncle murdered Jane, but she cannot accept it. "Mr Saber's a pretty good detective," is Joe's commercial. Saber has worked out that the fake 'suicide note' was really only her translation of a section of Racine that he had asked her to write down. All very high brow detection!
Kathleen clings to the hope that it is not so. Rashly, alone, she confronts her uncle with the evidence. The kind old gentleman abruptly changes character, though there is some sort of explanation, as he had been spending all the cash held in the trust fund. He tries to push her over a balcony, but Saber, with Bob Page and the inspector in the rear, rush in and it's Uncle William who somehow topples over the edge.
This is a neat story by Patricia Hill, with Silvia Francis giving a strong portrait of the vulnerable sister. The part of Uncle William is played sympathetically too, though it is a little hard to accept that the kindly old gentleman whom we met initially could be such a scheming villain. His elaborate method of murder is also unlikely, though not as tortuous as Saber's logic in solving the case. Neverthess, I found all characters sympathetically played, and the story hangs together well.

Some external scenes shot at the impressive Caldecote Towers in Bushey.
Saber drives TGP668. Joe drives UTM495.
Bob Page has one line in Saber's office and is briefly seen at the end. The non speaking police inspector is likewise only briefly glimpsed at the end. This film is dated 1959 and must be one of the last made in series 4

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THE BLACK WIDOW
Dr Krile phones Mark explaining he has a patient (Geoffrey Hibbert) with amnesia who keeps talking of some criminal act he's just committed. The man mutters about warning Henry, and of something in Henry's bag. Who is he? Bob and Mark search the man but there's no clue as to his identity except, maybe, two theatre tickets. Bob learns from the agency that they had been sold to a James Tasker (John Martin). But he turns out to be the secretary of the Wapping Sporting Club and the tickets were used as a lottery prize. The lottery ticket stub yields an address, 8 Lewin Drive, Bayswater.
"Warn Henry about the Black Widows," mutters the odd man. More questioning reveals he had put three of these poisonous spiders in Henry's bag.
Bob goes to Lewin Drive and talks to Mrs Janet Hinton who lives there. Henry's her husband! The sick man proves to be her brother who lives with them, Freddy, a docker.
But Henry's an elusive man, being a travelling salesman, and with no mobiles, he can't be warned about the deadly spiders in his bag. But his car can be traced, a "two tone Cresta saloon UTM 496." His employers Gladstone Novelty Candy Co (GRO 2925) provide a list of calls Henry (John McClaren) was due to make this day.
Inspector Parker is a very humble man. He plays second fiddle in the Saber office as Henry's car is searched for by every police car in London. They whizz round the deserted streets as Saber phones White's Supermarket in Pentonville Road. Henry was there fifteen minutes ago. He was off to Necto Industries, heading north there, but it's too late as he's missed by seconds. Some guessing about his next destination- it could be a children's orphanage. The phone rings there, but the children are too busy dipping their hands into Henry's bag for free samples! By the time Saber gets through, Henry's just left. Inspector Parker emerges from his reverie to obey Mark's suggestion of setting up road blocks.
Saber speculates with Janet Hinton on why Freddy has sought revenge. Bob returns from seeing the children with some good news at last- "none of the kids at the orphanage got bitten." But Henry has eluded those road blocks. Then as if by magic he walks into Saber's office! He'd learnt from neighbours his wife is there. He gets a slight surprise. "Careful Mark," warns Parker as Saber pokes around inside the bag.

The main police car in the search is 894 FPC, among others seen are MGF 287, NLN 820, 892 FPC and XPC898. Bob drives UTM495.
In the credits is "Inspector," though he is called Inspector Parker by Saber.
Big Ben is showing 1.55 when Dr Krile first phones Saber. However we had been informed it was early morning! Later inside the office Big Ben is stuck on 1.05 as Saber chats with Mrs Hinton. But at least it moves round to 2.35 when Parker arrives

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HOUR OF RECKONING
After 15 minutes introduction, we finally meet Mark Saber. Nancy Palmer (Jean Aubrey) asks him for help.
She's fallen for Frank Forbes (Brian Nissen), The Man who didn't Break the Bank at Monte Carlo. They'd both been staying at the Hotel Metropole on the Riviera. Losing heavily at the casino,Frank had been loaned £2,000 by a Mr Kaslow (Denis Shaw) who describes himself as an "investor." If Forbes agrees to marry the wealthy Nancy, they must share her fortune 50-50, otherwise he will have to pay a forfeit... his life!
Problems follow thick and fast for Frank. He does propose, but Nancy says that although she does love him, she has not been entirely honest with him: for she is not rich at all. He replies by admitting he is broke also.
Kaslow wants his forfeit. But what Kaslow wants most, is his revenge because, before Frank had met Nancy he had jilted Emily, Kaslow's own daughter who had then driven her car over a cliff. Though it was suicide, he knows Frank had caused her death. Frank claims he never loved the girl.
Hiding in that old favourite Danziger location, the Buckingham Hotel "Cromwell Road" (a free plug?), an increasingly nervous Frank awaits the arrival of Keska, the hired assassin.
It's then that Nancy wisely calls Saber in. It's a curious scene as Saber at one point seems to say he had already met Frank. As it is, Bob interviews the suave Kaslow, who denies all, and even claims he has no children.
Into Frank's room, Kaslow enters with a gun. He tells Frank, sitting deep in his armchair, that he is here to finish him off in person. But it is Saber sitting there, and he shoots Kaslow first.
Further, it transpires Frank really does love Nancy, so all ends happily.
Saber drives TGP668 in the final scene. Earlier Bob takes a taxi round London.
Uncredited small speaking parts: at the casino, 1 the banker, and 2 the croupier

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DOUBLE TAKE
At the Old Bailey, the recently convicted Minoli threatens the life of Jack Lewis, a witness (Robert Dorning). With his wife Gina, Jack comes to ask for Mark Saber's protection. Bob is assigned as a bodyguard for the "henpecked" husband. Perhaps being near his "peach" of a wife Gina (Gene Anderson) is a bonus.
Lewis has received anonymous letters on the lines of I'll Get You. He's sure they're from Minoli. Mark goes to Wormwood Scrubbs to interview this prisoner whose release is due very soon. He's a reformed character according to the warden. Minoli agrees that Lewis is not worth swinging for, denying sending the letters. He resents Saber's remarks and clutches him by the throat. So much for the warden's judgement!
At Lewis' apartment, the wait is on. Gina idly reads on a rickety sofa. Jack sits on it momentarily, then jumps up. Sinister feet are seen ascending the stairs. Someone is outside! But it turns out to be only Karl Clayton, Lewis' business partner.
Night. Ouside Mark patrols, while Bob lazes on the sofa. That same taxi that brought Clayton to the flats arrives again. Same passenger. He even looks round in the same way as before! Whilst Bob snoozes, Mark sees a gun being thrown from the bedroom window, which Clayton collects. Then a scream. Lewis has been shot. Was it Minoli? But Mark grabs Clayton and climbs up to the flat to explain all. Of course shrewd old Saber had known all along.

Notes- Uncredited speaking role: Karl Clayton (Paul Stassino). Donald Gray hesitates over one line: "we're... we're paid to work." Saber drives TNM286 in several scenes, but in the second half he is in TGP668. Taxis: MLE151, then twice VLK166. At the start of the story Big Ben shows 9.35, at the end 12.15
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DARK MOMENTS
From a pawnbroker, Mrs Roberta Keel (Marion Mathie) buys a pistol and cartridges, the price a £25 bribe. She phones her husband (Arnold Bell) warning that she is going to shoot him. Harry Keel seeks help from Saber. He explains he allowed his wife to move to her own Mayfair flat, but today she returned outside the family home and pointed her gun at him.
"Your wife's a bit neurotic," observes the perceptive detective. They go to her flat (the location is "Chesil Court") but she's not been there for two days. A leaflet in her flat advertises treatment by a Dr Kirchway (Peter Elliot) Bob consults this "eminent doctor," pretending he's flipped it, but he doesn't fool the quack. The doc denies ever treating Mrs Keel, and tells Bob he is having hallucinations! However, investigation into her bank account proves she'd recently paid Kirchway some money.
Dr.Welsh, her first analyst, is shot and inured. In a flashback, he tells Mark that she had come back to him demanding medicine, wanting to be made better. She had grown impatient and wounded him. Inspector Parker arrives on the scene and of course wants to arrest her. But she still has to be found. Saber suggests Mr Keel declares his wife mentally incompetent.
"She'll come after me," argues a worried Harry. But that's what Saber wants, to flush her out. So Harry sits at his desk. The tortured Roberta comes in.
"I won't fail this time Harry," she tells him. A touching scene follows.
This is an interesting tale of mental breakdown with Saber concluding by pledging a war on "quack doctors."

Uncredited speaking role: a nurse. Saber drives TGP668. Mrs Keel's taxi is PXL887, she also uses one other. Bob and Keel both take taxi OGT344 and another taxi used is TJJ676
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PLATINUM MURDER
By the Thames, the London Export Company is being robbed. Nightwatchman Dunphy throws a brick at an intruder to foil the crime. His boss Standish (John Longden) is puzzled why the criminal had been stealing a cheap light fitting. Inevitably it baffles Inspector Parker too, why would a thief risk being killed for such a petty haul? But Mark Saber of course is the man to solve this case. He's retained by the LEC. The crook, Albert Taft, later dies from that throw of the brick. Taft was a former bank guard, who, according to his boss Mr King, had left his employment suddenly two weeks ago, at the same time as King's secretary, Miss Thelma Stevens. She is now missing. He had been a keyholder for the bank's security vault.
Mark sends Bob Page to check out Thelma's flat. Thelma's room mate Marion Moore confirms Thelma had been friends with Albert, no more, but she hadn't returned to their flat in the past two weeks. This is a typical scene with Robert Arden as Bob, flirting, not for the first time, with a young lady. Bob leaves, with a list of phone numbers of Thelma's other friends, plus Marion adds her own home number! News that the safety box of a Mr Deeds has been robbed. It had contained platinum bars. The plot suddenly becomes clear, when a lab report reveals that those lighting fixtures were made of pure platinum.
Bob is interviewing the manager of a smelting factory where one Harry Brown worked as a senior supervisor. He is currently away on holiday, and is another friend of Thelma's. Her body now shows up in the Thames.
Via Bond, a passport photographer, Mark tracks down where this Harry is now staying (it's Chesil Court, a familiar location in the series). Harry claims he had been in love with Thelma. It was she who persuaded him to melt down the platinum, but too late he realised that she had been playing both him and Albert along. His rather long explanation ends the tale.
Notes: In the first scene Taft is called "Alfred" by Inspector Parker. Mr King makes two visits to Saber's office, each time arriving in taxi OGT344- and there are actually two different shots of this. Outside the office, Bob picks up this same taxi, but mysteriously alighting at his destination in taxi KGW713. Later he goes off in TNM286, but alights from UTM495. Mark drives TGP668. Big Ben shows 10.40, then 11.50 outside the office at the end
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SILENT ACCUSATION
It's a cold foggy day when Fred Winchell visits his old friends Tom and Lillian Brent. Fred is out of jail after four years inside, and Tom (Neil Hallett) requires his help. He needs an alibi for when he kills his Aunt Mary. He'll inherit her £100,000, so it will be a profitable piece of work, and Fred seems assured by that famous line, "there's no possible way it can go wrong."
"Everything's going to be all right," he repeats as, disguised, he drives off in his Morris Minor with dummy plates. En route he is held up for a short time, when the road is blocked by an accident. A girl called Pat (Lorna Henderson) idly watches his car. But Tom is soon on his way to his aunt's lonely house, and he smothers her with a cushion. Soon, despite the fog, he's safe back home, his disguise removed.
He phones his aunt's nearest neighbours, the Beales, saying he's worried he can't reach his aunt by phone. It's they who find the dead body.
They inform the police inspector (John Stuart) that she didn't get on very well with her only relative, Tom, as he wasn't "the sober type." Goodness knows why this case baffles the inspector, but anyway, he asks Mark Saber for assistance.
Mark offers his condolences to the Brents but finds Tom over eager to give his alibi. Also his car is rather dirty considering it hadn't, according to Tom, been driven recently. So Mark asks assistant Bob to cancel their tennis match with Ann and Helen so he can take a closer look at that car. That's all Bob does in this story. Mark creeps through the shrubbery to the driveway where the Morris is parked. The words PAT SNOWDON are traced in the dirt on the boot of the vehicle. It's where the girl had written her name, when the car was held up briefly by the accident.
Tom Lillian and Fred are toasting their good fortune, but it's short lived. Pat has been located, and identifies the car as the one she saw on the road. "They always slip up in the end," smiles Saber.

Notes: uncredited speaking roles: Tom's aunt. Mr Beale. The sergeant with the unnamed inspector in two scenes.
Saber drives TGP668. The familiar UTM496 is one of the vehicles at the accident. 894XPC is the police car. The Morris Minor's dummy plate is GUD604. Though Fred is told to put the real plate back on the car, he must have forgotten for the same plates are on the car throughout.
Another gaffe: The inspector says Tom's alibi is that he was playing "Canastra" when he means Canasta. Also Saber twice leaves Tom's house and on the opposite side of the road the same lorry is travelling. Also when he gets back to his office, each time Big Ben shows 12.20!

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UNDER SUSPICION

Sgt Fred Rydell (Kenneth Edwards) asks Mark for help as his brother Jim, a policeman of 10 years standing, is suspected of being involved with some petty thefts of cash, from people that he and his partner Constable Swift have been called out to. "The first time I've had to go to work on the police," jokes Mark.
There have been three incidents, including a man robbed of his wallet, and cash stolen from Glasco's office. Though Jim doesn't appear to be living extravagantly, his girlfriend, Vicki Stuart (Jan Holden) has "an income."
Other 'violations' (irregularities, in English) on Jim's beat come to light as Bob investigates. A playful Mr Jilenko (Hal Osmond) spends the interview trying to palm off a girl friend on Bob, actually Jilenko's secretary: " a very efficient girl, very pretty too... she can cook too!" As Bob feigns to go he's asked: "now you've seen her, don't you want her phone number?" Jilenko has a nice punchline after Bob departs.
There are other 'violations' which make Saber believe it's all "too pat." So he keeps watch on Jim Rydell's police car, and at one violation at a warehouse, soon after the police depart, some crooks enter the premises. Saber stops them escaping by the rather crude but effective method of shooting at their tyres. I don't feel the BBC would have finished the case quite like that.

Notes: Big Ben reads 1 o'clock in an exterior shot at the start. But when Rydell goes inside, it's now 9.30! Then at the end as Saber drives up in TGP668 it is 12.15.
The police car is NLN820. Bob, after walking to his first interview with Mrs Swift, drives TNM 286 and UTM495, recklessly swapping vehicles several times, apparently! To crown it all, the two crooks drive up in UTM495- no wonder they have to be arrested!
Inspector Parker is mentioned in this tale, but never seen.
Uncredited speaking roles: man robbed in street (John Martin). A customer at Vicki's shop

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DILEMMA FOR HARRY
We start with a long location scene near the Thames, with dialogue that's been added afterwards. Saber is enjoying a picnic with a one-off girlfriend, Carol (Shirley Cain in her screen debut). She says she's been trying to get Mark to come for a whole year! However Bob is chaperoning them. But when Bob stands up someone takes a pot shot at him. who chases after the rotter, and returns to find his boss kissing Carol! She never appears again. Must have been the end of the romance?
So who is after Bob? He says he's not "been around long enough" for anyone to nurse a grudge against him. In fact he can only remember "one or two cases." Inspector Parker himself finds four possible cases but only two men who are in current circulation:
a) Ben Roberts (Hal Osmond) - he'd been sent down last May for an insurance swindle, even though he protested his innocence.
b) Ed Blake (Arnold Yarrow) - a moneylender who had made threats on Bob's life.
However they are red herrings because while these suspects are being interrogated Bob gets a death threat from a man who calls him Harry and says he'll get back at him for selling his friends out to the Nazis. A second call announces he's going to "get Harry real soon."
The potential killer is Mac, whose longsuffering wife is tired of Mac's obession with revenge, with the result that he strangles her. By tipping a taximan, Mac is able to slip past the police guard outside Saber's office. He prepares to shoot Bob. Saber calmly allows him to proceed- but that's a ruse to grab Mac's gun.

We never quite discover why Bob is erroneously confused for this Harry chappie.
Footnote: I can find no reference to Bob's involvement with 'Ben Roberts' or 'Ed Blake' in any other case. Does this mean there might be "missing" Saber episodes?!!
Mac seems to have bought one of the vehicles Saber uses, as he is driving UTM495.
In one standard shot, Mark and Bob drive up in TGP 668 with Big Ben showing 11.50. However inside the office Big Ben is indicating 11.40!
There's rather a lot of poor acting in this story

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OPERATION ARSON
Antediluvian fire engines set the scene of arson. Over the past month four new houses of builder Mr Shaw (John Brooking) have burned down. Since Chief Fire Officer Denning (Ian Fleming) is unable to track down the arsonist, an angry Shaw, believing rivals are trying to ruin his thriving business, engages Mark Saber.
The great detective's first port of call is the bank to check on Shaw's financial situation. The Amalgamated Bank confirm Shaw's business is profitable, so it must be a matter of questioning employees and former employees who might have a grudge.
First Mark interrogates union agitator Rumson (Geoffrey Hibbert), bitter at his treatment by Shaw, "he's a giant octopus." Flirty Miss Meg Miles (Ann Lynn) is interviewed by Mark's assistant Bob Page. She is also bitter at being sacked by Shaw. He didn't like her flirting at work, she's clearly that sort since she advances on poor Bob. Exit Bob in some haste. It's the type of scene Robert Arden as Bob did several times in this series, and did it well. Dead ends. Mark Saber can only emulate Denning and wait for developments, not a stance that is welcomed by Mr Shaw.
They get their bit of luck when Harry Walston, a Cunard Line steward who had met the great detective on one of his cruises, turns to Mark Saber requesting help with his wayward son, Chester, allegedly sixteen but looking nearer twenty six. Harry's worried the lad is being indulged by his adoring mother Mary (Noel Dyson). He's going off the rails.
Bob Page is assigned to find out about Chester, while Mark focusss on the arsonist. Bob learns that Chester has had difficulty holding down any job. He'd worked as a delivery boy, but was sacked when he'd stolen money from pay packets he was supposed to deliver to Shaw's firm. Hurriedly Bob relays the news to his boss. So suddenly the arson case is solved. There's a distressing conclusion with Chester's mother receiving a sharp ticking off from Saber for not raising her son properly.
Police car: XPC898. Saber drives TGP668. Bob mostly drives TNM286, but UTM495 (once). Harry and later Shaw arrive at Saber's office in the same taxi OGT344. Big Ben is at 12.57 when Saber first drives up to his office. Later Bob arrives at 5.35. At the end it shows 11.50
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COME OUT FIGHTING
According to his manager 'Irish' Clancy, boxer Johnny French (Neil Hallett) is pure dynamite, the best he has ever managed. He's booked for a title fight showdown with Karminski.
In his Buckingham Hotel room, Johnny receives a surprise visitor. It is his opponent's beautiful sister, Tina (Vera Fusek), who gives him a sob story, in effect asking him to throw the fight so she can use the prize money (all 1,000 quid!) to rescue her dear Polish mother from behind the Iron Curtain. She uses moral blackmail too when she reveals her brother might go blind if he's hit too hard. Irish starts to get worried that his asset is cherchez la femme, so on the very day of the big fight he calls in Mark Saber to get the truth out of this girl: "dark, black hair, brown eyes, about 110 pounds."
So Saber rushes round London in his car as Johnny prepares to fight. As Johnny steps into the ring he bears all the marks of a loser. As Tina is there watching, quite why Mark is wasting his valuable time speeding through the city is a mystery.
The fight begins. Tina stares beseechingly at Johnny. Irish asks him after Round One why he seems to be throwing the fight away. Next round Johnny is really tottering.
But then Mark, having discovered the facts, shows up after his weary travels. Johnny has been all but counted out. Johnny is told that Tina's tale was "a fix," thus we know how the fight will end....

For sure, this is a sub-standard Brian Clemens tale. Apart from the location shots, Donald Gray has only two studio scenes which probably took an hour to shoot. Even so he stumbles uncharacteristically over some lines, suggesting it was all done in a hurry.
Notes: Robert Arden is in the screen credits, but not the film! Tina calls Karminski Stan, though the MC introduces him in the ring as Julius. Uncredited speaking roles, all at the boxing match: a steward, a well wisher, the MC, and the ref. Mark's car is TGP668
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TIME ALIBI FOR MURDER

Bob is reading a case in the magazine Man with a perfumed blonde smelling of amour. "That only happens in books," Mark disappoints him.
Theatrical agent Mr Allison Stevens interrupts with a phone call, claiming he is in danger, his life threatened. Saber is asked to come to his Kensington flat tomorrow night at eight. But why a whole day's delay, Bob queries. Apparently the poor man is convalescing.
So prompt at eight Mark and Bob knock at his door. A phone is ringing inside, then they hear screaming. They burst in to find Stevens gagged but dead, apparently suffocated. His brother Kirk (Philip Saville), who'd been in Paris that day, retains Mark to find the enemy who had killed Allison, admitting, "my brother had a knack of rubbing people raw."
Mark calls on widow Kathy Stevens (played by Jennifer Jayne, alias Mark's girl friend Ann in other tales!). She will receive the insurance. She has no alibi. She bares all. Her marriage was one of convenience. He had his "frivolities," the latest being singer Laura Winters.
Visiting Laura, Mark discovers her in tears. Her dad is there too (Hal Osmond), he has a "heavy heart" disapproving of his daughter's affair with an older man. "I could have killed Stevens," he rashly admits. He then confesses, but surely to protect his Laura.
Mark is puzzled over the coincidence of the eight o'clock appointment being the exact time of Stevens' death. "Must be psychic!" jokes Inspector Parker.
In the flat where it all occurred, Mark explains to all the suspects (and Parker of course) that death was actually by poisoning. The death rattle that had been heard is also unconvincingly explained, unless Inspector Parker was later charged with incompetence. Stevens had been dead for some time. So whodunnit? was it the self-centred wife, the discarded protege, the outraged dad or the parasitic younger brother?

Mark drives TGP668. Bob uses a taxi OGT344
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OUT OF THE PAST
Amy Kubrick has come from Berlin to find a man whose photo she had spotted in a paper. Pete Phillips, the editor of the Daily Echo informs her he is called Mason Crowder, vice president of Ervine Plastics. He got married last year to one of the main shareholders in the newspaper.
Amy confronts Crowder in his office. He was her husband in Germany. Later she is found strangled in her digs in Moscow Road Bayswater.
Mark Saber "noses around" on behalf of the Echo. Her landlady, who'd found the corpse, shows Mark a postcard that had just arrived for Amy. It's in German, Mark reads it half aloud, muttering in German. From Wilhelm Schultz. He says he's coming to London to see her.
At the airport, Mark meets him. The heartbroken figure explains that he loved her. She had gone to England to settle some mysterious business.
Mason learns about Amy's visit to the Echo, and complains to his father-in-law, owner of the newspaper. Mark discovers Mason's real name is Kubrik!
He asks Mason about it. The "boring, interesting" truth comes out as to why Amy was murdered. In the best Cluedo tradition, Mark gives out his line, "I am accusing you of the murder of Amy Kubrick."
Mark drives TGP668. Speaking parts not in the on screen credits: Amy's landlandy in 2 scenes (Norah Gordon). Betty, Phillips' assistant in 4 scenes (Ann Lynn)
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INCIDENT IN SOHO

This story begins with 2 minutes of footage of the Soho Carnival- presumably to give local colour, or perhaps to fill in time. Donald Gray's travelogue informs us that Soho is "famous for its good food," perhaps not what most people would list first in its claim to notoriety.
During the fair, a man is shot. He is taken away in an ambulance. Saber is called as a matter of urgency to the hospital where he enjoys some "flirting" with a nurse before Inspector Parker meets him and asks for his help. "I must be dreaming!" Mark exclaims.
Inspector Parker explains that the wounded man was an undercover policeman, David Sayers. He had been infiltrating a gang of bootleggers, "shades of Al Capone" (!) Miss Lila Longo (Jan Miller), a close friend of Sayers claims it was an accident and this is corroborated by her dad Nick (Arnold Bell) and her boyfriend Johnny (Raymond Young), "a pretty-boy hoodlum."
Bob, posing as an insurance adjuster, checks up on Sayers' fictitious life insurance. Mark has called on his girlfriend Ann in her dressing room, asking for her help in the case. Thus Ann (or as Bob calls her "Bo-Bo") accompanies Bob, since "big man" Johnny is one for the girls, to "captivate him with some feminine allure."
A drink of the illicit booze and Bo-bo makes up to Johnny. "How did I do?" she asks Bob afterwards: "You were magnificent!"
The plan works. Lila is aroused to jealousy and confesses all. She confesses that she had shot Sayers on Johnny's orders.

Uncredited speaking extra: the second nurse. The sergeant who poses as Sayers does not speak, but is played by John Martin. Saber drives TGP668. Bob drives UTM495. The ambulance is UNK310

Series 4 of Saber of London
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JOCKEY MISSING

Tim Caldwell, ace young rider of Angulaine for Berkley Stables, disappears after a win, sending a note of resignation to his employer, offering no explanation.
Miss Kate Berkley asks Mark to find their good luck charm, if only because the stables are facing financial ruin without Tim's winning ways.
Barney King, a horse racing reporter, informs Bob that the whisper is that Dave Merton (Denis Shaw), a "big time bookie," is trying to foreclose on the stables. Bob also learns from Tim's landlady that he left his digs in a hurry. Oddly, though he had booked a taxi, she noticed him taking a lift in a passing car.
Mark travels with Bob to Colchester Racecourse (the credits mention the racing scenes were shot at Lincoln). There they bump into Inspector Parker who has bad news, Caldwell has been found in the river, two bullet holes in his head.
So it's the end of the case. Or is it? Mr Berkley wants that "dirty conniving blackguard" Merton caught. Unfortunately he has no proof. So Saber resorts to his familiar trick of entrapment. An Irish jockey Sean Regan (Geoffrey Hibbert) is retained by Berkley, and he is soon visited by Mr Merton and his henchmen. Regan is warned that it's not healthy working for Berkley. He's reminded of Caldwell's fate, after he refused to throw two races. Regan won't succumb so Merton tries some softening up. Bursting in, Parker makes his arrests.
In the final scene, it's 6.30 as Mark listens with Ann to Aguliane's next race, She collects a £5 bet off Mark as Angulaine wins again.

Ann Sears as Miss Berkley and William Hodge as Mr Berkley enjoy one nicely acted confrontational scene with Donald Gray.

Mark drives TGP668. Bob drives the Vauxhall. Uncredited speaking roles: The race commentator. Tom Caldwell. Barney King. Mrs Adams, the landlady. Ann (Jennifer Jayne). Also appearing but not speaking: Richard Shaw as one of Merton's heavies. John Martin, who is sitting next to the race commentator. Gaffe- in a newspaper headline the spelling is Berkeley, unlike the credits

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DEATH HIDES OUT
10.30pm on a windswept Sunday night at The Larches near Penshot, forty miles out of town. A Ghost! A typical Brian Clemens story on his favourite theme of a lady alone in an isolated house.
Next morning, Big Ben shows 10.05 when Mrs Myers, (a nice role for Katharine Page), consults Mark Saber. She tells of the "tall figure in black, the face of a dead man" that has frightened her.
The trouble is Mark doesn't believe in ghosts and Bob Page puts the silly old dear down as a "real eccentric." But Mark promises to come down to the Larches to investigate. There must be a rational explanation. There are 4 people who could be trying to scare her:
Mary Barlow, the weird housekeeper- no wonder, exclaims Bob, that Mrs Myers has got the heebie jeebies with her running around loose!
Fenning, to whom The Larches had been rented before Mrs Myers unexpectedly returned. He had lived here with his wife, only she had run off with another man.
Roy, the nephew who inherits everything- the logical suspect.
Mr Harvey of the Acme Real Estate Company, who are keen to purchase the property to knock it down for development.
Mark waits for the ghost and shoots at it. It disappears. All that's left to do is find the suspect with buckshot.
Harvey has an bandaged hand. So is it him? Mark persuades Mrs Myers to leave the house empty, to give the 'ghost' a free hand. Next night it returns. Footsteps. A shadowy figure materialises. It is captured! Why it is here is revealed.

Mark drives TGP668. Inspector Parker is not seen or heard in this story, though he does contact Mark on the phone

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SWITCH TO MURDER
Assistant jeweller Miles (Frances Matthews) carries the Falcoon Diamond to the Mayfair Hotel (as this was then a Danziger property, surely a bit of free advertising!). The diamond is being sold by the partners of a jewellery business, Carret (George Roderick) and Henderson. Normally it's always kept locked in their safe. The potential purchaser, a sultan, takes one look at the £100,000 object, and declares it is a fake. Somewhere en route to the hotel it had turned to paste.
Mark is retained by the Acme Insurance Co, but as he is too busy, Bob interviews the chauffeur who remembers Miles being handed the diamond by Mr Carret and on the journey they had stopped briefly at a telephone kiosk, and, yes, he did take the jewel case with him. Miles claims he was only phoning Janet Bradley his fiancee to say he'd be late.
Inspector Parker's theory is that the phone call was a tip off to his associates and warns Miles he is the main suspect. Bob reports back to Mark who as usual doesn't agree with the policeman.
Henderson happens to find the genuine diamond in his partner's desk, and Carret forces him at gunpoint to phone Miles asking him to come as a matter of urgency to their office. There Miles discovers Henderson's corpse. Of course, he has to pick up the poker.
Mark calls on Mrs Carret who tells him about the Falcoon, "it's beautiful, heavenly, if one can say that of a diamond. When you touch it, you feel almost worshipful. At least that's how I felt yesterday." Mark picks up on her use of 'yesterday.' She'd been shown the diamond at home. Carret had claimed the diamond had never left his office until being taken to the Mayfair. Back at the scene of the crime Mark teaches Parker his job. He points out the inconcsistencies in Carret's story-
1. Why send junior Miles to the hotel with the stone?
2. Why was the stone ever at Carret's home? Was he making a phoney?
A good theory, retorts Parker. No evidence though. Mark suggests a search of Carret's home. That threat is enough for Carret to draw his gun. That goes to prove Mark was right. The story ends with a joke, as Parker and Saber look at the two diamonds and cannot discern which is the genuine one.

Big Ben is at 12.58 when Bob reports to Mark. One police car used is TYK855. Uncredited speaking extras: A footman at the Mayfair. The Sultan. Binns the chauffeur (Hal Osmond)

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ARENA FOR FRAUD
Tommy Haines (Robert Dorning) is the manager of boxer Ray Gibbons, who's had an amazing 20 ko's in a row. But Ray's one desire is to get out of the fight game. But as he's partly owned by promoter Oscar Carno, he needs permission to pack it in.
As Mark knows Carno (they had allegedly met a year earlier), he agrees to act as a go-between. Oscar turns out to be a snob, even if his cockney accent is still much in evidence. Oscar curtly denies he owns Ray. For it would be illegal for him to own both him and the next boxer Ray is due to fight.
Bob finds out from Redell at the Boxing Board of Control who exactly does own the boxer. There are three people with a share in him, Tommy his manager, a woman called Marion Sitar, and Gunner Walsh.
Bob has the nicer job, he interviews Marion, who in a sparkling scene, flirts with Bob as he asks why she owns part of a boxer. She admits she's put up £500, and is happy to receive a tidy interest on the sum. She kisses Bob. "Will I see you again?" he asks hopefully. "I sincerely hope not," is her crushing reply.
Gunner Walsh is a lonely old man. Mark can't get anything out of him, but it turns out he is Tommy Haines' father-in-law. Haines admits all the funding to help promote Ray has come via Carno, indirectly. But Carno has been demanding exorbitant interest on these loans. Bob asks Carno why he is doing it. The pair lose their tempers.
"Strip him of his respectability," is Mark's ploy, for it's Carno Achilles Heel. Thus Mark persuades Marion to avoid prosecution for usury by giving up her loan. She informs Carno that he faces potential adverse publicity, and so the moneylender backs down.
Solemnly Mark warns Marion, "no woman should try to own a man."
This doesn't quite tie up all the loose ends, making the story rather unsatisfactory. But I liked William Hodge's blustering performance as Oscar, and Gene Anderson (billed as Jean Anderson) as the bubbly Marion.
Notes: Big Ben shows 5.05 as Mark Saber and Bob Page leave the office for the boxing match in TGP668. Bob drives UTM495 to the Boxing Board, then transfers to TNM286 as he drives past Big Ben (showing 10.35) on his way to Miss Sitar. Later to see Carno he catches a taxi OGT344, which also takes him back to the office.
Uncredited speaking role: Carno's assistant (John Martin).
Gaffe: The character Ray Gibbons is in the credits as Ray Robbins, in fact Saber calls him thus once in his narration, but all other times he is 'Gibbons'

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THE OPPORTUNISTS

Leaving their fine detached house, Suzy Willmot and her friend Betty bid mummy and daddy farewell, driving off to somewhere in the West Country, precise destination unknown, on a vacation. The car is UTM 496, surely I've seen Saber's assistants driving that one!
They are followed in another familiar car, UTM 495, as they stop off at a quiet inn ten miles outside Salisbury.
The man following, Younger, tips off his accomplice Lloyd, who is back back in London. Lloyd phones Old Man Willmot. The butler Hughes (Adrian Cairns) takes the call and informs his master. Threats of harm to Suzy unless £10,000 is forthcoming. Mrs Willmot is all for paying, but her husband Frank (Arnold Bell) is perceptive enough to realise that if they do so, more money might be demanded. No police, instead a private eye, Mark Saber, who awaits the next phone call from the blackmailer.
Willmot does agree to the demand, Take the cash to Victoria Station at 11.30am next morning and wait by the news stand. Saber and Bob Page watch as Willmot waits. 50 minutes later, with some of the 'extras' still wandering round the station, the station announcer asks Willmot to call at the Information Desk.
He is ordered to catch the 12.35 to Brighton. Mark and Bob accompany him, and they speculate en route on what the kidnapper is planning next. A guard delivers a note, at Horsham Bridge the money must be thrown from the left window. At the appropriate place just after Horsham (actually we see a shot of Durham! Not that Horsham is on the line to Brighton anyway,) the crook collects his package.
Of course this is a golden goose for the crooks, and Younger follows the girls as they drive on to Seaford on the Devon coast (someone's geography is getting confused).
After pondering it all, Saber now decides on that old chesnut, the butler did it, Hughes that is, though according to Mrs Willmot he is "such a nice man." So Bob, Mark and Willmot follow the perfect butler as he takes his afternoon stroll. It leads him to a seedy house where he collects the cash from Lloyd. The gang are immediately arrested while the girls, oblivious of the threat, continue to enjoy their vacation.

The electric train to Brighton has route indicator 6 (except for one shot!). Uncredited speaking extra: Betty. Also, at HW Beumont (sic), the news vendors on Victoria Station, the man behind the counter is John Martin (in a non speaking part)

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DEATH AT HIS FINGERTIPS

Rex Verney is dubbed The Man with Death at His Fingertips (Francis Matthews). He is half of a knife throwing act with his wife Jill (Vera Fusek) the thowee, as it were.
When he receives anonymous phone calls claiming his wife is unfaithful, he gets "the jitters" and isn't exactly in the best frame of mind to throw knives at her on stage! He gets so angry, several witnesses at the theatre hear him threaten to kill her if she really is two-timing him. To their Buckingham Hotel room, someone sends flowers "to my darling Jill."
Verney is so worried he consults Saber. Talk it over with her, is the advice he receives.
But he can't, for when he returns to their room, there she is, dead. Inspector Parker knows of course whodunnit, even though wise old Saber tells him he's making another mistake.
Saber delves back into Verney's past and travels to Liverpool's Alhambra Theatre to talk to a wardrobe mistress. From her, he learns Jill had formerly been one half of a Apache dancing act, and Bert Miller her partner (Paul Stassino) went mad when they split up and sworn he'd "make her pay." Now why couldn't old Parker have found all that out?!
Saber tracks Miller down to the Hilton Apartments and bluffs a confession out of the glib blackmailer.

Notes- Saber's girl friend Ann is given a mention, but does not appear. Mark breezily asks Bob if he'd phone her to break their date.
There's a stock shot of a railway guards carriage on the Liverpool train, shown back to front.
On two occasions the stage manager (John Stuart) introduces the act as "Rex VARNEY"

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MURDER FOR REVENGE (dated 1959)

Stella (Marion Mathie) is an irascible twisted invalid, her husband John Adams (Robert Raglan) a successful businessman. He gains his comfort from actress Betsy Lynton (Liz Fraser in an early role), their tryst on a park bench his only relief from his wife's complainings. They look an ill matched pair, but apparently they are in love. She is amazingly philosophical about the inadequacy of their relationship, since he won't leave Stella, but he has promised to leave her half his money should he die.
Frank Lynch is an engineer working in Adams' firm. But Lynch falls out with his boss over the percentage payment for one of his inventions. Frank needs more cash and attempts to blackmail Adams over his dalliance with Betsy.
John receives an urgent telegram from Betsy, asking to meet at their usual bench at 10.30am. Here Frank is shot dead.
11.40am: a taxi drives up to Mark Saber's office. Betsy wants to consult Mark, knowing she is a prime suspect. She has a long wait, since the clock shows 2.20 when Mark sees her!
Inspector Parker is looking very smug, for he is about to make an arrest, he scoffs to Mark that Betsy has taken him in. His proof is the telegram sent to Adams.
Mrs Colby, Stella's housekeeper is certain that "hussy" is guilty too. Even Bob Page thinks this is a cut and dried case.
Stella does concede that she had just learned about Betsy from "a friend." This was Frank.
So Saber questions Frank who has now ensconsced himself in John's office. He does admit that he had blackmailed John, but that is all.
The obvious clue is now followed up. Where was the telegram sent from? The unlikely truth exposes the killer, Mark does the business while Inspector Parker stands idly by.

Saber drives TGP 668. Uncredited role, not speaking: John Martin plays a passer by in the park, arm in arm with a girl.
The telegram, dated 31st July 1958, is sent to 52 Oxford Street W1, the shot of Adams' office is not this address but is a little further along the road

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DEAD BEFORE ARRIVAL

At the Rivera Export Company an exceptionally heavy case is accidentally dropped revealing a corpse inside.
Mark Saber and Bob are relaxing at the Club Bolivar, perhaps being entertained is too strong a word, for they are listening to some pretty average singing and watching some pretty average Latin dancing. "Not bad," Mark comments, maybe tongue in cheek. Presumably it's a way of filling up the 25 minute storyline in which the group called Mantas receive tv exposure, which may not have helped their careers a lot.
Next day in his office, Mark is phoning his girlfriend Ann, admitting he missed her. In walks Miss Mari Carmen Diaz (Marianne Benet), with a request to find her missing Argentinian fiance Antonio Giron. He was a guitarrist at the club, but failed to turn up for work a week ago. The owner of the club says he went back to Argentinia. But Miss Diaz is worried, and Mark promises to investigate.
When she leaves the office, she is followed by two heavies for an inordinately long time, presumably to fill out the 25 minutes.
Checking at the Immigration office, Bob finds they know nothing of Antonio, nor does the Argentinian Embassy have any details about him.
The story in the newspaper of a mutilated body found at the docks on a boat bound for South America excites Mark's suspicions. But Bob can't identify the body when he examines it for it is so disfigured.
Inspector Parker pays a call on the Club Bolivar. A Jamaican group plays in the background. Parker asks Rivera about the crate with the corpse.
All of a sudden Mari is snatched taken to a mews property to be questioned. She is told Antonio had been part of this gang until he had attempted to go straight. From somewhere Saber bursts in, with gun, to expose the drugs smugglers. A fight, Carmen gets minor revenge by biting Rivera before "nick of time" Parker swoops.

This is a weak story which doesn't hang together. At the end, despite his words to Ann earlier, Mark dates Mari.
Notes: Bob is driving UTM495 though there's one shot of him in TNM286 along The Mall, then he reaches Saber's office back at the wheel of UTM495. In fact exactly this same shot is seen three times in this story! The police car is MRK422. The crooks' car is 436AMY.
Big Ben is very confusing: it shows 3.55 when Mark and Bob come in to their office after the night at the Bolivar. It's still at the same time when the interview with Mari ends. However as she exits the office we see Big Ben showing 10.35!
Uncredited speaking roles: Fred, and Bill (Howard Lang), the two men lifting the crate. Pearce, the immigration office clerk. A waiter. The male singer at the club. Rivera's heavy

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FIRE!
International Insurance agent Fenner (Mark Singleton) watches another warehouse fire, the third in the last few months at warehouses belonging to Roy Burgess (John Longden), a philanthropist. He's married to actress Margo (Virginia Kieley). In Burgess' office is his secretary Warren (John Martin), who Mark helped put in jail 5 years ago. He also employs Arthur James, a convicted pyromaniac. Burgess certainly helps those down on their luck!
The case develops when Burgess informs Mark Saber that he has received a blackmailing phone call about the fires. Arthur James has confessed and is demanding £50,000. Saber, with Inspector Parker, goes to the pay off, but James never turns up.
But Burgess phones, saying he's worried. He has been followed home. "Wait a minute," he cries, "there's someone at the door! The door's opening! It's James." BANG. Burgess shoots him.
So that's all straightforward. Except that we have noticed that it's been raining in every outdoor shot. Saber's always wet when he comes indoors. And this helps Mark, not Parker of course, uncover the truth.

Footnote - The theme of overhearing a murder on the telephone also occurs in the 1957 Charlie Chan story "Final Curtain". Coincidentally, or perhaps not, in both cases the actor at one end of the phone is John Longden.

Saber drives TGP668. Uncredited speaking roles: The policeman at the fire. James' landlady (Totti Truman Taylor). Peterson, Parker's assistant in two scenes. PC Hurley. Police doctor. There's a lovely throwaway line from Donald Gray to Peterson as they exit one scene, "A very racy hat you've got on there Peterson. You trying to emulate Mark Saber?!"

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FULL MOON
This is a superior example from the series with a script by James Eastwood. Expense has hardly been spared, for four of the characters (though not Donald Gray) are filmed on location in Brighton walking along the Esplanade, relaxing on Palace Pier and visiting The Royal Pavilion.

Actress and singer Miss Dora Dane has been strangled during the night in The Gordon Hotel. The third such murder, one at Windsor last month, the first in Putney two months ago. The Full Moon Murders, the case becomes known as.
Mark Saber is discussing his current case with a (silent) blonde client, when he's approached about investigating this murder. He's rather short staffed as his assistant Bob has just left, so his girl friend Ann Fellowes (Jennifer Jayne) agrees to help.
Dora, it seems, had a shadowy boyfriend, "tall with black hair, a bit like a movie star." He had been seen with her around midnight. Dora worked at the Red Slipper Club, and Louella the barmaid and Harry the pianist recognise the man as John Smith. Saber cleverly draws a primitive identikit picture of his face.
The parent of one of the earlier murdered girls recognises him as Wing Commander Bertram, whilst the other as Charles Cuthbertson Tillotson. His latest alias is Captain Charles Brigham, though his real name is Andrew Bordon (Robert Raikes), and at present he's befriending a girl on the train to Brighton. She's Barbara, but she's accompanied by her parents who are holidaying in Brighton. Bordon is staying at the Metropole.
Tonight's a full moon. Back in London, Ann is disconsolate that all her work hasn't unearthed the killer. But she gets a break when a singer at the Red Slipper, identifies the picture as that of Andrew Bordon. She'd met him yesterday in Brighton.
Ann grabs Mark and they dash to Brighton.
"You've been rather strange," Barbara tells the murderer. "Charles, you're so different tonight." Now he takes her to his room. "Don't get excited, Charles." He starts to strangle her, but enter our one armed detective. Just in time.

There's the standard shot of the outside of Saber's office, TGP668 parked outside, Big Ben showing 12.58. The Brighton train is authentic, though with third class carriages, it must be an old film! There are a lot of uncredited parts on the film print, though cast lists have identified some, in order of appearance: 1 Miss Logan the maid (Jan Holden) in two scenes and one not speaking, 2 another maid, 3 the police doctor n two scenes (Frank Forsyth), 4 Wilson, Parker's assistant, 5 Bendix, manager of The Gordon Hotel, 6 Harry the pianist (Rolf Harris) in two scenes, 7 A waiter at the Metropole, 8 Eileen, at The Red Slipper, and 9 Another waiter at the Metropole (Hal Osmond) in two scenes

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Saber of London - Series 5

#1 FLORENTINE MADONNA
#2 THE LAST CHAPTER
#*3 DAMAGES
*4 COUSIN FROM MONTREAL
*5 A BOXFUL OF TRAGEDY
*6 THE BIG STONE
*7 MURDER WITH MAKE-UP
*8 ORDEAL OF FEAR
*9 THE SCREAM IN THE DARK
*10 KILL AND RUN
~12 LOST AND FOUND
~13 SWEETHEART BEWARE

13 stories were made during the first half of 1959. In the first Saber was helped by Jennifer Jayne, his girl friend/ assistant Ann Fellows (marked #), originally she had been introduced as a fashion model with the surname Chertsey (3.35 Beyond Fear), then mentioned as Ann Churchill (3.39), then as Ann Fellows in 4.26 Incident in Soho and 4.27 Jockey Missing (uncredited). In 4.24 Time Alibi for Murder, Mark fails to recognise her, mainly because she is playing Kathy, an entirely unrelated character!
Saber's principle assistant in these stories is played by by Garry Thorne as Eddie Wells (marked with an asterisk *). However, for the final stories, there was no assistant for the overworked Saber, even though Eddie is in the screen titles (marked ~).

This final group of stories is rather a come-down after the generally very good previous season with Robert Arden. Thus Jennifer Jayne is used as a stop gap assistant in the first stories, before the arrival of Garry Thorne, who doesn't quite become the assistant befitting such an experienced detective.
Perhaps Donald Gray knew his fate was sealed, though he gives it his best shot still. None the less, some expense wasn't spared, as in at least one episode (5.6) we see Mark and Eddie in a new feature, a studio mock-up of Saber's Porsche.

My favourite episode: Perhaps #5.13 Sweetheart Beware, as the last of the long long series, has a certain nostalgic sadness.
Best moment: In #5:4 Garry Thorne tries to pretend he's a teddy boy. I also like the performance of Concepta Fennell as the scheming killer in #5.10 Kill and Run.
Dud story: #5:9 The Scream in the Dark is poorly scripted

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THE FLORENTINE MADONNA

Mike Gerard's shop is a front. He sells good copies of rare paintings, and to obtain the fakes he is keeping Jim Peters (Geoffrey Hibbert) a virtual prisoner in a room behind his shop. "That'd fool anyone," Gerard gloats, as Peters is forced to start his latest painting, a copy of a madonna.
The Grosvenor Art Gallery are holding an exhibiton of rare Italian masters. Gerard is scheming to steal an original and substitute it with Peters' fake. He should have an easy job, for Inspector Parker is in charge of security. At the moment, Mark Saber has no assistant, so he has persuaded his girl friend Ann Fellowes to help with "routine work," that for her means asking if he really loves her. A client materialises in the shape of Mrs Peters, who asks Mark to find her husband who has disappeared. She doesn't know where he is, fearing his activity as a good painter might have got him into some sort of trouble. Ann goes to examine his papers, and finds the business card of Michael Gerard.
"He's going to make us rich," Gerard smiles at his assistant Tana (Sandra Dorne). Mark checks his shop out, posing as wealthy art collector Walter A Sheridan. He wants an Italian masterpiece for his private collection, and Tana tells him Gerard can oblige.
In fact Gerard is planning to leave the country, and so pays off Peters, who naively believes he has been assisting in some sort of art security operation. Unfortunately the real Walter Sheridan is in the news, so Gerard rumbles the imposter, and when Mark calls again, ready to pay the $50,000 asking price, he is greeted with a slap from Tana and then is tied up. The criminal pair continue with their plan, and switch the fake painting with the genuine Madonna all too easily, but for once Inspector Parker is on the ball, having been tipped off by Ann, and the couple are arrested. Ann breaks into Gerard's shop to rescue Mark, and has a good laugh when she sees him all trussed up.

Big Ben shows 12.58 outside, then for Mrs Peters' interview 10.05. Saber does drive TGP668, but he also takes a taxi LYL914, which had been previously used by Gerard. Police car is 894FPC.
"Gerards" shop sign is spelt thus, though in the credits the owner is spelt "Gerrard." Uncredited speaking roles: Dr Willis (Peter Bathurst)- not in the on screen titles but in tv listings. A male and female customer at the shop. A lady at the art exhibiton. Sgt Briggs, who is guarding the paintings

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THE LAST CHAPTER

Tony Bartlett (Robert Raikes), Roger Kent (Neil Hallett) and Charles Williams (Harry Towb) are three writers who are idly discussing their trade, when the subject of the perfect murder crops up. Tony is an old hand at crime stories.
Tony is about to marry Betty Finch (Ann Stephens). But his previous wife Jessica is threatening to create a scandal, sell her story to the papers etc etc. Roger, who "had hopes" in Betty's direction himself, sees "another way out," and suggests murder. However, he aims to implicate Tony in Jessica's death. His cunning plan involves getting Tony to collect an airline ticket. Pretending to be Tony, Roger invites Jessica to Tony's flat, where he knocks her out. Tony arrives home with the ticket to discover the corpse. He makes a phone call to his friend Mark Saber.
Inspector Parker doesn't buy Tony's "fantastic" story. Roger says he knows nothing of any ticket. "This is fantastic," repeats Tony, echoing Parker's observation. Indeed, "every shred of evidence points to his guilt," says Mark later to his girfriend Ann. She provides some pertinent comments, "remind me to make you my permanent secretary sometime," quips Mark.
In Tony's novels, the murderer always gets caught in the last chapter. But will it happen in 'real life'?
At Scotland Yard, as Parker watches on bemused, Saber questions Roger. Mark probes. Roger had been just a bit too careful since he had phoned using Tony's name to confirm the airline reservation at the very moment Tony happened to be collecting it. Roger's response to this information? He tries to fight his way out of the office. As the dumbfounded Parker stands and stares, Saber stops Roger's escape!

Saber drives TGP668. Big Ben shows 11.05am when Mark chats with Ann in his office. No Garry Thorne in this story. But with uncredited speaking parts are: Arnold Bell (guest at party), an unidentified actress as Sonia, Geoffrey Hibbert as Mr Wright a Ticket Clerk, and an unknown actor as Mr Henderson as the first clerk. As Rees, the policeman in Parker's office, in a minor non speaking role is John Martin

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DAMAGES
In the Frazer Building, a faulty handrail breaks causing Sam Hawtrey (Jack Melford) to falls downstairs. He is paralysed.
Even though three doctors each state there is nothing wrong, Sam decides to claim compensation from his insurance firm. He says he will never walk again. The Acme Insurance Company only offers a pittance so Sam decides to sue.
George Robinson, Acme's claims manager, approaches Mark Saber who is taking a break at Puckeridge House with his girl friend Ann (uncredited, who is only seen on horseback). George believes Sam is a fraud.
Mark sets up surveillance in a room opposite Sam's flat in St Ann's Villas in Kensington, along with assistant Eddie, who does suggest inviting Ann along, though this never happens. Now we see Sam at home, and the hunch is correct, it's all an act. His crooked pal Mike Frazer (Robert Dorning) is confident the pair will net £50,000. Whenever Sam hobbles slowly out for a walk, Mark films him and Eddie follows, and for several days Sam makes no slip at all.
Day 5. As Sam staggers slowly away from his house on foot, a roller skater bumps into him and instinctively, angrily, Sam goes after him for an instant.
That's enough proof for Robinson. But Mark has spotted a flaw in Sam's account of the accident, which "smells to high heaven." He must have an accomplice, and that is Frazer, who works at the building where Sam had had his fall. To prove their connivance, Mark continues his watch. After 4 days, Mike Frazer's car draws up at the house. Moments later, Mark and Eddie call also, Sam can do no better than offer Mark a bribe, which he turns down of course. So that leaves a fight, during which Sam makes a miraculous recovery and slips quickly away. However it's a case of poetic justice since in his haste Sam trips down the stairs.
No police in this story. Saber drives TGP668. At the end Big Ben is showing 11.45.
Uncredited speaking roles: A passer by outside Sam's flat (John Martin). Frazer's secretary

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COUSIN FROM MONTREAL
Maybe the first episode to feature Eddie Wells, Mark's latest assistant. At one point Mark narrates: "Eddie hadn't been with me for very long, but he was young and keen."

Here's the Danzigers' effort to get with it! It starts with a Saber sermon, "juvenile delinquents, whether called hoodlums, spivs, or teddy boys, are a problem the world over." These yobs beat up and kill Johnny, who's allegedly aged 16 but looks at least 26. His mother (Ursula Camm- a wannabe Peggy Mount) seeks Saber's help, as Inspector Parker has spent a month getting nowhere in his investigations. Typical.
Mark meets Johnny's best friend, Tommy Burns (John Charlesworth) who lives in a posh place with his father and Miss Gibbons "my secretary." It's a stark contrast to Johnny's East End slum. Not that Tommy ever went there, but Mark believes it will open his eyes, as he doesn't think the "place has a tv set." After they meet Johnny's mum in a moving moment, Tommy is persuaded to open up. He confesses he witnessed Johnny die, "I watched them beat him to death, and I didn't lift a finger to help him." The gang leader was Rick Dorsey (Tony Doonan). Johnny had wanted to leave the gang, because they were being forced to commit small burglaries, but Rick said he knew too much. It was Jumbo who killed him. But a "big shot" is masterminding the robberies, who gets "kids do his dirty work for him."
This episode title refers to Eddie's alias as he infiltrates the teenage gang. He's the ideal person, he tells Mark, as he was nearly a delinquent himself. "The public can be grateful that you went in for crime investigation, rather than instigation," jokes Mark. In a City waistcoat and smart suit, Eddie goes to the "jive joint" where Rick's gang hang out. Authentic rock music is in the air. Eddie says he's just been "let out of the pen in Canada" where he'd pulled a bank job. Convinced that Eddie is "big time," Rick takes him to his leader Lavell (Denis Shaw), who is immediately arrested. Simple really.

Big Ben in the stock footage of Saber arriving outside his office shows 2 o'clock. However inside it shows 9.30! "Have you ever seen a better view of Big Ben?" Mark asks Tommy, "I'm rather fond of it myself."
Saber's car- TGP 668.
The Police Inspector is Parker, "he's a very good man."

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A BOXFUL OF TRAGEDY
London, the opening narration informs us, is the Antique Collectors' Paradise. Into one such shop walks a suave well dressed man (Ferdy Mayne) to buy a present. He eyes a nest of Italian caskets but the shopkeeper tells him they have already been sold for £50. An offer of £100 is turned down, £150 no, £200 no, then £250 is rejected by the scrupulous antique dealer, Harold Jason.
He tells Mark Saber of this strange little episode and after posting the caskets, he returns to his shop to find it being ransacked by the smart customer. He is brutally killed.
Mark is playing bridge at his club when he receives a phone call from Inspector Parker to tell him of the murder.
From Chris, Jason's nephew, it is learnt that nothing has been stolen. However one page of a ledger had been torn out. This would record the sale of the mysterious casket (the set of 3 seems to have diminshed to one), and Chris knows the buyer was a Mr Venner of Hampstead. His daughter Julie has been given the boxes as a birthday present. Julia takes them to her home where she lives with her husband.
Clearly there is something in the casket, purchased from the house of the late Ken Spenser in Richmond. His wastrel son Roy had inherited the estate as there had been no will. Spenser's housekeeper clearly dislikes Roy, and who can blame her, for he is the well dressed customer!
Roy has found out from Venner where Julie lives- in Finchstone Heights. He tracks her down at the shops. He asks for the casket, and she very kindly gives him a lift to her home.
Mark has found out Julie's car registration- KBY660 and he and Eddie spot her car and follow her home. There Roy is admiring the casket for which he offers £250. To reinforce his offer he draws a gun when Mark walks in. Off he goes with the casket but Eddie is waiting, and overpowers him.
The box is closely examined. A false bottom. A missing will.
A nice final twist follows, in this Brian Clemens story.

Note: though KBY660 is given as the number of Julie's car, in fact she is driving that old Danziger favourite, UTM495. Surely Saber should have spotted his old car?! He himself drives TGP668.
Uncredited speaking extras: A customer at Jason's shop. The waiter at Saber's club. Saber's bridge partner. Mrs Barlow, Spenser's housekeeper (Norah Gordon)

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THE BIG STONE
Along the quiet Bruton Street, a lady is walking. In broad daylight, out of a passing car leaps a masked man, snatching her bag before jumping back into his car and away.
Secretary Jessica Roberts returns to G Ross and Son to report the theft of the diamond she was carrying, worth £50,000. She had been taking it to the cutters, Jonathan French & Co.
Saber gives the case his urgent attention. One puzzling matter is that French had suffered the loss of a small diamond three months ago, never traced. Miss Roberts admits she had gone to pieces and can't describe her assailants. But Mark notices her flat is expensively furnished.
Mark's first break comes with Jimmy Willis, French's assistant. He is pally with dancer Carlotta (Ann Lynn), who is seen wearing a diamond engagement ring like the one French said was missing. Mark and assistant Eddie enjoy a nice time watching her dance before chatting to her. She admits she is engaged, albeit secretly, to Jimmy. They are to fly to Rio to get married.
Mark returns the stolen ring, and the engagement is at a sudden end! The poor Scotland Yard inspector is also upbraided by French, for not solving this simple case himself.
But the Yard are making another gaffe in arresting Jimmy for both thefts, because Mark is certain that stealing the Ross' diamond is out of Jimmy's league. Also he has an alibi.
Mark and Eddie return to the route Jessica walked, along Farm Street to Bruton Street, the scene of the crime (in the Mayfair district of London). This road is currently closed to vehicles. So Jessica's story is clearly false, although it certainly wasn't according to what we saw of the crime!
She gets jittery and before she can talk, is silenced by the man pretending to be her admirer. It's easy enough to work out who shoots her, even though we never see his face.
Thus when Saber comes to question her, all they find is her dead body. Mark spots something, it's a match broken in two. Now who has a habit like that? The clue was there...
Big Ben is at the familiar time of 12.58, when we first see Saber's office. He drives TGP668, Eddie drives 675LMY. The police car is 894FPC.
Uncredited speaking roles: A waiter at the club. George, another waiter. Ross' male secretary. John Blythe as Willis is not in the on screen credits, though he is in the tv listings.

FOOTNOTE: Jessica lives at BARRIE HOUSE

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MURDER WITH MAKE-UP
Script by Brian Clemens. In the story, Saber explains to Inspector Parker that his "new assistant" is Eddie, though Parker responds sarcastically, "you've introduced us at least a couple of times!"
A drop of cheer is the biggest vice of " furtive" Fenn, porter at Linton Court Apartments. Kind Carl Hilton (John Gabriel) holds the fort whilst he visits the pub. But while Fenn is away, Mrs Jane Hilton sticks her head in the gas oven. She leaves a farewell note.
Mark Saber gets the call on the golf course. Naturally, he has to finish off with a winning putt before rushing off to investigate. Inspector Parker and the doctor both agree it's a straightforward case of suicide, "gas oven, farewell note, distraught husband." Mr Hilton is a "decent enough fellow," according to Parker, which is enough to persuade Saber to take on the case! "Jane and I never disagreed about anything important," Hilton tells Saber wistfully.
An old school friend of Jane's, Mr Dane (Brian Nissen), was the last to speak to Mrs Hilton at 3pm. But he's very evasive about the subject of his phone call from Amersham. For Mark, the main puzzle is why the immaculate Mrs Hylton had been found fully made-up with eyebrow pencil and mascara, but "why make up for a gas oven?" Mark visits the Daily Mirror offices, having sent Eddie in to Marylebone Town Hall. They discover Mrs Hilton was a rich divorcee whose first husband Harry Jordan had a criminal record for arson. In fact she had helped convict him. The insurance company's rep on the case had been Carl Hilton.
Eddie interviews Jordan who has only recently been released from jail. Jordan admits he had gone straight to his ex-wife that day to ask her for some cash. Mark gets Dane to admit his relationship. He explains they were going away that day together as Hilton had been ill treating his wife.
So there are several suspects, but Eddie re-echoes the main issue, "for a tidy woman, she seems to have a lot of untidy ends!"
Eddie drives to question a barman (Hal Osmond) in whose pub near the Hilton's, Jordan had been found drunk. The barman remembers the hotel porter being there too, at the time of Mrs Hilton's death. Hilton's alibi is "knocked high as a kite," and Mark proves he had tampered with his wife's farewell note, which was really a goodbye saying she was leaving him for Dane.
A final chase neatly leads to "right where it started in the kitchen." It's the "end of the line, Hilton."

Notes: Uncredited speaking parts: Mitchell, the manager of the apartment block (Donald Hewlett)- he seems so nervous he even muffs one line. The constable in the foyer of the apartment block. Another constable at Vine Street Station. Dane's secretary.
Saber drives TGP 668. Eddie drives UTM495, the very same shot of him arriving at the office comes twice in two minutes! He also drives TNM268 to the town hall. Big Ben shows 2pm in Saber's office.
Gaffes: Donald Gray states in one line of narration that he and Eddie were doing "a lot of lay work" (that is leg work). Hal Osmond calls the apartment block "Lynchon Court."
The 'suicide' note is dated Mon June 14th, making the year 1954 or 1965, or maybe it's an inexactitude

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ORDEAL OF FEAR
The Hon Anita Buckworth (Honor Shepherd) has just married divorcee Sir Charles Auden and moved into his rambling mansion. Its dark passages and dozens of empty rooms seem rather frightening to her. A little late in the day, he tells her of his gloomy past. After the war Sir Charles had married his housekeeper Vera O'Malley, but this proved a costly mistake. But he provided "handsomely" for her and Alfred their son.
7am next morning and old Thompson the butler (an ideal part for dear old Gordon Phillott), who has served Sir Charles for 20 years, arrives at the bedroom to find "Sir Charles would awake no more."
Spooky Auden Place is hardly a suitable home for the lonely widow, Lady Auden. She broods. In a thunderstorm at dead of night she sees a ghost and screams. "Is she all right?" queries the butler, rather needlessly. When a figure in a mask scares her again, it's time to call in Mark Saber.
A new chauffeur joins the staff, Eddie Wells, Mark's assistant. He learns the butler is short of cash owing to his daughter's worthless marriage, so improbably suspicion falls on him. But he's "an old loyal servant, he's incapable of such a beastly deed!" I should think so too!
Mark meets the "insignificant" son of the late Sir Charles, who inherits nothing from his dad as he'd already received plenty. However Mark realises his mum (Concepta Fennell) is a "tigress" who had wasted all the money Charles had given her.
Visiting Auden Place, the apparation conveniently materialises enabling Mark to pounce and reveal who is behind it all.

Mark drives TGP668. Uncredited speaking extras: Betty the maid. Morton the manservant. A doctor at the Scrubs (John Martin)

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THE SCREAM IN THE DARK

Head Accountant William Pelham, working late in the offices of the Inter Dominion Builders, falls out of the window to his death. An incomplete note to his wife Ethel, and his remarks to Carter the nightwatchman point to suicide. Only puzzle for the police is why did he leave his letter unfinished? His wife is heartbroken, as is his daughter Susan (Wendy Williams) and nephew George Rye. His insurance is invalid because he killed himself.
He had heavy gambling debts. Charles Hooper, a squash partner of Saber's and friend of Susan's, asks for the great man's help. The main mystery is why did Pelham scream as he fell to his death? Not usual suicide behaviour.
Mark talks it over with the president of the company, Sir Basil (Ian Fleming). He says Pelham was an invaluable employee in charge of accounts. So Mark's theory is that someone had had a hand in the till, and Pelham found out.
For Pelham's replacement, Mark arranges for actor Henry Elliott (Jack Melford) to take the post, first task examine the books. As Henry J Ashwood, he's introduced to staff.
To relax, he takes out Helen, previously Pelham's secretary and now his. He tells her that he knows the books have been doctored, so she phones her boyfriend, worried the swindle is about to be exposed. The killer confronts Henry in his office, but of course Mark is waiting, "the game's over!" But not before Henry is pushed, as usual, out of the window. But luckily a net was waiting to break his fall.

Saber drives TGP668. Big Ben shows 9.35 at the start of the story. Later it's at 1.50.
A large number of uncredited speaking parts: Pelham (John Stuart). Carter the nightwatchman (Hal Osmond). Police Inspector (Howard Lang). His assistant. Mr Shortwood the solicitor. Charles Hooper (Hugh Cross). A waiter and the head waiter at a restaurant. Two firemen

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Series 5: Saber of London

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KILL AND RUN

Irene Saunders has a plan which is "quick and final, with no risk" to get rid of John, her husband. This, so she can have Bobby Lang (Brian Nissen).
After work, John Saunders catches the train arriving at Wallingford at 6.30. He starts to walk the three niles home. Bobby borrows the Saunders car and on a dark night road, runs him down. Diamond shaped tyre marks are found by the body.
Matthew Tidmarsh engages Saber to investigate the death, as he is convinced a "squirt" called Tony Bassett, a driver of fast cars, is the guilty man. Saber discovers Bassett does indeed soup up his cars to do over 100 mph, but as a fast car driver himself, Saber is entirely sympathetic towards him! Bassett provides some useful information about Mrs Saunders' clandestine meetings.
So Mark goes to talk to her. "Be careful you don't fall for her," warns Bassett.
Arriving at the Saunders' home, Eddie jokes with Mark, "can I trust you alone with a femme fatale?" But Mark is more interested in her "plump and inactive" husband who was hardly fit enough to tackle a long walk home. Mark is certain she is lying and calls in Inspector Parker. Parker is typically sceptical.
Bob Lang is next for questioning. They've certainly found the weakest link here. Mark's bluff that he has found an eyewitness sends the jittery Bob straight to Irene in a panic. The calculating woman disowns all of Bob's actions. She gets out her gun to silence his blabbing. But Saber had emptied it of bullets. They are both arrested.
A nice little story with Concepta Fennell convincing as the conniving wife.

Mark drives TGP668. Bobby drives UTM 496, a Saber cast-off!

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Series 5: Saber of London

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LOST AND FOUND

5.30pm- TWA flight from America lands. Donald Gray narrates something about seashells being cast up on the seashore, that apparently describes Kim Muller (Jane Jordan Rogers) who has flown in to begin her new job, working for a well known lecturer Professor Harding. However as nobody meets her, she has to make her lonely way in the London rain to Harding's home.
The door is ajar, so in she walks, calling out the name Mr Harding. He is in his library, sitting stiff in his chair. Yes dead! In shock, she screams but is chloroformed by an unknown intruder.
Sgt Mansfield finds her wandering in the street, dazed and agitated. She is even more worked up, when she takes the policeman into the house to find the corpse has disappeared.
Inspector Parker is incredulous, even less understanding than usual. For Harding is supposed to be in Scotland. No body, so he ridicules Kim's story. Fortunately for her, Mark Saber happens to be at the Yard, and is more sympathetic. Over a cigarette, Kim explains that she had met Harding at one of his American lectures, and had been offered the post of his secretary. One bag she had brought over went missing at Harding's home, odd because it only contained her clothes. The bag had been a present from Bill Quinn, another lecturer (Mark Singleton) who lives with his brother Eric (Emrys Leyshon).
11.30pm- Parker phones Mark to warn him Lancelot Harding has been found shot. Mark in turn tries to contact Kim, whom he had left in the New York Hotel, but she's gone out. According to Harry the receptionist, she had phoned Melbourne 2436 and then gone to 50 Merrick Lane. That's where Bill and Eric live.
At their flat, Mark is given the cold shoulder by the brothers, but there's the missing bag! The reason for the crime becomes clear, as the brothers argue with each other. Narcotics. The eminent Harding had been the unwitting courier, until he had found out the truth.
So Inspector Parker has to eat humble pie yet again, as he apologies to Miss Muller.

Uncredited speaking extras: A policeman at the Yard. A policeman at Quinn's flat. Kim's taxi is OYU155

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SWEETHEART BEWARE
I doubt the Danzigers were specially sentimental, but whether by luck or whatever, actor Robert Ayres who featured in the very first story of Mark Saber,
A Lady is Missing also appears in this 156th and very last adventure for Mark Saber.
Saber drives TGP 668 in England. In Rome he takes a taxi, which from internal shots clearly is driven on the left of the road! No police inspector in this story.
Uncredited speaking parts: Two air traffic controllers in the opening scene: one is Anton Rodgers, plus one other whom I think is John Martin. An airline captain (Robert Raglan). Seppi, the Club Panama doorkeeper.

A plane crashes on landing, the pilot Captain Glen Ramsey (Robert Ayres) being the sole survivor, 33 perish.
Martin Haigh (Peter Reynolds) is an eyewitness, watching in horror as his wife is killed. It scars him, and he blames the pilot, who had only suffered broken legs. Glen is in a wheelchair and does blame himself for the accident, he'd only escaped because he had not fastened his safety belt.
His fiancee Jill Standish (Leigh Madison) comforts him, having flown specially all the way from Rome to see him.
Haigh books into Room 54 in the same hotel where Glen is staying, in Room 46. Very unpleasantly, he kills Glen's pet dog Ringer.
"Why?" Glen asks of Mark Saber. "Someone with an insane hatred for you," decides the great detective, using his expertise gained from 155 other successful cases.
Saber talks to the bellboy who had been exercising Ringer. The lad recalls Haigh asking about the dog, but Ramsey doesn't know anyone of that name. Then the link is spotted, one of the dead passengers was Mrs Haigh. Mark Saber plays one of his long shots, which comes off of course. He finds out Haigh has taken the Rome plane, which is where Jill is currently working as a cabaret singer at the Club Panama.
In her dressing room, Haigh waits for her, but she goes straight home, so he follows. Mark gets to the club thirty minutes later.
Safe back in her apartment, Jill phones the police about a man following her, but she can't make these foreigners understand English, and she falls for Haigh's trick, as he offers to phone the police for her, as he can speak Italian. Ironically she tells him, that she might be getting herself murdered, and wouldn't be able to make any Italian understand what was happening. Too late she perceives her danger. Revenge is what Martin Haigh craves. But Mark has sped to the flat in time to prevent a tragedy, shooting Haigh in the wrist. Jill is safe.
Our last glimpse of Saber is him phoning the cops, speaking in Italian. Though we end with the usual sequence when he, despite it being the last ever story, invites us, in those familiar words, to "see you next week when Big Ben will chime in another mystery from London." Alas, Big Ben has stopped, the marathon series is silent for ever.

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SABER OF LONDON MEMORIES by ROBERT ARDEN, co-star in series 4.
Very many thanks to the late Robert Arden who wrote this affectionate tribute for my site in 2002 aged 80.
Well, it's all a long time ago now, but what I remember most about it was the low pay, the hard work, and what sheer fun it all was! The Danzigers, God Bless 'Em were always happy to corner cut. They did pay very badly, but all you had to do was call Eddie, tell him you were free and you were cast - no matter whether you were right or not for the particular role. Hardly anybody took the series seriously - not the Danziger Brothers, (of whom I have fond memories). Their attitude was -get the work done, but enjoy it. In Saber of London there were two constant directors - Ernie Morris (who had originally been a prop man) and Max Varnel (Max, the son of pre-war director Marcel Varnel) were more concerned with getting through as quickly as possible - quality was secondary to speed. The occasional director, Godfrey Grayson did try to infuse a little more thought and quality into his efforts, but even he was forced to compromise in order to complete the show in two and a half days! We worked Monday to Friday and occasionally on a Saturday if we needed to. Location work was also taken within the time allotted. We often shot location shots that the directors weren't sure they'd ever need - but made them visual (no dialogue - unless specifically needed) so they could be cut in to any episode - and in fact some of the shots turned up in variously different episodes. The lighting cameraman, Jimmy Wilson, was one of the best and had a facility that the Danzigers loved. He could work fast - and still be good.
Donald Gray was a pleasure to work with. No pretensions - a great sense of humour - and not a jealous actor. He would let you have a scene if he thought it was better to focus other than on him all the time. A Gentleman in every sense of the word. But a scary driver. We'd do some scenes in the Porsche, and my heart would sometimes be sitting in my mouth as at speed he would change gear with his one arm - no hand on the wheel, controlling the car with his knee. I still break out in a sweat when I think of it.
Quite well known actors turned up in the show, and some who were to become well known. Once you'd made an initial appearance, you could call the casting director - say you were free for ten days in May, and you'd be offered a role. Everybody moaned about the pay rate, but hardly anybody turned down the work. Editor John Bloom (Claire Bloom's brother -now working I think, in Hollywood) and the late Freddie Burnley - to become an accomplished documentary director for TV - worked long hours to get the shows finished and, as far as I remember, were never late in delivering the finished product.
The studios were custom built - and had a very pleasant atmsosphere as I recall. One had to trudge through mud to get to the main door for the stound stages, but eventually they had the front landscaped and it was just like one of Hollywood poverty row studios. After all these years I still remember the Danziger period of my professional life with a certain warm nostalgia. The studios at Elstree - specially built by Eddie and Harry - are gone - but the memories linger on.
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BIOGRAPHIES
DONALD GRAY (1914 -1978) - Born in South Africa, he was overall winner of a Paramount talent competition but after appearing in some minor roles as El(d)red Tidbury he moved to England. He lost an arm in the war. In the 50's he became a BBC announcer for a while, before starring as Mark Saber. He had few further starring roles, though he does do a voiceover for the Captain Scarlet puppet TV series. Trevor Jordan has written his biography "Colonel White meets Mark Saber."

COLIN TAPLEY
(1909-1995) - He was the usual police inspector at Scotland Yard. It's likely he obtained the part as a result of his friendship with Donald Gray. In series one he appears irregularly, sharing the part with others but by the concluding stories of series two he is the regular inspector. Born in Dunedin, New Zealand, he, like Gray, was a winner in the Paramount competition. He made some films in Hollywood, before coming to England. Unlike Gray, Tapley continued working for the Danzigers, appearing, uncredited more often than not, in their later series Man from Interpol and The Cheaters. He made films until 1969. He was married to a titled lady.
Series 1: MICHAEL BALFOUR (1918-1997) 'Barney'- Born in America, he became one of the most commonly seen bit-players in British cinema. He moved to England before the war and served with the RAF Eagle Squadron. In one Danziger programme, the character he plays is described like this: "with a face like yours, you'd scare 'em to death." But in real life he was a gent with quite sophisticated tastes.
Series 1: THERESA THORNE 'Judy' - I have found little information on her. Can you help? She appeared in the 1955 film Joe Macbeth, made the same year as her role in the Saber series. She also played a photographer called Mary, in the 1957 Charlie Chan story "The Noble Art of Murder".
Series 2: DIANA DECKER (born in USA 1926) 'Stevie' - As a yougster, she moved to England and made her film debut in 1943. She appeared with Donald Gray in the 1952 Saturday Island. She is best known as a recording artist with the hit "Poppa Piccolino" and also appeared on the London stage and as a cabaret singer.
Series 3: NEIL McCALLUM (1929-1976) 'Pete'- born in Canada. After his role in Saber of London he starred in one film for the Danzigers 'On the Run' which also features Gordon Tanner. On the strength of his performances, ABC signed him as a contract artist, enabling him to appear in Armchair Theatre, as well as stock series like "International Detective" (he's in "The Prescott Case"). He also appeared on the London stage. In 1965 he hosted A-R's "A Swinging Scene". By the 70's he was a producer, notably for BBC Scotland's "Sutherland's Law". He died tragically of a brain haemorrhage.
Series 3: GORDON TANNER (1918-1983) 'Larry'- also Canadian. Also appears in a Series 2 story "Find Harry Clay". Earlier he had appeared in The Vise story "Never let me die". Later he's in Man from Interpol, International Detective and Interpol Calling.
Series 4: ROBERT ARDEN (1922-2004) 'Bob Page'- first English born asistant for Saber, even if he grew up in the States! A dance band vocalist with the likes of Joe Loss, he made his film debut in 1944 in 2,000 Women. He became prominent on television in the ITV panel game "What's it All About?"A prolific actor, he told me his favourite role was in "Flight Into Danger" a BBC live drama.
Series 5: GARRY THORNE 'Eddie Wells'- Was he related to Theresa above? He appears in one Danziger film ('The Depraved' 1956) and in at least one story from each of the earlier series of Mark Saber, often as a criminal! His mother was Lenore Coffee (1896-1984) - a Hollywood screen writer from the silent days to the 50's.She also provided the script outline for one Invisible Man episode. Apart from this series, Garry's only regular TV role was as "guard" in Sir Lancelot.

All series: Actor John Martin undoubtedly had the most roles of any supporting actor. He is in the on screen credits five times in series four: 4.10 The Lady Doesn't Scare, 4.12 The Black Widow, 4.23 Come Out Fighting, 4.25 Out of the Past, 4.38 Fire. But he has numerous more uncredited small parts, including 1.5, 1.6, 1.7*, 1.9*, 1.10, 1.13, 1.19*, 1.21, 1.24, 1.25*, 2.4, 2.15, 2.18, 2.22, 2.28, 2.29*, 2.33, 2.38, 3.1?, 3.8?, 3.11, 3.14, 3.15, 3.27, 3.36, 3.37*, 3.38*, 3.39, 4.7, 4.19, 4.26*, 4.27*, 4.31, 4.33*, 4.35*, 5.2*, 5.3, 5.7*, 5.8, and 5.13. (* in this list means his part is non speaking)
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Missing Mark Saber stories

I am missing reviews of 35 of the British series. If you have any, or can add data on them, do email me!

1:4 Collector's Item, with Jan Holden. The policeman is Inspector Chester (Frank Hawkins)
1.8 Blood in the Sky, with Patrick McGoohan
1.12 Frame Up Without Gloves, with Lee Patterson. Police: Inspector Chester (Frank Hawkins)
1.16 Killer on the Prowl, with Patrick Holt. Police: Inspector Chester (Frank Hawkins)
1.22 The Sally Ankers Story, with Jill Clifford.
1.26 The Big Snatch. Police: Inspector Chester (Frank Hawkins)- this episode known to survive
2.3 Sing Softly Sister. Police: Patrick Holt as Brady, with Sandra Dorne
2.4 Against the Ropes with Robert Ayres, Tony Quinn
2.5 Safe for Murder with John Harvey, Catherine Finn
2.7 Holiday for Heatherton with John Stuart
2.8 Kill Me, My Love. Police Colin Tapley as Chester, with Mary Parker
2.9 Corpse in the Cellar with Patrick Holt, Noel Dyson, Jack Melford
2.11 Cage of Fear. Police Colin Tapley as Price, and Bernard Bresslaw
2.19 Corpse with a Sword. Police Peter Bathurst as the Inspector, and John Barron, Anne Valery
2.20 Short Cut to Murder. Police Kenneth Edwards as Inspector, with John Longden
2.21 Tough Part. Police Kenneth Edwards as Inspector, with Bernard Bresslaw, Robert Arden
2.23 Find Harry Clay. Police Kenneth Edwards as Inspector, with Gordon Tanner, John Stone
2.32 The Sucker Game. Police Colin Tapley as Inspector, with Michael Caine - known to exist
2.34 Back Track to Murder. Police Colin Tapley as Inspector, with Robert Arden, Jennifer Jayne
2.35 Death Wears a Coronet with Barry Keegan
3.4 Death by Delayed Appointment. With Phillip Saville
3.9 The Baby Sitter with Barbara Brown, John le Mesurier
3.16 Man About to Die with Gordon Tanner, Kay Callard
3.20 4 Against 3. Police: Colin Tapley as Parker, with Patricia Driscoll, Kay Callard
3.23 Code to Murder. Police: Colin Tapley as Parker, with Robert Dorning
3.24 Calling Charlie- Emergency. Police: Colin Tapley as Parker, with Bill Nagy, Dorothy Gordon, Denis Shaw
3.33 Lillies for Lucas. Police: Colin Tapley as Parker, with Garry Thorne, Michael Ripper
4.5 A Night on the Town, with Sandra Dorne, Patrick Holt
4.15 Cooked Up Murder. Police: Colin Tapley as Parker, with Carl Duering
4.20 Dangerous Meeting. Police: Colin Tapley as Parker, with Carl Duering, Kay Callard, Jack Melford
4.30 Silence for Sale. Police: Colin Tapley as Parker, with John Le Mesurier,
4.32 1,000 Alibis with Elsie Wagstaffe
4.37 A Date With Trouble
5.11 Broken Journey. Police: Colin Tapley as Parker, with Denis Shaw

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