You Can’t Pick the Number

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Airdate: December 24th, 1959
Written by Henry F. Greenberg
Directed by Richard B. Whorf 
Produced by Charles Russell
Director of Photography Charles Straumer
Co-Starring Jay C. Flippen, Darryl Hickman, Christine White, Doreen Lang, Harry Tyler 

“Chicago, South Side. October, 1932. The depth of the Depression. A time of hardship and despair for many, of standing lines and waiting for a meal. For some, not even a place to sleep. A time of closed gates and no work signs. A time of hope, of small, desperate hope. Hope for a better tomorrow and a little break today. Any little break, any heaven-sent little windfall, to happen now, today, right now. The mobsters were equal to the task and came up with the numbers game. On the surface, it worked like a lottery. You chose a number from zero, zero, zero, to nine hundred and ninety-nine. Your chances to win were one in a thousand. If you were lucky, you got back six hundred for one. If you lost, you could play again tomorrow, and nine hundred and ninety nine times out of a thousand – you lost.”
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The Dutch Schultz Story

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The Dutch Schultz Story

Airdate: December 17th, 1959
Teleplay by Jerome Ross and
Robert C. Dennis
Story by Jerome Ross
Directed by Jerry Hopper
Produced by Sidney Marshall
Director of Photography Charles Straumer
Special Guest Star Lawrence Dobkin
Featuring Mort Mills, Robert Carricart, David White

“The underworld has always lived by one law, the law of the jungle. The strong clawed their way to power, the weak died in a hail of machine gun bullets. In March of 1935, one of the toughest mobsters in New York City, the man who dominated the underworld at the moment, was Arthur Flegenheimer, better known as Dutch Schultz. During his career, Dutch Schultz and his mob were suspected of having committed over 100 murders. He controlled every racket in New York. He had branched out into liquor, narcotics, later shakedowns, the numbers racket. ”
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The Tri-State Gang

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Airdate: December 10th, 1959, June 9th, 1960
Written by Joseph Petracca
Produced by Josef Shaftel
Directed by Allen H. Miner
Director of Photography Charles Straumer
Special Guest Star William Bendix
Featuring Alan Hale, Gavin MacLeod, Jay Adler, Roxanne Berard, Stanley Adams, Peggy Maley, Joseph Mell, John Ward

“In the latter part of 1933, an epidemic of hijacking broke out in the states of Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania. The similarity of the holdups identified them as the work of the Tri-State Gang. This time it was a factory shipment of radios. The routine was always the same: Big Bill Phillips, a cheap, hulking six-foot-four ox of a man, handled the truck. Artie McLeod, a cheap tin horn gambler, handled the burlap hood with style and efficiency. The oldest of the gang was Georgie Kaufman, a battered ex-pug who once fought Benny Leonard in Madison Square Garden. The fence was James Jonathan Harris, sometimes called Gentlemen Jim. A quiet-spoken Englishman from the moors of Yorkshire. He was a suspicious and ever-watchful man. Bobby May, second in command, three-time loser, an ex-con, San Quentin. The leader of the gang was Wally Lagenza, a pale, cold, blond beast untouched by any civilizing influences. The doctors at Dannemora once described him as a vicious, antisocial animal, dangerous, ruthless and depraved. Eliot Ness and his men had been assigned by Washington to investigate the activities of the Tri-State Gang. That same night, they drove down to Richmond, Virginia, where they met with Sheriff Wilson of Richmond County.
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Fulfilling Dad’s dream: Son working to finish book on ‘Untouchables’

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The Fort Wayne Journal Gazette explores the effort behind finishing Dan Lynch’s book on The Untouchables:

While Kelly Lynch didn’t go into the same profession as his father, he has spent the past few years delving into his father’s passions.

One of those, the railroad, has seen Lynch become the executive director of the Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society and his involvement in the restoration of the historic steam locomotive No. 765.

The other is a TV show that Lynch describes as creating a cultural awakening, having impacted everything from “The Simpsons” to “The Sopranos.”

Lynch was barely a teenager when he began to watch with his father the VHS tapes his dad had recorded of the TV show “The Untouchables.”

Dan Lynch would have been a teenager when the show debuted in October 1959, but it made a huge impact on him and started a fascination that continued until he passed away in 2014.

This year, as the show marks its 60th anniversary, the Spencerville resident has uncovered an unfinished, 400-page manuscript written by his father and has revisited the TV production in the digital age.

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The Surprised Mr. Stack – TV Guide

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This article was originally published in the December 5th, 1959 issue of TV Guide.

He finds himself starring in a TV series that was supposed to be a movie

When Robert Stack was first shown the script for The Untouchables, he solemnly shook his curly head and pointed the tips of his well-bred thumbs toward the floor. It was his professional opinion that the story of Eliot Ness, United States Treasury agent, was lacking in something.

“From an actor’s point of view,” says Stack, a 40-year-old California socialite, whose approach to his career has always been marked by a certain detachment, “it had no dynamics. Don’t ask me what that is, but I can assure you it’s a quality that’s mighty important to the leading man, two critics and three other actors.”

For this reason, Stack was cool about playing the Ness role when it was first offered him by Quinn Martin, ex­ecutive producer of the Desilu pack­age, and Phil Karlson, its director and a long-time friend of Stack’s. Aside from the fact that Martin and Karlson thought enough of him to drop by his house and make the pitch, Stack says two things made him change his mind and agree to clean up Chicago-on film, at least. Read More

Tuning In To The Untouchables: An Interview

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NPR station WBOI covers The Untouchables Retrospective in its interview with historian Kelly Lynch:

Fort Wayne filmmaker Kelly Lynch is celebrating the 60th anniversary of the television crime drama, The Untouchables, with an online retrospective.

Lynch got hooked on this groundbreaking show thanks to his father, Dan, a nationally syndicated editorial cartoonist whose career included work for the Kansas City Times and the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette.

Earlier this month, WBOI’s Julia Meek sat down with Lynch to discuss the passion he inherited from this dad, their combined efforts in this project and where the journey continues to take him.


The Artichoke King

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Airdate: December 3, 1959, June 2nd 1960
Teleplay by Harry Essex
Directed by Roger Kay
Produced by Sidney Marshall 
Director of Photography Charles Straumer
Featuring Jack Weston, Al Ruscio and Robert Elingston

“6AM Tuesday, April 19th, 1931. The place, the Washington Produce Market in New York City. You’re asleep most likely, grabbing that extra 40 winks before the alarm gets you up, but things have been moving along here in the market set up to feed the city with the largest appetite in the world. Every 48-hours, more than 25 million pounds of fruit and vegetables stream into the city during the night. A multi-million dollar business, a prime target, for the viscous racketters of the era. There were also decent citizens like the Cestaris: Angelo, his wife Sophia, and his son Atony. They worked hard, enjoyed the fruits of their labors, tried to be good citizens.”
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“Mexican Stake-Out”

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Airdates: November 26th, 1959, August 11th, 1960
Teleplay by Robert C. Dennis and Alvin Sapinsley
Story by Alvin Sapinsley
Directed by Tay Garnett
Produced by Charles Russell
Director of Photography Charles Straumer
Co-starring Martin Landau, Vince Edwards
Featuring Barbara Luna, Ken Lynch, Byron Foulger, David Renard, Joseph Ruskin, Frank Wilcox, Alex Montoya, Richard Norris, Roy Engle, Rudolfo Hoyos

“Chicago, Illinois, October 1st, 1932. In thirty two hours in closed session, Judge McGinnis would consider evidence against a racketeer named Theodore Newberry, the owner of gambling parlors, speakeasies and houses of prostitution. Justice was finally able to catch up with this man. The key witness in the case against Newberry was an obscure clerk at city hall named Julius Imbry. To protect this witness, police guarded his home twenty-four hours a day.”
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Vincent “Mad Dog” Coll

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Airdate Nov. 19, 1959
Teleplay by Palmer Thompson
Story by Charles Marion
Directed by Andrew McCollough
Produced by Paul Harrison
Director of Photography Charles Straumer
Co-starring Clu Gulager, Lawrence Dobkin
Featuring Suzanne Storrs, Richard Carlyle, Dick Miller, Ronni Anton, Richard Carlin

“In the month of February in the early thirties, three widely separate events occurred. At Churchill Downs, the entries for the Kentucky Derby were closed. In Tijuana, Mexico, a gambling syndicate accepted a huge bet in the winter book on one of those entries. The bet came from New York City, from a phone in a building on the west side of Manhattan. It was placed for a sallow-faced, tight-fisted man named Arthur Flegenheimer, Jr., better known as ‘The Dutchman.’ Dutch Schultz, beer baron of New York who, with his body guard Benny Bristow and his chief lieutenant Lefty Gallagher, sat in his office figuring the take from his criminal empire, Mile outside three men waited: Fats Finney, Needles Bledsoe and their leader, a man who had a vindictive hatred for Dutch Schultz! A man who was one of the most fantastic gangsters of that era: Vincent Mad Dog’ Coll.” Read More

“Ain’t We Got Fun”

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Airdate: November 12th, 1959
Teleplay by Abram S. Ginnes and Robert C. Dennis
Story by Abram S. Ginnes
Directed by Roger Kay 
Produced by Sidney Marshall 
Director of Photography Charles Straumer 
Special Guest Star Cameron Mitchell
Featuring Joseph Buloff, Renee Sullivan, Ted de Corsia and Timothy Carey

“Chicago, summer of 1933. In less than a year, the long unworkable era of Prohibition would come to an end. But the byproducts spawned by that era, the hoodlums, gangsters, the viscous members of syndicated crime were determined to live on. Many of them were already turning away from liquor to other lucrative fields of crime: the numbers racket, call girls, gambling, dope. But in Chicago, in that year 1933, one of the most successful of the gangsters had other ideas. He was already well on his way to accomplishing them. His name: Jim Harrington, better known to the mobs as Big Jim.”
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