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An ABC anthology television series that played single-episode television programs from overseas, but also produced and promoted new Australian works.
The individual works had no explicit thematic connection to one another, and the term 'theatre' was applied loosely: some instalments were adaptations of stage plays, but many appear to have been written directly as 'television plays'. The series also semi-regularly aired operas.
In some instances, the productions were imported wholesale from other countries: 'Collect Your Hand Luggage' (aired 20 October 1965), for example, is a re-titled broadcast of ITV Television Playhouse episode 'Collect Your Hand Baggage' (originally aired in 1963).
In other instances, the episodes are Australian productions of international works: 'Tartuffe' (aired 13 October 1965), for example, is an Australian production of the Moliere play, produced Henri Safran and with an Australian cast. These productions are only indexed individually on AustLit if there is a discernible Australian script-writer and/or localisation of the production.
Wednesday Theatre followed a common pattern for anthology series on early Australian television, in that the Australian content rapidly dropped away and the series became primarily re-screenings of British productions: see also Stuart Wagstaff's World Playhouse.
For a full listing of episodes and airdates, see under Film Details.
form yNice 'n JuicyColin Free,
( dir. Eric Tayler)Sydney:Australian Broadcasting Commission,1966Z18329111966series - publisher film/TV
According to Don Storey in his Classic Australian Television, the sit-com Nice 'n Juicy was the first series (as opposed to a serial, a multi-episode program with a continuing narrative instead of self-contained episodes) produced in-house by the Australian Broadcasting Commission.
According to Storey,
Nice 'n Juicy is set on a rundown citrus orchard in New South Wales, at a fictitious location called Wyvern Creek. Jack and Mort Hamlin are two brothers who live a lonely and tenuous existence on the decaying 25 acre property willed to them by their father. The elder brother, Jack, is conservative and wishes to develop the old family property. Mort wants to sell up and move to the bright lights of Sydney and live high on the profits. Jack, however, is a depressing realist and knows that any sale is going to be engulfed by a double mortgage.
Though the first series was expanded from six episodes to thirteen, and the show both rated respectably and was popular with critics, the ABC chose not to undertake a second series. Storey concludes that 'the show has not aged well, and today it comes across as rather dated, largely due to the tedious stage play atmosphere that the restrictive single set imposes'.
Contemporary news reports indicated that author Colin Free based the series on his own script, How Do You Spell Matrimony? (see, for example, 'ABC Drops Yearly Serial Idea' in Works About).