Playwrights ’56

870. PLAYWRIGHTS ’56. (October 16, 1955-USA). NBC-TV. “The Battler”, based on a story by ERNEST HEMINGWAY, with PAUL NEWMAN, DEWEY MARTIN, PHYLLIS KIRK. Music composed and conducted by HARRY SOSNIK. Sponsored by Pontiac, Armstrong Floors, A fine adult drama about a young man leaving home to go “on the bum”. During his first night on the road, he meets a larcenous truck driver who steals his money, a cruel cafe owner and a sadistic train brakeman. Thrown into the night, his ultimate encounter is with a crazed punch-drunk fighter and his giant companion (whose main service to his friend is to club him on the head when his madness turns to violence). The story of how the fighter and his strange “protector” met and how the fighter went downhill fast after his wife left him creates a starkly realistic portrait of a way of life. Especially poignant is the last argument between the fighter and his wife, which takes place in a deserted prize ring. A class production all the way, directed by ARTHUR PENN (who went on to direct some of the best Hollywood films of ihe 60’sÑincluding “Bonnie and Clyde”). Well done drama from the era of Kerouac’s “On the Road”. 60 minutes. Television-Drama