Lux Video Theatre: The Armed Venus (1957)

Run Time - 60 min.  |  
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Moviedom's favorite aquatic star Esther Williams made her TV dramatic debut--as a villainess--in this 1957 episode of the NBC anthology Lux Video Theatre. Williams plays Vicki, an apparently schizophrenic young woman who goes from sweet to sinister and back again at a moment's notice. No one can quite figure Vicki out, least of all her erstwhile boyfriend, a nightclub owner. As Vicki continues to play the Enigma game, such unattractive tangibles as infidelity, blackmail and finally murder enter the picture. Knowing what Williams's fans would expect, writers Richard McDonagh and William Stuart) contrive to include a swimming party scene, allowing her to don a form-fitting suit and show off her underwater talents (the scene was originally written as a dance party, but there's not a whole lot of water-sport potential there). The Armed Venus was originally telecast live.