Television Drama Anthologies

by DanCushing | created - 18 May 2014 | updated - 29 Apr 2018 | Public
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1. Play for Today (1970–1984)

75 min | Comedy, Drama

A British television anthology drama series that aired on BBC1 between 1970 and 1984.

Stars: Alison Steadman, Nigel Hawthorne, Tony Caunter, David Daker

Votes: 232

2. The Wednesday Play (1964–1970)

75 min | Drama

Series of one-off plays made by BBC television, which gave breaks to a wide range of writers and directors in the late 1960s, such as Dennis Potter, Ken Loach, David Mercer, and John ... See full summary »

Stars: Edwin Brown, Neville Smith, Tony Selby, Michael Robbins

Votes: 78

3. Screen Two (1985–2002)


Producer Kenith Trodd was part of a 1984 team brought together to study how the BBC should respond to Channel Four's pioneering efforts in making movies for television and theatrical ... See full summary »

Stars: Geoffrey Chater, Roger Brierley, Bernard Hill, Warren Clarke

Votes: 140

4. ITV Television Playhouse (1955–1967)

60 min | Drama

Richard O. Sullivan as a child genius in the play "Honour Bright".

Stars: Campbell Singer, Thomas Heathcote, Richard Caldicot, June Brown

Votes: 34

5. ITV Playhouse (1967–1982)

Comedy, Drama

Anthology series of dramatic works.

Stars: Michael Bryant, William Simons, Katherine Barker, Geoffrey Palmer

Votes: 40

6. Armchair Theatre (1956–1974)

60 min | Drama

This show was a British television drama anthology series of single plays that ran on the ITV network from 1956 to 1974. It was originally produced by Associated British Corporation, and later by Thames Television from mid 1968.

Stars: Harry H. Corbett, Billie Whitelaw, Neil McCallum, Paul Whitsun-Jones

Votes: 121

8. Thirty-Minute Theatre (1965–1973)

30 min | Crime, Drama

It is an anthology drama series of short plays shown on BBC Television.

Stars: Robin Chadwick, Donald Sinden, Deborah Lavin, Helen Lindsay

Votes: 28

9. Comedy Playhouse (1961–2017)

30 min | Comedy

Anthology series of one-off, unrelated situation comedies.

Stars: Frank Thornton, John Le Mesurier, Robert Dorning, Bernard Cribbins

Votes: 33

10. Second City Firsts (1973– )

30 min | Drama

This was a BBC drama anthology series of short plays, written largely by first time writers, which were transmitted between 1973 and 1978.

Stars: Ken Kitson, Jean Heywood, Ivor Roberts, Alison Steadman

Votes: 8

12. Screen One (1985–2002)

Comedy, Crime, Drama

Anthology of unconnected movies of different genres.

Stars: Mark Chapman, Geraldine James, Alfred Molina, Julie Walters

Votes: 80

13. The Afternoon Play (2003– )

60 min | Comedy, Drama, Mystery

A series of individual Dramas each with a different story and cast.

Stars: Rob Swinton, Robert Stone, Tracie Bennett, Ray Burdis

Votes: 41

14. Dramarama (1983–1989)

Drama, Family, Fantasy

A series of plays for children which featured the supernatural frequently and science fiction occasionally.

Stars: Denyse Alexander, Ian Kirkby, Christopher Biggins, Bill Wallis

Votes: 87

16. Journey to the Unknown (1968– )

60 min | Horror, Mystery, Sci-Fi

A British anthology series about everyday people finding themselves put into unusual circumstances...many of them supernatural in nature.

Stars: Michael Callan, Joseph Cotten, Brandon De Wilde, Julie Harris

Votes: 165

17. BBC2 Playhouse (1973–1983)


BBC2 Playhouse was a British one-hour episode anthology television series produced by the British Broadcasting Corporation.

Stars: Ralph G. Morse, Gawn Grainger, John Bluthal, Trevor Laird

Votes: 80

18. Out of the Unknown (1965–1971)

60 min | Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi

A classic anthology science fiction series which features adaptations of stories by famous authors including Isaac Asimov, J.G. Ballard, Frederik Pohl and John Wyndham.

Stars: John Gabriel, Charles 'Bud' Tingwell, Erik Chitty, Peter Copley

Votes: 88

19. Play for Tomorrow (1982)

60 min | Drama, Sci-Fi

An anthology of six science fiction plays ; In "Crimes", a psychologist tries to cope with marital problems while working on the problem of prison overcrowding in 2002. In "Bright Eyes", ... See full summary »

Stars: Gavin Campbell, Tracey Childs, Robin Ellis, Denys Hawthorne

Votes: 16

20. Six Days of Justice (1972–1975)


Drama deals with a magistrates' court, which usually is their first encounter with the law in the U.K. The stories evolve around the types of crimes that are presented there from parking ... See full summary »

Stars: George Waring, Meadows White, Rex Robinson, Ishaq Bux

Votes: 8

21. Studio 4 (1962– )

60 min | Drama

Anthology series of plays filmed at the BBC TV centre's newly constructed Studio Four.

Stars: Marjorie Wilde, Frederick Farley, David Spenser, Dallas Cavell

Votes: 13

22. Thriller (1973–1976)

65 min | Crime, Drama, Fantasy

Anthology series of self-contained episodes with the genres ranging from murder mystery to suspense to psychological and supernatural horror.

Stars: Donna Mills, Gary Collins, Michael Jayston, Robert Powell

Votes: 611

23. Tales of the Unexpected (1979–1988)

25 min | Comedy, Drama, Horror

Dramatizations of many Roald Dahl short stories.

Stars: Roald Dahl, Andrew Ray, Forbes Collins, Richard Johnson

Votes: 1,630

24. ITV Sunday Night Theatre (1969– )

78 min | Drama

Anthology series of dramatic works.

Stars: Michael Balfour, Madoline Thomas, Sandra Bryant, Diane Cilento

Votes: 50

25. Scene (1968– )

24 min | Documentary, Drama, Family

Mixture of fictional and non-fictional thought-provoking short films aimed at students of school and college.

Stars: Nick Ross, Paddy Feeny, Jane Carr, Ken Jones

Votes: 16

26. The Play on One (1988–1991)


Various plays from each of the home nations.

Stars: Kenneth Cranham, Tom Watson, Susan Wooldridge, Phyllis Logan

Votes: 21

27. Centre Play (1973–1977)


Anthology series of half hour plays produced in BBC's Television Centre's studios.

Stars: John Barrett, Will Knightley, David Daker, Michael Gough

Votes: 8

28. ITV Sunday Night Drama (1959–1980)

Comedy, Drama, Romance

ITV Sunday Night Drama is a UK television anthology series produced by ABC Weekend Television, Associated Television (ATV), Associated-Rediffusion Television, and Granada Television.

Stars: André Morell, Victor Platt, Anthony Mayne, Donald Houston

Votes: 9

29. Great Performances (1971– )

TV-G | Drama, Musical

Filmed and televised versions of theater productions, such as plays, musicals, operas, ballets, and concerts from around the world.

Stars: Julie Andrews, Walter Cronkite, Plácido Domingo, Renée Fleming

Votes: 572

30. ITV Play of the Week (1955–1974)

90 min | Comedy, Drama

An anthology series from the U.K., from 1955 to 1974, producing about five hundred ninety-minute episodes from Granada Television.

Stars: Derek Francis, Alfred Burke, Arthur Hewlett, Esther Lawrence

Votes: 48

31. Wodehouse Playhouse (1974–1978)

30 min | Comedy, Romance

A series of dramatisations of some of P.G. Wodehouse's comic short stories - in which P.G. Wodehouse, himself, introduced some of the early episodes.

Stars: John Alderton, Pauline Collins, P.G. Wodehouse, Paul McDowell

Votes: 110

32. Screenplay (1986–1993)


An anthology drama series.

Stars: John Kavanagh, Tony Doyle, Michael Liebmann, Kenneth Cranham

Votes: 56

33. BBC Play of the Month (1965–1983)

120 min | Drama

Monthly anthology series featuring televised versions of plays.

Stars: Charles Gray, Eric Porter, Jeremy Brett, Lally Bowers

Votes: 91

34. BBC Sunday-Night Theatre (1950–1959)


Series of television plays performed live.

Stars: Richard Caldicot, George Woodbridge, Robert Brown, Brian Rix

Votes: 70

35. Omnibus (1967–2003)

Not Rated | Documentary, Biography, Music

Arts documentary series with concerts and experimental dramatizations.

Stars: Humphrey Burton, Kirsty Wark, David Collings, Michael Hordern

Votes: 153

36. The Sextet (1972– )


An anthology series of BBC television dramas on sexual themes. The same cast was featured in each production.

Stars: Denholm Elliott, Billie Whitelaw, Richard Vernon, Dennis Waterman

38. BBC2 Play of the Week (1977– )

Crime, Drama, Mystery

Anthology of plays and novels adapted into feature length movies.

Stars: Judi Dench, Richard O'Callaghan, Frederick Treves, Anthony Jackson

Votes: 22

40. Rooms (1974– )


Two part weekly dramas concerning the various drifters who rent rooms in a lodging house.

Stars: Jenny Twigge, Ian Redford, Anne Dyson, William Marlowe

Votes: 51

42. Scorpion Tales (1978– )

60 min | Mystery

Anthology series of stories "with a sting in the tail."

Stars: Heronimo Sehmi, Anthony Bate, Tony Britton, Lynn Farleigh

Votes: 13

43. Kraft Theatre (1947–1958)

60 min | Drama

A well-received anthology series presenting live television dramas.

Stars: Ed Herlihy, Vaughn Taylor, Valerie Cossart, E.G. Marshall

Votes: 126

44. Lux Video Theatre (1950–1959)

30 min | Comedy, Drama

Live dramatic shows featuring Hollywood stars. Initially, the show was a thirty-minute weekly show, but when it moved to NBC in August 1954, the show was extended to sixty minutes, and the ... See full summary »

Stars: Ken Carpenter, Jay Jackson, Otto Kruger, Gordon MacRae

Votes: 89

46. Playhouse 90 (1956–1961)

90 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama

Of the many anthology series, this is considered the most ambitious with outstanding talent in front of the camera. Attracting top ranked directors and scripts, it was often filmed live including the entire first season.

Stars: Richard Joy, Charles Bickford, Kim Hunter, Malcolm Atterbury

Votes: 272

47. The Kaiser Aluminum Hour (1956–1957)

60 min | Drama