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Encyclopedia > Unsolved Mysteries
Unsolved Mysteries

Unsolved Mysteries Logo
Format Crime, Drama, Mystery
Starring Robert Stack
Country of origin Flag of the United States United States
No. of episodes 553 [1] (plus 7 Specials)
Production
Running time 60 minutes
Broadcast
Original channel NBC, CBS, Lifetime, Spike
Original run January 20, 1987 Revamping Fall 2008 on Spike [2] –
External links
IMDb profile
TV.com summary

Unsolved Mysteries is an American television program that was hosted and narrated by Robert Stack. It first debuted in 1987 and aired from 1988 to 2002 on NBC (1987-97), CBS (1997-99) and Lifetime in 2001-02. It used a documentary format and featured real-life cases of unsolved criminal cases, missing persons, unexplained paranormal phenomena such as alien abductions, ghosts and UFOs, and "alternative history" theories. Image File history File links Unsolved_Mysteries. ... For other uses, see Drama (disambiguation). ... Mystery fiction is a distinct subgenre of detective fiction that entails the occurrence of an unknown event which requires the protagonist to make known (or solve). ... Robert Langford Modini Stack (January 13, 1919 – May 14, 2003) was an American stage and movie actor. ... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... This article is about the television network. ... This article is about the broadcast network. ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... January 20 is the 20th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1987 (MCMLXXXVII) was a common year starting on Thursday (link displays 1987 Gregorian calendar). ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... A television program (US), television programme (UK) or simply television show is a segment of programming in television broadcasting. ... Robert Langford Modini Stack (January 13, 1919 – May 14, 2003) was an American stage and movie actor. ... This article is about the television network. ... This article is about the broadcast network. ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ... Documentary film is a broad category of visual expression that is based on the attempt, in one fashion or another, to document reality. ... Anomalous phenomena are phenomena which are observed and for which there are no suitable explanations in the context of a specific body of scientific knowledge, e. ... The Abduction Phenomenon is as umbrella term used to describe a number of kidnap individuals--sometimes called abductees--usually for medical testing or for sexual reproduction procedures. ... For other uses, see Ghost (disambiguation). ... UFO can mean: Unidentified flying object United Future Organization, a Japanese-Brazilian electronic jazz band UFO, the rock band that previously featured Michael Schenker UFO, the Gerry Anderson TV series United Farmers of Ontario, a political party that formed the government in Ontario from 1919 to 1923 U.F.O... Alternative history or alternate history develops out of historiography to identify historical points of view that have been ignored, overlooked, or unseeable. ...


The show was hosted by Robert Stack and (during its brief CBS run) co-hosted by Virginia Madsen. Later episodes featured journalist Keely Shaye Smith and television host Lu Hanessian as correspondents in the show's telecenter, from where they provided information on updated stories. Virginia Madsen (born September 11, 1961) is an American actress. ... Shaye Smith is an American journalist. ...


The show was known for its eerie theme song, which made use of a Phrygian mode, as well as Stack's unmistakable voice, which became synonymous with the show. Due to historical confusion, Phrygian mode can refer to two very different musical modes or diatonic scales. ...

Contents

Format

Unsolved Mysteries featured segments filmed in documentary style, with actors portraying the victims, perpetrators and witnesses. In most cases, however, victim's family members and police officials were also featured in interview segments that were interspersed throughout the dramatization. Before an episode begins, the following message is related to the audience: "This program is about unsolved mysteries. Whenever possible, the actual family members and police officials have participated in recreating the events. What you are about to see is not a news broadcast." For special episodes, like Mysteries of the Psychic Mind or Mysteries of the Afterlife, the message is: "This program is about unsolved mysteries. The re-enactments and special effects are actual eyewitness accounts. What you are about to see is not a news broadcast." Each episode of Unsolved Mysteries usually featured three or four segments, each involving a different story. Stack offered voice over narration for each segment, and appeared on-screen to begin and end segments, and to offer segues. Documentary film is a broad category of visual expression that is based on the attempt, in one fashion or another, to document reality. ... The term voice-over refers to a production technique where a disembodied voice is broadcast live or pre-recorded in radio, television, film, theater and/or presentation. ... In music, segue is a direction to the performer. ...


Viewers were invited to telephone, write a letter, or, in later episodes, use the internet to contact the program if they had information that might help solve a crime. The toll free number, 800-876-5353 (U.S.), and website (shown below) are still active today although the show is long out of production.


Unsolved Mysteries segments, all of which involved actual events, generally fell into one of four categories:

  • criminal cases : accounts of abductions, suspicious deaths, homicides, robberies, missing persons and other miscellaneous unsolved cases, where either the suspects were unknown or could not be located. According to the show, about 40% of these episodes resulted in the capture of a suspect or suspects.[citation needed]
  • lost loves : accounts of individuals trying to reunite with someone from their past; often involving closed adoption or people separated by circumstances.
  • unexplained/alternative history : "alternative" theories of history (among them the theories that outlaws such as Billy the Kid and Butch Cassidy did not die as history recorded it, that the Russian Grand Duchess Anastasia Romanov survived the 1918 regicide that killed her entire family, that the assassination of Louisiana senator Huey Long may have been an accident, and that the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr was in fact a conspiracy).
  • paranormal matters : accounts of miracles, alleged UFO/alien encounters (including examination of the Roswell UFO Incident and the Phoenix UFO Incident, or scientific questions about life on Mars), ghosts, Bigfoot, or other inexplicable phenomena.

Viewers were given updates on success stories, where suspects were brought to justice and loved ones reunited. “Kidnapper” redirects here. ... For other uses, see Death (disambiguation), Dead (disambiguation), Death (band) or Deceased (band). ... Homicide (Latin homicidium, homo human being + caedere to cut, kill) refers to the act of killing another human being. ... Note: This article refers mainly to closed adoption in the United States. ... For other uses, see Billy the Kid (disambiguation). ... Butch Cassidy (13 April 1866 - c. ... Russian: Великая Княжна Анастасия Николаевна ) (June 18, 1901 - July 17, 1918) was the youngest daughter of Emperor Nicholas II of Russia and... For other uses, see Regicide (disambiguation). ... This article is about the U.S. State. ... Huey Pierce Long, Jr. ... Martin Luther King Jr. ... Paranormal is an umbrella term used to describe a wide variety of reported anomalous phenomena. ... A miracle, derived from the old Latin word miraculum meaning something wonderful, is a striking interposition of divine intervention by God in the universe by which the ordinary course and operation of Nature is overruled, suspended, or modified. ... UFO can mean: Unidentified flying object United Future Organization, a Japanese-Brazilian electronic jazz band UFO, the rock band that previously featured Michael Schenker UFO, the Gerry Anderson TV series United Farmers of Ontario, a political party that formed the government in Ontario from 1919 to 1923 U.F.O... Roswell Daily Record, July 8, 1947, announcing the capture of a flying saucer. ... A photograph of the lights taken on March 13, 1997 by Lynne D. Kitei The Phoenix Lights, sometimes referred to as the Lights over Phoenix, is the popular name given to a series of optical phenomena that took place in the sky over the U.S. states of Arizona, Nevada... Adjectives: Martian Atmosphere Surface pressure: 0. ... For other uses, see Ghost (disambiguation). ... It has been suggested that Evidence regarding Bigfoot be merged into this article or section. ...


Broadcast history

Robert Stack, Host
Robert Stack, Host

Image File history File links Robert_Stack-UM.jpg Summary Robert Stack Host of Unsolved Mysteries, photo Licensing This is a copyrighted image that has been released by a company or organization to promote their work or product in the media, such as advertising material or a promotional photo in a... Image File history File links Robert_Stack-UM.jpg Summary Robert Stack Host of Unsolved Mysteries, photo Licensing This is a copyrighted image that has been released by a company or organization to promote their work or product in the media, such as advertising material or a promotional photo in a...

NBC, 1987-1997

The show aired on NBC from 19871997. When it first appeared on television, Unsolved Mysteries was a smash hit. It was originally hosted by Perry Mason's Raymond Burr as a television special. Karl Malden also hosted the show before Robert Stack took over full-time. Part of this popularity might be credited to older viewers who recognized Stack as Eliot Ness from the popular 1960s television hit The Untouchables, and Stack's Unsolved Mysteries persona seemed to echo his portrayal of Ness: he was garbed in a trenchcoat and depicted wandering through foggy landscapes. Unsolved was also one of the few prime-time shows of its era to appeal to fans of the supernatural, and used effective special effects to enhance tales of the unexplained. This article is about the television network. ... Year 1987 (MCMLXXXVII) was a common year starting on Thursday (link displays 1987 Gregorian calendar). ... For the band, see 1997 (band). ... Raymond William Stacey Burr (May 21, 1917 – September 12, 1993) was an Emmy-nominated actor and vintner, perhaps best known for his roles in the television dramas Perry Mason and Ironside. ... Karl Malden (born on March 22, 1912) is an Emmy Award-winning, Oscar-winning and Golden Globe-nominated American actor, known for his expansive manner. ... Robert Langford Modini Stack (January 13, 1919 – May 14, 2003) was an American stage and movie actor. ... Eliot Ness Eliot P. Ness (April 19, 1903 – May 16, 1957) was an American Prohibition agent, famous for his efforts to enforce Prohibition in Chicago, Illinois as the leader of a legendary team nicknamed The Untouchables. ... The Untouchables is the name of a television series that ran from 1959 to 1963 on the American Broadcasting Company. ... Special effects (also called SPFX or SFX) are used in the film, television, and entertainment industry to realize scenes that cannot be achieved by live action or normal means. ...


In 1992, NBC aired a short-lived spin-off series called Final Appeal. Year 1992 (MCMXCII) was a leap year starting on Wednesday (link will display full 1992 Gregorian calendar). ...


CBS, 1997-1999

By 1997, however, the show started to lose its audience, and NBC cancelled the show. It was soon revived on CBS. In early 1999, Stack was joined by actress Virginia Madsen for hosting duties in hopes to regain ground on the ratings, but to no avail. After two years, CBS removed the show from its Friday night lineup. This article is about the broadcast network. ... Virginia Madsen (born September 11, 1961) is an American actress. ...


Lifetime, 2001-2002

Unsolved Mysteries slowly faded, but in 2001, the program regained some popularity with a somewhat new audience, when it was revived on the Lifetime cable television network, where new episodes aired sporadically until 2002, usually on weekdays between 11 A.M. and 3 P.M. Old episodes still run in syndication on several television networks (notably Lifetime) in the U.S., Canada, and Australia; but as of August 14, 2006, Unsolved Mysteries is not being aired on Lifetime. On January 1, 2007, the program moved to Lifetime Real Women, which is mostly on digital cable. Year 2001 (MMI) was a common year starting on Monday (link displays the 2001 Gregorian calendar). ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ... For other uses, see United States (disambiguation) and US (disambiguation). ... is the 226th day of the year (227th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... The introduction to this article provides insufficient context for those unfamiliar with the subject matter. ... Digital cable is a term for a type of cable digital television that delivers more channels than possible with analog cable by using digital video compression. ...


During some shows, callers give tips to the telecenter. When the show aired on NBC and CBS, the number was displayed on the bottom of the screen. When it moved to Lifetime, the number was removed and an address was put in place. Strangely enough, Lifetime kept the telecenter segments in the broadcast, despite the fact that this wouldn't make sense to a viewer who had tuned in after the show was taken off NBC and CBS.


Some viewers blamed the decline of Unsolved Mysteries on the addition of co-hosts Keely Shaye Smith and Virginia Madsen, or blamed the show's late-era makeover, which involved the changes to theme song and putting its telephone center on camera. Ratings also declined when the program moved from its original Wednesday evening to Friday evening beginning in the Fall 1994 season. Shaye Smith is an American journalist. ... Virginia Madsen (born September 11, 1961) is an American actress. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ...


HBO

According to an Article from Broadcast & Cable, HBO Distribution is planning on bringing back Unsolved Mysteries when the cable channel Lifetime contract expires in 2008. The show would feature a new set, new music, recaps on old cases, as well as new cases, and eventually a new host. [3] Sticking with the eerie theme that Unsolved Mysteries has always had, some rumored names to be the new host include James Earl Jones, Bryant Gumbel, and actor Richard Jenkins. For other uses, see HBO (disambiguation). ... Lifetime can refer to: Life expectancy, the length of time a person is alive One of the American media ventures owned by Lifetime Entertainment Services Lifetime (TV network), a cable television network Lifetime Movie Network, a cable movie network Lifetime (band), an American melodic hardcore punk band from New Jersey... James Earl Jones (b. ... Bryant Charles Gumbel (born September 29, 1948), is an American television personality for news and sports programs. ... Richard Jenkins (born 2 December 1953 in DeKalb, Illinois, USA) is an American actor. ...


Spike TV

According to Broadcast & Cable, Spike TV, a male-focused Cable TV channel, will begin broadcasting a revamped Unsolved Mysteries from fall 2008.


DVD releases

Six 4-disc DVD sets have been released, each with a different theme. DVD (also known as Digital Versatile Disc or Digital Video Disc) is a popular optical disc storage media format. ...

The sets were re-released on June 21, 2005 with a lower suggested retail price. On March 21, 2006, a compilation set called The Best of Unsolved Mysteries was released, which contained selected segments from each of the earlier DVD sets along with some previously unreleased-on-DVD content. A special boxed set featuring the first six sets along with the new content from the Best of collection was also produced. UFO redirects here. ... is the 250th day of the year (251st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2004 (MMIV) was a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see Ghost (disambiguation). ... is the 257th day of the year (258th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2004 (MMIV) was a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... A miracle, derived from the old Latin word miraculum meaning something wonderful, is a striking interposition of divine intervention by God in the universe by which the ordinary course and operation of Nature is overruled, suspended, or modified. ... is the 299th day of the year (300th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2004 (MMIV) was a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Psychic (sīkĭk); from the Greek psychikos - of the soul, mental - and referring in part to the human mind or psyche (ex. ... is the 25th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see Murder (disambiguation). ... is the 25th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see Legend (disambiguation). ... is the 46th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 172nd day of the year (173rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 80th day of the year (81st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


External links


  Results from FactBites:
 
NationMaster - Encyclopedia: Unsolved Mysteries (2892 words)
Unsolved was also one of the few prime-time shows of its era to appeal to fans of the supernatural, and used effective special effects to enhance tales of the unexplained.
Unsolved Mysteries slowly faded, but in 2001, the program regained some popularity with a somewhat new audience, when it was revived on the Lifetime cable television network, where new episodes aired sporadically until 2002.
Unsolved Mysteries slowly faded, but in 2001, the program regained some popularity with a somewhat new audience, when it was revived on the Lifetime cable television network, where new episodes aired sporadically until Robert Stack's death in 2003.
Unsolved Mysteries TV Show - Unsolved Mysteries Television Show - TV.com (478 words)
Unsolved Mysteries explores unsolved cases in which you, the viewer, can call in or write and solve them.
Unsolved Mysteries has solved 40% of their featured cases, that is 300 cases solved...
Top Cops was an anthology series (similar to Unsolved Mysteries) from Larry Jacobson and Sonny Grosso, with the music provided by Domenic Troiano for CBS Broadcast International.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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