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The Twenty-Four Karat Plague 

Four men plan to heist radioactive gold over a poker game. Then find out that it is mixed with Uranium.The man smelting and forming the planchets gets radiation poisoning and it goes down hill for them fast.


Don Medford


Robert Malcolm Young (teleplay), Robert Sherman (story) | 2 more credits »




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Karl Malden ... Detective Lt. Mike Stone
Michael Douglas ... Inspector Steve Keller
Vic Morrow ... Vic Tolliman
Herb Edelman ... Lew Morrison
Anthony Zerbe ... Eddie Whitney
Paul Jenkins ... Charlie Durand
Robert F. Simon ... Capt. Rudy Olsen
Simon Scott Simon Scott ... Prof. William Mason
Milt Kamen Milt Kamen ... Gordy
Wright King ... Les Slauson
Royce D. Applegate ... Joe - Truck Driver (as Roy Applegate)
Bern Hoffman Bern Hoffman ... Fisher - CNU Security Guard #2
Dale Ishimoto ... Gold Vence
Mark Rasmussen Mark Rasmussen ... Parking Lot Attendant
Julie Payne Julie Payne ... Mrs. Durand


Four men plan to heist radioactive gold over a poker game. Then find out that it is mixed with Uranium.The man smelting and forming the planchets gets radiation poisoning and it goes down hill for them fast.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Action | Crime | Drama | Mystery


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Release Date:

8 November 1973 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


When the briefcase full of money dropped and had fallen open at the end of Act 4, all the money strewn out on the street was play money. See more »

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User Reviews

Have you seen what the price of gold is these days
8 April 2015 | by kapelusznik18See all my reviews

***SPOILERS*** Hyjacking a shipment of gold bricks the robbery gang lead by the very unstable and scuzzy Vic Tolliman, Vic Morrow, never in their lives realized that it may well end up killing them due to the high levels of radiation the gold was subjected to at the California Northern University's science lab. The gang was already in hot water in killing, by inducing a fatal heart attack, on one of the university drivers that they pistol whipped. But the best or worst for them was yet to come when it was revealed by the university staff that the gold was bad news, in being highly radioactive, and instant death to anyone who comes in contact with it even the some 800,000 population of San Francisco.

With Det. Lt. Mike Stone, Karl Malden, and his youthful, some thirty years his junior, but senior partner in rank Inspector Steve Keller, Michael Douglas, on the case they search out all the deserted ship yards on San Francisco Bay to find the abandoned truck with it's gold cargo. That's to be smelted by one of the gang members flower peddler and ex-con Eddie Whitney,Anthony Zerbe, to be later fenced in Chinatown by fence-man Dale Ishimoto. It's when it became evident to Toillman that his pal Whitney is doomed to die from radiation poisoning that he keeps the fact that the gold he's melting down is radioactive hoping that by him dying he'll split the take, estimated to be $500,00.00, three with fellow hijackers Lew & Charlie, Herb Edelman & Paul Jenkins, three instead of four ways.

****SPOILERS**** Badly miscalculating his escape plan in using both Lew & Charlie to make it work Tolliman also knocks off, by smashing his brains in, the dying Whitney when he in realizing he's dying is planning to make peace with his maker by going to the police and confessing his crime. By now with both Lew & Charlie also coming clean in what they did by turning themselves over to the police. Det. Let. Mike Stone & Inspector Steve Keller, thus leaving Tolliman twisting in the wind as well as up the creek without a paddle. Making things ever worse for him Tolliman now completely losing it had also since murdered his Chinatown fence-Dale Ishimoto- for cutting the price for the gold he offered him in half:From $300,000.00 to $150,000.00. On the run with really nowhere to go and also possibly dying from radiation poisoning Tolliman makes a run for it through the streets of San Francisco with both Det. Let. Mike Stone & Inspector Steve Keller hot on his tale. Only to get hit, he should looked ahead not behind, by a car and killed with the $150,000.00 in cash he took from the murdered Dale Ishimoto strewn all over the street for anyone present to grab and stuff their pockets with!.

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