Papa Doc - The Black Sheep Hatti was the world's first black republic, ruled from 1957 to 1971 by 'President For Life' Dr Francis Duvalier - Papa Doc. Whicker meets Papa Doc in his Presidential Palace at Port au Prince in the company of his Tontons Macoutes - murderous civilian thugs. This show won the Dumont International Journalism Award at the University of California, Los Angeles in 1971.
Whicker In Stroessner's Paraguay - The Last Dictator Alan Whicker comes face-to-face with the last of South America's old style dictators - Don Alfredo Stroessner who has been absolute ruler of Paraguay for 19 years. One Paraguayan in ten is sold to be a paid informer and the Minister of Information has admitted there are so many informers that they run out of information and have to make it up.
Harold Robbins - I'm The World's Best Writer Harold Robbins, 56 and five times married, is the orphan who became the world's best paid writer. In New York he takes Alan Whicker round the Devil's Kitchen district of his youth. This won the Best Interview Programme Award at 1973's Hollywood Festival of World Television.
He's Been Hunted All His Life - Now He's Going To Rest In Peace Butch Cassidy's sister Lula is alive and well and living in Utah, aged 94 and with a fund of fascinating stories. In Salt Lake City Whicker drives the hydrogen car, learns from Dinosaur Jim why these monsters face a new extinction, and sees the world's biggest man-made hole
Whicker meets Percy Shaw who invented cats’ eye reflectors for roads. We discover how Percy Shaw was inspired on his way home from a pub named Rose Linda’s in Queensbury near Halifax in West Yorkshire, when he found himself guided by his car headlights reflecting off the tram lines.
Whicker looks at the cult of immortality in America, where people will pay $10,000 for the chance to live twice. They believe that while they are frozen for a century or two, science will find a way of re-animating them as medicine crosses new frontiers. A Michigan professor predicts it will become a trillion dollar industry. Twenty people are frozen already. On Long Island, Whicker talks to a Manhattan policeman, beside them, in a crate of dry ice, is his wife. His hope is that science will find a way to cure the cancer from which she died, and then invent a method of reviving her. On his death he will join her in the ‘freezatorium’. In the San Fernando Valley, Whicker meets the director of a scheme by which 20 bodies can be frozen in large tanks, liquid nitrogen preserves them in this frozen limbo and a salt solution replaces their blood. The hundreds who are willing to take out the $10,000 insurance policies for a second chance are formed into Cryonic Societies across America. This episode, above all, illustrates the complete rejection of the inevitability of death.
Whicker meets Germany's most eligible bachelor, Johannes, Prince of Thurn and Taxis. This remarkable man owns more land in Germany than any other person and lives in a glittering palace in Bavaria. At 12-years old, he underwent bullying and interrogation by the Gestapo, but did not crack, and ended up openly defying his inquisitors.
Whicker visits Norfolk Island, a tiny piece of paradise drifting through the South Pacific where the descendents of the Bounty Mutineers live, the seamen who set Captain Bligh adrift in an open boat and returned to their Tahitian women. Today most islanders are still called Young, McCoy, Adams, Quintal, making isolated Norfolk an 18th Century storeroom of people - the way we used to be, once upon a time. They speak a unique dialect, a soft and joyful blend of West Country English and Tahitian. Their most indomitable character is Girlie Christian, 76-year-old descendant of Fletcher Christian who tells an extraordinary story. Girlie is a television original.
Alan Whicker, always daring, rediscovers two vanishing tribes. The first on Dominica - where remnants of the proud Caribs live who gave their name to cannibalism. The second tribe are also flesh-eaters - when they can get it. Tribesmen dance in the sunlight, bodies are strangely decorated as Whicker arrives amid a wild and curious ceremony. They are ... London coppers! Metropolitan police now keeping the Queen's peace on the small island of Anguilla.
Whicker meets 36 year old Patricia, a merry warm-hearted woman and the mother of nine children by a variety of fathers. She is also a criminal who has been an inmate of Holloway five times. She specialises in housebreaking and shoplifting, but her lifetime of crime has included smash-and-grab, hi-jacking, gaol-breaking and armed robbery. In this episode she discusses her crimes and reveals her techniques to Alan Whicker. Patricia provides a revealing picture of a criminals' mind, and then speaks of the revelation which transformed her moods and attitude from then onward.
Gay liberation is one of the fastest growing movements in America. In this episode Alan Whicker attends a homosexual wedding in San Diego, meets a gay bishop, three transexuals and some members of a lesbian tide.
Whicker looks at an extraordinary group of people whose belief is absolute and baffling, they are members of the first and largest of several hundred Jesus Communes - the 'Christian Foundation' of Tony and Susan Alamo. He investigates the position of this enigmatic couple, so lacking in charisma yet commanding such complete and astonishing allegiance. Why are there Jesus freaks content to exist 30 to a room in conditions of squalor, when their unlikely leaders live on the hill above in such style?
In Whicker's investigation into this American city, we consider the background of America's greatest mass-murder, ride with the Police on their remarkable night-patrols, fly with the Helicops, shoot with the Fastest Gun in the West, play ‘The Game’ with Houston junkies, mingle with 140 widows in a club that costs £6,000 to join and sample life among the 'Never Sweat Set'.
Charmain Biggs, wife of Great Train robber Ronnie Biggs, talks at length for the first time on television about her life with Ronald. They discuss the background to his part in the robbery, his dramatic escape from Wandsworth and their life on the run in Australia where, eventually, a number of people knew who they were.
Americans have one Secret Society which everyone longs to join, based on an improbable sandbar down in Florida. For a century Palm Beach has been the Mecca of the Super Rich, living between tall walls and high hedges with only one money problem - how to spend it. Palm Beach, a never-never land, where no-one feels properly dressed without a yacht, is seemingly populated by bathroom billionaires known by their products, like Mr Kleenex, Mrs Listerine, Mrs Q-Tips and Mrs Gillette. In his remarkable study of America's new aristocracy at play, Whicker reflects that the rich should not be resented but enjoyed as a pageant - as they pass before us, a glittering entertainment. He talks to society hostesses, including Juliette de Marcellus, Helene Tuchbreiter, and Ann Hamilton.
In this fourth revealing report from his Indian travels, Alan Whicker journeys through the princely state of Rajasthan to chronicle the end of this golden era in which a Sun God has been transformed into a Mister, and to see what has happened to this most exotic race of Maharajahs. He meets the dignified queen mother - the Rajmata of Jaipur, who tells of being cast into prison by Mrs Gandhi. The present Maharajah keeps a team of polo ponies, and also plays the game on elephants, but lesser mortals must use bicycles. Jodhpur's palace is now an hotel, as is the Lake Palace of the Maharana of Udaipur, whose family is the oldest in the world. In the 15th-century desert city of Bikaner, the Maharajah remembers sand grouse shoots with King George V.
Whicker revisits one of Los Angeles more unusual marriages - plastic surgeon Kurt Wagner & his wife Kathy (“I’d Like to Think I’m Nearer to God than Frankenstein”, ITv TX 3rd October 1973). He finds that Kathy, now 38, has had two more improving operations since they last met - a full facelift and an acid treatment. Whicker gives viewers that sense of privileged eavesdropping as he peels away the attitudes of this unusual couple and reveals some startling truths about the surgeon whose patients call him Mr God. Why would he turn to psychiatry? What has led the couple to get involved in ESP and marriage counselling? Rarely has there been such a sting in the tail of one of Whicker's films...
San Francisco has become the capital of the world for a rapidly growing tribal community of self-styled beautiful people. They are staging a peaceful revolution against the pressures and greed of the western way of life. But the 'straight world' outside shows little enthusiasm for these Flower Children, with their long hair, far-out clothes, and dropped-out ideals. They're often viewed as parasitic and drug-addled. Alan Whicker finds himself surrounded by love, peace and harmony in 1960s San Francisco. (1967)
Alan Whicker takes a journey on board the world's most prestigious and luxurious train, the Orient Express, from London Victoria to Venice