Mike Connors had been terrific as a smooth undercover cop in "Tightrope" (1959-60). It was a fast-paced, suspenseful 30-minute show.
Two attempts were made to revive the series in an hour long format. Both wisely brought back Connors.
The first pilot was called "The New Tightrope".
"The Expendables" which aired in 1962 was the second. A semi-documentary approach was used. I believe Connors now had a partner. There may have been an omniscient narrator, rather than Connors narrating. The producers splurged for two big name guest stars: cultivated sex pot Dina Merrill and the cool, debauched Zachary Scott. This pilot obviously had a lot more money to work with than "Tightrope" had, but the results were much inferior.
A final attempt to revive "Tightrope" was made in 1972. Christopher George ("The Rat Patrol", "The Immortal") starred as a seemingly disgraced cop in the TV movie "Man on a String".
"Tightrope" might even have been an inspiration for the fine undercover cop drama "Wiseguy".
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