Amos Burke was a Los Angeles chief of detectives who was also a millionaire with a chauffeur-driven Rolls Royce, a mansion, and a high-wheeling lifestyle. The hallmarks of this series were ... See full summary »

Creator:

Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Episodes

Seasons


Years



3   2   1  
1966   1965   1964   1963  
Won 1 Golden Globe. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

It Takes a Thief (1968–1970)
Adventure | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

The adventures of suave cat burglar Alexander Mundy, who plies his trade for the U.S. Government.

Stars: Robert Wagner, Fred Astaire, Malachi Throne
I Spy (1965–1968)
Action | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A pair of intelligence agents posing as a tennis pro and his coach go on secret missions around the world.

Stars: Robert Culp, Bill Cosby, Kenneth Tobey
The Girl from U.N.C.L.E. (1966–1967)
Action | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

The missions of agent April Dancer of the United Network Command for Law and Enforcement.

Stars: Stefanie Powers, Noel Harrison, Leo G. Carroll
Burke's Law (1994–1995)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

This brief revival of the 1960s cop thriller continued the adventures of Amos Burke, a senior Los Angeles police officer and millionaire. By now, Burke was a widower with a son, Peter, who ... See full summary »

Stars: Gene Barry, Peter Barton, Dom DeLuise
77 Sunset Strip (1958–1964)
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Stu Bailey and Jeff Spencer were the wisecracking, womanizing private detective heroes of this Warner Brothers drama. Stu and Jeff worked out of an office located at 77 Sunset Strip in Los ... See full summary »

Stars: Efrem Zimbalist Jr., Edd Byrnes, Roger Smith
Perry Mason (1957–1966)
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

The cases of a master criminal defense attorney, handling the most difficult of cases in the aid of the innocent.

Stars: Raymond Burr, Barbara Hale, William Hopper
McHale's Navy (1962–1966)
Comedy | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

The misadventures of a misfit PT Boat crew during World War II.

Stars: Ernest Borgnine, Joe Flynn, Tim Conway
Hawaii Five-O (1968–1980)
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

The investigations of Hawaii Five-0, an elite branch of the Hawaii State Police answerable only to the governor and headed by stalwart Steve McGarrett.

Stars: Jack Lord, James MacArthur, Kam Fong
The Rebel (1959–1961)
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

After the end of the American Civil War, a former Confederate Army private roams the Wild West and, as a rogue drifter, gets involved in helping out various settlers threatened by various bad guys.

Stars: Nick Adams, Chuck Hamilton, Sid Troy
Bat Masterson (1958–1961)
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Dressed-up dandy (derby and cane), gambler and lawman roams the West charming women and defending the unjustly accused. His primary weapon was his wit (and cane) rather than his gun.

Stars: Gene Barry, Allison Hayes, Allen Jaffe
Combat! (1962–1967)
Action | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Combat!, a one-hour WWII drama series on television, followed a frontline American infantry squad as they battled their way across Europe. With mud-splattered realism, the show offered ... See full summary »

Stars: Vic Morrow, Rick Jason, Pierre Jalbert
That Girl (1966–1971)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Ann Marie is a struggling actress living in New York City. In between trying to find jobs acting and modeling she has time for her boyfriend, Don Hollinger, and her dad, Lew Marie.

Stars: Marlo Thomas, Ted Bessell, Lew Parker
Edit

Cast

Complete series cast summary:
...
 Capt. Amos Burke / ... (81 episodes, 1963-1966)
...
 Det. Tim Tilson (64 episodes, 1963-1965)
...
 Det. Les Hart (64 episodes, 1963-1965)
...
 Henry (64 episodes, 1963-1965)
Eileen O'Neill ...
 Sgt. Gloria Ames / ... (33 episodes, 1963-1965)
Edit

Storyline

Amos Burke was a Los Angeles chief of detectives who was also a millionaire with a chauffeur-driven Rolls Royce, a mansion, and a high-wheeling lifestyle. The hallmarks of this series were glamorous, sophisticated settings, unusual twists on formula homicide plotlines, and big-name guest stars. After a couple of seasons, its format was radically revamped. Burke left the police force and became an agent for US Intelligence. At that point, the show's name changed to "Amos Burke--Secret Agent". Burke's adventures were briefly revived in 1994, under the original title. Written by Marg Baskin <marg@asd.raytheon.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 September 1963 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Amos Burke, Secret Agent  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(81 episodes)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

This originated as the first installment of an anthology series, The Dick Powell Theatre: Who Killed Julie Greer? (1961). Dick Powell had played Inspector Burke on that show. See more »

Crazy Credits

In the opening credits, the title of the show was always announced by the voice of a woman saying, VERY seductively, "Burke's Law". See more »

Connections

Referenced in 100 Girls by Bunny Yeager (1999) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

My first favorite show
19 May 2002 | by (N Syracuse NY) – See all my reviews

The earliest shows I remember watching were kiddie shows or things my parents liked. I was about age 10 when "Burke's Law" came on and it was the first show I decided I really liked after I began to form my own tastes. It was a light but sophisticated murder mystery show that was more comedy than drama. It was the first of the "all-star" cast whodunits and lead to the later "Murder She Wrote", "Matlock" and "Diagnosis Murder", which were created by some of the people responsible for "Burke's Law". Levinson and Link, the creators of "Columbo", also wrote may of the scripts for "Burke's Law". The show was Aaron Spelling's first big hit, so it has quite a pedigree.

What really made it interesting was the eccentric characters who made up the suspects. They were played by an eclectic group of character actors taken from the usual TV "repertory" group, the stars of other shows, former and even current movie stars, silent movie stars and even people from the independent film movement and the British theater and films, who were happy at the American TV exposure and quick paycheck they got for performing a few scenes on the show. You can see oddities like Basil Rathbone listening in pain to John Cassavetes doing a "beatnik Hamlet", Sterling Holloway trying to blackmail Cassavetes, William Demarest running a hotel for ex-Vaudvillians where an acrobatic act earns their keep by cleaning the chandeliers, a convention of police chiefs, each one modeled on a famous fictional detective, (it anticipates Neil Simon's "Murder by Death"), a fake Russian aristocrat who really isn't fake but figures that no one will believe him anyway so he pretends to be a fake, etc, etc.

Gene Barry, one of several Cary Grant imitators on TV at the time, (see Craig Stevens in "Peter Gunn", John Vivien in "Mr Lucky"), is perfect for the lead role, better than Dick Powell in the pilot, which was made two years before as part of Powell's anthology series. Powell would have played the lead in the show but died of cancer before he could undertake the role. They say acting is reacting and Barry is the greatest reactor in TV history, the perfect guy to play off of all the eccentrics. Gary Conway, who should have become a much bigger star, (he was later in "Land of the Giants"), Regis Toomey, the gorgeous Eileen O'Neill and Leon Lontoc offered excellent support.

Unfortunately, somebody, (Spelling? The network?), decided to junk the show by turning it into an under-financed, back-projected spy show. Burke suddenly abandoned LA and is mansion and Rolls-Royce to become a James Bond style agent who traveled the world for a secret government organization headed by someone called "The Man". It was a tepid version of "The Man From Uncle" and was placed opposite what turned out to be the greatest of all spy shows," I Spy", which was in color and filmed in actual locations around the world. The local ABC affiliate in Syracuse declined to even show "Amos Burke Secret Agent" and from what I saw of the episode in syndication, I can't blame them.

Amazingly, the program had a third incarnation and the by now fabulously successful Aaron Spelling brought it back in 1994. Burke was back in LA chasing crooks in his Rolls, but with a son to help him. they dusted off the old scripts for the new shows. Only occasionally did we see the old spark of creativity, such as a victim freezing to death on the hottest day of the year, an ambulance chasing lawyer getting run over by an ambulance, Ephraim Zimbalist Jr. as a greedy tycoon practicing his golf drive from the rook of his building, (who cares who it falls on?), and Brian Keith as an ex-marine turned romance novelist who puts on a dress to get in the mood to write. Still is was a lot better than the other new murder mystery which followed it, "Diagnosis Murder" with Dick Van Dyke. Unfortunately, the network kept the wrong one, (I doubt they cried about it, as it went on for years).

Without the original "Burke's Law", there would have been no "Diagnosis Murder". The original remains the best whodunit in TV history and one of the most entertaining shows of all time.


41 of 43 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page