Sam McCloud is a Marshal from a Taos, New Mexico, who takes a temporary assignment in the New York City Police. His keen sense of detail and detecting subtle clues, learned from his experience, enable him to nab unsuspecting criminals despite his unbelieving boss.
Considered one of the most violent television series of its era, "Mannix" followed the adventures of L.A. private eye Joe Mannix, who first worked for a detective agency known as Intertect, which relied heavily on computers and a large network of operatives. In the second season, Mannix opened his own agency, with police widow Peggy Fair working for him as his secretary. Each episode featured plenty of fistfights, car chases and shootouts. Written by
Marty McKee <firstname.lastname@example.org>
He's not as fabulously wealthy as Amos Burke,nor famous as Jim Rockford or Columbo,but few television detectives have remained and beloved and under the radar cool as Mike Connors' Joe Mannix. The television series "Mannix" was the return of the private eye detective shows and this was a reply to the domination of the weekly espionage shows that were all over the place during the 1960's. Created by the team of Richard Levinson and William Link under executive producer Bruce Geller and associate producer Barry Crane along with producers Wilton Schiller along with Ivan Goff and Ben Roberts(whom wrote scripts for some of the episodes)and under the executive in charge of production Herb Solow and Douglas S. Cramer for Desilu/Paramount Television,"Mannix" produced an astounding 194 episodes-all in color for CBS and ran for an impressive eight seasons on the network from September 16,1967 until April 13,1975. The theme music was composed by the great Lalo Schirfin(one of the all time television theme greats).
"Mannix" is one of the great detective shows of all time and here's why. One,you had some very good writing and excellent camera work in both angles and continuity. The other,right from the start however,Mike Connors emitted broad-shouldered,Everyman solidness. Mannix solves his cases with his brains,his gun,and his fists. He was an all-purpose detective. In season one of "Mannix"(and from the debut episode),the intital concept of the series was intriguing from the start: a high-tech investigative agency,Intertect,headed by Joesph Campanella(the boss Lew Wickersham)possessed all the tools to analyze and fight crime,except one;a P.I.'s instincts,that ability to play hunches and make correct decisions by 'gut feeling'. So they hired the best veteran private eye in the business,Joe Mannix to take the cases and solve the crimes. Mannix utilized his services whenever the 'human touch' was required,while backing him with all their resources. While the Intertect episodes were often imaginative,and Connors and Campanella had good chemistry,fans were tuning in each week to watch Joe Mannix solve cases,deal with crime and mysteries and take on the baddies despite being beaten,tortured,drugged or worse managed to emerge victorious. With his chiseled features and thick jet black hair,Mannix was a hero attractive enough to appeal to women,yet tough enough to keep men watching as well despite being fiercely loyal to his Greek heritage.
However,Campanella and Intertect were dropped by the second season. Mannix left the firm at the start of the 1968-69 season and set up shop as a private investigator,accompanied by a secretary,Peggy Fair(Gail Fisher,in one of the first roles on a drama series for a African-American actress),the widow of a cop. With aid from his 'buddies' on the force(Robert Wood,Jack Ging,and "Brady Bunch" patriarch Robert Reed who played Mannix's superior Lt. Tobias),Mannix would take on cases as simple as petty theft,to unsolve murders,blackmail,while still taking his share of abuse each week. Over the course of eight seasons,Mannix was shot 17 times,knocked unconscious 55 times and was drugged 12 times. "Mannix" proved to be a winner in the ratings too,nominated for several Emmys and it was producer Bruce Geller's most successful show after the huge runaway success of "Mission:Impossible". In 1970,actress Gail Fisher became the first black actress to win the Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series for her role as Peggy Fair on "Mannix"(beating out Barbara Anderson of Ironside and Peggy Lipton of The Mod Squad),and was nominated for four Emmys,winning once and 3 Golden Globe Awards(she won in 1973 for Best Actress)and in 1971.
THE BEST EPISODES: Season One of its debut episode "The Name is Mannix",and episode 13 of the series "A View of Nowhere" were impressive. Seasons 2 thru 4 were brilliant,while the last few episodes of its last two seasons(season 7 from the 1973-1974 season,and the final season 1974-1975,season 8)were action packed and fill to the hill with excitement. The success of "Mannix" would open the door for a whole new generation of 'gumshoe detectives' to follow,from "Hawaii Five-O",to "Columbo","Ironside"(which premiered that same year-1967), "Dan August","MacMillan and Wife","Banacek","Kojak","Baretta","Cannon", to "Barnaby Jones","The Rockford Files",and "Policewoman".
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