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|Index||18 reviews in total|
Someone do a DVD boxed set with commentaries on this quickly before Malachi Throne, Susan St. James and R.J. leave us!!!! Much like the Man From UNCLE, Mission: Impossible and other shows "filmed" all over the world, the Universal backlot was Paris, Istanbul, Rome, etc. But the one thing this show did have that none other would was R.J., AKA Robert Wagner. The first season was great and when joined by his Dad (Fred Astaire) the scripts became a little more tortured, but still, you wanted to move and talk like R.J. When Bette Davis was a co-star as an ailing female thief that was going to hold a formal party, R. J. commented on the class she exuded by saying, "White Tie - First Cabin". He is what Austin Powers attempted to be, he is what a less brutal version of Connery's Bond could have been. No matter where he went, he could be the playboy who knew the best Bistro in Cannes, the grooviest bar in Picadilly, the best casino in Monaco. He had the women: Susan St. James before Rock Hudson, an early interracial fling with one of the Fifth Dimension-ettes. Studios are making a fortune on DVD releases. I am stunned with slack-jawed amazement that they can come up with the first season of the Brady Bunch but not a unique cultural event like "It Takes a Thief". Trust me, we'll buy it.
I remember that line as if it were said yesterday!! Robert Wagner as Al Mundy had a big influence on me as a 13 year old looking for a "style" of his own. I combed my hair like him and even tried to dress like him. This show had it all; beautiful women, exotic locations and a real cool theme song. I remember being quite devastated when this show was cancelled. Thought the folks at ABC were nuts!! We all know that Mr. Wagner went on to star in "Switch", "Hart to Hart" and the underrated "Lime Street". But I must admit that this was and still is my favorite. What a Gem!!
"Let me get this straight,........you want me to steal?"
That line was from one of the coolest espionage shows to ever come out of the 1960's. The series "It Takes A Thief" premiered in a era that was lined with espionage shows that included "The Man From U.N.C.L.E", "The Avengers","The Saint","Secret Agent Man","The Wild,Wild West","I Spy","Mission:Impossible","Man With A Suitcase",and "Get Smart" to name a few. "It Takes A Thief",which came in as a mid-season replacement for the 1967-1968 season,premiered on ABC-TV on January 9,1968 for the three seasons it was on the air until March 24,1970 producing 66 episodes all in color. It was among the last of the 1960's spy television genre,although it was be clipped by "Mission:Impossible" which continued onward into the early-1970's. "It Takes A Thief" which was created by television writer Roland Kibbee(who was the writer and producer for a lot of Universal produced TV-series including "Leave It To Beaver","The Munsters","McHale's Navy")who also served as executive producer of this series along with Frank Price,Glen A. Larson,and Jack Arnold. The first two seasons of the show were filmed on the lot at Hollywood's Universal Studios,but the third and final season of the series were filmed on location in Europe within Greece and Italy and locations in France.
"It Takes A Thief" stars Robert Wagner(his first role in a television series) was the debonair jewel thief Alexander Mundy turned international man of espionage and mystery who was hired by the U.S. Government's S.I.A. agency(secret intelligence agency)(his boss was Malachi Throne who was in Seasons 1 and 2 of the series,and was replaced in the show's third and final season by Edward Binns) for a range of dangerous,yet sometimes various assignments,but in some of the episodes he did his job with such grace and style. The series also had Fred Astaire(who appeared in Season 3 of the series) as his dad who was also a jewel thief,but also worked for the government as well. There was one of the episodes where(and one of the oddest and weirdest episodes ever produced)he would be in a tight jam and somewhere would have to risk his neck to save the damsel in distress like The Fifth Dimension's Marilyn McCoo,or other broads like Petula Clark,Nancy Sinatra and so forth. Others included Susan Saint James, Bette Davis, Ida Lupino, Fernando Lamas, Paul Heinreid, and Joesph Cotten made guest appearances. Susan Saint James appeared in five episodes of the series.
One of the underrated and better episodes from Season 2 featured the one and only Peter Sellers in a dual role;in which he would played an informant in one,and a cold blooded killer out to get our hero in another! Great ending if you get the chance to see it. The series originally ran on ABC-TV from 1968-70,and when the show ended I thought why destroy a good thing that was very good since this show was a spy show,and a good hearted well-produced crime drama/action-adventure spectacle which after this show ended Robert Wagner went on to star in other crime/action shows like "Switch" with Eddie Albert(aka from Green Acres),and Sharon Gless(from Cagney & Lacey) ,and "Hart to Hart"(with Stephanie Powers),and to the LOST Wagner series from the early 1980's(I forgot the title of it,but it ran on NBC)
"It Takes A Thief" did very well in the ratings since ABC moved the series to different nights during its run. Season 1 was on Tuesday nights at 8:30e/7:30c opposite Diahann Carroll's "Julia",and the long-running "The Red Skelton Show". For Seasons 2 and 3,the show moved from Tuesday nights to Thursday nights at the 10:00e/9:00c time slot opposite "The CBS Thursday Night Movie",and "The Dean Martin Show" which got it canceled on March 14,1970 to bad ratings. On September 14,1970,the show that ABC replaced "It Takes A Thief" was the short-lived science-fiction thriller "The Immortal".
Alexander Mundy was the coolest of the cool, a career thief who had been
given a get out of jail free card. Even though he had choosen to do
burglaries for the government, there was still a hint that Mundy might go
back to his old ways if he could figure out how to get away with it. The
show even became more cool when they added the character of Mundy's father
(Fred Astaire) who was also a career criminal.
One of the oddest episodes I remember was one that featured singing group, The Fifth Dimension. Marilyn McCoo's (lead singer) character had died in the first few minutes, but then she returned, stating, "I died, but now I'm back". They did a great acoustic version of "One Less Bell To Answer" in that episode.
Back in the day there were three shows that I had to see every week , or , the world might stop spinning or some strange like that would happen.They were "It takes a thief " , " Mission Impossible " , and, " Star Trek",In that order, and in case you didn't know Al Munday was the coolest guy on TV. And then make Fred Astaire his dad was just to much, they were the perfect match. The chemistry between characters, the writing,the locations. This I think was one of the perfect shows far ahead of it's time, I wouldn't be surprised if it ran today that it would get better ratings then some of stuff on the major networks.I was so overjoyed to see the entire saris, and look forward to sharing it with everyone.
Cool was a word that was used for many things back in the day when this series aired. 1968 was a very serious year yet here was something that wasn't serious yet I thought it was very cool, this despite the fact I was an antiwar peace love hippie. I was 18 and Alexander Mundy was my fantasy life alter ego. It wasn't about the plots, although the twist of the government turning to a convicted felon for help was novel. Nothing really groundbreaking about this series, nothing that sticks out in my memory all these years later about particular episodes, although I do remember the addition of Fred Astaire to the cast being a great way do show where Mundy got his mojo. It was all about Robert Wagner in his prime being the coolest of cool guys. The looks, the confidence, the overall attitude, Women wanted him; men wanted to be like him. I loved it and I recommend it.
It Takes a Thief was the coolest show ever. Wagner was suave, sophisticated, and always well dressed. Inventive stories, great dialogue, and watching Robert Wagner and Fred Astaire plot to knock over the casino in Monte Carlo is just irresistible. This would be a perfect candidate for a big-screen remake, but there's nobody cool enough to fill Alexander Mundy's shoes--maybe Travolta?
Every girl and woman had a crush on RJ back then--he was so f*****g suave! I loved this show and the premise, it was always intriguing. I always had a crush on Fred Astaire as well and when he joined the show, I thought, perfect casting. I will always have a soft spot for Malachi Thorne, I loved his mellifluous voice. I recall one particular episode that guest starred the beautiful, not to mention Black actress, Marilyn McCoo (5th Dimensions). Up until that point, RJ interacted with many women, but here was definite chemistry and I was sooooo disappointed that they wimped out on the kiss--Ar! As a young Puerto Rican woman, I knew this was a pivotal moment on TV that would have opened the doors to race relations on programming and they just didn't have the guts to do it--such a shame. Talk about missed moments. BTW, I was only 13-14 then. Get this out on DVD already so RJ and MT can make the talk show circuits. This can be remade with RJ playing MT's role--that would be fun.
I want to know when this is going to come out on DVD. Does anyone have an idea. I enjoyed this series very much and always caught all the reruns. My favorite episodes were the ones with Alexander's father, played by Fred Astair. The episode with the balloons was especially good. Is there anyway to vote on this series being brought out on DVD format for us to purchase. I also have a couple of other Robert Wagner movies that I would like to see come out on DVD. One of them was with Audry Hepburn and I think it was made for television. The name was "Don't just stand there". The other movie was a remake of "Indiscreet", I would also like to have that on DVD.
I, for one, would really like to see this series on DVD and I would buy it yesterday! Back then, I was a fourteen year old, eighth grade girl in love with Al Mundy, or Robert Wagner, or RJ, or all of the above. I agree with all the previous writers concerning how exciting a show this was and they must have had a good size budget to film in all those exotic places instead of a Hollywood studio. The acting was tremendous and the guest stars were very good as well. With all the other sub-prime shows on television now, why can't they bring back shows that are exciting and fun to watch. I think I will try and write TV Land and see if they would re-re-run the episode they re-ran this past summer - - Darn, I missed it. But, in the meantime, does anyone know if the DVD's on the internet are legit? Thanks for helping.
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