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Banacek (1972–1974)

TV Series  |   |  Crime, Drama, Mystery
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The adventures of proud Polish-American detective Thomas Banacek.


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Title: Banacek (1972–1974)

Banacek (1972–1974) on IMDb 7.6/10

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2   1  
1974   1973   1972  
Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. See more awards »
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Complete series cast summary:
 Thomas Banacek (17 episodes, 1972-1974)
Ralph Manza ...
 Jay Drury (17 episodes, 1972-1974)
Murray Matheson ...
 Felix Mulholland (16 episodes, 1972-1974)


Thomas Banacek is a clever and well-to-do insurance investigator living in Boston. He makes good money by solving the most intricate and unusual mysteries, and is very proud of his Polish heritage. His contacts include his street-smart chauffeur Jay and British bookstore owner Felix. Written by Marty McKee <mmckee@soltec.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

detective | See All (1) »


Crime | Drama | Mystery





Release Date:

13 September 1972 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


(16 episodes)

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

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Did You Know?


Peppard originally signed to star in a weekly hour series, but NBC instead chose to make "Banacek" a 90-minute show that would alternate with two other series on NBC Wednesday Mystery Movie. Peppard's contract was not modified, however, leaving him free to leave the series after two seasons to pursue other projects. See more »


Thomas Banacek: If you're not sure that it's potato borscht, there could be orphans working in the mines.
See more »


Referenced in Up Late with Alec Baldwin: Episode #1.4 (2013) See more »

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User Reviews

12 July 1999 | by (NEW JERSEY, USA) – See all my reviews

George Peppard WAS the show. Short hair when long hair was cool, wealthy and Bostonian, a ladies man with no equal, and the ability to solve impossible thefts for the insurance reward money. He was the man to see when all else failed. I still watch the re-runs when I get the chance. Sadly, too few shows were made. It was one of the four rotating Mystery Movies on NBC for a time. Supposedly, George Peppard walked away from a successful series because of the grind of the show. He was in nearly every scene and had to do voice overs too. Or else, one problem with the show that may have led to the decision to end the series was that, although entertaining and having great characters, the crimes were starting to get derivative and easier for the viewer to know the general solution to the problem in hand.

The inspiration for this show, for me, was the movie, THE THOMAS CROWNE AFFAIR. Take the important bits of the movie, a brilliant crime, Boston, wealth, the upper-crust life style, an insurance detective, and change the star from the thief to the recovery expert and you have the TV series, BANACEK. Of course, the added "hook" was making him Polish. This brand of Polish was the antithesis of every joke you've ever heard.

It would have been nice had George Peppard made some BANACEK REVISITED shows before he died. Like the NEW PERRY MASON, they would have been welcomed by his many fans. Peppard owned the role. Someone may play a similar role again, but they will not re-create the BANACEK mystique. George Peppard put his mark on that character for all time.......

17 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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If you like this series..... spacekadet3
A slight case of plagiarism benbrae76
Is Banacek Shown on TV Anymore? CaperGuy
Which episodes are the best? Angelface354
Name of music Banacek played at home ... duffy09
Who was that guy? SealordJohn
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