With his rumpled raincoat, ever-present cigar, bumbling demeanour and Sherlock Holmesian powers of deduction, disarmingly polite homicide detective Lieutenant Columbo took on some of the most cunning murderers in Los Angeles, most of whom made one fatal, irrevocable mistake: underestimating his investigative genius.
The Naval Criminal Investigation Service's Office of Special Projects takes on the undercover work and the hard to crack cases in LA. Key agents are G. Callen and Sam Hanna, streets kids risen through the ranks.
Series about an ex-con-turned-private-investigator named Jim Rockford who would rather run away than fight and would rather go fishing than work. He isn't a coward, and he isn't lazy--just a bit on the cautious side, that's all. And he bears a very strong resemblance to Western TV hero Bret Maverick. Rockford is sometimes aided (and sometimes deterred) in his cases by friends Dennis Becker (a police detective), Angel (his cowardly former cellmate) and pretty Beth Davenport (his lawyer). Written by
Marty McKee <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The character of Rockford was originally written in an unproduced script for the ABC series Toma (1973). That script was rewritten as the pilot for the "Rockford Files." Both ABC (who initially rejected the script for "Toma") and NBC had problems with the "Rockford" scripts. Executives at both networks thought the dramatic series scripts were too funny. The writers were always ordered to take out the funny lines. The writers and eventually the star refused. See more »
Even though Jim Rockford always drives a current model Firebird, many episodes feature stock footage shot with older models, especially in the 1975-77 seasons. See more »
Hey, I'm sorry Dad, you just caught me at a bad time. Reading that detective fiction doesn't help. I mean things aren't like that you know? They're not black and white. They're aren't any heroes left, they die young. (pointing to a book cover) His gun is deadly? Mine's in a cookie jar.
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The message left on the answering machine at the opening credits changes from episode to episode, always introducing another case. See more »
I only qualify this show's classic status in reference to the 70s because the fashion & overall style of the show is sooooooo 70s. I was a young kid in the mid-to-late 70s (when this show was on the air) and watching it is always good for a flashback or two. It's a reminder that although 70s fashion has made a big comeback, they still managed to filter out some of the really tacky stuff (as cool as Rockford was, I doubt his plaid jackets will ever come back in style).
The Rockford Files is about Jim Rockford, a single, 40-something Private Investigator who lives in a rundown trailer house in sunny Southern California (Malibu, to be precise), drives a gold Pontiac Firebird, and has a dad he simply calls "Rocky". Rockford served in Korea (same as the real-life Garner) and did time in prison for a crime he didn't commit, although he was later pardened. Despite being sharp as a tack and tough on his feet, Rockford is forever getting himself entangled with con men, mobsters, and non-paying clients that keep him from the getting any respect.
Other recurring characters on the show include police Sgt. Dennis Becker (Rockford's close friend and seemingly the only member of the LAPD who doesn't hate his guts), Angel Martin (Rockford's former cellmate in prison & constant source of aggravation), and Beth Davenport (his attorney who frequently has to show up and bail Rockford out of jail).
The typical episode finds Rockford taking on a seemingly simple case that turns into something much bigger, or stumbling onto an unrelated mess while in the course of his regular investigations. Sometimes trouble seeks Rockford in the form of ex-cons he associated with in prison or as a PI, and as you can guess, it's never boring. Rockford routinely gets in over his head and some of his escapes tended to be a bit too Houdini-like, but James Garner's laid-back, easy charm always made sure you kept rooting for him.
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