Handsome, charmed PI Lance White (Tom Selleck) may speak lines that sound like they're from a 1940s B movie, but everyone is so attracted to him they hang on his every word. That is everyone except ...
Series about an ex-convict-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 rather on the cautious side, that's all. And he bears a very strong resemblance to Western television hero Bret Maverick. Rockford is sometimes assisted (and sometimes deterred) in his cases by friends Dennis Becker (a police detective), Evelyn "Angel" Martin (his cowardly former cellmate) and pretty Beth Davenport (his lawyer). Written by
Marty McKee <email@example.com>
There are two interesting commonalities between "The Rockford Files" and Hill Street Blues (1981). The first, which is fairly well known, is that the composer of the themes for both series is Mike Post and the themes from both shows were Billboard music chart hits. The second, lesser known commonality is that both shows featured a strong female attorney named Ms. Davenport--Beth Davenport in the case of "Rockford" and Joyce Davenport in the case of "Hill Street". Additionally, "Hill Street" premiered (January 15, 1981) almost exactly one year after the final original broadcast of "Rockford" on January 10, 1980; both were (and still are) considered groundbreaking in terms of style and emerging dramatic structures and elements; and both series were broadcast on NBC during their original runs. 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 »
Why didn't you get me 'Little Eddie' or 'The Greek?'
They said they wouldn't do it. They said the last time they were in a con with you, it blew sky high. What does he mean by calling me a halibut?
It's a fish that swims at the bottom.
I don't like him.
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The credits for guest stars, writers and other upper-level crew did not always appear right away, sometimes appearing as late as ten minutes into the episode. See more »
This show destroyed the Private Detective show formula.
At the time, most TV PI's had cutie pie secretaries (Mannix' secretary Gail and Barnaby Jones' ex Miss America Lee Meriweather in particular), Jim Rockford had an answering machine...
All TV PI's had nice offices with dark wood paneling, Rockford's office was the living room of his decaying mobile home parked in the lot outside a diner...
It took at least 3 guys fighting dirty to subdue the average TV PI, even short, fat, aging Cannon. Jimmy was always the one getting his head handed to him unless he figured a way to sucker punch his opponent...
At the climax, other TV PI's would pull their guns, shoot it out with the baddies and save the day. Rockford's gun, often as not was still at home in his cookie jar...
TV PI's always had a friend on the police force who would gladly do favors, looking up DMV records, etc. Rockford's friend on the force was always getting in trouble for even knowing Rockford. The Captains & Lieutenants on the force universally viewed Jim as low life scum & not worth the time of day...
The average detective would go about his business, assembling clues to solve this weeks mystery. That is the way it was with Rockford except that he was always dealing with hustlers, con men, ex-convicts and the occasional ex-girlfriends, every one of whose purpose in life seemed to be the bedevilment and aggravation of Jim Rockford. Not to mention the recurring role of Jim's dad Rocky (deftly played by that Trojan actor, Noah Beery) who was always after Jim to give up PIing and do something "respectable" like truck driving.
When this show appeared on TV, every other PI looked dull and one by one they disappeared as they lost ground in the ratings.
This is also the show that put Steven J Cannell on the map. Nothing that he ever did subsequently equaled this. In fact most of it was crappy formula detective shows.
The Rockford Files is the REAL DEAL!
Simon Sez, CHECK IT OUT!
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