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|Index||14 reviews in total|
I enjoy watching Ving Rhames and I am excited that he has journeyed
into TV land with the new series remake, "KOJAK" -- but no one, and I
mean NO ONE tops Avery Brooks as HAWK! Avery Brooks did what very few
blacks in TV during the 80's could do - he played an "afrocentric,"
pro-black, take no prisoners everyman, without being a narrow minded,
uptight militant. Militancy has its place in history but that's not
what AMCH was about.
I long to see that engaging snarl of Hawk's with the quintessential growling "ahhh" that he often followed up with. Only Mr. Brooks could give life to something that had no meaning.
It's a shame to see that Avery hasn't gotten his due props in movies and TV. Star Trek: Deep Space Nine was cool, but I wanted to See Avery in action---HAWK in action.
Maybe someday someone will think hard about putting Hawk on DVD for the masses -- not just for Africn Americans. I hope that times have changed just enough for the powers-that-be to factor in the huge crossover appeal of AMCH and of Avery Brooks.
What would be awesome would be to see Avery in action again, as Hawk, in a revival of the series. Surely there's a cable station or network out there that could truly give this show the chance it deserves to find its audience.
And hopefully, Mr. Brooks would WANT to do it.
"A Man Called Hawk" was one of those shows that were finely put together but was never giving a chance because of all the political technicalities. The general viewers are not ready for a strong black character that is intimidating and passes the racial stereotype of black characters. It should have lasted more then a season.
THE HAWK was then and still is now THE BEST. The only reason I actually enjoyed SPENSER: FOR HIRE was just so I could see THE HAWK in action, doing his thing as only he could. Avery Brooks will always be one of my favorite actors simply because of his portrayal of this unique character - which I refer to as my #1 Superhero. HAWK had it all - the look, the style, the dialogue, the weapon, the Street Savvy, and the cool to handle ANYTHING that came his way. I grew up during the late 70's and early 80's so I wasn't a part of the 70's blaxplotation that made Shaft a star. But to me THE HAWK will always be my Shaft. I only got to watch A Man Called HAWK once and I hope one day I'll be able to get a chance to see Mr. Brooks in action as THE HAWK either on Video or DVD release.
This show, naturally the spinoff of "Spenser: For Hire", had excellent
potential. Like most dramatic series which featured Black men in starring
roles, it did not survive.
Firstly, there is the "Hawk" character. I believe that it overwhelms White people, especially so in the late 1980's, to see a Black man portrayed so splendidly. "Hawk" contained many fine ingredients: intelligence, sharp knowledge of the streets, toughness when necessary, gentleness when necessary, the ability to speak in such a dignified manner, tact, a fine wardrobe, etc. In a previous special edition of TV Guide which ranked the most memorable characters in TV history, "Hawk" was mentioned, though I felt that he should have been ranked higher.
This man was smooth, suave, and debonair. "Hawk" was a "Shaft" without the blaxploitation element. Many in the Black community felt that the reason that this show did not last was because the character was far too "cool" for television. It was acceptable for "Hawk" to be the Black "sidekick" to "Spenser". However, having such a smooth Black character in a starring role on series television was too much. Of course, the reason that was made public was that the show was canceled due to low ratings. However, I digress.
It was very unfortunate that this show never had the opportunity to blossom into the great show it could have been.
Someone made the comment that with all the stuff out on DVD that there should be some release of "Hawk's" 13 episodes. I wish I'd known the show would be yanked off the air so quickly. I had an old front-loading VCR and could have -- should have -- videotaped it. As it is, I have one episode on tape somewhere, and I'm rummaging through my old VHS tapes to find it. If they EVER rerun "A Man Called Hawk" on TV again, I won't make the same mistake. However, my fear is that the show will never make it on usual roundup of "old-show" viewing such as "TV Land" or "Nick at Night" or any of the other cable networks. "BET" ran it for a hot minute but it didn't last long; they are too stuck on comedies and music videos. "USA" recently flipped the script on the old "Kojak" series and updated the Telly Savalas character with Ving Rhames. Although it's a stretch to hear Ving say "Who loves you baby?" while smacking on a lollipop, some of the same qualities that made "Hawk" memorable are also evident in this show: smooth, intelligent, in charge,smart dresser, and smart dialogue. You can bet that this time I'm videotaping the new "Kojak," but man I'd like to get my hands on a "Hawk" DVD collection.
I grew up during the 1950s and 60s; therefore, I am familiar with black action heroes like Woody Strode's Sergeant Rutledge, Richard Rountree's John Shaft, Robert Hooks' Mr. T (in the movie "Trouble Man"), Greg Morris's Barney Collier (on TV's "Mission Impossible"), Clarence Williams' Linc Hayes (on TV's "The Mod Squad"), etc. So, I can say with some experience that Avery Brooks' portrayal of "A Man Called Hawk" was the ultimate incarnation black male urban suavity. As much as we loved (and needed) the John Shaft image, Hawk took it to a whole new level. Hawk was like Shaft on steroids...and freely independent, too! He was the total package, and Avery Brooks brought him to life with genuine suspension of disbelief. It was the perfect dream. I was afraid OF and FOR Hawk because I knew he would not compromise.
Not that I'm surprised, but after all these years and TV show releases of the worst kind, No One Has Seen Fit to Put HAWK on DVD. Let's face it. This was a Black oriented show and the natural assumption is that Blacks and other minorities can/should watch and appreciate any show staring White males BUT the opposite requires special attention. Let's drop the double standard and make this show available to anyone who wants to see it. Hawk could have been better. Unfortunately it wasn't on long enough to take it's own course. Washington,DC as a location was OK but to have remained in Boston would have added an extra boost to the plot environment especially from a racial stand point. I guess we'll never know.
I remember meeting Bill Yates and Travis Clark after the first season
of Hawk wrapped. Clark was also working CBS' "Tour of Duty" and seemed
to be a rising star on the horizon. I wonder where he is today?
Perhaps Hawk was ahead of its time. Tour of Duty faded quickly also -- but now we have Steven Bochco's family-made "Over There" series. Perhaps Hawk was ahead of its time but could also come back in some form?
Of course, positioning Hawk against the powerhouse Cosby Show was another bad move. A wonderful news show featuring Linda Ellerbee was also slaughtered by the Huxtables, and Hawk was also no match.
Would be great to see this on DVD -- especially in memory of the late Moses Gunn who was the metaphysical "old man" character (and later joined Avery Brooks as his father in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine).
My favorite part about AMCH was that Hawk got to escape from being Spencer's second banana and gain his own cache. He was Afrocentric without being militant. Strong without being obnoxious. Before his time, perhaps?
With today's emphasis on gangsta rappers, a strong man with the sophistication of Hawk may be lost as a protagonist for future television or film roles. At least, we should have a DVD release for the true fans to enjoy.
I enjoyed the TV series Spencer For Hire and Avery Brooks as Hawk. When he came out with his own show I though that was amazing. The episodes that I saw I enjoyed very much but they could have been better, may be if the show had been on longer they would have gotten the chance to iron out all the wrinkles. All the TV shows of the past 10 to 20 years is now on DVD and and I think it would be a good idea to put A Man Called Hawk on DVD for those of us who enjoy Avery Brooks as an actor. I'm sure there are a lot of people who would enjoy seeing Mr Brooks A Man Called Hawk on DVD. I wonder if anyone knows who we could talk to about have this put on DVD. Wht do you think
Hawk fans rejoice. A Man Named Hawk in now on the regular line up of TV
One. There is a Labor Day Marathon. Also, TV One is running an
interview with Brooks on its Quiet on the Set TV show. Brooks speaks
about the making of Spencer for Hire. He also shares his views on a Man
The strong Black character of Hawk seems right in place in 2006. This addition to the TV One programming will allow an entire new generation of viewers. TV One should be commended for bringing this short-lived but powerful series back to life.
Thanks for bringing these 13 episodes back!
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