R.C.M.P. was definitely not from the "Dudley Do-Right" genre of features. Unapologetically cold, grainy and raw, the show was very realistic and stood up well against other crime dramas on TV of the day. French actor Gilles Pelletier portrayed Corporal Jacques Gagnier, whose sidekick Constable Bill Mitchell was played by English actor Don Francks.
Canadian film maverick, Frank Radford "Budge" Crawley spearheaded the co-production with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, British Broadcasting Corporation and the Australian Broadcasting Corporation in an attempt to fulfill his dream of sharing "the Canadian Way" with the rest of the world.
While not a fan of American-style cinema. he allegedly also wanted R.C.M.P. to sign with an American TV network. At the time, however, this couldn't happen unless they had full control over any shows they broadcast. Despite how lucrative a deal with a U.S. network might have been, Crawley would not budge and the show ended up with only a paltry take in American syndication.
The show ran for one season and a whopping 39 episodes, but despite not becoming the spectacle Crawley promised, the years to come would see R.C.M.P. reruns garner fans from all over the world, from even as far away as Hong Kong.
Crawley Films was apparently once Canada's biggest film production company outside of the NFB (National Film Board), but "Budge" ended up selling his baby to Vic Atkinson and William Stevens. Crawley died in 1987 and his empire went bankrupt, just shy of its fiftieth anniversary. R.C.M.P. would stand up well in DVD form, if anyone wants to take it on.
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