The Rockford Files (1974–1980)
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Trouble in Chapter 17 

Jim's drawn into being bodyguard for an author, who believes her popular book on the perfect wife's the cause of death threats against her.


William Wiard


Roy Huggins (created by), Stephen J. Cannell (created by) | 1 more credit »




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
James Garner ... Jim Rockford
Noah Beery Jr. ... Joseph 'Rocky' Rockford (as Noah Beery)
Joe Santos ... Dennis Becker
Ed Nelson ... Edgar 'Bud' Clement
Arthur Roberts ... Jack Avery
Claudette Nevins ... Ann Louise Clement
Donna Baccala ... Janet Avery (as Donna Bacalla)
Arlene Martel ... Marty Bach (as Tasha Martell)
Al Checco ... Sam
Bob Navarro Bob Navarro ... 3rd Reporter
Toni Berrell Toni Berrell ... Woman
Candace Howerton Candace Howerton ... Gloria
Mario Machado ... 1st Reporter
Scott Ellsworth Scott Ellsworth ... Zinberg
Mike Steele Mike Steele ... Lyle Van Houghton (as Michael M. Steele)


Jim's drawn into being bodyguard for an author, who believes her popular book on the perfect wife's the cause of death threats against her.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis



Did You Know?


The skinny kid who is never credited but is ubiquitous as a background character is spotted busing tables at the Taco Stand right after Jim and the others get shot at. See more »


One of the Mercedes and Jim's firebird both have their outer High-beams disconnected as they drive away from the secretary's apartment. Federal law prohibits headlights being wired in that way, the outer beams must always be on either high or low if any of the lights are on. See more »


Jim Rockford: I keep getting the feeling that I'm Chapter 17 in your book - the beneficial effect of the other man on domestic tranquility.
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The Rockford Files
(Main Title Theme)
Written by Mike Post and Pete Carpenter
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User Reviews

Never judge a book...
9 July 2015 | by stones78See all my reviews

This is one of the few episodes that I would've never guessed the ending, or even the middle, as it was very well written, and had some surprises along the way. Some of the faces include Claudette Nevins, who I thought was average, Ed Nelson, who I thought was great, Arlene Martel, Arthur Wilson, and Donna Baccala, who didn't do that much after this. We get a few nice shots of the beach, the Firebird, and a few cool scenes with Dennis and Rocky. I think the writers of Columbo might have "borrowed" the opening scene from this episode, which has a famous female writer addressing a group of women, with Rockford being the only male in attendance; in the Columbo episode, he was the only male listening to another famous author, played by Ruth Gordon, but I digress. The writing was so good here that you may not know who to sympathize with, or which person is really the evil one. How they manage to add twists and turns in just under an hour is beyond me. I would recommend you try and catch this whenever you get the chance.

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Release Date:

23 September 1977 (USA) See more »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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