The series finale: James Marshall Gunther, the businessman who was the lead villain in "Targets Without a Badge" two shows earlier, returns to put out a murder contract on Dave Starsky. Starsky is critically wounded and seems to be dying. Hutchinson wants revenge, but can't seem to find Gunther -- until Gunther unexpectedly hands him a present -- the corpse of his own lawyer Bates in Gunther's office.
Did You Know?
France never purchased this series finale in the '70s. Starsky and Hutch
(1975) was wildly popular in France, boasting millions of viewers every week. Much like Bewitched in the USA, this show was in near non-stop reruns, year after year. The ratings were that good and remained constant. This is largely due to the French actors dubbing the leads: whereas in USA the show is mostly serious and often tedious, in France, the talent of the voice-over cast turned it into a very well-done action-comedy with hilarious dialogue, punctuated by key dramatic moments. Such humor is completely unknown in USA, as the French went largely off-script to add culturally-inclined humor, which only makes sense in French. (The same phenomenon is true of The Persuaders!
(1971), and of Jerry Lewis
's films.) The dull episodes were completely unknown in France: they were either not purchased for broadcasting rights, or they were dubbed in a such a way that a bilingual Francophone is truly watching two completely different shows when switching from French to its original version. Magazine news stories (as well as popular "Starsky et Hutch" fan books) of the era published that this finale was very dark, with Starsky shot and, at the end, hanging in the balance between life and death. It was further claimed that it was implied he would not make it, and that it thus was better for France to end the series on a more positive note. There being no internet back in the seventies, French fans never learned that this wasn't so, and couldn't fathom why the series was not as popular in the USA. David Soul
in particular loved to visit France, as they were both treated with Beatlemania-like fever. He later would move to the South of France for a few years. See more
Det. Dave Starsky
Gentlemen, I'm gonna propose a toast. My toast... to four very, very heavy dudes.
Det. Ken 'Hutch' Hutchinson
Well, at least three.
Det. Dave Starsky
God bless us all. I'm gonna remember this night for a long time to come.