J.J. Starbuck

Created by Stephen J. Cannell (1941-2010) "I reckon a diamond is just a hunk of coal that stuck to the job." Did someone say Texas? Just in case anyone missed the point, TV's cornpone-spouting J.J. (JEROME JEREMIAH) STARBUCK (played by Dale Robertson) wears ten-gallon hats, cowboy boots and fancy western shirts, drives a flashy limo with … Continue reading J.J. Starbuck

Oscar “Duke” Ramsey (The Duke)

Created by Stephen J. Cannell The Duke was yet another Stephen J. Cannell-produced P.I. show that flopped. In the pilot, Up Against the Odds (April 5, 1979), we meet 38-year old Chicago prizefighter OSCAR "DUKE" RAMSEY (played by Robert "The Wild, Wild West, Hawaiian Eye" Conrad), who decides--with some help from his long-time manager Benny--that … Continue reading Oscar “Duke” Ramsey (The Duke)

What Hath Rockford Wrought?

The Other Eyes of The Rockford Files   Much like Maverick, Rockford co-creator Roy Huggins' other hit show starring James Garner, The Rockford Files delighted in poking fun at its own genre, seeding the show with numerous cock-eyed takes on the private eye. Here are the most memorable: Gandolph "Gandy" Fitch  Created by Gordon Dawson … Continue reading What Hath Rockford Wrought?

Richie Brockelman (Richie Brockelman, Private Eye)

Created by Stephen J. Cannell & Steven Bochco The detective wore tennis shoes? RICHIE BROCKELMAN can best be described as a younger, less cynical version of Jim Rockford. Played by Dennis Dugan, he comes across, in his jeans and tennis shoes, as being rather young and naive, which works to his advantage. But Richie is … Continue reading Richie Brockelman (Richie Brockelman, Private Eye)

Jake Axminster (City of Angels)

Created by Stephen J. Cannell and Roy Huggins "This is the city of Los Angeles, one of the least corrupt cities in the United States, and its police force is one of the most honest and efficient in the world. But it wasn't always so..." -- from the opening credits "They call LA the City of … Continue reading Jake Axminster (City of Angels)

Marcus “Gabby” Hayes & Gandolph “Gandy” Fitch (Gabby & Gandy)

Gandolph Fitch created by Gordon Dawson Marcus Hayes created by Chas. Floyd Johnson, Dorothy J. Bailey & Stephen J. Cannell "Gabby and Gandy--sounds like a puppet show." --Jim, on learning of the proposed new partnership, in "Just Another Polish Wedding" I loved the original Spenser for Hire, but have always wanted to see a crime show … Continue reading Marcus “Gabby” Hayes & Gandolph “Gandy” Fitch (Gabby & Gandy)

Lance White (The Rockford Files)

Created by Stephen J. Cannell "Hunches don't come from any place, Jim, they're just hunches. That's how we solve our cases. We get hunches, they turn out to be right, and the case gets solved. Gee, I don't know how you survive as a private investigator, Jim. You don't seem to know any of this … Continue reading Lance White (The Rockford Files)

Dennis Booker

Created by Stephen J. Cannell & Erik Blakeney "No badge. No back-up. No problem." God help me. Although it was pretty much universally dismissed at the time as "Mannix for the MTV generation," I sort of enjoyed the absolutely preposterous late-eighties TV show Booker. For some reason, I didn't find it all that bad.]. Sure, it … Continue reading Dennis Booker

Ray (Stingray)

Created by Stephen J. Cannell (1941-2010) "Someday I'll return, and I'll ask you to perform a favor, and you must do it" -- Ray's terms-of-service RAY (or whatever his name was), as played by Nick Mancuso in television's short-lived Stingray (1985, NBC) was an enigmatic ex-Intelligence officer who helped people with their problems, and valued … Continue reading Ray (Stingray)

Cody Allen, Nick Ryder & Murray “Boz” Bozinsky (Riptide)

Created by Stephen J. Cannell and Frank Lupo Riptide was Stephen J. Cannell's attempt to update Surfside Six for the eighties, with a few Magnum P.I. touches. It featured good-looking hunks (and Vietnam vets) Perry King as CODY ALLEN and Joe Penny as NICK RYDER, who team up with computer nerd MURRAY "BOZ" BOZINSKY (Thom … Continue reading Cody Allen, Nick Ryder & Murray “Boz” Bozinsky (Riptide)