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The Detectives (1959 TV series)

The Detectives (also known as The Detectives Starring Robert Taylor and Robert Taylor's Detectives) is an American crime drama series which ran on ABC during its first two seasons (sponsored by Procter & Gamble), and on NBC during its third and final season. The series, starring motion picture star Robert Taylor, was produced by Four Star Television in association with Levy-Gardner-Laven Productions.[1]

The Detectives
Ursula Thiess Robert Taylor The Detectives 1960.JPG
Robert Taylor as Capt. Matt Holbrook and wife Ursula Thiess as Lisa Bonay in The Detectives
Also known as''Robert Taylor's Detectives''
GenreCrime drama
Written byLee Berg
Borden Chase
Patricia Chase
Calvin Clements Sr.
Norman T. Herman
Michael Morris
Louis Pelletier
Gene Roddenberry
Alvin Sapinsley
Palmer Thompson
Directed byLewis Allen
Richard Carlson
Thomas Carr
Alvin Ganzer
Murray Golden
Arthur Hiller
Arnold Laven
Don McDougall
Don Medford
Ted Post
Paul Wendkos
StarringRobert Taylor
Tige Andrews
Russell Thorson
Lee Farr
Mark Goddard
Adam West
Composer(s)Herschel Burke Gilbert
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons3
No. of episodes97
Production
Producer(s)Levy-Gardner-Laven
Arthur H. Nadel
CinematographyJoseph F. Biroc
Wilfred M. Cline
Editor(s)Lyle Boyer
Marsh Hendry
Running time25 minutes
(1959–1961)
50 minutes
(1961–1962)
Release
Original networkABC (1959–1961)
NBC (1961–1962)
Picture formatBlack-and-white
Audio formatMonaural
Original releaseOctober 16, 1959 (1959-10-16) –
May 18, 1962 (1962-05-18)

SynopsisEdit

Taylor stars as Detective Captain Matt Holbrook, the tough, no-nonsense head of an elite police investigative unit in a major U.S. city. Ostensibly, each man in Holbrook's hand-picked squad of detectives came from a different division. Lt. Johnny Russo (Tige Andrews) was from burglary, Lt. Jim Conway (Lee Farr) came from Homicide and Lt. Otto Lindstrom (Russell Thorson) was from the Bunco Squad.[2]

ProductionEdit

In the series' second season, Farr left the series and was replaced by Mark Goddard as Detective Sgt. Chris Ballard. Future Batman star Adam West joined the cast during the third season as Sgt. Steve Nelson. The series moved to NBC for its third season and was increased from thirty to sixty minutes. The series was also retitled to Robert Taylor's Detectives. A total of 97 episodes were produced before the series was canceled in 1962.[3] The series was produced for Four Star by Levy-Gardner-Laven Productions, which produced other successful Four Star series, such as The Rifleman, and The Big Valley.

Future Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry was a contributing writer to the series .

CastEdit

EpisodesEdit

Season 1: 1959–60Edit

No.
overall
No. in
season
Title Directed by Written by Original air date
11"The Streger Affair"Arnold LavenPalmer ThompsonOctober 16, 1959 (1959-10-16)
22"Shot in the Dark"Arnold LavenChristopher KnopfOctober 23, 1959 (1959-10-23)
33"The Hiding Place"Joseph H. LewisDonald S. SanfordOctober 30, 1959 (1959-10-30)
44"Decoy"James NeilsonLouis PelletierNovember 6, 1959 (1959-11-06)
55"The Murderous Deadline"Don MedfordPalmer ThompsonNovember 13, 1959 (1959-11-13)
66"The Bait"Don MedfordLeonard FreemanNovember 20, 1959 (1959-11-20)
77"My Name is Tommy"TBATBANovember 27, 1959 (1959-11-27)
88"Back-Seat Driver"Arnold LavenMeyer DolinskyDecember 4, 1959 (1959-12-04)
99"Two-Time Loser"TBATBADecember 11, 1959 (1959-12-11)
1010"The Long Drive"TBATBADecember 18, 1959 (1959-12-18)
1111"Masquerade"TBATBADecember 25, 1959 (1959-12-25)
1212"Life in the Balance"Don MedfordJoseph StefanoJanuary 1, 1960 (1960-01-01)
1313"Karate"Ted PostGene RoddenberryJanuary 8, 1960 (1960-01-08)
1414"Blue Fire"Don MedfordGene RoddenberryJanuary 15, 1960 (1960-01-15)
1515"My Brother's Keeper"Don MedfordHerbert Abbott SpiroJanuary 22, 1960 (1960-01-22)
1616"House Call"Arnold LavenPeter ParkerJanuary 29, 1960 (1960-01-29)
1717"The Trap"Don MedfordHerbert Abbott SpiroFebruary 5, 1960 (1960-02-05)
1818"Conspiracy of Silence"Stuart RosenbergPeter PackerFebruary 12, 1960 (1960-02-12)
1919"Twelve Hours to Live"Arthur HillerPeter PackerFebruary 19, 1960 (1960-02-19)
2020"Anatomy of Fear"Don MedfordJoseph PetraccaFebruary 26, 1960 (1960-02-26)
2121"Armed and Dangerous"William GrahamLouis PelletierMarch 4, 1960 (1960-03-04)
2222"The Bad Eye of Rosa Rosetti"Don MedfordJoseph StefanoMarch 11, 1960 (1960-03-11)
2323"Time and Tide"Harry KellerDavid HarmonMarch 18, 1960 (1960-03-18)
2424"Little Girl Lost"Don MedfordCalvin J. ClementsMarch 25, 1960 (1960-03-25)
2525"The Chameleon Truck"TBATBAApril 1, 1960 (1960-04-01)
2626"The Old Gang"TBATBAApril 8, 1960 (1960-04-08)

Season 2: 1960–61Edit

No.
overall
No. in
season
Title Directed by Written by Original air date
341"The New Man"Don MedfordLee KarsonSeptember 16, 1960 (1960-09-16)
352"Longshot"John RichBorden & Patricia ChaseSeptember 23, 1960 (1960-09-23)
363"The Sports Job"Arnold LavenHarry KronmanSeptember 30, 1960 (1960-09-30)
374"Alibis"TBATBAOctober 7, 1960 (1960-10-07)
385"Shuttle"TBATBAOctober 14, 1960 (1960-10-14)
396"Cop on Trial"Roger KayBorden & Patricia ChaseNovember 4, 1960 (1960-11-04)
407"The Little Witness"Arthur HillerLee BergNovember 11, 1960 (1960-11-11)
418"You Only Die Once"Arthur HillerDavid HarmonNovember 18, 1960 (1960-11-18)
429"Adopted"Ted PostTeleplay by: Harry Kronman & Erna Lazarus
Story by: Erna Lazarus
November 25, 1960 (1960-11-25)
4310"The Other Side"Paul WendkosBorden & Patricia ChaseDecember 2, 1960 (1960-12-02)
4411"The Scalpel"John RichPalmer ThompsonDecember 9, 1960 (1960-12-09)
4512"Big Poison"Gerald MayerEllis MarcusDecember 16, 1960 (1960-12-16)
4613"The Informer"William F. ClaxtonHenry GreenbergDecember 23, 1960 (1960-12-23)
4714"Razor's Edge"Paul WendkosLawrence DobkinDecember 30, 1960 (1960-12-30)
4815"The Frightened Ones"Lamont JohnsonGordon Gordon & Mildred GordonJanuary 6, 1961 (1961-01-06)
4916"Power Failure"Lewis AllenLaurence MascottJanuary 13, 1961 (1961-01-13)
5017"Kinfolk"Don WeisJay SimmsJanuary 20, 1961 (1961-01-20)
5118"Quiet Night"TBATBAJanuary 27, 1961 (1961-01-27)
5219"See No Evil"Tom GriesJohn K. Butler & Boyd CorrellFebruary 3, 1961 (1961-02-03)
5320"Personal Enemy"Robert ButlerA. I. BezzeridesFebruary 10, 1961 (1961-02-10)
5421"Matt's Woman"Lewis AllenTeleplay by: Donn Mullally & Harry Kronman
Story by: Donn Mullally
February 17, 1961 (1961-02-17)
5522"An Eye for an Eye"James ClavellMort ThawFebruary 24, 1961 (1961-02-24)
5623"Bad Apple"TBATBAMarch 3, 1961 (1961-03-03)

Season 3: 1961–62Edit

No.
overall
No. in
season
Title Directed by Written by Original air date US
681"Tobey's Place"TBATBASeptember 29, 1961 (1961-09-29)
692"The Legend of Jim Riva"TBATBAOctober 6, 1961 (1961-10-06)
703"Shadow of His Brother"Richard CarlsonPalmer ThompsonOctober 13, 1961 (1961-10-13)
714"A Barrell Full of Monkeys"TBATBAOctober 27, 1961 (1961-10-27)
725"One Lucky Break"TBATBANovember 3, 1961 (1961-11-03)
736"A Piece of Tomorrow"TBATBANovember 10, 1961 (1961-11-10)
747"Beyond a Reasonable Doubt"TBATBANovember 17, 1961 (1961-11-17)
758"Hit and Miss"TBATBADecember 1, 1961 (1961-12-01)
769"Song of the Guilty Heart"TBATBADecember 8, 1961 (1961-12-08)
7710"Escort"TBATBADecember 15, 1961 (1961-12-15)
7811"The Queen of Craven Point"TBATBADecember 22, 1961 (1961-12-22)
7912"Act of God"TBATBADecember 29, 1961 (1961-12-29)
8013"Point of No Return"TBATBAJanuary 12, 1962 (1962-01-12)
8114"Crossed Wires"Richard CarlsonTBAJanuary 19, 1962 (1962-01-19)
8215"Night on the Town"Robert ButlerElliot WestJanuary 26, 1962 (1962-01-26)
8316"Pandora's Box"TBATBAFebruary 2, 1962 (1962-02-02)
8417"The Jagged Edge"Alvin GanzerA.I. BezzeridesFebruary 9, 1962 (1962-02-09)
8518"The Outsider"Thomas CarrBarry TriversFebruary 16, 1962 (1962-02-16)
8619"Walk a Crooked Line"TBATBAFebruary 23, 1962 (1962-02-23)
8720"Night Boat"TBATBAMarch 2, 1962 (1962-03-02)
8821"One Lousy Wednesday"TBATBAMarch 9, 1962 (1962-03-09)
8922"The Con Man"TBATBAMarch 16, 1962 (1962-03-16)
9023"Never The Twain"TBATBAMarch 23, 1962 (1962-03-23)
9124"Three Blind Mice: Part 1"TBATBAMarch 30, 1962 (1962-03-30)
9225"Three Blind Mice: Part 2"TBATBAApril 6, 1962 (1962-04-06)
9326"Finders Keepers"TBATBAApril 13, 1962 (1962-04-13)
9427"The Fourth Commandment"TBATBAApril 20, 1962 (1962-04-20)
9528"The Walls Have Eyes"TBATBAApril 27, 1962 (1962-04-27)
9629"Strangers in the House"TBATBAMay 4, 1962 (1962-05-04)
9730"Saturday Edition"TBATBAMay 18, 1962 (1962-05-18)

Paperback NovelEdit

Prolific pulpsmith Norman Daniels was tapped by Lancer Books to write an original novel based on the series' concept and characters, and the book, named for the series, was released in 1962, with a cover price of 35¢, its copyright assigned to the author. It manages to sport all three iterations of the title: The cover, beneath a close-up photo of the star's eyes, says Robert Taylor starring in The Detectives; the spine says merely The Detectives and then cites the author; the title page proclaims Robert Taylor's Detectives.

Comic bookEdit

Dell Comics issued a comic book rendition of Robert Taylor's "The Detectives" during the series run .[4][5][6]

RelatedEdit

A few years after The Detectives ended, Barbara Stanwyck, Robert Taylor's ex-wife, had her very own successful series also produced by Four Star/Levy-Gardner-Laven Productions, The Big Valley, which also aired on ABC.

Several cast members on The Detectives went on to major TV roles after the series ended:

  • Robert Taylor, series star of The Detectives, who played Det.Capt. Matt Holbrook, went on to star in the successful syndicated TV series Death Valley Days, where he remained until his death in 1969. He had enjoyed a long and successful film career as a leading man in over 70 films- prior to starring in The Detectives.
  • Adam West, who was added to the cast in The Detectives' final season as Det. Steve Nelson, went on to play the lead role in the ABC series Batman.
  • Tige Andrews, who played Det. Johnny Russo, went on to play as Police Detective Captain Adam Greer in ABC's The Mod Squad. He also appeared in the original Star Trek as Klingon officer Kras in the episode "Friday's Child".
  • Mark Goddard, who played Det. Chris Ballard, went on to star in the CBS sci-fi series Lost In Space. Prior to the Detectives, Goddard co-starred in the popular (but cancelled after one season), CBS-TV series,Johnny Ringo, also produced by Four Star.
  • Russell Thorson, who played Det. Otto Lindstrom, had a long list of film and T.V. credits before and after The Detectives, including the T.V. movie "Cocoon"[7][8][9] - the original pilot episode of the CBS series, Hawaii Five-O starring Jack Lord.

SyndicationEdit

In syndication, the series was rebroadcast for a time under the name, Captain of Detectives. Rebroadcasts were shown in the early 2000s on cable's TV Land network.

Home mediaEdit

The Detectives has been released in Germany (in dubbed German language only) under the name "Kein Fall für FBI" [1] As of 2019, there has been no official release of Robert Taylor's "The Detectives" on DVD in the U.S.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Brown, Les (1992). Les Brown's Encyclopedia of Television (3 ed.). Gale Research. p. 152. ISBN 0-8103-8871-5.
  2. ^ https://www.tvtime.com/en/show/77778
  3. ^ Wayne, Jane Ellen (2006). The Leading Men of MGM. Carroll & Graf Publishers. pp. 187–188. ISBN 0-7867-1768-8.
  4. ^ "four-color-series-ii-issue-1168". ComicBookRealm.com.
  5. ^ "four-color-series-ii-issue-1219". ComicBookRealm.com.
  6. ^ "four-color-series-ii-issue-1240". ComicBookRealm.com.
  7. ^ "Pilot". 20 September 1968 – via www.imdb.com.
  8. ^ "Cocoon: Part 1". 4 June 1969 – via www.imdb.com.
  9. ^ "Cocoon: Part 2". 11 June 1969 – via www.imdb.com.

External linksEdit