Friday, 27 January 2012

TV Cops - San Francisco's finest

If you thought that Dirty Harry was the only cop that mattered in San Francisco then you clearly don't watch enough retro TV.

Detective Lt. Mike Stone is a widower with over 20 years experience on the force. He is partnered by 28 year old Insp. Steve Keller. Cue the basic premise for one of TV's best loved cop shows. Of course given the casting - veteran Karl Malden and spawn of Kirk, Michael Douglas it was pretty much assured this show was going to be a cut above.

There were 120 episodes made between 1972 and 1977 and as well as it's stellar cast the show was also know for the quality of it's guest stars - Leslie Nielsen, James Woods, Nick Nolte, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Cal Bellini, Pat Conway, Patty Duke, Richard Eastham, Don Keefer, Flip Mark, John Ritter, Robert Wagner, Rick Nelson, Wayne Maunder, Dick Van Patten, Mark Hamill, Stefanie Powers, Martin Sheen, Tom Bosley, Tom Selleck, Larry Hagman, Bill Bixby, Norman Fell, Anthony Geary, Beverly Washburn, Michael Constantine, Paul Michael Glaser, David Soul, and Meredith Baxter, among many others. Even Michael Douglas' own mother, Diana Douglas, guest-starred in a season two episode, "Chapel of the Damned".

Michael Douglas left the show after the second episode of the fifth and final season and Richard Hatch was introduced as Insp. Dan Robbins but the ratings were never the same and the show was cancelled at the end of the season.

It was revived in 1992 for an NBC TV Movie, Back to the Streets of San Francisco with Karl Malden now chief of detectives. And the show is currently rumoured to be getting a remake from CBS.

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