Great commercial here. Not sure where I first saw it. Not on television at all. Probably on Facebook. I added it there myself so I’m not sure.
I rank THE OUTSIDER as the third best P.I. series ever made for television, Just behind The Rockford Files and Harry O. Created by Roy Huggins, it only had twenty-six episodes produced and this original novel.
David Ross is your prototypical private eye. Money is always a problem, but he is that eye that will help people who need it. He himself served six years in prison for murder until his name was cleared.
In this novel, Ross is headed to meet his new client, movie producer Leonard Caldwell, when an attractive redhead jumps into his car begging a ride. She then refuses to get out of the car at her previously announced destination, She starts screaming when he refuses and attracts a Beverly Hills police cruiser.
It turns out she’s a P.I. herself and wants to find her partner, Tex McCloud who’d disappeared shortly after going to work for Ross’s new client.
Caldwell wants his wife found. Ex-actress Vania Dare had dropped out of sight shortly after her first husband, long thought dead twenty years now, had reappeared and seemed on a course to exact revenge on everybody that had wronged him in the past.
Caldwell simply wants to know if she left willingly or was kidnapped. If the former that was fine. Caldwell also seemed interested in keeping quiet that she might be a bigamist, even an unintentional one, as he is aiming for a run in the California Senate.
Ross soon has someone following him in a corvette with lethal intent. The “dead” husband grabs him and seems interested in adding him to the growing list of people who had “wronged” twenty years earlier. And the cops are giving him a hard time.
Liked this one.
For more forgotten books, check in over at PATTINASE on Fridays.
With a new interpretation of the Ranger almost upon us, I thought it time to look at another, the one most of us are familiar with: the television version. The Ranger was around long before 1949, but television forever locked most of us that were kids at that time into Clayton Moore and Jay Silver heels as our favorite heroes. This one tells the same story, the origin tale so to speak, in a different manner. The role of Butch Cavendish was played by Glen Strange better known for his bartender role in the Long Branch saloon on Gunsmoke.
And I’m still not sure about Johnny Depp as Tonto and the actor playing the title role, Armie Hammer, gets third billing.
For overlooked movies, telkevision, and related matters, Todd Mason does the gathering on Tuesdays over at SWEET FREEDOM.
Novelist Walter Wager wrote the seven I SPY novels, making Robinson and Scott agents for the CIA. That was never pinned down on the series. He also gave them a consistent boss handing out their assignments, something else the series went in a different direction with.
The two novels he did for MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE were the first and number four(the middle pair were by Michael Avallone I believe, under pseudonym of Max Walker. The first novel featured Dan Briggs(played by Steven Hill during the first season) and the last(all the other three for that matter) Jim Phelps(played by Peter Graves the rest of and the second series) as team boss.
Hat tip to John Scalzi for pointing out this one. This type of fantasy tends to bore me quickly(think Terry Brooks’ Shannara, Jrdan’s Wheel of Time, Goodkind’s Sword of Truth, etc.). I usually bog down a few books into such a series, which feature large numbers of doorstops. Here I never made it out of the first one. I understand the TV series is pretty good, but I don’t do HBO.
Just as well I think.
My nephew turned me onto this Japanese Anime TV series. A total of twenty-six episodes and a film, there was some sort of controversy on content. The original showing was only twelve episodes and a special. later in 1998, another Japanese network ran the whole series.
It’s set in 2071 and cowboys are bounty hunters. The two we meet early on are Spike Spiegel and Jet Black. Black is the owner of the spaceship, the BeBop, that they travel around on. A few episodes in a young woman name Faye Valentine attaches herself to them as another hunter. They pick up a genetically altered dog in one story, Ein, who has human level intelligence(the problem is he rarely shows that, reacting more like an ordinary dog most of the time). The final addition to ship’s crew is an orphaned young woman named Edward, a computer whiz, a hacker. Both Spike and Faye have their own small ships, usually loaded for bear. But not always. Another character made sporadic appearances, Vicious, a former friend of Spike’s in organized crime and now sworn enemy.
In the series, our entire solar system has been made accessible by hyperspace gates. The Moon has been partially destroyed in 2022(only ten more years, look out) by an exploding early version hypergate. Mars is the central seat of human civilization by this time, not to mention the criminal syndicates. The Cowboys get their assignments, the bounties, from an internet program hosted by a couple of overly peppy characters.
Throughout the run of the show, we catch up on the character’s back story. Spike had been an enforcer for one crime syndicate before going straight. Jet had been a cop out of Ganymede. Faye doesn’t get cleared up until late in the sow. We only know she has hige debt problems, her reason for becoming a cowboy.
We encounter a variety od criminal and genetically altered monsters throughout. And some in-jokes along the way. I caught a few and probably missed others. One has a black man, huge Afro, dressed in a white suit who announces he’s the last of the Shafts. He’s also dragging a coffin behind him as he enters the city walking(Django anyone). In that same episode, Shaft is pursued bt a black woman with her own Afro and sharp clothes(Pam Grier perhaps).
The show was a lot of fun and it’s creator has hinted over the years of perhaps doing another series. Nothing ever seems to come of it though. And a live action version has been in the pipeline for years with only Keanu Reeves attached in the role of Spike. It seems to be a funding issue holding it up. Fans seem to take delight in guessing who would be good in the other roles. Bruce Willis seems to pop up frequently for the Jet Black role.
Despite all the future trappings, it has an old time feel. Handguns, cigarettes dangling from lips, smoke blowing, the fighting, the slum-like areas of cities on other worlds in our solar system.
The trailer for the movie:
and the show’s opening/theme song:
As always on Tuesday, visit Todd Mason over at Sweet Freedom for links to all the fine posts on overlooked movies and related things.