6 July 2008 | bkoganbing
Cannibalized For Other Series
The Warner Brothers detective clone factory came out with a model that didn't sell. Perhaps had Jack Warner actually shot the thing in New Orleans, taking advantage of the many sights and wonders the Big Easy has to offer Bourbon Street Beat would have had a longer run.
This show featured three detectives Richard Long, Andrew Duggan, and Van Williams with a curvaceous secretary named Melody played by beauty queen Arlene Howell. As with the other shows 77 Sunset Strip, Hawaiian Eye, and Surfside Six detectives in a hands across the studio policy helped each other out on cases. Certainly did save Jack Warner on spending money for pricey guest stars.
Bourbon Street Beat only lasted one year, the shortest of any of the clones. But the resourceful folks at Warner Brothers had Van Williams move to Miami Beach and open a detective agency on a houseboat there, long before Frank Sinatra and Don Johnson would operate from same. Williams took his Ken Madison character and over to Surfside 6 and co-starred with Lee Patterson and Troy Donahue. In the meantime Richard Long as Rex Randolph moved to the other coast and joined the guys at 77 Sunset Strip..
As for Andrew Duggan, a few years after Bourbon Street Beat was canceled he popped up on a 77 Sunset Strip episode assisting Efrem Zimbalist, Jr. when a case took him to New Orleans. Duggan's Cal Calhoun character had gone back to the New Orleans PD from whence he came.
It was like they cannibalized parts from one model fix up their other cars. It maybe what makes Bourbon Street Beat unique among forgotten television series.