10 August 2017 | tardis432002
Tough, Smart, and Fast
Rod Cameron makes a believably rugged hero in this excellent detective series. The stories are tough, smart, and fast, packing a lot of plot, and a lot of plot twists, into efficient, engaging half-hours. With episode titles like "Three's a Shroud" and "A Bookie's Not a Bibliophile", the whole show could have come from the pages of Manhunt magazine, or Black Mask. Fans of vintage detective fiction will know that's a compliment. A frequent director is William Witney, who had directed many of the best movie serials, so you know he could deliver action on a budget. Stunt doubles are often a bit obvious in fight scenes, but that's typical of the period, and not that distracting. Location work is a big plus, not only around San Diego, but as far afield as New Orleans. It would appear that only Cameron and a camera crew got to go to some locations, with dialogue scenes done back at the studio, but still, it adds to the visual texture of the show. One episode has an extended sequence filmed on the roof of the iconic Hotel Del Coronado, predating the film "The Stunt Man" by 20 years.
This show won't change anyone's life, but it does exactly what it's supposed to do, and holds its own against any other detective show. My wife and I only wish there were more than 39 episodes.