22 June 2016 | bkoganbing
A character actor and a character
One of the quirkiest cops in television series was Barreta played by Robert Blake who in real life got to see the other end of the criminal justice system. Loquacious and iconoclastic this was a guy who definitely followed his own beat.
Living with ex-cop Tom Ewell as a landlord and having a cockatoo named Fred as a companion, Baretta seemed completely dedicated to his job and didn't seem to have much of a social life. I'm betting that his friend Rooster the pimp who was his number one snitch supplied a little nookie for his pal. At least Rooster never called Baretta, an 'honorary soul brother' like Huggy Bear did with Starsky and Hutch.
Robert Blake who played some interesting roles like one of the GI rapists in Town Without Pity, one of the killers in In Cold Blood, serial killer John List was never traditional leading man material. As a kid he was best known for playing Little Beaver in the Red Ryder series and the Mexican kid who sold Humphrey Bogart the winning lottery ticket in The Treasure Of The Sierra Madre, Blake never was a teen heart throb. He was a born character actor and a character.
The quirky Baretta is hard to find on the nostalgia channels. That arrest for murdering his last gold digging wife even with an acquittal spelled finis for Robert Blake. A pity because Baretta took a unique approach to crime fighting.
And that's the name of that tune.