The Greatest American Hero (1981–1983)

TV Series   |  TV-14   |    |  Adventure, Comedy, Sci-Fi


Episode Guide
The Greatest American Hero (1981) Poster

A teacher is asked to be a superhero using a special alien suit with powers he can barely understand or control.

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7.4/10
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  • Connie Sellecca in The Greatest American Hero (1981)
  • William Katt at an event for The Greatest American Hero (1981)
  • The Greatest American Hero (1981)
  • The Greatest American Hero (1981)
  • The Greatest American Hero (1981)
  • Dennis Lipscomb in The Greatest American Hero (1981)

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Creator:

Stephen J. Cannell

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User Reviews


25 May 2004 | deaconjguy
Warmth and 80's magic...
The Greatest American Hero was one of the best concepts for a TV show that I have ever seen, and certainly the most unique take on the superhero genre. The show had charm, lighthearted fun, and was full of 80's magic. I can still remember watching this show back in the early 80's and when Ralph first tried to fly that red suit. He couldn't get it, and some little kid that saw him struggling gave him some advice. Now see, that's the kind of magic that TV shows in the 80's had. TV wasn't afraid of putting out a hero that got advice on how to fly from a goofy little kid. Ralph Hinkley (played by William Katt) was just a regular guy, a young high school teacher that wanted to make a difference. Then one night he is approached by aliens out in the desert, teamed up with a gung-ho FBI agent, and given a spectacular red suit styled in the classic superhero design of cape and longjohns.

Unfortunately poor Ralph promptly loses the instruction book to the suit, and must learn the suit powers through trial and error. Connie Sellecca played Hinkley's girlfriend Pam, I seem to recall later in the show they were married. I also remember that Ralph got another instruction book, only to lose it again. And if I remember correctly, this show was only on for a brief 2 years and had 3 seasons. I don't know why the network prematurely cancelled this series, the show sadly never got to live up to it's full potential. I think it only clocked in around 44 or 45 episodes because the network pulled the plug on it so soon. The low episode number is probably why we don't get the luxury of seeing TGAH on Sci-Fi channel, WGN, TBS, or TV Land. Even with only 2 years of episodes, this series is still fondly remembered by many as a part of 80's magic.

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