The cases of an easy going private investigator.
Series about an ex-con-turned-private-investigator named Jim Rockford who would rather run away than fight and would rather go fishing than work. He isn’t a coward, and he isn’t lazy–just a bit on the cautious side, that’s all. And he bears a very strong resemblance to Western TV hero Bret Maverick. Rockford is sometimes aided (and sometimes deterred) in his cases by friends Dennis Becker (a police detective), Angel (his cowardly former cellmate) and pretty Beth Davenport (his lawyer).
Ep.1: Backlash of the Hunter
Jim Rockford works for Sara Butler by investigating the death of her father, a drunken wino who was murdered at the beach. The case leads Jim to the strange Mrs Elias, her boyfriend Jerry and a ground to air shootout in the Las Vegas desert…
James Garner stars as Jim Rockford, a private investigator who lives and works from his trailer in Malibu, Los Angeles. Jim is an ex-con who had been imprisoned for five years in San Quentin for armed robbery – a crime which he did not commit and was later pardoned. Jim has a quarter page advertisement in the yellow pages, drives a tan Pontiac Firebird and has an answering machine, which plays at the beginning of every episode; “This is Jim Rockford, at the tone leave your name and message and I’ll get back to you”. A person then leaves a message – which usually has no relevance to the episode but is often humorous.
The series also stars Noah Beery Jr as Jim’s father Joseph “Rocky” Rockford, a retired truck driver. Rocky offers words of wisdom, advice or even assistance in some episodes. Rocky frequently pressures his son to leave the PI business and take up safer, honest work, such as trucking. Jim also has a close friendship with Dennis Becker, played by Joe Santos. Dennis is a Los Angeles Police Sergeant, later promoted to Lieutenant. Jim uses Dennis get information, police computer checks and often makes him the hero of the case Jim was investigating.
Any time Jim is arrested in the first four seasons, he simply calls for his attorney Elizabeth “Beth” Davenport, played by Gretchen Corbett. Jim and Beth had a previous relationship, but remained friends until Beth went off to run her own private practice and later write legal fiction. In her absence Jim turns to John ‘Coop’ Cooper, played by Bo Hopkins in the fifth season. Coop is a disbarred attorney who specialises in legal research, and gets embroiled in three of Jim’s cases. While Jim was in prison, he met Evelyn ‘Angel’ Martin, wonderfully portrayed by Stuart Margolin. So named because he was always praying the hard cases not to hit him; Angel is sneaky and is always up to something illegal – often involving Jim in his swindles. As part of his parole, he works for his brother-in-law who owns a LA Newspaper. Roy Huggins and Stephen J Cannell created The Rockford Files. The shows production team included Meta Rosenberg, Juanita Bartlett, Chas Floyd Johnson and David Chase, all of whom have had further successful series in later years.
Cast and Crew:
James Garner, Noah Beery Jr. and Joe Santos
Creators: Stephen J. Cannell, Roy Huggins
Production Company: Cherokee Productions, National Broadcasting Company (NBC), Roy Huggins-Public Arts Productions
Audio/Visual: mono, color
Date Release: 1974
Additional details in:
The Rockford Files in IMDB
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Filed Under: The Rockford Files