Tuesday, January 31, 2012

BANACEK STARRING GEORGE PEPPARD

Banacek was part of the NBC mystery movie on Sunday nights, along with McMillan and Wife, Columbo, Hec Ramsey, McCloud and , briefly, Snoop Sisters. George Peppard played Banacek as a cool, sophisticated, antique-loving insurance investigator. Each week thieves stole something very precious in an ingenious way. Banacek was hired by the insurance companies for 10 percent of the value of the recovered item. Thomas Banacek was a complete sexist pig and the Polish jokes were horrible. But the mysteries were very interesting.

CAST

His chauffeur , played by Ralph Manza, served as comic relief, he thought he could solve the mysteries better than Banacek. Thomas also has a friend,played by Murray Matheson, who owns an book store, he proved background information for him. The friend, Felix, was elderly but also a ladies man just like Banacek. There is a fellow insurance investigator Carly, played by Christine Belford, she is a thorn in his side, she keeps trying to outdo him and sometimes she sleeps with him.

PILOT MOVIE DETOUR TO NOWHERE

SEASON ONE

LET’S HEAR IT FOR A LIVING LEGEND

PROJECT PHOENIX

NO SIGN OF THE CROSS

A MILLION THE HARD WAY

TO STEAL A KING

$10,000 A PAGE

THE GREATEST COLLECTION OF THEM ALL

THE 2 MILLION CLAMS OF CAPTAIN JACK

SEASON TWO

NO STONE UNTURNED

IF MAX IS SO SMART, WHY DOESN’T HE TELL US WHERE HE IS?

THE $3,000,000 PIRACY

THE VANISHING CHALICE

HORSE OF A SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT COLOR

ROCKET TO OBLIVION

FLY ME—IF YOU CAN FIND ME

NOW YOU SEE ME, NOW YOU DON’T







There was a movie pilot and 2 seasons of episodes. There would have been a third season, but George Peppard was going through a nasty divorce and wanted to deprive his wife of his earnings. The show looks good, you can tell they spent money on it. Some shows look like they are all shot in the a couple rooms with familiar scenery. But this shows spent the money and goes on location often.

There are some recurring themes in the series. Jay is always trying to solve the puzzle himself and hustling for money. Felix can't win at chess. Carly is suspicious and jealous of Banacek but still sleeps with him often. His name is purposely mispronounced as Ban a sec and his being Polish is always mentioned (this is during the time when Polish jokes were very common and acceptable). And every woman that meets Banacek wants to sleep with him.

MYSTERY MOVIE OPENING CREDITS


Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Snoop Sisters



Snoop Sisters was part of the NBC Mystery Movie lineup for only one season, 1973-1974. The series was part of the Wednesday and Tuesday night Mystery movie series, the other shows were Banacek , Faraday and Company and Tenafly. All the series, except for Banacek were quickly cancelled. Only 4 episodes were made of this series, but I still remember it fondly. The heroines, 2 elderly sisters, were game for anything and kept getting involved in mysteries.

CAST


Helen Hayes played Ernesta Snoop

Mildred Natwick played Gwen Snoop

Lou Antonio played Barney, the sister’s chauffeur

Bert Convy played police detective Steve Ostrowski

Mildred Natwick was also a part ofMcMillan and Wife, another part of the NBC Mystery Movie lineup. She played Commissioner McMillan’s eccentric, widowed mother.






Natwick and Hayes had made a movie for ABC in which they weren’t the Snoop sisters but they were amateur detectives. The movie, Do Not Fold, Spindle, or Mutilate, was successful and may have served as an unofficial pilot to the Snoop Sisters.

Ernesta and Gwen Snoop were very successful mystery writers, but they were not content to just write or enjoy retirement. The sisters became involved in real life mysteries, using the experience they gained writing their books , to search for clues. The series was set in New York City.

Barney was their loyal chauffeur, who helped them with their cases and served as an unofficial bodyguard. Steve Ostrowski was the sister’s nephew and was sucked into their cases.

Monday, January 16, 2012

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