Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Peter Gunn

I'm a big fan of jazz, detectives and film noir, not to mention femme fatales that can drop a man with a single stare. So then how is it that I’ve never seen Peter Gunn? I remember back in the 80s watching a few minutes of the horrible Peter Strauss version. Maybe that’s what did it in for me and so I never bothered to check out the original Blake Edwards classic. Rap Sheet recently did a post on the 50th anniversary of the show and I decided it was time to catch up.

I just finished watching the first sixteen episodes. Since I am the one who’s two martinis behind on this classic, I’ll keep it short. Craig Stevens as Gunn is perfect. As they say he’s hot on the case and cool under pressure. Lola Albright is the girlfriend who, according to the back of the dvd case, can melt butter at twenty yards, and I agree. My favorite actor on the show is Herschel Bernardi who plays the role of Lt. Jacoby in such an understated performance that he steals each scene. Oh, and the jazz is ultra cool, not just the unforgettable Henry Mancini theme but every noir scene is packed with appropriate gritty jazz.

I’ve posted the first episode, "The Kill." Everything about this first set was topnotch. You probably already knew that, but for those that don’t, check out this episode. It's a shame there are so many commercials but it’s only twenty-five minutes. Give it a try. I think you will be happy you did.

Watch Peter Gunn: The Kill (Part 1 of 7) in Entertainment Videos  |  View More Free Videos Online at Veoh.com

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 | Part 7


Ray said...

That goes back a bit - and, of course, Duane Eddy hit the big time with the theme.
Peter Gunn was almost compulsory back when I was at school.
Unfortunately, the box sets available are not Region 2 - yet but I'm told that they are on the way.

Randy Johnson said...

I remember the show, but it's been so long. Last year I read the tie-in novel by Henry Kane and thought the way the characters talked a bit odd at times.
I'm going to check the episode you posted out.

Randy Johnson said...

Randy Johnson here. Liked the episode. Thanks for the post.

Josh said...


Charles Gramlich said...

I Haven't seen these episodes. I'll have to check back when I've got a moment. No time to go through it now.

David Cranmer said...

Ray, The Duane Eddy track is the definitive version without a doubt. No offense to Mancini but Duane really rocked out on that one.

Randy, I’m glad you liked the episode. The first one is not the best of the bunch but it was the only one I could find that was complete. I wasn't aware there were tie-in novels. I’ll be on the lookout for them.

Josh, so true.

Charles, I know you’ve been busy and I hope everyone goes over to the Razored Zen to check out all the great Halloween posts. You have some very fine writing happening there.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I think Peter Gunn was just before my time. I know the theme song but that's about it. I'll put it on netflix.

David Cranmer said...

Patti, I know you will find it entertaining. A lot of great atmosphere with this show. It is a bit dated but overall a deserved classic.

Barbara Martin said...

My brothers loved this show, and I being youngest had to go to bed before it was on. Thanks for posting this, now I can watch the episodes I missed.

I can see the show is well done: but a few of the TV shows then had the main character narrating as the episode went along, i.e. Perry Mason and Dragnet.

Thanks for the trip down memory lane.

David Cranmer said...

No problem Barbara and I'm glad you enjoyed it.