Monday, January 21, 2008

Mysteries on TV: Banacek, Barney Miller, and Hawaii Five-O

Mysteries on TV

Three new DVD sets of mystery and suspense television series are being released this week.

Banacek: Season 2

George Peppard played the suave, ever so sure of himself, -based freelance insurance investigator for two seasons on NBC. Banacek was one of the rotating series that comprised the NBC Mystery Movie; the others were , , and (each of which is available from the website).

Banacek solved "impossible crimes", usually the theft of a very expensive item that was heavily insured, and collecting a 10% fee for finding it. The missing items in the second season include a computer system the size of a small building (this was the 70s, remember) that disappears and a crippled commercial airplane that vanishes after landing in the desert.

The second and final season of Banacek is being released on 3 disks and consists of 8 episodes that aired during the 1973-1974 television season plus the pilot (which was inexplicably omitted from the first season DVD set).

Barney Miller: Season 2

Hal Linden starred as the captain of a New York City police precinct in the sitcom , which aired for 8 seasons on ABC. Originally titled The Life and Times of Barney Miller with episodes that depicted Barney's personal as well as professional life, by the second season the focus was firmly on the detectives in the police station.

There were no significant cast changes during the second season, but that would change for the third. Season 2 was the last to feature Gregory Sierra as Det. Chano Amenguale, and guest stars Steve Landesburg and Ron Carey would join the cast the following year as Det. Arthur Dietrich and Off. Carl Levitt, respectively.

The Barney Miller Season 2 DVD set is being released on 3 disks and consists of all 22 episodes that aired during the 1976-1977 television season.

Hawaii Five-O: Season 3

Almost certainly among the best theme song and opening credits (which featured a montage of terrific visuals including a giant north shore wave) was that of . The series, which starred Jack Lord as Steve McGarrett, head of an elite (and fictional) state police force, aired on CBS for 12 seasons. The series was filmed entirely in Hawaii.

This season also shows the return of McGarrett’s arch nemesis, Wo Fat, played by Khigh Dhiegh, who shows up twice this season as he does throughout the run of the series and, of course, in the final episode of the 12th season.

Hawaii Five-O Season 3 is being released as a 6 disk DVD set that contains all 22 episodes (including 2 2-part episodes) that aired during the 1970-1971 television season. This was a great television show and a DVD series worth owning. Until Season 4 arrives ... Be there ... Aloha!

Visit the Mysteries on TV website to discover more currently available on DVD.

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