Sunday, February 12, 2006

For All You Canadian Brian Keith Fans

Looks like we Canadians got lucky, and by "we Canadians" I mean "those of us Canadians who are nostalgic for '80s shows with lots of car chases": a Canadian company has brought out a DVD release of the first season of Stephen J. Cannell's Hardcastle and McCormick. It's only available in Canada, but you can order it from and they'll ship it Southward.

"Hardcastle and McCormick" was created by Cannell (and one of his better staff writers, Patrick Hasburgh) in the wake of the success of "The A-Team." It followed the same basic formula as "The A-Team": the lead characters team up every week to dole out some vigilante justice. Brian Keith plays a judge who has a list of 200 cases he presided over where the defendant was guilty, but had to be let off due to legal technicalities. When he retires, he teams up with an ex-con (Daniel Hugh Kelly) to track down scumbags who got off on technicalities and bring them to justice. Think of it as "My Name is Earl" meets "Dirty Harry." In other words, it's pure '80s: comedy, Rambo-esque contempt for the law, an odd-couple buddy story, and lots and lots of car crashes. Among the three shows of this kind that Cannell turned out in the year 1983 (the other two were "The A-Team" and "Riptide"), this may have been the best, mostly because of Brian Keith. At the price, it's worth a look if you like '80s nostalgia.

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