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The Blue Knight: The Blue Knight

"The Blue Knight" — not the William Holden one — turns up as a pilot for George Kennedy. Kennedy, who won fame and an Oscar for "Cool Hand Luke," gets to play the Bumper Morgan role (as opposed to Holden's version) as a rougher lawman. He's a beat man whose imposing — and slightly paunchy — appearance enables him to restore order without violence (that alone will win votes with the protestors). He breaks up a neighborhood drug ring.
THIS PRODUCTION is from producer John ("Apple's Way") Furia Jr. and Lorimar ("The Waltons") Productions. It is a fine example of how sharp writing (by Albert Rubin), keenly sensitive acting and perceptive direction (by J. Lee Thompson) can result in a fascinating cops v. robbers show without blood and gore.
George Kennedy is imposing, paunchy but strong, as Bumper Morgan, the cop who has won respect, admiration, and sometimes even love as a father figure from the people on his beat.
This is a pilot film that spawned into a "Blue Knight" series. A policeman is killed at the very beginning — to give the plot and Bumper the required motivation — but we don't see it because Bumper is so upset he gets his fishtailing cruiser all fouled up in traffic and is late getting to the scene. From then on, the interest lies in Bumper's outwitting the street-people as well as the foot-dragging bureaucrats within police headquarters.

Episode Info

Episode number: 1x0
Airdate: Friday May 09th, 1975
Special Airtime: 08:30 pm
Special Runtime: 90 Minutes

Director: J. Lee Thompson
Writer: Albert Ruben

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Guest Stars
Byron Mabe
As Hemmings
Don Hanmer
As News Vendor
Hoke Howell
As Coggins
John Dennis
As Dolnick
John Steadman
As Wimpey
Marc Alaimo
As The Dutchman
Richard E. Kalk
As Dibbs
Tad Horino
As Medical examiner
Alex Rocco
As Detective Charley Bronski
Bart Burns
As Randy
Britt Leach
As Programmer
Dorothy Meyer
As Shopper
Douglas Dirkson
As Bricker
Eric Christmas
As Joel Stebbins
Glynn Turman
As Edwin Beall
Harry Caesar
As Walter
Howard Hesseman
As Resident
Ji-Tu Cumbuka
As Leroy 'Tank' Whittier
Jim Bowles
As Burrito owner
John Fujioka
As Tanaka
Joseph Wambaugh
As Desk Sergeant
Lieux Dressler
As Waitress
Michael Margotta
As Frank Zugarelli
Reid Cruickshanks
As Lieutenant Walsh
Rick Hurst
As Detective Harriman (as Richard Hurst)
Verna Bloom
As Moody Larkin
Walter Barnes
As Personnel Officer
Main Cast
George Kennedy
As Bumper Morgan
Phillip Pine
As Sgt. Newman
Warning: The Blue Knight season 1 episode 0 guide may contain spoilers
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