How many of LA's Chief of Detectives, have been chauffeured to work in a Rolls Royce Silver Shadow, live in a palatial mansion, and are the toast of society? Enter one, Amos Burke, played expertly by Gene Barry, whose only real distinction in the cinema was a starring role in George Pal's "War of the Worlds," (1953).
Barry, not unlike the character depicted in "Burke's Law," was well-suited to the role. Born into a family with musical credentials, (his father was a violinst; his mother a singer) Barry had a sense of effortless grace, charm and and attractive baritone voice and entertained the idea of an operatic career for the stage.
After appearing in several forgettable films, save "War of the Worlds," Barry embarked on a successful acting career throughout the 50's and 60's. He even had the distinctive honor to be the first villain in the pilot for "Columbo" entitled "Prescription Murder" (1968), as what else? An eminent psychiatrist suspected of killing his wife. In the 70's Barry starred in the short-lived series, "The Adventurer" with Barry Morse as a globetrotting, ultra wealthy, bachelor (although a little too old for the role)solving international capers.
Nonetheless, this first set of Burke's Law comes highly recommended. VCA has done a superb job of remastering the episodes and the show also stars a pre-"Land of the Giants" Gary Conway as Burke's indispensable assistant. The show has a bevy of recognizable guest stars that reads like recitation from Hollywood's Walk of Fame--even silent star Zazu Pitts and Anne Francis in the pilot episode, "Who Killed Honey West?"
If you like classic crime dramas as I do, here is yet another collection you will add to your DVD library.