The first season of The Streets of San Francisco
was nominated for an Emmy for Best Drama Series and its stars, Karl Malden
and Michael Douglas
, were nominated for Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor, respectively. But as this inaugural season unfolded, the veteran cop/rookie cop dynamic that charged the first 14 episodes matured into a more paternal mentor/student relationship (Malden's Mike Stone refers to Douglas's Steve Keller, throughout as "the boy" and "buddy-boy"). These episodes are particularly engrossing, and provide Malden with some of his finest primetime hours. In "Trail of the Serpent," a street gang bent on freeing their captured leader takes Stone hostage. Stone plays it cool, appealing to the humanity of one of the more sensitive gang members, while the more hotheaded Keller almost jeopardises his rescue. In "Legion of the Lost," Stone goes undercover on skid row to investigate the murders of three homeless men. In two episodes, Stone does not allow personal relationships to compromise his sense of duty. In "Deadline," a newspaper editor tries to cover up the murder of his mistress, and in the process, unwittingly implicates his own son, who was also the victim's lover. In "Shattered Image," a woman from Stone's old neighborhood is now the socialite wife of a murdered senatorial candidate. "Beyond Vengeance" echoes Cape Fear
as a vengeful sociopath, freed on parole, seems to be stalking Stone's daughter.
Malden and Douglas are a terrific team, and they are aided and abetted by literate scripts ("Room with a View" alludes to Hemingway's story "The Killers"), with clever twists. In "The Albatross," a killer is freed when it turns out he wasn't wearing his hearing aid and did not hear Keller when he read him his rights. In the Emmy-nominated "The House on Hyde Street," an elderly recluse becomes the prime neighborhood suspect in the death of a young boy. Guest stars in these episodes read like a Hollywood's Most Wanted List, with veteran character actors (Joseph Cotten, Jack Albertson, Leslie Nielsen, Barbara Rush) and future TV Land favourites (Victor French from Little House on the Prairie and Highway to Heaven, a pre-Cheers Nicholas "Coach" Colasanto, Jamie Farr, and Clint Howard). Of course, the real star is San Francisco, an intriguing backdrop with its roller coaster hills and funky neighbourhoods. --Donald Liebenson
The complete first season of the 1970s US cop show which followed veteran detective Mike Stone (Karl Malden) and his young partner Steve Keller (Michael Douglas) as they fought crime on the streets of San Francisco. Episodes comprise: 'The Thirty-Year Pin', 'The First Day of Forever', '45 Minutes from Home', 'Whose Little Boy Are You?', 'Tower Beyond Tragedy', 'Hall of Mirrors', 'Timelock', 'In the Midst of Strangers', 'The Takers', 'The Year of the Locusts', 'The Bullet', 'Bitter Wine', 'A Trout in the Milk', 'Deathwatch', 'Act of Duty', 'The Set-Up', 'A Collection of Eagles', 'A Room With a View', 'Deadline', 'Trail of the Serpent', 'The House On Hyde Street', 'Beyond Vengeance', 'The Albatross', 'Shattered Image', 'The Unicorn' and 'Legion of the Lost'.
From the Back Cover
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Michael Douglas Streets Of San Francisco - Series 1