Tuesday, February 17, 2015

The Rockford Files Files

A couple of months back I picked up all seasons of The Rockford Files for a song, and I just started watching the first season. I used to watch the show when I was a kid, and I'm happy to say it really holds up. James Garner makes a terrific world-weary private eye, the stories are tightly constructed, and there's a deep vein of sarcastic humour running throughout the show. The car chases and fight scenes are excellent too, though Garner's Rockford does his level best to solve problems with his wits rather than violence - perhaps because he often loses fistfights.

It's also a kick to see California of the 1970s - the cars, the architecture, the fashions, the home decor.

"This just hasn't been my day at all," Rockford quips after, on top of two arrests, two beatings and a betrayal, the bad guy sneaks up behind him with a loaded pistol right after he's figured out the case. Garner's exasperation neatly encapsulates the tone of the show, one of the best dark comedies of the 1970s. I look forward to seeing the whole series for the first time. 

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