Monday, February 21, 2022

It Was 50 Years Ago Today, Burgess Meredith Taught the Band to Play

50 years ago tonight, the TV movie Probe premiered on NBC. The movie led to the series Search, which we discussed back in this episode. The show has a soft spot in my heart (and Mike's, too, I'm sure) because I associate it with our deciding to do a podcast.

Burgess Meredith, Hugh O'Brien, and Elke Sommer were in the cast in the movie, which followed an episode of Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In. The story introduces us to World Securities Corp., a private security/investigations firm that uses all kinds of sweet technology in its work. When the series proper began on September 13, it changed its name to avoid conflict with a public broadcasting program.  It also began rotating O'Brien, Tony Franciosa, and Doug McClure as the leads.

I'm partial to the Hugh Lockwood episodes with O'Brian/ "The Murrow Disappearance," the premiere episode, is one of those and also the one we selected for the podcast, but the whole series is entertaining and recommended if you can find it. Warner Archive released it on DVD and streamed it on its Warner Archive Instant service. Probe is available as a separate DVD release.

It all started 50 years ago tonight, and though Search only lasted one season, it gave us a movie and almost a couple dozen fun hourlong installments. Today we salute the show, and the movie that launched it, once more!

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