Paramount // 1974 // 1214 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge P.S. Colbert // January 9th, 2013
"Crime Drama That Sets The Bar"
Let's cut out all the fancy chatter and get right down to the heart of the matter: That steel-jawed, street-savvy, suavecito P.I. whose mama called him Joe Mannix (Mike Connors, Good Neighbor Sam) stopped crime dead in its tracks, and the abrupt cancellation of this series in the spring of 1975 was a direct corollary to the abrupt spike in both the quantity and sinister quality of villainy plaguing our society ever since.
You want proof? Mannix: The Final Season has twenty-four episodes of solid proof:
* "Portrait In Blues"
* "Game Plan"
* "A Fine Day For Dying"
* "Walk On The Blind Side"
* "The Green Man"
* "Death Has No Face"
* "A Small Favor For An Old Friend"
* "Enter Tami Okada"
* "Picture Of A Shadow"
* "Desert Sun"
* "The Survivor Who Wasn't"
* "A Choice Of Victims"
* "A Word Called Courage"
* "Man In A Trap"
* "Chance Meeting"
* "Edge Of The Web"
* "A Ransom For Yesterday"
* "The Empty Tower"
* "Quartet For Blunt Instrument"
* "Bird Of Prey: Parts 1 & 2"
* "Design For Dying"
* "Search For A Dead Man"
Spoiler alert: Mannix always wins. As soon as he was put out to pasture, the rest of us lost!
Any remaining skeptics are hereby invited to jog along as the scourge of the underworld attempt to put our man through his paces. There are kidnappers, extortionists, card sharks, crooked politicians, assassins for hire, and all manner of Mafiosos, from bag men to big bosses. (Did I say Mafiosos? I meant "Syndicate" members, of course!) All of them are eventually swatted away like gnats at a church picnic by the one-man task force whose self-appointed mission it was to keep the streets of America safe for its decent, hardworking citizens.
Go ahead, laugh. Have a big chuckle at the expense of Mr. M.'s peculiarly Caucasian karate moves, his tortuously Technicolor, double-knit polyester suits (supplied exclusively by Botany 500), and those sideburns wide enough to ski down, but let me ask you this: While you were making your way through Mannix: The Final Season, did you see any crystal meth or crack cocaine? Did you hear about auto-immune deficiencies and flesh-eating viruses reaching epidemic proportions? How about disgruntled ex-postal workers with assault rifles, or government bailouts for financial institutions trafficking in toxic assets?
These days, we've got staggering unemployment, but here's just a short-list of the television icons jobbing for Mannix during the 1974-75 season: Tom Selleck (Blue Bloods), Rue McClanahan (The Golden Girls), Erik Estrada (CHiPs), Berlinda Tolbert (The Jeffersons), John Ritter (Three's Company), Katherine Helmond (Soap), Russell Johnson (Gilligan's Island), Pamela Bellwood (Dynasty), and Bill Bixby of The Incredible Hulk, who appears in one but also directs a trio of episodes, including "Hardball," Mannix's final assignment.
Paramount has done a bangup job with these standard-definition full-screen transfers, which practically waft Aqua Velva after shave, and the sound of Joe's Florsheim running shoes comes through loud and clear in the Dolby Digital mono mix. English captioning for the hard of hearing is also available.
Who else can make a motorcycle gang sorry they were foolish enough to take him on when he was all by himself?
Review content copyright © 2013 P.S. Colbert; Site layout and review format copyright © 1998 - 2013 HipClick Designs LLC
Scales of Justice
* Full Frame
* Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono (English)
* English (SDH)
Running Time: 1214 Minutes
Release Year: 1974
MPAA Rating: Not Rated