Sunday, September 11, 2016

Nostalgia Theater: Losing The Devlin Connection

As you know if you've followed Nostalgia Theater long enough, I have a particular affinity for the "gimmick" detective shows that populated the TV landscape during the 1980s. Obviously some were more successful than others, but that didn't stop the nets from keeping on shaking the trees to see what might fall out. One example of an also-ran in this genre is the short-lived skein The Devlin Connection, which was notable for being the return to series TV for actor Rock Hudson after six seasons on McMillan & Wife in the '70s.

Airing on NBC from October to December of '82, The Devlin Connection was created by John Wilder (who also developed the excellent Centennial miniseries a few years prior), and really it had one of those premises that only makes sense in a TV writer's mind. Hudson was Brian Devlin, a former military officer who's become director of the Los Angeles Performing Arts Center. When he's reunited with son Nick Corsello (Pointman's Jack Scalia), a racquetball pro, the two decide to solve mysteries together. Sure, makes sense to me. Here's the intro:

That title sequence seriously looks like a parody we'd see some modern sketch show like Key & Peele. Just from that it's not hard to see why The Devlin Connection failed to really...(wait for it)...connect with audiences, but it didn't help that the show was retooled while in production, leading to a whiplash, schizophrenic feeling between the grittier pre-retool episodes and the flashier post-retool ones (which actually aired first). It was thirteen and done for Devlin, but Hudson would return to TV on Dynasty in 1984 (his final role) before passing away from AIDS in 1985.

One Year Ago in Nostalgia Theater: Space: 1999 Gets Mooned!

Two Year Ago in Nostalgia Theater: Getting to the Core of Filmation's Journey to the Center of the Earth

Three Years Ago in Nostalgia Theater: Lois & Clark Turns 20!

Four Years Ago in Nostalgia Theater: Rediscovering The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles

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