Jimmy Stewart is a film legend with tremendous name recognition. So it is not surprising to hear that later in his career he did some work on the small screen. His efforts on TV though had mixed results. His first effort, The Jimmy Stewart Show, was a not well received sitcom. His second effort was well received, but for some reason still only received one season, Hawkins. I never had the opportunity to watch Hawkins, so when Warner Bros announced they would be putting it on DVD I was excited and here is a little about why:
A decade before TV saw another silver-haired, slow-drawling Southern shyster with a knack for sleuthing out the truth, M-G-M welcomed back two titanic talents, TV producer Norman Felton and screen legend Jimmy Stewart, for Hawkins. Stewart played Billy Jim Hawkins, solving crimes alongside his cousin RJ (Strother Martin) and a bevy of sensational costars. Bonnie Bedelia plays a troubled young woman accused of familicide, Cameron Mitchell plays a tinseltown spouse facing murder charges, Julie Harris plays an accused mercy killer, William Windom plays a parent with a vendetta, Lew Ayres and James Best play folk caught up in a deadly Civil War re-enactment, James Luisi plays a football pro caught up in foul play, Teresa Wright plays an ex-amour of Bill Jim’s, and Paul Burke and Pernell Roberts play a senator and aide caught up in a slaying.
If you like 70s style mysteries or are a fan of Stewart, you are going to enjoy Hawkins. The acting, writing and production are top-notch. It is just a shame it was canceled, in just one season and it is nearly 600 hours of Jimmy Stewart performing. Is that is not a good definition of TV magic, I don’t know what is. So drop by the WBShop and order yourself a copy of Hawkins: The Complete TV-Movie Collection on DVD today.
Oh and it has a GREAT theme song by Jerry Goldsmith: