|David Janssen on his car phone|
David Janssen was back as urbane P.I. Richard Diamond for the second season out of four, consisting of 21 half-hour episodes. Diamond narrates the stories a la Mike Hammer, whose show began the same year, and even roughs up people the way Hammer does on occasion, even though he's otherwise a very different sort of fellow. Most of the episodes are a solid "B" or "B+," making the show entertaining but not outstanding. Among the more memorable episodes are: "The Dark Horse," in which a lady politician rejects the notion of a bodyguard; "Pension Plan," about a unique retirement scheme involving stolen jewelry; "Another Man's Poison," in which Rick, as everyone calls him, wonders if he was the real target when a man nearby gets shot; "Last Testament" (was the will of an electrocuted man altered?); "Percentage Takers," in which Rick protects an obnoxious Broadway star played by Jack Cassidy; "The Bungalow Murder," in which a studio head is found dead; "One Foot in the Grave" [an old cop is shot]; and "Snow Queen," in which an art store covers up a brisk trade in heroin. Guest-stars include Gordon Jones, Doris Dowling, Jay Novello, Keye Luke, Gloria Talbott, Nick Adams, Lee Van Cleef, Kipp Hamilton, and many others.
Verdict: Janssen is fine and the show quite entertaining. ***.