Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, July 18, 2013


Dan Adams (Rod Cameron ) questions a suspect
CORONADO 9 TV series. 1960.

Rod Cameron starred in this well-made and entertaining detective series that lasted one season. Cameron plays Dan Adams, a private dick who used to work for Naval Intelligence and works out of San Diego with a Coronado address. Many of the episodes were directed by movie serial master William Witney, who helmed G-Men vs the Black Dragon, in which Cameron played agent Rex Bennett [reprising the role in Secret Service in Darkest Africa]. Cameron may have been stone-faced as Bennett, but he's much, much better as the tough but human and compassionate Adams, who gets involved in some very intriguing cases, and has a solid core of law and order values. Some of the best episodes include: "Doomtown," in which the village geek is accused of a murder he didn't commit; "Remember the Alamo," in which it isn't certain if a man's (David White from Bewitched) younger wife has been kidnapped or not, but his secretary (Beverly Garland) may hold the answer; "Gone With Thy Loot," which has a lot of skulduggery over some stolen jewels; "Blonde Herring," a shipboard adventure with a sizzling Carol Ohmart, and an effective Sue Ann Langdon and Harry Lauter in supporting parts; and "They Met in Honolulu" in which Hayden Rourke's much younger bride simply disappears right after the ceremony. The best episodes are: "Run, Shep, Run" with Jay Novello giving another amazing character turn as a Southern doctor in a swampland chase and mystery; "Sincerely Yours, Napoleon," in which a married, middle-aged man tells his wife (Virginia Christine) that he spent their life savings on certain letters but there's a honey (Sue Ann Langdon, again) in the pot; and "Flight to La Paz," in which Adams is aboard a plane that crash lands in an isolated area and a suitcase of money ignites all kinds of passion in the passengers; Harry Bartell and Laurie Mitchell [Queen of Outer Space] are both excellent in this. [Bartell was the process server who pretended to be a big fan of Ricky's on the I Love Lucy courtoom episode.] Out of 39 episodes there isn't a real stinker in the bunch.Other notable guest-stars include Mary LaRoche, Patricia Medina, Norma Varden, and Coleen Gray [The Leech Woman], who is excellent as a conflicted woman who tries to help the sick mobster father that she's been estranged from for many years in "The Anxious Mariner."

Verdict: Very entertaining and well-done mystery series. ***.

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