Additionally, brace yourself for the following:
Joe Friday in a sweater vest.
Bill Gannon smokes a cigarette.
Hold on to your hat - because Olan Soule is not only back, but is wearing one.
And we're off!
First stop: Parker Center with an unorthodox monologue:
"It was Thursday, January 25th. It was overcast in Los Angeles.
Before I went on vacation, I was working the day watch out of homicide.
I was due back in three days. My name's Friday. I'm a cop."
Joe's Ford Falcon.
The parking kiosk as we have seen many times in season one driving sequences.
Joe never went on to talk to the kiosk attendant in the series.
Does anyone know any of the cars in the shots?
You all have helped me a lot in the past!
Jack also looks particularly happy in the premiere.
Heck yeah I'm happy! Dragnet in color!
Witness the magic of true location shooting.
N O P A R K I N G
Walking up to the Police Administration Building like this showcases the ground condition.
Modernist architects catch flack for making spaces like this sometimes.
What it's really best at (other than sheltering) is framing a view at each bay, as we see above.
There's a hulking modern structure overhead, but you only sense the enormity as you look around and focus on all the things around the property's periphery.
As a student of architecture, I think its cool.
Here's PAB Green - we will see a lot of it, we have seen a lot of it.
Particularly throughout seasons one and two. That's Dragnet's 'Russell Kimball' epoch.
This is the ultimate realism for which Dragnet was known.
It permeated the style like this institutional green paint.
Looking through these doors is something we have done before on the Dragnet sound stages.
Really love how tidily everything is pinned to the cork boards.
"We're up to our navels, Joe."
"I'm just here to pick up my mail."
Bill has a toothache. He has a belly full of ulcers.
Poor guy. That's weak.
The Bill Gannon that we got to know for two and a half seasons doesn't quite resemble the Bill in the Dragnet movie. Harry Morgan is playing Bill for the first time.
That's the last time you get to be Captain Hugh Brown. Everybody knows that part rightfully belongs to Art Balinger or possibly Art Gilmore.
(The blackish thing on the wall at left of frame is an old thermostat.)
All of these sound stages would probably have been made especially for this pilot.
In this frame, we are looking out from the sixth floor; between the curtain panels, at the new backdrop of downtown L.A.
Check out the framing, though. The Russians are on the left, LAPD brass on the right, and they use two big curtain panels to visually divide and organize the frame.
Someone's visiting L.A. from the USSR.
Bill Gannon's dental student nephew, Melvin:
Everyone's using the elevator!
Here's a PAB exit sequence from season one:
Joe going back to his place to gear up for his now-ended vacation fails to show his apartment.
Which is fine. It gets its own episode.
Service revolver goes here. (And what a skinny belt!)
Gannon gives Joe a folder full of information regarding a lurid missing persons case.
Bill takes his usual role of driving, as he would continue throughout most of the series.
This is the first reverse projection driving sequence. It's pretty long.
They are working really hard to exemplify ultimate realism.
Joe speaks more in police officer parlance in this film compared to where we are in season three.
Next stop: Colonial Street.
Bobby saw the photography enthusiast briefly when he took his sister's gloves to her in the car.
They even fill out her story - she was married, but her husband perished in Vietnam. She also has a daughter. So tragic.
Next, back to Parker Center.
Joe smokes while they banter and go through the files.
I don't think this driving sequence gets repeated, but dig that Googie style sign at the far left of the frame. Good stuff!
Somewhere along Colonial street, for sure, right?
Adam and Eve Ltd.
"Why be lonely?"
Our first location is bunk. 6th & Melrose doesn't exist, but I think they were trying to go for "sketchy" because skid row is a block away on Fifth. The set looks really nice, though, so who knows?
I recognize this sound stage, don't you?
It's so cute as a lonely hearts club.
Welcome to the Garden of Eden
Carol Byron! She reminds me of Enid Coleslaw with those glasses.
Who's the boss?
10309 White Oak Canyon Road - Doesn't seem to exist these days, but it may have gone the way of Georgia Street Juvenile.
There seems too be too much messiness in the White Oak Canyon sequence.
Bill is smoking! See for yourself!
Spooky Harry Bartel plays a police artist instead of a detective or scientific type.
Virginia Gregg is such a jerk to this Hector Garcia.
Joe gets to zing her, though.
"Tell me, Sergeant, you don't pay this artist of yours very much, do you?"
"No, ma'am. He's a police officer."
After that, I think Virginia lightens up on him.
Back to Parker Center.
If you want a summary of Dragnet 66-70 in a single frame, I think this will do it:
They are using a pneumatic tube to transport these request forms:
Apparently this lady's hand is pushing the buttons in the following sequence:
We have already seen the cards cycle 3-4 times in Dragnet thus far.
Now you know where that sequence originated!
HOLD THE PHONE
Ok, it's getting late, time to get back to the party.
Carol Byron got a costume change!
Her earlier scene had her in tartan, now she's in brown.
That's odd, because she's at work and it's the same day, right?
"Was there ever really a Tommy Dorsey?"
Friday, January 26th, Joe is back on the trail of a murderer.
They are still eschewing louvers and you can see the background photo in the top right of this frame:
Jack Ragotzy's use of "the n word" gets Joe to counter by letting out a scripted "damn."
Watson from Personnel:
On the road again: Dogtown - which Joe says got its name from a dog pound that occupied the area.
Olan Soule in a hat! We missed you!
A soupy helicopter shot we won't see again at about the :40 mark.
Dragnet is aping Conrad Hilton's eccentricity in running luxe hotels.
We can do the math - 1200 rooms x 4 ash trays per room = 4800 books of matches on top of what's in the bowl and the cocktail lounge and…. and….
Hey! It's Kent McCord!
I bet in 1966, he had no idea that he was going to be 1/2 of a seven season long cop show.
He wasn't even called Kent McCord yet. He was still going by his old name.
Let's hop up to the ninth floor and figure out who our dead guy really is.
HOLD THE PHONE
And hold the dead girl mystery. We have to get our hearts broken by some French expatriates at 4629 Foster Avenue. There's a Foster in real life; it's in Baldwin Park.
Roger Til and Gerald Michenaud.
He offers the guys his brother's passport and explains why he now goes by William Smith.
He is stoked to become an American citizen and changed his name from Whatever Laborg to Smith.
Joe sweetly calls back to his old partner called Smith (Frank Smith played by Ben Alexander & Herbert Ellis) from the black and white series.
Everything in this set is brooding color, wood, and lots of patterns.
What's up, kid? We're about to ruin your life.
Yep. Poor little guy. At least he has a cool uncle.
Next up - more establishing footage of parking at Parker Center.
Let's check in at Cafe Rue De La Paix - an awning on a back lot.
An awning with a hillbilly-style valet -
"A nineteen and fifty-nine Buick sword!"
Eddie Firestone & Herb Ellis
For loudmouth pill head bums, their pad is pretty all right.
Reverse projection driving to the Princess Pat hotel for a DB.
DB means Dead Body.
Fireproof. Sleep in safety.
This is the fourth missing model:
Her story is no less tragic than the other three missing persons.
Check out her digs:
Don Ross playing the role he was born for - Latent prints!
We're almost done. Just about to catch up with Vic Perrin.
Gannon notes that the market where the candy bars were purchased was on Kelso street, and there is a Kelso street in real life between LAX and Downtown Los Angeles; it's in Inglewood.
Nice old 76 station with the rotating ball:
They used to be seriously everywhere, now there may be one left.
The new Joe Friday In Color is a "supercop" who can work for thirteen hours investigating and then scale a 90' cliffside in the pouring rain, beat up Vic Perrin, and rescue a teardrop trailer from falling over said cliff. On the way up, Joe's legs get buried by rocks, even.
He does it all in the rain and in a sweater vest.
Were these pictures too lurid for 1966?
I wonder why it took two and a half seasons of Dragnet to broadcast this pilot.
Three out of three cases solved.
Murder of four photo models, murder of a French expat, murder at the Princess Pat.
Murder, murder, murder. Good grief.
The epilogue comes along almost nine months later -
I LOVE DRAGNET
Jack Webb as Sergeant Joe Friday
Harry Morgan as Officer Bill Gannon
Vic Perrin as Don Negler
Virginia Gregg as Mrs. Kruger
Gene Evans as Captain Hugh Brown
John Roseboro as Sergeant Dave Bradford ("If the department doesn't question the color of his skin, you damn well see that you don't.")
Bobby Troup as George Freeman
Tom Williams as Melvin Gannon
Jack Ragotzy as Carl Rockwell (racist, pedophile, rapist)
Roger Til as William Smith
Gerald Michenaud as Claude LaBorg
Bruce Watson as Freddie (Car park attendant)
Herb Ellis as Ricky Markell
Eddie Firestone as Max Shelton
Elizabeth Rogers as Eve Sorenson
Additional Cast (Uncredited):
______ as Johnny from the PAB parking kiosk
Art Balinger as Inspector Ed Walker
______ as George Beck (Captain of Central Division)
______ as Ray Rudell from TED
______ & ______ as NKVD advance security agents ("Nyet!")
______ as Russian Interpreter
______ as Donna Wilson (first missing photo model)
______ as Jean Barrows (second missing photo model)
Thordis Brandt as Carol Freeman (third missing model)
Carol Byron as lonely hearts clipboard lady
______ as lonely hearts club balloon lady
______ as lonely hearts club ribbon lady
______ as White Oak Canyon Road newspaper/bathrobe man
______ as White Oak Canyon Road multicolored shirt lady
Harry Bartel as Police artist Jim Murdock
______ as Police artist Hector Garcia
______ as Ruth the card file lady with blonde bouffant
______ as Central Division officer
John Sebastian as Sergeant Danny Mendez
______ as "Adam" that likes prunes
______ as "Eve" that doesn't know "that" Johnson
John Nolan as "Adam" with mustache
______ as "Adam" with white hair, mustache, and beard
Sara Selby as "Eve" with titian hair that introduces Joe to Elizabeth Rogers
______ as Mr. Rodman (He played Paul Carter.)
Jody Gilbert as "Eve" that wants to win the trip to Catalina
______ as Blonde guy with guitar ("You bet your bird.")
______ as Watson from Personnel
______ as Deputy Coroner
______ as Officer Bailey
______ as other Dogtown officer
Olan Soule as Wayne
______ as Dean
______ as Hollywood Kingsley Hotel desk clerk
Kent McCord as Brewster the junior desk clerk
______ & ______ as Officers that take Herb Ellis and Eddie Firestone downtown
______ as Detective Harry Hansen
Alfred Shelly as Detective McCready
______ as Pete the Police photographer
______ as Betty Mason (fourth missing photo model)
Don Ross as Bill from Latent Prints
______ as Betty Mason's landlady
______ as Fred the market clerk
______ as Bob (white shirt)
______ as Norman (yellow raincoat)
______ as Oliver Crawford (trailer park manager)
______ as Lady in trailer next door
______ as Subdivision entrepreneur
Dennis McCarthy as Reporter
______ as Perp with tattoo
______ as Central Receiving doctor
Art Direction - Russell Kimball
Set Decor - John McCarthy and George Henshaw
Costumes - Vincent Dee
Aired 27 January 1969, filmed in 1966.
Written by Richard L. Breen
Wavy wavy wavy wavy wavy wavy,