Come aboard "The Riptide," home to the hottest detective agency in Los Angeles. Cody Allen (Perry King, The Day After Tomorrow) and Nick Ryder (Joe Penny, TV's "Jake and the Fatman") are longtime pals who have seen more than their share of danger -- and action. Along with a buddy from their days in the military, the brilliant but socially inept scientist Murray "Boz" Bozinsky (Thom Bray), they solve a series of mysterious cases involving stakeouts, seduction, and the law. Detective work has never been this hot!
Even devoted fans cant deny that Riptide was grade-A cheese--and we're talking Velveeta, not Gruyère That said, a little TV-style cheese never hurt anyone. In the first episode, Cody (Perry King, Class of 1984) notes that he and fellow ex-Army MP Nick (Joe Penny, Jake and the Fatman) have been friends for 10 years, detectives for two weeks. Of course, an action-adventure series needs sidekicks and gimmicks. So, computer genius and fellow vet Murray "Boz" Bozinsky (Thom Bray) becomes the brains to their brawn, while toys include a houseboat ("The Riptide"), a pink helicopter ("The Screaming Mimi"), and a robot ("Roboz"). As with Miami Vice, which premiered the same year, much of the action takes place by the water, while the playful banter between the Southern California-based duo is reminiscent of Simon & Simon, one of the era's other popular buddy shows Created by Stephen J. Cannell (Hunter, 21 Jump Street), Riptide also gave the gals something to ogle--in the two-part pilot ("Riptide, AKA Pier 56"), King and Penny play an entire scene wearing nothing but tighty-whiteys. And in most episodes, shirts are sure to come off. Courtesy of the scenic location, the series boasts a bevy of bikini-clad babes, as well.
Guests stars include Kelly Preston ("The Hard Case"), Dennis Franz ("Double Your Pleasure"), and Geena Davis and Lance Henriksen ("Raiders of the Lost Sub"). Marsha Warfield (Night Court) and Anne Francis (Honey West) also drop by on occasion. The former is Max, hostess at their favorite nightspot; the latter is Mama Jo, skipper of the all-female charter craft docked in the next slip. Riptide began life on NBC as a midseason replacement, paired with Cannells The A-Team, and was renewed for two more seasons. Entertaining adventures aside, this three-disc set is devoid of extras. --Kathleen C. Fennessy