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B.L. Stryker: Season 1

4.0 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

B.L. Stryker, a former New Orleans detective, returns to his native Florida and is thrust by circumstances into the life of a private investigator. His lifestyle and principles clash with those of the rich and powerful in Palm beach as he solves crimes in conjunction with the local police. Stars Burt Reynolds, Ossie Davis and Rita Moreno, with guest appearances from Abe Vigoda, Kristy Swanson, Maureen Stapleton, Douglas Fairbanks, Jr., Neil Patrick Harris, Michael Chiklis and many others. Each of the episodes was a 2 hour Sunday Night Movie. (414 minutes)

About the Actor

Burt Reynolds is one of the most enduring stars in Hollywood, making scores of movies over 40 years. Starring roles in The Longest Yard, Semi-Tough, Smokey and the Bandits and countless other action and comedy hits made him one of the biggest male stars of the the '70's and 80's. His role in Boogie Nights in 1997 reinvigorated his career.

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Burt Reynolds
  • Format: Color, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: HART SHARP VIDEO
  • DVD Release Date: February 26, 2008
  • Run Time: 471 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0010TDRZK
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #219,255 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Bennet Pomerantz VINE VOICE on March 4, 2008
Verified Purchase
In 1989, ABC and Universal Television division tried to do what NBC tried in the late 1970's, A Mystery Movie wheel. They had four Mystery Characters (Kojak, Gideon Oliver, Columno & Stryker) revolving in a two movie format once a month. The concept lasted two TV seasons until ABC canceled the wheel.

Reynolds filmed this show in the late 1988-1989 near his home in Jupiter Florida. Reynolds incoporated the south Florida landscape as a character in itself.

This serious was played in a fashion to the John D MacDonald Travis McGee novels, which Reynolds tried to get for a film or two. However, This series seemed akin to McGee as well as the Rockford Files.

Another factor is Ossie Davis play sidekick to Reynolds. Davis acts like a Meyer to Reynold's McGee. His small part of the washed out boxer friend steals every scenes without really trying. This is a testimate to the actor and the man.

These Stryker mysteries are well done for a television production. This first season is only five 94 minutes episodes, but each are well crafted whodunits. With scripts by noted writers like Robert B Parker, who created Spenser novel, this show is sharp.

Now let me say these copies are clear masters. They could be shown today if the networks needed shows to put on.

The TV GUIDE imprint is semi new DVD division of Arts Alliance America, but they have released two Banacek volumes, the second season of Charles In Charge, and the complete Crow tv show. This show fits right in with this

Go get it, I want a lot of sales, so they can release the second (and Final( volume of this series

Bennet Pomerantz AUDIOWORLD
Comment 27 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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I'm a big fan of TV mysteries, so I was very happy to see Arts Alliance America releasing the first season (5 2-hour episodes) of this very underrated mystery series. Burt Reynolds fans (who know what he can do when given solid material) and TV mystery aficionados should grab this one!

"B.L. Stryker" only lasted two seasons (as long as the "ABC Mystery Movie" lasted) but can and should have gone far longer, even after the umbrella series was axed. "Stryker" was a terrific series, the best by far of any of the ABC Mystery Movie segments (including the Columbo revival, and I'm a Columbo fan!) with strong talent in front of and behind the camera. Tom Selleck co-produced, the scripts were strong by the likes of Robert B. Parker ("Spenser: For Hire" and the "Jesse Stone" series) and Joe Gores, and the directors included Hal Needham. And this series is among the best that Burt Reynolds ever did, solid mysteries with a light comic touch (but never buffoonish comedy).

The cast had a terrifically smooth chemistry from the start, including Ossie Davis as Stryker's best friend and retired boxer Oz (whose character really grounded the show and humanized the potentially cliche Stryker PI character), Dana Kaminski as Stryker's wannabe-actress/secretary Lynnda, Rita Moreno as Stryker's glamorous ex-wife Kimberly, Michael O. Smith as the local police Chief McGee, and Alfie Wise as the nouveau riche neighbor whose toys (planes, cars, SUVs) always ended up getting destroyed during Stryker's cases. And the guest cast included Kristy Swanson, Helen Shaver, Maureen Stapleton, Neil Patrick Harris (before Doogie Howser) and many others.
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Very enjoyable series from late 80s/ early 90s. If you like Burt, enjoy the Palm Beach scenery, and like old classic tv detective shows then you will enjoy this movie series. They may have been pushing the "Travis McGee" vibe when they made this series, but what's wrong with that. Beats most of what you find on TV these days. Thanks Burt!
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After a series of increasingly lower performing and lower quality feature films throughout the 1980s, Burt Reynolds decided to try his luck on network television as part of ABC's revival of the Mystery Movie format. On paper, B.L. Stryker looked solid, a private eye series with a light touch, produced by Burt and Tom Selleck. Doubtless, the two envisioned the series as an offshoot of Selleck's Magnum PI, but, in reality, most of the episodes misfired to one extent or another.

Reynolds starred as B.L. Stryker, a former New Orleans cop turned Palm Beach private investigator, who lived and worked out of a run down houseboat. Ossie Davis co-starred as Burt's only confidante, an ex-boxer who usually got involved in the cases as well. Burt also had a kooky secretary (Dana Kaminsky), a wealthy computer genius neighbor who was the butt of many of Burt's jokes (Alfie Wise), and a wealthy ex-wife (Rita Moreno) who still carried somewhat of a torch for him. Despite the talented actors in these roles, the characters were largely underwritten and underused, a far cry from the well drawn ensemble that supported Tom Selleck on Magnum.

The shows themselves were definitely a mixed bag. Because each episode ran about 95 minutes (to fit, with commercials, in the two-hour mystery movie time slot), the scripts were often quite padded. The crime elements of most of the shows were laughable, with third rate drug dealers, loan sharks, and mob enforcers played by fourth rate actors proving no match for Burt. So, during the parts of the episode in which Burt wasn't playing tough guy, he alternated between playing the snarky Burt, making fun of the cops and the Palm Beach elite, and the sensitive Burt, interacting with Davis and some of the guest stars.
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