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The Fugitive: Season 1, Vol. 1
DVD | Box Set
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Dr. Richard Kimble is accused to be the murder of his wife. The night before his execution, he escapes. The only chance to prove his innocence is to find the man who killed hi wife. Kimble, persecuted by the Lt. Gerard, risks his life several times when he shows his identity to help other people out of trouble.
The hunt for one of DVD's Most Wanted TV series is over! The Fugitive, ranked by TV Guide among the top 40 shows of all time, is just as gripping as when the falsely convicted Dr. Richard Kimble's "twisting and turning" odyssey to find his slain wife's real killer began nearly 45 years ago. David Janssen's Kimble is a TV icon (No. 22 on Bravo's list of the 100 Greatest TV Characters), the haunted, hunted man desperately trying to find the elusive one-armed man he witnessed fleeing his home on the night of the murder before the relentless Lt. Philip Gerard (Barry Morse) finds Kimble. But at the heart of these 15 inaugural black-and-white episodes is not so much the chase, but instead the compelling human dramas that convey "how it is" with Kimble, who moves from town to town, taking odd jobs, and reluctantly becoming involved in the lives of troubled strangers he meets. His presence is usually greeted with suspicion and hostility as in the episode "The Other Side of the Mountain," in which he no sooner enters a bar in a rundown mining town then the locals (led by a pre-Gomer Pyle Frank Sutton) rough him up.
The Fugitive has a palpable noir sensibility. In the first episode, an upstanding citizen (guest star Brian Keith) is actually an abusive husband, whose wife (Vera Miles) Kimble is compelled to protect. Acting at the husband's behest, two cops lean on Kimble to leave town. "Why would the average man be scared of the police?" one of them taunts Kimble. In "The Witch," Kimble nearly falls prey to mob justice after false accusations from a young girl. There are several Kimble-Gerard near misses, the most memorable occurring in the two-parter "Never Wave Goodbye," in which Kimble, tired of running, puts down roots as an apprentice sailmaker in Santa Barbara. In the storm-tossed climax, Kimble must decide whether to let Gerard drown or save his life. Essential to The Fugitive mythology is "The Girl from Little Egypt," in which Kimble, recuperating after being hit by a car, flashes back to the events preceding his wife's murder and his subsequent trial, conviction and escape from a Death Row-bound train. We also get our first, harrowing glimpse of the one-armed man (Bert Raisch). Another benchmark episode is "Home Is the Hunted," in which Kimble returns home following his father's heart attack and gets a less than warm welcome from his embittered brother (look for young Billy Mumy and Clint Howard as Kimble's nephews). The change of scenery in each episode allows for appearances by an impressive gallery of character actors, several at the beginning of their careers, including Sandy Dennis, Bruce Dern, Robert Duvall, Jack Klugman, and Jack Weston. No collector of classic TV can afford to let The Fugitive get away. --Donald Liebenson
Beyond The Fugitive
More Running From the Law on DVD
More 1960s TV
- All 15 Episodes from the 1963 Season on 4 discs
- Transferred rom the original negative with restored audio
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Certainly by a mile the most compelling. You simply can't take your eyes off the screen.
When I was in my early teens the fate of Dr. Richard Kimble was an ongoing topic of conversation just as much as the Beatles, Vietnam and the space program were. We knew it was fiction, but David Janssen's performance was so profoundly human, painful and riveting that it got under your skin, which explains why the final episode of the series, in which the hero finally confronts the one armed man, drew one of the largest audiences in the history of television.
As I view the series now it strikes me that The Fugitive also spoke secondarily to the fact that the American Dream was perhaps just that, a dream. A very dark and lonely dream, for what Kimble encountered as often as support and friendship was danger, cold and unforgiving urban sidewalks and an uncaring, brittle countryside.
What we're reminded of in this superbly crafted DVD set is the overall excellence of the shows Quinn Martin Productions brought us, from the unusual casting choices, exceptionally deep performances, clever and twisting plot scenarios and flawless editing and camerawork. And what great, great writing.
Thank you David Janssen for creating one of the medium's most unforgettable characters, and for delivering more emotion in a glance than most TV actors are able to muster in an entire career.
everything. David Janssen is brilliant as Doctor Kimble, and made the situations very believable.
Barry Morse was really great as Gerard and never out of character and determination to hunt down Kimble.
You just held your breath and hoped Kimble got as far away from Gerard as possible.
They definitely don't make shows like this anymore, and I am sure never will. David Janssen, always, the gentleman, brought a kindness , inherit goodness and integrity, that is unmatched by any other character in television history.
As far as the quality of the set goes, the transfers are all very good considering their age. Most episodes look very sharp. The remastered mono sound mix is good also. No extras though. I don't really mind having the season split up into two sets, as long as they don't take too long to get the rest of them out.
For you music fans, notice the Jerry Goldsmith music from the episode of The Twilight Zone called "The Invaders" (Agnes Moorehead with the little robot and spaceship on the roof of her farmhouse) is used repeatedly thoughout The Fugitive series as a stinger cue. Also notice the music that is unmistakably Bernard Herrmann's in the episode "The Girl From Little Egypt" (also from an episode of The Twilight Zone called "Walking Distance;" it plays during the flashback of Richard Kimble talking to his wife in her hospital room after their son was stillborn).
To the people who have never seen this show before and are even remotely interested, I highly recommend it. You won't be sorry.