Tuesday, January 22, 2013

The Barney Miller Ensemble



BARNEY MILLER was a cop sitcom that lasted 8 seasons from 1974 until 1982. Although its two biggest breakout stars from the beginning were Hal Linden as barney and Abe Vigoda as Fish, it was always really an ensemble comedy and one of the best TV has ever presented. 


In the beginning the show featured scenes of Captain Miller's home life and his wife featured prominently. Stars Hal Linden and Barbara Barrie came to the series from very successful Broadway careers, as did Ron Glass.Gregory Sierra and Jack Soo had been longtime character actors and Max Gail was s till a relative newcomer in the business.

Sierra left first, returning to a very eclectic list of character roles. Vigoda, who had been around a long time before he impacted with THE GODFATHER, was the breakout character and got his own short-lived but funny sitcom, FISH.

James Gregory came along in the semi-regular role of the Inspector and Ron Carey scored as a sycophantic uniformed officer yearning to be a detective.




Deadpan comic Steve Landesberg was brought in as a new detective and changed the dynamic a bit. It changed even more with the death of veteran Jack Soo.
But no matter who might come and go, the quality of the writing and performances remained high and BARNEY MILLER remained a hit.


At one point, they even locked up THESE guys. Well, at least in this publicity shot.

 





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