1 9 5 8 – 1 9 6 3 (USA)
138 x 60 minute episodes
This popular series was shot on location all over New York – from the Staten Island Ferry to Times Square.
A feeling of gritty realism pervaded the stories as veteran cop Lt. Dan Muldoon (John McIntire) and his young sidekick Jim Halloran (James Franciscus) ran down the murderers and muggers, petty thieves and swindlers who inhabited the seamier side of the metropolis.
Although the stories were based around of the activities of the NYPD’s 65th Precinct, it was the underworld figures that the police pursued, and the people upon whom they preyed, that served as the show’s primary focus.
The programme began undergoing cast changes even after its first season. Detective Muldoon was killed in a spectacular chase sequence seen in a March 1959 episode when his squad car ploughed into a petrol tanker (actor John McIntire had decided to move back to Montana).
Lieutenant Mike Parker (Horace McMahon) became the wizened old pro for the remainder of that season, and also returned when the series came back in hour-long format after a year’s layoff.
With him in the 1960 – 1963 run was a new young partner, Detective Adam Flint (Paul Burke), Flint’s girlfriend, aspiring actress Libby Kingston (Nancy Malone), and good-natured Sergeant Frank Arcaro (Harry Bellaver), who had been a patrolman in the 1958 – 1959 episodes.
Steely-eyed Parker was the perfect hard-nosed cop for a hard city, and his portrayal helped make the series a great success.
Added too, was some dramatic city-at-dawn theme music by Billy May (“Somewhere in the Night”). But the real star was New York itself, where, as the narrator intoned, “There are eight million stories in the Naked City . . .”
The series was based on a story by Mark Hellinger, which had been previously made into a 1948 movie, also titled Naked City.
The 1959 episode entitled ‘Four Sweet Corners’ led to the creation of the series Route 66, which ran a year longer than its parent show.
Lt Dan Muldoon
Detective Jim Halloran
Sgt Frank Arcaro
Lt Mike Parker
Detective Adam Flint