Home Television Drama Thin Man, The

Thin Man, The

1 9 5 7 – 1 9 5 8 (USA)
78 x 25 minute episodes

Nick (Peter Lawford) and Nora (Phyllis Kirk) Charles are a sophisticated young married couple who live in an apartment in New York’s Greenwich Village with their dog, Asta. Even though the dog is male, Nora gave him a girl’s name based on her Uncle Harry’s theory that “a sissy name will make a man out of a boy”.

Nick (who Nora calls “Nickie”) is a former private detective (owner of Nicholas Charles Confidential Investigations) turned mystery editor for an unnamed publishing house in Manhattan. He has an eye for the ladies.

Beautiful and fashion-conscious, Nora (who Nick calls “Tiger”) is heir to the Claridon family fortune. She feels her intuition is better than Nick’s experience when it comes to detective work and together they use the “laundry list” method to solve crimes, with Nick relating the facts while Nora writes them down.

Beatrice Dean (Nita Talbot) is a beautiful con artist who goes by the alias of Blondie Collins. Blondie has a knack for larceny and has been arrested on several occasions. Whenever she is in trouble or needs refuge she turns up at the Charles’ for help. Despite Nora’s jealousy, Nick can’t resist “a gorgeous doll” and always helps Blondie.

Hazel (Patricia Donahue) is Nora’s friend, an attractive single woman who has a crush on Nick and flirts with him at every opportunity. She lives in the brownstone next door to Nick and Nora.

Ralph Raines (Stafford Repp) and Harry Evans (Jack Albertson) are lieutenants with the Homicide Division of the NYPD who assist Nick and Nora in solving crimes.

The TV show suffered in comparison to the Thin Man movie cycle (which had starred William Powell and Myrna Loy) and was certainly inferior in plot, pace and banter.

The format of a comedy/mystery with married detectives would return again and again to the small screen though, not least with McMillan and Wife and Hart To Hart.

Nick Charles
Peter Lawford
Nora Charles
Phyllis Kirk
Blondie Collins (Beatrice Dean)
Nita Talbot
Patricia Donahue
Lt. Ralph Raines
Stafford Repp
Lt. Harry Evans
Jack Albertson