Thirty years ago an easygoing detective by the name of Jim Rockford burst onto the television scene and carved a place for himself in television history. Now for the first time, The Rockford Files is available on DVD.
Jim Rockford was nothing like his fellow television detectives. For one thing, he was an ex-convict who had served time in prison for a crime he didn’t commit. He rarely carried a gun preferring instead to keep it in the coffee jar (he always said it prevented rust). And he relied on his quick wit instead of violence to achieve his goals.
The Rockford Files was the greatest achievement of James Garner’s career and rightly so: the wisecracking Rockford is so much like Garner that his acting seems almost effortless.
In spite of the fact that it was made in the mid-70s, the show has held up pretty well. Sure, some of the fashion appears dated today. There’s a healthy dose of the slang of the day. The cars (which always played a central part in every episode) bring back feelings of nostalgia. But the scripts were well written and always provided the right amount of humor at key moments to break the tension of the drama.
An added bonus in this set is the interview with Garner that explains the genesis of the show and provides keen insight into the minds behind its creation.
I’ve always been a fan of The Rockford Files. Now that it’s out on DVD, fans can remember why this was (and still is) one of the best mystery shows ever made.