The Rockford FilesThe Rockford Files was an American detective television drama that had its first run on the NBC television network between 1974 and 1980. The show was notable for sharp writing (often by creator Stephen J. Cannell) and for the easy charm and charisma of James Garner who starred as Jim Rockford.
The tone of the show varied from light humor (often provided by Stuart Margolin as Jim's shifty friend Angel) to gritty drama. Rockford was an ex-con whose infrequent jobs as a private investigator allowed him to scrape up enough cash (his often-uncollected fee: "$200 a day plus expenses") to keep his trailer on the Southern California beach and take care of his father Rocky (Noah Beery).
Seen today the show appears at first sight to be pure '70s camp, with the ubiquitous gangster nemeses sporting huge lapels and spouting tough-guy jargon, but a few minutes in the astute characterizations and warm relationships between the principals draw in the viewer and, like the best shows, The Rockford Files becomes a timeless classic. This program spawned many other detective shows, including Magnum, P.I and Tenspeed and Brown Shoe (also created by Cannell).