The Rockford Files/Nice Guys Finish Dead
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Nice Guys Finish Dead is the seventh episode of the sixth season of The Rockford Files, and the one hundred seventeenth episode overall.
Guest Stars: Joseph Bernard (Carmine DeAngelo), Al Berry (Ed Fuller), Roscoe Born (TV Commentator), Fritzi Burr (Mrs. DeAngelo), Gregory Norman Cruz (Attendant), Larry Dunn (Norm Cross), Erica Hagen (Brandy Alexander), Steve Jones (Newsman), Fred Lerner (Carl Richman), John Lombardo (Police Clerk), Larry Manetti (Larry St. Cloud), Simon Oakland (Vern St. Cloud), John Roselius (Mike Mikelson), Tom Selleck (Lance White), James Whitmore, Jr. (Freddie Beamer)
At a private eye convention, an unpopular Senator who was scheduled to give a speech is murdered, mechanic and would-be private eye Freddy Beamer is accused of the crime, and Rockford and insufferably perfect detective Lance White team up to solve the crime.
No doubt that this performance laid the groundwork for Tom Selleck to land his own popular detective series, Magnum, P.I.
Behind the Scenes
Allusions and References
Rockford wins the Goodhue award for Private Detective of the Year over the heavily-favored Lance White. Blowhard Vern St. Clair tells him not to do a long speech, just say 'Thank you' and get lost. Jim does just that, and Vern chides him: "Thank you? What kinda speech is THAT, Jim?"
At the end of the episode, there is indeed a mistake...Lance did win the award and Rockford has to hand it over, insisting all along that 'The nomination is the award'.
And of course, there are the hilarious reactions to Lance White just being in the room. Even Dennis Becker, who normally is not star-struck, is entranced by the charming detective. Blowhard Lt. Chapman also falls under Lance's spell--we first see Chapman chew out Rockford for being at the Police Station and tell him to get lost, then when Chapman goes into his office, Lance is sitting in his chair, calling him 'Chappy' and offering to help on the case, for which the Lieutenant is eager to accept. After White leaves his office, Chapman calls him a 'helluva guy'!
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