Bourbon Street Beat

ABC (ended 1960)


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Bourbon Street Beat

Show Summary

Bourbon Street Beat was a crime drama very much in the same vein as 77 Sunset Strip, produced by Warner Brothers, running on ABC for 39 episodes during the 1959-60 television season.
Chronicling the adventures of three private eyes solving crimes in the Big Easy, Bourbon Street Beat featured Richard Long as Rex Randolph, Andrew Duggan as Cal Calhoun, and Van Williams as Kenny Madison.
Despite the show lasting only one season a couple of its characters would live on in other shows. Rex Randolph went to 77 Sunset Strip while Kenny Madison ended up on Surfside 6.
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  • 77 Sunset Strip Clone

    Bourbon Street Beat was a 77 Sunset Strip clone that ran for one season and 39 episodes during the 1959-60 TV season on ABC. It followed the same formula as its predecessor. Two leads playing private eyes, a hot chick who was there for eye candy and little else, a young goob who provided much of the comedy relief, and various assorted recurring characters. Richard Long and Andrew Duggan played the leads, Arlene Howell was the hot chick, a pre-Green Hornet Van Williams played the goob, and Nita Talbot (as a stripper named Lusti Weather) was the most prominent of the recurring characters.

    The show was set, naturally, on Bourbon Street in New Orleans. Long and Duggan played private eyes who went into partnership on the show's first episode. Long was the young and handsome one while Duggan character was older and more worldly and rumpled. The two leads had good chemistry together and many of the better episodes tend to be ones where they had more or less equal screen time.

    The setting of New Orleans also made for some interesting storylines involving voodoo, spooky mansions, serial killers, and bayou mysteries. Most of the time the world of Bourbon Street Beat was much edgier than the world of its Hollywood based predecessor. But alas, the show never found enough of an audience to rate a second season although the characters of Long and Williams would be spun-off to other shows. So, in a sense, Bourbon Street Beat did last for more than one year although not long enough to make any special mark in the history of television.moreless