Night Stalker

Season 1 Episode 1


Aired Thursday 9:00 PM Sep 29, 2005 on ABC



  • Trivia

    • The police would never let reporters -- press pass or not -- on the actual crime scene, taking photographs and trampling on evidence.

  • Quotes

    • Perri: Oh that reminds me. I've been covering crime for four years. How long have you?
      Kolchak: Five.
      Perri: That's what I thought.

    • Vioncenzo: You know, most people come in the office, meet their colleagues, get a desk, before they start snagging stories.

    • Kolchak: All these strange deaths, like…pieces in a puzzle, a puzzle I'm trying to put together. Something terrible is happening. (pauses) But no one sees it 'cause no one wants to.

    • Kolchak: Have you ever used a gun before?
      Jain: No.
      Kolchak: That's what I thought.
      Jain: I've never used a cattle prod before, either.

    • Perri: What's this prove?
      Jain:That these things Kolchak's looking for were here.
      Perri: Or wolves, or coyotes, or armadillos, for all I know.
      Jain: Armadillos?!?

    • Jain: The hottest places in Hell are reserved for those who in times of moral crisis remain neutral.

    • Kolchak: (closing monologue) As a reporter I seek answers to the questions that haunt me. But the stories, the real stories, you won't find printed in any newspaper. Stories of strange deaths, endless suffering, horrors we can only pretend to explain, and the hidden threats that connect them all. These are the stories I live to write, driven by the faith that one day people will read them and understand, haunted by the fear that the answers I seek lie not in the darkness without but the darkness within.

    • Kolchak: (opening monologue) I drive at night, a police radio as my compass, looking for answers to questions I'm only learning how to ask. About things adults dismiss...but children are right to fear. Shapes that lurk in the darkness, nightmares that intrude from another realm, forces that spring not from the imagination but live amongst us, unseen. These forces have taken something from me, something I can never recover. So I stalk the night, looking...and knowing our fear of the dark never really goes away. We just learn to pretend it's not there.

  • Notes

    • A deleted scene on the DVD includes an extended version of the escape from the caves. Two hellhounds attack the car: they are much more visible. One of them bites Perri but is scraped off the side of the car by the rocks. When the car pulls out into the sunlight, the second hellhound retreats back into the caves.

    • The Beacon office building is in real-life found at 1000 Wilshire Blvd. in Los Angeles. It was previously used in Robbery Homicide Division.

    • Music featured in this episode included:
      "Dragonfly" by M. Craft.

    • As with most pilots, there are no opening credits but the regular actors' names are simply flashed on screen, followed by the guest stars.

    • Stuart Townsend takes on the role of Carl Kolchak, played by Darren McGavin in the original movies and series. Cotter Smith takes on the role of Antonio Vincenzo, played by Simon Oakland in the original movies and series. John Pyper-Ferguson plays the role of Agent Bernie Fain, which was the original name of the character Bernie Jenks that was played by Ralph Meeker in the original TV movie The Night Stalker.

    • Perri uses a fictional web search engine (SpyderFinder) to look up information on Kolchak.

    • The premiere featured a 3-second digitally-inserted clip of Darren McGavin, taken from the TV movie The Night Stalker. He can be seen on the right side as Kolchak enters the newsroom, right after Perri is at home looking up Kolchak on the Internet. The newsroom itself is a modern-day set - it is only McGavin himself who is added. The footage is taken from a scene in the movie where Carl is loading up his bag with a stake and hammer.

  • Allusions

    • License Plate
      Kolchak's license plate number, 197DMG2, is yet another intentional allusion to the original series. 197_2 (1972) is the year the original Night Stalker TV movie aired. And DMG is the initials of Darren McGavin, who played the original Kolchak.

    • Kolchak's Wife
      Carl's wife is named "Irene" - an in-joke homage to the original series. In the last episode of the series, "The Sentry," Kolchak deals with police official of the week Lt. Irene Lamont. Lamont is played by...Darren McGavin's real-life wife, the late Kathie Browne.

    • Hat and Hatrack
      At Kolchak's house in the study, a hatrack is present and an old straw hat is on it. This is a deliberate allusion/homage to the hat that Darren McGavin wore in the original Night Stalker movies and series.

    • Las Vegas and Seattle
      Both of these cities are mentioned, Las Vegas extensively. These were the cities where ABC's two TV Kolchak movies were set in.

    • Jain: Do you even work for the Beacon, Mr. Horshack?
      Referencing the character Arnold Horshack from the TV series Welcome Back, Kotter.

    • Perri: You can ride home with Elmer Fudd - I've had enough.
      When Kolchak says he's going "hunting," Perri refers to him as Elmer Fudd, a character from The Looney Toons, who often goes hunting for Bugs Bunny. The daughter is also watching similar cartoons at the hotel earlier.