The Delphi Bureau

ABC (ended 1973)


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The Delphi Bureau

Show Summary

Glenn Garth Gregory is an investigator for the super-secret government agency known as the Delphi Bureau. The Delphi Bureau is answerable directly (and only) to the President. Officially it's a research firm and Gregory's cover is that of a researcher. The Delphi Bureau is so secret that even Gregory himself is not precisely sure what it does, where it is based out of, or how many people work for it...he suspects the Delphi Bureau's only members are himself and his boss, Sybil Van Loween, the mysterious Washington socialite who gives him his assignments. He meets her in various locations around Washington. The relationship between Gregory and Sybil was very ambiguous, they had a lot of very sharp, witty dialogue reminiscent of a '30's screwball comedy, and her flirtatious attitude toward him hinted that they might have been more than employer and employee. There was also a little bit of a hint that blackmail might have been involved in Gregory's working for the agency. Gregory is closer to Columbo or Jim Rockford than James Bond. He doesn't use secret weapons, and would rather not use a gun (though he does on occaision), preferring instead to rely on his photographic memory, powers of observation, and ingenuity to solve cases. At the time, there was a group of TV detectives and spies who tended to get hit on the head a lot, and Gregory was among this group, usually getting hit on the head at least once, maybe twice per episode. Even as a kid, I used to wonder how long a person who had a photographic memory would keep it if they got hit on the head as much as Gregory did (...probably not long. Don't misunderstand, I was a huge fan of this show, [as if you couldn't guess] but you can be a big fan and still wonder about some elements of it...) Critics and journalists generally dismissed the show as being gimmicky and scraping the bottom of an already tired genre (spies), because of the photographic memory angle, but it had some very creative, clever plots (at least for the time). One episode that has stuck in my memory to this day had a person killed by what we would now recognize as a microwave oven...this was at the time when they were just coming onto the market as a high-end consumer product, so not many people had them and the show was very much on the cutting edge at the time (needless to say, a story like this would be a lot more controversial today when nearly every home has a microwave oven...)moreless