The Fugitive (1963)

ABC (ended 1967)



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The Fugitive (1963)

Show Summary

Dr. Richard Kimble (David Janssen), wrongly accused of murdering his wife, escapes custody while en route to Death Row and must elude police and Lt. Philip Gerard (Barry Morse), who is obsessed with his capture. Kimble must constantly relocate and change his name while he continues his quest to find the real killer, a one-armed man (Bill Raisch) he saw leave the scene of the crime. The finale was the most-watched episode of all-time until the final episode of "M*A*S*H."

The original series aired from 1963-1967 (120 episodes) on ABC and inspired the 1993 movie, "The Fugitive," starring Harrison Ford and Tommy Lee Jones. CBS brought the series back in a modern-day version in 2000, which starred Timothy Daly as Dr. Kimble. The original series also inspired a format used in several other shows, such as "The Incredible Hulk" and "Quantum Leap."


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  • David Janssen

    David Janssen

    Dr. Richard Kimble

    Barry Morse

    Barry Morse

    Lt. Philip Gerard

    William Conrad

    William Conrad

    Narrator (uncredited)

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    • David Janssen was born to play the role of Richard Kimble

      I heard my elders talking about "The I knew the name "Richard Kimble" and thought that was the name of the doctor whose real story inspired the TV series. For some unknown reason a short while ago I was curious about what really happened to that doctor. So one day in January 2015 I google searched "What happened to Richard Kimble?" From there I found the TV series on Youtube. I began to watch one episode just trying to see what that 1960's TV drama was like. Unexpectedly I was completely absorbed in it. Subsequently I watched 84 episodes in a few days. I think David Janssen was born to play the role of Richard Kimble. His intense expressions: always contemplative, cautious, fear of being recognized, aware of the presence of a police, furtive, heavy-heartedness, worry laden, averting eyes, smiling only occasionally, His extraordinary humanity and his adherence to the physician's vow, brought out the superb personality of this Dr. Richard Kimble. However, in some situations the script writer over did it, I think, perhaps for the purpose of overwhelming the audience. Kimble, being a humane individual and a dedicated physician even when he was trying to run for his life never left a person in need of medical attention without exerting his best effort at the risk of being captured on the spot. Most of that I agree. But when he devoted himself to saving and treating Gerard on various occasions knowing that Gerard would arrest him right there and then as soon as he was physically better due to Kimble's help, I felt those deeds were too saintly, completely beyond reason. The episodes in the series almost always give some extremely emotional moving moments, at least to me. I was in tears and get an ache in my heart every time.moreless
    • The Fugitive and TV Noir

      The film noir concept applied to The Fugitive recognizes the dark side of existence, the guilt, the running from reality and the confusion known to those who seek the light while running in the dark. This is further explained in TV Noir:20th Century-2010, Amazon Books.
    • Seminal Dramatic Series of the Sixties

      It's all been said, and it's all correct. This is film noir done for television in the best way possible. I'll just add that I watched an interview with Barry Morse and was absolutely floored to hear his British accent!

      Maybe the first series to film a true 'final' episode-which was a terrific, logical and thoroughly satisfying ending to one of the finest dramas ever.
    • by far the best

      I dont understand with all of the garbage on TV that they cant find another actor like David Janssen. His movements, facial expressions, and speech are that of great your character. You can find repeats at 10;00 central on ME tv.
    • Dr. Richard Kimble, heading to his own execution for murdering his wife, is freed by a twist of fate. To prove his innocence he seeks the one-armed man he saw leaving the scene of the crime, and is relentlessly pursued himself by a police lieutenant.moreless

      At some time in the future when one can finally decide what the greatest achievements in television history were, a strong candidate for the top of the list will be this absolutely perfect series, with David Janssen as the innocent man on the run and Barry Morse as his obsessed pursuer, Lt. Gerard. Although Dr. Richard Kimble's primary focus while a fugitive from justice is to find the elusive one-armed man, that mysterious character doesn't appear in that many episodes, but when he does, it sure shocks the audience away from the episodic happenings of whatever Kimble's current situation is, back into the main story that it was temporarily distracted from. In one gripping episode, Kimble actually captures the one-armed man and drags him into a police station, that scene featured in the opening promo. Another amazing two-part episode has Kimble trapped in a small town with Lt. Gerard's wife, the two unaware of who the other really is, leading one to wonder who is going to discover the other's identity first, and what will they do when they find out? The highly rated final episode does not disappoint anyone who has followed the story from the very first episode. William Conrad's narration is also perfect, and may have led to his own detective series "Cannon," another of the reliable Quinn Martin productions of which "The Fugitive" is clearly the finest. It just doesn't get any better than this.moreless

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