55 years ago today, The Fugitive first aired on ABC. The American drama series starred David Janssen as Dr. Richard Kimble, a physician who is wrongfully convicted of his wife’s murder and sentenced to receive the death penalty. Nominated for five Emmy Awards, it won for Outstanding Dramatic Series in 1966, before ending the following year. Produced by Quinn Martin, it appeared on the 2002 TV Guide list of The 50 Greatest TV Shows of All Time. CHECK OUT the who’s who of actors that made guest appearances throughout the 120 episodes and WATCH the last 5 mins of the series… (1963)
Typically, The Fugitive was able to attract two or more guest stars per episode, legends from stage and screen, and often they would play different characters in multiple episodes. They included: Robert Duvall, Mickey Rooney, Dabney Coleman, Ed Asner, William Shatner, Telly Savalas, Ed Begley, Jack Klugman, Leslie Nielsen, Kurt Russell, Charles Bronson, Ossie Davis, Angie Dickinson, Diane Ladd, Hope Lange, Carol Lawrence, Carroll O’Connor, Vin Scully, Brenda Vaccaro, and Tuesday Weld.
It was not until episode 14, that viewers were offered the full details of Richard Kimble’s plight. A series of flashbacks revealed the fateful night of Helen Kimble’s death, and a glimpse of the “One-Armed Man” that Kimble saw running from the vicinity of his home that evening. Janssen’s understated performance earned him three Emmy nominations for best actor in a TV drama.
More Good News on this date:
- Ken Kesey was born, the American author of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest and member of the psychedelic literary posse, the Merry Pranksters (1935-2001)
- The first Space Shuttle, Enterprise, was unveiled by NASA–with the cast of TV’s Star Trek present–after a write-in campaign succeeded in changing the name from Constitution (1976)
- Vanessa Williams was crowned the first black Miss America (1983)
- The Camp David Accords were signed by Israel and Egypt (1978)
- North Korea, South Korea, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and Micronesia joined the United Nations (1991)
- The last Russian troops departed from Poland (1993)
- Heather Whitestone of Alabama became the first deaf woman crowned as Miss America (1994)
- Northern Ireland‘s main Protestant party joined peace talks, bringing together all players for the first time (1997)
- President Clinton lifted 50-year restrictions on trade, travel & banking with North Korea (1999)
Within weeks, encampments sprang up around the world to join the protest against social and economic inequality for “the 99 percent”. Some lasting and positive direct action did result. (Photo by John St John Photography, CC)
And, Happy 73rd Birthday to legendary NBA coach Phil Jackson, who won an amazing eleven National Basketball titles as a coach: six with Michael Jordan the Chicago Bulls and five with Kobe Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers. (1945)
And, on this day in 1787, the final draft of the United States Constitution, a blueprint for how the nascent government would function, was completed and signed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The framers wisely separated and balanced governmental powers to safeguard liberty and equality, the interests of majority rule and minority rights, and the federal and state governments. Though it began with the now-famous phrase, “We the people,” there were many disappointed delegates who refused to sign the draft, due to certain compromises.
The Great Compromise ended the stalemate between “patriots” (who favored states-rights) and “nationalists” (who favored stronger federal powers) and the question of how to apportion for representation in the congress. Numerous other compromises accommodated the factions but also led to only 39 of the 55 delegates agreeing to sign the document. The final arbiter of law in the nation, The Constitution’s first three words—We the People—affirmed that the government of the United States exists to serve its citizens.
The Constitution has been amended 27 times (the first ten, known as the Bill of Rights, protected personal freedoms and restricted government power) to meet the challenges of a profoundly changing country. It is the model on which the constitutions of other nations were based. Written on parchment, the original four pages are stored and viewable at the National Archives in Washington, DC.