TV Tuesday: Half Nelson 1985

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Half Nelson Image One
Image Credit: &

Thirty-five years ago, today, the television series Half Nelson debuted on NBC with a two hour pilot TV movie. Created & written by Glen A. Larson and Lou Shaw, it starred Joe Pesci, Fred Williamson and Victoria Jackson with Dean Martin (as himself) in the movie pilot, adding Bubba Smith, Dick Butkus and Gary Grubbs as main cast in the series. Notable guest stars were Morgan Brittany, George Kennedy, Gary Lockwood, John Saxon and a dog listed as Spuds MacKenzie but, credited as Tony in the TV show. Curiously, the image reflects actors Tony Curtis and John Matuszak as guest stars but, they aren’t on IMDB and Television Obscurities states that Rod Taylor was in the pilot but, his name was also not listed on IMDB.

Movie Summary:

Rocky Nelson is a New York City cop who, after making a major bust and selling the rights of his story to Hollywood, decides to try his luck out as an actor. However, when he gets there, the directors think that he is too short to be an actor. He is, then, approached by someone who offers him a job at a Hollywood security agency because he would fit in there being an ex-cop and, while working there, he could come in contact with some Hollywood heavyweights who could give him the break he needs. [At] the same time, he gets to live in Dean Martin’s guest house.

Half Nelson Image Two
Image Credit: &

Series Summary:

Rocky Nelson is a former New York cop who is trying to make it as an actor in Hollywood. However, like most actor wannabees, he is still looking for his big break and his lack of stature doesn’t endear him to the directors. So, he is currently working for Beverly Hills Patrol, a private security agency that caters to the needs of the Hollywood elite and, who also try to keep things quiet for their clients. [Every] now and then, Rocky comes across a case which requires him to slip into his old mold of cop, which doesn’t make his boss or the police lieutenant that he encounters, happy.

Trivia Bits:
♦ This was Dean Martin’s final acting role.
♦ Martin, playing himself, is the owner of Beverly Hills Patrol and Joe Pesci’s Rocky provides him security.
♦ The series replaced the low rated V TV series.
♦ After the pilot movie, only six episodes aired before being cancelled and replaced with Misfits of Science in the new season.

Additional Reading:
Episode List (IMDB)
TV Obscurities (Website)

Opening & Rod Taylor’s Scenes

27 thoughts on “TV Tuesday: Half Nelson 1985

    badfinger20 said:
    March 25, 2020 at 1:24 AM

    I actually remember this show but I’m not sure I watched it. Joe Pesci in it would make it interesting.
    I did watch V for a while.

      The Hinoeuma responded:
      March 25, 2020 at 1:37 PM

      I don’t remember this at all. I do remember watching V…the mini-series & the show. And, I also remember being disappointed because they cut the legs out from under the show with little resolution:

        badfinger20 said:
        March 25, 2020 at 1:48 PM

        I do remember watching V… I HATE when they cancel and don’t have a resolution.

          The Hinoeuma responded:
          March 26, 2020 at 12:06 AM

          Another comment not in the panel…

          Yeah. Me, too. But, suits don’t care about fans. If they did, Firefly would have been treated better.

            badfinger20 said:
            March 26, 2020 at 12:58 AM

            There was another show…hell I wish they would finish it now. Maybe you can do a post on it one day… It had Tim Daly from Wings…before Wings…it was called Almost Grown…a great show about a married couple looking back on the sixties….in the late 80s.


              The Hinoeuma responded:
              March 26, 2020 at 1:52 AM

              I’ve heard of that. It debuted in 1988. It depends if the date falls right. I have the structure of going back in time in five year increments, using the day’s date. Without a framework, I wouldn’t know where to start.

              With music, you can go way back to before Christ and come up with something (wing it). Movies can go back to the late 1800s (wing that, too). TV? There is no such thing pretty much prior to 1946 (the UK was ahead of us). I did a couple of TV shows on a Wayback Wednesday that didn’t fall into my five year searches. Then, I reorganized my days.

              In my current structure, 1988 would work out in 2023 and, since it debuted November 27, the day would have to line up. LOL!

              I know it sounds strange but, I have a format. I tweak it, here and there and, my FOTDs & POTDs float, esp. when I can’t find a fucking thing to blog about. LOL!

                badfinger20 said:
                March 26, 2020 at 9:38 AM

                Now you have a system! That is awesome!
                Dang…I completely wing it.
                The only time I had a clue is the couple of weeks I did “Songs that reference _____ in them”…it made it easier that is for sure….also the power pop Fridays…but I started to run out of power pop songs I really loved…I am going to look more.

                  The Hinoeuma responded:
                  March 26, 2020 at 1:33 PM

                  I didn’t start out that way. It is a work in progress, some of which got based on the TBT of FakeBook. My blog didn’t have a particular theme so, I played around with it.

                  I still make adjustments.

                  UK’s #1 Hits blog…hell, he has a reason to blog for YEARS. He just follows the chart.

                  With me, it is date based, except my pix posts.

                    badfinger20 said:
                    March 26, 2020 at 1:45 PM

                    I throw proverbial darts at a board. I kinda like it…it keeps it exciting…nothing is off my list.

                      The Hinoeuma responded:
                      March 26, 2020 at 1:57 PM

                      Everyone has their own system that works for them. 😁

                      badfinger20 said:
                      March 26, 2020 at 6:05 PM

                      LOL …my system is I have none

                      The Hinoeuma responded:
                      March 26, 2020 at 2:26 PM


                      badfinger20 said:
                      March 26, 2020 at 6:34 PM

                      That wasn’t right! My system I have IS none…

                      The Hinoeuma responded:
                      March 26, 2020 at 3:29 PM


          badfinger20 said:
          March 26, 2020 at 12:59 AM

          My post vanished…it had a link

            The Hinoeuma responded:
            March 26, 2020 at 1:53 AM

            You mean the comment above? I moderate, remember?

              badfinger20 said:
              March 26, 2020 at 9:38 AM

              I remembered after I said something…

      The Hinoeuma responded:
      March 25, 2020 at 1:53 PM

      Sorry for the load up on emails.

        badfinger20 said:
        March 25, 2020 at 5:20 PM

        Nonsense… I like reading them lol… anytime. I can’t wait til I get a little break from work!

    JT Twissel said:
    March 25, 2020 at 5:31 PM

    Missed this one entirely although I am a Joe Pesci fan.

      The Hinoeuma responded:
      March 25, 2020 at 7:29 PM

      I totally missed it, too.

    Kat said:
    March 25, 2020 at 8:15 PM

    Me too. I don’t remember it all and I watched a lot of TV being home with an infant at the time.

      The Hinoeuma responded:
      March 25, 2020 at 8:54 PM

      I DO remember the V TV series before and the Misfits of Science after. LOL!

    bereavedandbeingasingleparent said:
    March 28, 2020 at 5:22 AM

    I like Joe so must try and track this down.

      The Hinoeuma responded:
      March 28, 2020 at 1:59 PM

      That will be very hard. Let me know if you have trouble.

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