A Man Called Hawk
|A Man Called Hawk|
|Created by||Robert B. Parker
|Developed by||Stephen Hattman
William Robert Yates
|Opening theme||Stanley Clarke
Lawrence "Butch" Morris
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||1|
|No. of episodes||13|
|Running time||60 minutes|
|Production company(s)||Warner Bros. Television|
|Original release||January 28, 1989 – May 13, 1989|
|Preceded by||Spenser: For Hire|
A Man Called Hawk is a prime time television series that ran on the ABC television network between January 1989 and May 1989. The series is a spin-off of the crime drama series Spenser: For Hire, and features the character Hawk, who first appeared in the 1976 novel Promised Land, the fourth in the series of Spenser novels by mystery writer Robert B. Parker.
Brooks reprised the role of Hawk in four subsequent TV movies: Spenser: Ceremony (1993), Spenser: Pale Kings and Princes (1994), Spenser: The Judas Goat (1994), and Spenser: A Savage Place (1995). Each is considered a sequel to Spenser: For Hire.
On the air for just thirteen episodes, A Man Called Hawk starred lauded African American actor and drama professor Avery Brooks as the title character, who has relocated from Boston to his hometown, Washington, D.C. The series co-starred actor Moses Gunn, who portrayed a father figure to Hawk known only as "Old Man". It was a spin-off of the recently cancelled Spenser: For Hire, which aired on ABC from 1985 through 1988. Brooks co-wrote the theme music for the show with jazz legends Stanley Clarke and Butch Morris, the latter of whom also did most of the incidental music for the show.
During the first three seasons of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Brooks wore a full head of hair and shaved his goatee, as a means of distinguishing his character Benjamin Sisko from Hawk. However, the goatee was added to Sisko's look near the end of Season 3, and his head was permanently shaven at the start of Season 4. Also on Deep Space Nine, Sisko's old friend and mentor, Dax, was called 'Old Man' by Brooks' character.
On Spenser: For Hire, the character of Hawk was defined by his sharp outfits, streetwise manner, sunglasses (worn even at night) and the incredibly large long barreled Colt Python .357 Magnum revolver that he carried with him nearly everywhere. He most often acted as a street resource for his private detective friend Spenser. Notably, Hawk had a clean shaven head, well before Michael Jordan and other celebrities popularized the look in the 1990s.
After spinning off to his own series, Hawk became less of an anti-hero and more of a traditional champion of people that needed help and could not fight for themselves. A deeper personal history was developed for the character, and Hawk became more of a Renaissance man, displaying talents for boxing, chess, playing jazz, and an appreciation of fine African art.
Additionally, the character Hawk appeared in two TV movies with no connection to either Spenser: For Hire or A Man Called Hawk. In Spenser: Small Vices (1999), Hawk was portrayed by Shiek Mahmud-Bey. In Walking Shadow (2001), the role went to Ernie Hudson. See Spenser (TV movies).
List of episodes
|Episode||Production||Airdate||Title||Notable Guest Stars|
|1||101||28 January 1989||"The Master's Mirror"||Angela Bassett, Vondie Curtis-Hall|
|2||102||4 February 1989||"A Time and a Place"||Anthony LaPaglia|
|3||103||11 February 1989||"Hear No Evil"||Charles S. Dutton, Lorraine Toussaint|
|4||104||18 February 1989||"Passing the Bar"||Earle Hyman|
|5||105||25 February 1989||"The Divided Child"||Mary McDonnell, James McDaniel|
|6||106||4 March 1989||"Vendetta"||Keith David, Delroy Lindo|
|7||107||11 March 1989||"Choice of Chance"||Wesley Snipes, Joe Morton, Charles S. Dutton|
|8||108||25 March 1989||"Poison"||William Fichtner, Joseph C. Phillips|
|9||109||1 April 1989||"Never My Love"||Angela Bassett, Wendell Pierce|
|10||110||15 April 1989||"Intensive Care"||Samuel L. Jackson, Olivia Cole|
|11||111||29 April 1989||"If Memory Serves"||Nathan George|
|12||112||6 May 1989||"Beautiful Are the Stars"||Chris Noth, Karen Malina White, Valerie Simpson|
|13||113||13 May 1989||"Life after Death"||Thomas Hearns, Paul Guilfoyle, Kasi Lemmons|
The TV One network resumed airing episodes of A Man Called Hawk in September 2006.
Fans of the series have requested its release on DVD for years with no success. the KBC TV also aired episodes of "A Man Called Hawk" in late 1990s.
- A Man Called Hawk at The Internet Movie Database
- Bullets and Beer - the annotated detective site; everything about the Robert B. Parker's books
- A Man Called Hawk at TV.com