Talk:The Fugitive (TV series)

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I agree it would be interesting to briefly cover those series which have borrowed the "X pursued by the law for a crime he/she/they/it didn't commit" premise, but I'm wondering why "Hot Pursuit", a series so obscure I can't even find an episode guide for it, is more worthy of mention than, say, The Littlest Hobo? -- Antaeus Feldspar 16:18, 28 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Perhaps Feldspar is oppsed because he is confused about the merits of "Hot Pursuit'. [[User:Rex071404|Rex071404 Happyjoe.jpg ]] 22:23, 28 Sep 2004 (UTC)

I took out the reference to The Littlest Hobo as it was not about a character being pursued by authorities (unlike the other examples). Plus, the Littlest Hobo actually originated as a Lassie variation in 1958, and the series itself started in 1963 (it was later remade in 1979), so it doesn't really fit into this category. 23skidoo 15:44, 25 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Hmmmm. We may be onto something interesting here, because I there was a show that had a helpful Lassiesque dog falsely accused of having attacked a human (his trainer, I think?) and wandering from place to place until his name was cleared. I was fairly sure it was The Littlest Hobo; could it be that this was an element added in for the 1979 remake? In which case it would be more relevant, not less. -- Antaeus Feldspar 17:12, 25 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Found it. Not an incarnation of Littlest Hobo after all, but it exists. -- Antaeus Feldspar 17:19, 25 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Remakes, part deux[edit]

I think opening it from "chased by the law for a crime he/she did not commit" to "chased by the law for a crime, etc. or by sinister forces" opens it up to too wide a degree. The premise of a wrongfully-accused wanderer answers two questions, as detailed in the article. Widening the premise parameters by eliminating the "wrongfully-accused" angle reintroduces one of those questions: why don't they bring in the police? Some of those series answered those questions (The Invaders, for example) and other probably hoped it wouldn't occur to their audience. -- Antaeus Feldspar 02:31, 5 Nov 2004 (UTC)

I am not convinced. Please supply better proof. 03:48, 5 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Ho-hum, more tedious fleabites from -- Antaeus Feldspar 04:31, 5 Nov 2004 (UTC)
There are shades of grey. The main premise for a fugitive-type show should have two elements involved; why doesn't the main character settle down, and why do they not go the police for help? For example, the series Nowhere Man should be considered a fugitive-type show, as the main character had his life erased and he's looking for answers on the people who did that to him. He doesn't trust the police as they may be a part of the conspiracy that erased his life (pilot). Star Trek: Voyager is also sort of like the show; they don't settle down because they are trying to go home, while attempting to help aliens they don't know along the way with the lack of, or despite, the authorities in that space sector.

"believes to be"[edit]

        • stop chaning this back to :

who escapes custody in a train wreck and begins a cross-country search for the one-armed man he believes to be the real killer

the one armed man IS the killer!!!!!!!!!!!!! when u say kimble believes he is the killer u make it sound like 'kimble belives that the one armed man is the killer,,,,,but he might not be"...that is like sayin on 8/15/05 i believe that george bush is presdient....yeh i can believe that but by sayin i believe it makes it sound like it s open to subjectivity...IT IS NOTTTTTT HE ISSSS THE PRESDIENT.....DO NOT CHANGE THIS the one armed man IS The killer

stupid ass unsigned comment by (talk · contribs)

First of all, "stop chaning this back to" makes it sound like you kept changing it to your preferred version and someone else kept changing it back. A look at the history of the article shows that that's not the case; you changed it for the first and only time today, unless you previously edited The Fugitive, prior to April 2005.

Second of all, says "X believes Y" makes it sound like it is open to subjectivity or that it represents knowledge that is not certain. This is in fact the state that Richard Kimble is in right up until the end of the series: he believes that the one-armed man he saw on the night of the crime was the real killer, but he does not know it. Your analogy of saying that someone "believes" on 08/15/05 that George W. Bush is the President of the United States is a flawed analogy because almost anyone with a reason to care would, at this point, already know. Kimble wants to know who killed his wife, and wants the world to know who killed his wife, and believes that that someone is the one-armed man, but it isn't until the end of the series that he knows. (Correction: I just looked it up in my reference works. Fred Johnson, the one-armed man, confesses the murder to Kimble in episode 77, "Wife Killer" -- more than half-way through the 120-episode series.) -- Antaeus Feldspar 23:20, 16 August 2005 (UTC)




Excuse me, please. You clearly need to read Wikipedia:Civility. There is no need to respond to civil discourse with rudeness like "CORECTION MY ASS".
"When The Bough Breaks" does not change the crux of the matter. Yes, in that episode the narrator states that the one-armed man is the killer of Helen Kimble. But Richard Kimble can't hear what the narrator says; he is still believing that the one-armed man is his wife's actual killer, without knowing that he is. Until Johnson confesses, the only evidence he has against the one-armed man is the same kind of evidence that was used to falsely convict him, circumstantial evidence. -- Antaeus Feldspar 23:31, 17 August 2005 (UTC)
              *       *       *     *

Yeh, I agree. When something is a fact, you need not to preface it, or end it with "who he/she/it believes". I can see the anaology's point: "I saw George Bush, who I believe is the 43rd president, on TV." It is a fact, so you do not need to put that 'one belives'; otherwise all the things that people know would be 'that they believe'. Furthermore, "Who he believes is the killer" has a certain preview/ambiguity to it:

"...who he believes is the real killer. Stay tuned to the next episode to see if Kimble is right"

This is Wikipedia, not a site associated with previews and in the advertising business. Stick to the facts and what is true. As a reader of the article, I do not want to have to guess or make an opinion of my own if Kimble is right or not in knowing if Johnson is the killer, nor do I neccessarily want to know about what Kimble is thinking. MOST articles should not written/read as through the eyes of a single character, but of an omniscient force (as with MOST articles on Wikipedia should be[which leads to unbiased, totally 100% FACTUAL articles]). Write if you really need to "Kimble is after the man he believes is the killer", but you really need to back it up and say who ends up actually being the killer. Readers should NOT have to watch the series to figure out Kimble is right. That's why they turn here, to us. You should write something like:

"Kimble is on the run, searching for the one-armed man who he believes, and in fact is, the killer of his wife."

But definetly DO NOT leave it if Kimble just BELIEVES he is the killer; because as we all know that just because we believe something, doesn't mean it's true. Look at about 99.999% of the world's problems today. Are they not rooted and caused by perceptions, opinions, and subjection rather than facts, data, and conclusions based on non-ambiguous calculations.

--wise old man unsigned comment by (talk · contribs)

Well, perhaps if you had checked the article before writing this response, you would have discovered that the situation you were railing against no longer exists, making it rather moot. With that said, however, you are making the same mistake as the other anon who posted from your same IP address did, stating that if party A (such as the main character of a TV series) believes something to be true but does not know it for sure, and party B (such as the home viewing audience of the same TV series) knows to be true what party A believes but does not know, it is always more important that party B knows. This is not true; if we are talking about the actions a person takes due to their state of mind and state of belief, it is actively misleading to replace all discussion of what that person believes and replace it with our own knowledge of affairs. What sense would it make, after all, to say "Lieutenant Gerard is trying to arrest and bring back for execution Richard Kimble, who did not commit any crime"? It doesn't make any sense without the knowledge that Gerard believes that Kimble committed murder.
Likewise, to replace the fact that Kimble believes Johnson to be Helen's killer with third-party knowledge that Johnson is in fact the killer, creating the mistaken impression that Kimble knows for sure, is to misportray just what a slender thread of hope Kimble is following: until Johnson confesses to him in episode 77, he's been chasing this guy all over the United States, and somewhere in the back of his mind has to be the fear: what if he catches the one-armed man and gets the truth out of him and the truth turns out to be that it wasn't the one-armed man? To hide the fact that Kimble is on this dogged, relentless pursuit of the one-armed man, not because he knows the one-armed man is the killer but just because he's the only suspect Kimble has, is to downplay the oppressiveness of Kimble's plight. -- Antaeus Feldspar 23:31, 17 August 2005 (UTC)
  • I do remember an episode (although I've forgotten the title) where Kimble tracks Johnson to a town where the local sherriff arrests local vagrants and drifters and puts them in a fenced off yard out back for all the townspeople to see. Johnson's pic makes the papers and when Kimble sees it he comes to town. He arrives just as Johnson is released and they end up in a chase which ends in a crash and Johnson is nearly killed. Kimble comes to his rescue and hides him in some kind of summer camp (?) where he nurses him back to health, with the help of a friendly local/reporter (I forget which). While Kimble nurses Johnson back to health, Kimble shouts at Johnson, "Did you kill my wife?!" and Johnson, wearing a respirator mask and barely able to move, nods. God I miss this show! When is it coming out on DVD?! --- yours truly, Wrong Tower Guy

Episode 3 x 17: "Wife Killer" - great episode: "Did you kill her? Did you kill my wife?" Kuru talk 00:36, 3 September 2006 (UTC)
Unfortunately, for Kimble, that kind of confession was obtained under duress. If you're clinging to life and the only doctor around who can treat you demands a confession that you killed his wife, you might nod your head as well. Jclinard 15:29, 10 September 2007 (UTC)

Proposed rearrangement[edit]

Ipstenu has rearranged this article so that it has separate headers for the 1963 TV series, the 2000 TV series, and the 1993 film, and then headers for commentary about the origins of the 1963 TV series and spoofs and parodies. That would be a perfectly fine arrangement, except that this is not an article about the entire franchise of The Fugitive; it is an article about the original 1963 TV series. It used to be an article about both the original 1963 series and the 1993 film, but the 1993 film has its own article now and the 2000 remake had so little lasting impact that it is at most a minor note to be mentioned in relation to the original series that inspired it. But in Ipstenu's rearrangement, it's given earlier mention than what the people who made the original 1963 series had to say about it! Again, there is no need to add a header for "1963 TV series" because that is what this article is about -- not about every incarnation of Dr.-Richard-Kimble-on-the-run. -- Antaeus Feldspar 23:43, 7 July 2006 (UTC)

... And why is it that way? This page is named 'The Fugitive (TV series)', not 'The Fugitive (1963 TV series)'. Leaving it as is pretty much dismisses the remake of the TV show (not that it was a good remake, mind you). Look, what I did was I shortened the film 'section' (which already existed, I did not put it there, I moved the 2000 tv series up above the film, and added in sections to make it clearer what we were talking about. That's it. I put the impact and all at the bottom because it reflects on the entire world of the Fugitive, and not just one remake or the other. I admit, it could be done cleaner, as maybe a sub section of the 1963 show, but it seemed a little more jumbled up that an easy plunk here for one would let me do. Also, I don't think that the way the page is laid out makes it overtly obvious that there was a 1963 series. It just says 'Here's the figutive, here's all this stuff, oh and there was a film and another series. I get what you're saying, but the layout as is isn't reflecting that at all. This article is for the TV Series. Dump the movie to a one line mention with a link and organize, but just whole sale reverting back without appearing to read that I was trying to organize to give creds to all aspects of a TV show (like the name of this article implies) doesn't give any progress to an article. -- Ipstenu (talk|contribs) 16:12, 8 July 2006 (UTC)

- Can someone please confirm that Johnson and Kimble were struggling on a "water tower"? I've had the episode on tape and I've even seen still photos of it just this past week. I believe it WASN'T a water tower but a parachute jump tower. In the still photos there is a tower but no tank. Plus I remember, because my tapes is worn out now, that the tower had a big sign saying "parachute" or something like it on it. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) .

Sharp eyes. I just watched it again, and it is indeed some kind of carnival ride - definitely not a water tower. The sign they run past says "be a real swinger, ride the imported south sea thrill, the Fantastic Mahimahi". Nothing about parachute; and it looks like there are some tuna shaped cars laying about the tower. Changed the article to say 'carnival' instead of 'water'. Thanks! Kuru talk 15:31, 2 September 2006 (UTC)
Hmmmm. The Fugitive: Recaptured does claim it was a water tower within the amusement park (page 180) but that could be their error... -- Antaeus Feldspar 00:45, 3 September 2006 (UTC)
Fascinating - well, here's what I'm seeing: It's definitely not a functioning watertower; as Mr. 140 noticed, there is no holding tank at the top of the tower (it is shown clearly in several wide shots, including the famous "Phil Gerard: Crack Sniper" scene). As both Johnson and Kimble enter the area, they climb some curving steps that are framed with the sign detailed above taking up about half the shot - so I assume it was an important element. When they get to the base of the tower, there are three old amusement park ride style cars shaped like big blue fish that a equidistant around the tower. They have large steel arms attached to them that are the same metal as the tower, but you can never see them clearly attached to the tower. You can also see the top of the steps leading up directly to the base of the tower, and only the tower.
This is all original research, however. I'd hate to contradict a direct cite from a book devoted to the show; so maybe just saying "large steel tower"? Kuru talk 01:13, 3 September 2006 (UTC)


Is there any information on the availability of The Fugitive on DVD, will it be coming out? Frainc 20:16 September 2006

It's available as off air copies on the internet. 32 DVD's.

Method of Travel To Death House[edit]

The article says Kimble is traveling via bus to the death house and is involved in a train wreck. This is from the '93 movie, I think. On the series, IIRC, Gerard and Kimble are traveling via train and it derails. No bus in the original series. Been a while since I've seen the show. Can someone confirm or deny, and change the article if need be. Sir Rhosis 17:00, 10 December 2006 (UTC)

Yes, you're correct. Harrison Ford's bus was hit by a train, but David Jannsen was on board a train. Article changed. --Robertkeller 17:41, 17 January 2007 (UTC)
In the 2000 remake, the police van wrecks without aid of a train.Jclinard 15:42, 10 September 2007 (UTC)


While some believe this movie and its success may have started the Hollywood trend of the 1990s for remaking old television series as feature films, this movie eschews the campy approach generally taken by such remakes, and treats its source material with respect.

Anyone else see bias here? If so, how could this be edited to not sound so biased? Darkpower 09:29, 4 September 2007 (UTC)

There, I have it fixed, sort of. Had trouble thinking of what to replace it with, but it has WAY less biased than it did before. Darkpower 09:29, 4 September 2007 (UTC)

First and Last[edit]

The first episode was not a special episode. It begins with Kimble, having spent 18 months in prison with appeals before escaping in a train crash on the way to the Death House 6 months previously (so 2 years after the murder). His first alias (on TV) was James Lincoln.

When the last episode was coming up for airing, on both sides of the Atlantic there was speculation in the media and amongst the many people who watched the show whether Kimble was really innocent after all. ( (talk) 19:01, 21 June 2008 (UTC))


Despite being on the run for years and despite Gerard and so many other lawmen having seen Kimble, his wanted poster was never updated and continued to show him with grey hair instead of his dyed black hair. ( (talk) 16:19, 16 September 2008 (UTC))


As the show goes on, you see how women are attracted to Kimble, and doctors are even more attractive to many women. Kimble forms relationships with women easily and it is difficult to believe that he stuck with his wife only. Possibly Kimble had a number of affairs and that was what made his wife drink as she did, and heated up the final argument between them. ( (talk) 17:54, 31 October 2008 (UTC))

I've been re-watching the entire series and noticed considerably more sexual tension in episodes beginning with the second season. I assume this was a conscious decision by the writers/producers in order to boost the ratings. (talk) 06:57, 21 March 2013 (UTC)

Some thoughts[edit]

The wanted poster on Kimble was never updated though the Law knew he had blackened his hair. He was instantly recognisable from it, as happened many times. A simple beard and mustache, or a mustache and glasses would probably have been a good disguise but Kimble never tried it. It can only be assumed that he didn't so the viewer would always know it was him. Kimble always wrote his own credentials which were never checked unless he was under suspicion, then they were then found out to be false. He frequently left a place barely one step ahead of the law, having to leave his few belongings behind him. Even after travelling days when he must have had to sleep out in the woods, Kimble always looked fresh, well dressed and clean shaven. His wife was killed 2 weeks after Sept 5, 1961 and had 18 months of appeals, trial, etc. He was then on the run for 4 or 5 years (both figures given in 2-part wind up of the series.) He and Gerrard parted as friends. Gerrard had always believed he was guilty (though Kimble saved his life 3 times in the series) and that the one-armed man was an invention. He came to believe that Kimble had only committed the one murder and would commit no more. He knew that Kimble hated guns. Gerrard was finally forced to realise that Fred Johnson existed and was violent and a liar in the finale where he helped Kimble instead of taking him straight to jail as he should have. ( (talk) 10:46, 3 November 2008 (UTC))

Is this a suggestion for making improvements, or what? SlowJog (talk) 16:32, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
While Kimble, in the second-half of the last episode, did get the 1AM to verbally confess to killing Helen Kimble, Kimble had actually got the 1AM to admit it in an earlier B&W episode called "Wife Killer". It's the one where a reporter finds the 1AM in her town, publishes his photo in the paper to attract Kimble, and in the resulting chase the 1AM nearly is killed driving off a road and Kimble and the reporter have to nurse the 1AM back to health. When the 1AM (I'm to lazy to type his name) first regains consciousness and sees Kimble, Kimble demands to know if he really did kill his wife. The 1AM nods. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:54, 10 March 2010 (UTC)

Genre category[edit]

The list in the "legacy" section is impressive. Is it long enough to create a category that can be used to connect these? Maybe a "Fugitive genre" category? That would seem biased toward this program. Perhaps a more general term for the category could be thought of. SlowJog (talk) 16:32, 4 June 2009 (UTC)

New Zealand and the final episode[edit]

I don't know if this is worthy of inclusion. A writer for TV Guide magazine in the late 1970s or the early to mid 1980s recounted an experience in New Zealand in 1967. At a stadium where a football game was being held, there were television sets set up around the stadium. The game was suddenly halted, the sets were turned on, and everyone watched the final episode of "The Fugitive". When the episode was over, the football game resumed. GBC (talk) 07:42, 16 February 2010 (UTC)

Effect of the Finale[edit]

Helen Kimble must have been killed twice. In the episode "World's End", the newspaper ad says, 'Must contact R.K. about Sept. 17th'. William Conrad says, Sept. 17th was the night Helen Kimble was killed. In the final episode, Gerard asks Johnson, "Where were you on Sept.19, the day Helen Kimble was murdered." — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:23, 30 April 2012 (UTC)

The series' earlier episodes were already playing in afternoon reruns for some time before the final episode played in prime time. I remember that sponsors claimed that the market for the reruns suffered, as if seeing the resolution "spoiled" the show for viewers.

This was occasionally ofered as a reason why later TV series did not wrap up neatly when they went off the air. (E.g., Run For Your Life, whose protagonist had only two years to live. The show got through three (!) seasons, then ended abruptly, with the character neither dead nor cured.) WHPratt (talk) 03:28, 13 November 2010 (UTC)

Gerard belives Kimble killed his wife in "cold blood"?[edit]

I wanted to take a moment to compliment the person or persons who wrote or contributed to this splendid article. It is truly superb; replete with factual material and incisive analysis.

This has always been one of my favorite television shows. When first viewing it in its original airing (as a kid), the appeal was that every week one could tune in and watch someone with worse problems than one had. Now, watching it in retrospect the appeal is nostalgia for a bygone era; an era a relative eye blink ago in time yet seemingly an eternity away. It was an era when people conducted themselves with class as exhibited by their attire, manners, work ethic; an age of innocence for children when such things as “passwords” and admonitions such as “Don’t play alone or talk to strangers” were unheard of.

The series ended in 1967, just the right moment in time for it for 1968 was the year when everything changed and when capital punishment was to enter a long hiatus while being reviewed by the judiciary. The Fugitive is a crystallized moment in time, a refuge for all who feel as time exiles within a contemporary society alien to their values and tastes; a time when on television everyone smoked (even doctors!) and no one had sex.

Yes, not unlike Little Lord Fauntleroy, Dr. Richard Kimble, an innocent victim of blind justice, is a character only a writer could dream up. Every week he has one hour to search for the one-armed man, evade Gerard and capture, and fix everyone else’s problems in his spare time. No matter what the risk or cost to himself, he always does the right thing. We can only dream of such individuals of an idealized world within the one of reality that we must inhabit.

I have just one point of contention regarding the article. It is stated that Lt. Gerard believes Dr. Kimble murdered his wife in cold blood. The very nature of the crime would seem to belie that contention. Dr. Kimble’s wife was beaten to death and presumably Gerard and others believe it was in a moment of rage by her husband after an argument. (Indeed, even in truth it wasn’t a premeditated murder.)

This is further bolstered when in one episode Gerard is closing in on Dr. Kimble and he encounters a murderer who has already killed more than one victim. At the conclusion of the episode, Gerard is forced to let Dr. Kimble get away in order to take out the “other” murderer. When asked by a local police detective why he would have done that after having pursued Kimble for so long, Gerard responds: “I wanted them both. But this one was going to kill again while the other [Kimble] has done all the killing he’s going to do.”

At times, Gerard even seems to entertain moments of doubt concerning Dr. Kimble’s guilt, as nicely noted within the article. But I don’t think he (or anyone) ever thought that Dr. Kimble murdered his wife in cold blood. Perhaps this assertion within the article could be deleted as anti-factual? — Preceding unsigned comment added by HistoryBuff14 (talkcontribs) 16:24, 15 October 2011 (UTC)

Quantum Leap doesn't qualify[edit]

Quantum Leap is cited as an example of a fugitive on the run stopping to help people.

Helping people is certainly an element, but Sam Beckett (lead character played by Scott Bakula) is not "on the run". He is unable to control the fact that he is leaping from one figure to another, and must resolve the situation of that person in order to escape and leap into another person. Kimble and the many other characters are entirely in control, and even have the option to stop running and surrender themselves. GBC (talk) 05:07, 7 December 2012 (UTC)

Pilot Episode[edit]

Which episode was the pilot episode? (talk) 23:09, 24 March 2014 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:07, 24 March 2014 (UTC)