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Robert S. Finkel
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||2|
|No. of episodes||64|
|Running time||30 minutes|
|Picture format||Black and white (1953-1955)|
|Original release||January 1, 1953 – May 10, 1955|
City Detective is a half-hour syndicated crime drama starring Rod Cameron as 43-year-old Bart Grant, a tough 1950s New York City police lieutenant. The first of three consecutive Rod Cameron series, City Detective aired between January 1, 1953 and May 10, 1955. Late in 1953, the publication Variety noted that the series had been sold to 1,971 television stations, a then syndication record.
Numerous actors who appeared on City Detective later landed roles on established network series, including Barbara Billingsley and Hugh Beaumont, who appeared in separate episodes some three years before they were cast as the concerned parents in the sitcom Leave It to Beaver. Madge Blake, a peripheral figure in Leave It to Beaver as well as the Walter Brennan series The Real McCoys, also guest starred on City Detective. Andy Clyde, who played Madge Blake's brother on The Real McCoys, appeared as Pop in the 1955 episode "Desert Ice". Doris Packer of Leave It to Beaver and The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis appeared as Florence in the episode "Sixteen Vertical". Frances Bavier, later "Aunt Bee" on CBS's The Andy Griffith Show, appeared three times on City Detective. Lloyd Corrigan, a co-star of the future NBC sitcom Happy, appeared as Shoreham in the 1954 episode "A Safe Combination". Jean Byron, the mother on ABC's The Patty Duke Show appeared twice on City Detective.
- Mike Connors, before CBS's Tightrope and Mannix, guest starred as Massey in the 1955 episode "Baby in the Basket".
- Chuck Connors, later Lucas McCain on ABC's The Rifleman, appeared as Sam in the 1955 episode "Trouble in Toyland".
- Walter Coy, later the narrator of NBC's Frontier, appeared as Hilton in "Christmas Pardon" on January 1, 1953.
- Fess Parker, starring that same year as Davy Crockett on Walt Disney Presents appeared as Tony in the 1955 episode "Hearts and Flowers".
- DeForest Kelley, later on NBC's Star Trek, appeared twice on City Detective, as Benjamin in "An Old Man's Gold" Kelley and in "Crazy Like a Fox", later the title of a Jack Warden CBS detective series of the same name, Crazy Like a Fox.
- Carolyn Jones, later of The Addams Family, appeared twice in the episodes "A Girl's Best Friend" and "On the Record".
- Tom Greenway, a character actor, appeared twice in episodes "Drop Coin Here" (1954), and "Police, Watch My House" (1955).
- Vivi Janiss was cast as Sheila, with Pierre Watkin as Davis, in "The Hypnotic Wife"
- Kim Spalding, as Johnny in "The Rebel" (1953)
Other episodes and guest stars include:
- "Man Down, Woman Screaming" featured Beverly Garland (later of My Three Sons), Jack Kelly (thereafter of Maverick), western film star Lee Van Cleef, and Frank Ferguson of My Friend Flicka.
- "The Lady in the Beautiful Frame" (Olan Soule and John Doucette)
- "Too Many Grooms" (Claude Akins as Hardy)
- "The Horn That Blew Too Long" (Russ Conway as Clemson)
- "Why Should the Beautiful Die?" (Russell Johnson)
- "The Glass Thumb" (Barbara Billingsley, Frank Ferguson, and Douglas Fowley)
- "Cargo of the Midnight" (Peter Whitney)
- "The Lion Behind You" (Anthony Caruso)
- "On the Record" (Carolyn Jones)
- "The Blonde Orchid" (Hugh Beaumont as Philip Merriam and Douglas Fowley as Detective Wes Harris)
- "Private Mouthpiece" (child actor Richard Eyer as Wester)
- "The Perfect Disguise" (Angie Dickinson)
- "Goodbye Old Paint" (Robert Bray and Vera Miles)
- "Come Back, Little Witness" (Whit Bissell)
- "Found in a Pawnshop" (J. Pat O'Malley), and
- "The Beautiful Miss X" (Lynn Bari), the series finale.
- "City Detective: Summary". TV.com. Retrieved February 13, 2009.
- Alex McNeil, Total Television, New York: Penguin Books, 1996, 4th ed., p. 166
- "Episode List of City Detective". Internet Movie Data Base. Retrieved February 13, 2009.
- "Tom Greenway". Internet Movie Data Base. Retrieved January 18, 2010.
- "The Hypnotic Wife on City Detective". Internet Movie Data Base. March 1, 1955. Retrieved August 7, 2016.
- "Kim Spalding". Internet Movie Data Base. Retrieved January 28, 2010.