A new drug has hit the streets of Los Angeles that found its way in the hands of teens and young adults who want to “Turn on, tune in, drop out.” Sgt. Friday and Officer Gannon are called out to a disturbance at a vacant lot where a youth is all painted up and chewing the bark off a tree. They arrive to find the teenager with his head buried in the ground. Finding nothing but sugar cubes on the rambling and hallucinating youth they take him in to Central Receiving hospital to confirm he’s under the influence of an unknown drug and later to Georgia Street Juvenile where he refuses to cooperate or give his name. When asked about the sugar cubes he informs them that they are ‘those are the keys to the kingdom.” Friday and Gannon take the sugar cubes to the Scientific Investigation Division where turns out they contain L.S.D. At the moment the drug isn’t illegal and it’s starting to become popular with the younger generation. The parents of ‘Blue Boy’ Benjamin Carver fluff off the incident with their son as harmless teenage behavior. Friday and Gannon are introduced to two young teenage girls are name ‘Blue Boy’ as the person who sold them L.S.D. and is fast becoming a major supplier of the drug. Finally, a law is passed and L.S.D. is now classified as a dangerous drug. The officers revisit the parents of Benjie Carver where his mother offers them an apology. While searching the Sunset Strip for ‘Blue Boy’, Friday and Gannon come across the two young teenage girls they met earlier who mention that they were invited to an acid party from ‘Blue Boy’ and pass on the address to the officers. No sign of ‘Blue Boy’ at the acid party they break up. They get a break on the whereabouts of ‘Blue Boy’ from a drug store owner who gives them a delivery address for an order of empty capsules. They find ‘Blue Boy’ dead at a West Beverly Blvd. apartment.
Notable Guest Stars: Heather Menzies (-Urich) plays Edna Mae Dixon. She played Louisa Von Trapp in “The Sound of
Music” and was the wife of the late actor Robert Urich. Jerry Douglas plays Sgt. Eugene Zappey. Most of us may know Jerry Douglas as John Abbott (1985-2006) from the
soap opera “The Young and the Restless." Michael Burns who plays ‘Blue Boy’, a former child actor,
also may be remembered as Barnaby West from the television series “Wagon Train.”
Jack Webb regular Art Balinger plays Captain Richey. Don Ross makes his 1st appearance as Ben Riddle.
Videos: LSD Facts from the Episode (Episode written by Jack Webb (John Randolph) and directed by Jack Webb)
The Big Explosion - Air Date: 19-Jan-1967
Sgt. Friday and Officer Gannon are called out to a burglary at a construction company where 400 pounds of dynamite have been stolen, enough to level two city blocks. The blasting caps stolen from the burglary are electric blasting caps, sensitive to extraneous electricity, which means they can be triggered from transmission lines, straight currents, lightning, static, radio or television transmissions. Now they need to determine where and when the thieves plan on using the explosives. Friday and Gannon track the station wagon used by the thieves to a bartender. The bartender informs them that he had lent the car to a regular at the club he tends at named ‘Siggie.’ While staking out the Jade Bagoda, the bartender points out a man who provides them with a name for ‘Siggie.’ They are now able to find an address on a Donald Chapman who matches the description of one of the thieves. They discover he also has a history of racial violence. At Chapman’s apartment they discover the dynamite and caps in a closet, along with weapons and hate paraphernalia. They discover some of the caps are missing and four cases of the dynamite are empty. When Chapman finally does arrive at the apartment he refuses to divulge the whereabouts of the missing dynamite. Will Friday and Gannon be able to outsmart Chapman or will Chapman be able to out-wait the officers.
Show and Character Facts: Bill mentions "bringing some stuff back in '45" in relation to a discussion about the Nazi and weapon mementos Chapman has in his apartment. Possible reference to Bill Gannon being a WWII veteran, it was never stated in this episode outright that he was.
Notable Guest Stars: Bobby Troup appears as bartender Albert Amory. Kent McCord appears as Officer Martin (credited as Kent McWhirter)
The Big Kidnapping - Air Date: 26-Jan-1967
Sgt. Friday and Officer Gannon are called out to a bank where a woman named Janet Ohrmund has walked in looking for ransom money for her boss who is being held hostage. Her boss is cosmetics magnate Adele Vincent and the kidnapper is demanding $75,000 in cash or he’d kill Miss Vincent. They decide to give Miss Ohrmund the money and follow her back to Miss Vincent’s house in the hopes the kidnapper will release both woman. After receiving the money the kidnapper is spotted driving away with Miss Vincent in the car. Sgt. Friday devises a plan to fake a car accident on the on-ramp of the freeway in order to apprehend the kidnapper who they learn may also have Miss Ohrmund in the trunk of the car. Notable Guest Stars: Peggy Webber appears as Janet Ohrmund whose boss is being held for ransom. She was "Ma Friday" in the radio version of Dragnet amongst several other characters whose voice she gave life to in the radio version of the show. Other notable roles are Lady McDuff in the 1948 version of "MacBeth" with Orson Wells and Jenni Whitlock in "The Screaming Skull" (1958). She was also the voice of Scrappy-Doo in "The New Scooby and Scrappy-Doo Show" (1983).
The Big Interrogation - Air Date: 9-Feb-1967
An undercover rookie cop is accused of robbing a liquor store while he was supposed to be scoring a sale with a drug dealer. There seems to be some holes in the cop’s story as Sgt. Friday and Officer Gannon interview the young cop. A witness positively identifies the officer as the robber and there’s nine minutes he can’t account for. Can they get to the bottom of this case and determine if the officer is lying or telling the truth. This episode also contains the 'To be a Cop' speech.
Notable Guest Stars: Kent McCord as Officer Paul Carver
The Big Masked Bandits - Air Date: 16-Feb-1967
Cocktail lounges are being robbed by four bandits wearing red face masks. The only thing Sgt. Friday and Officer Gannon know about the suspects is they drive an old model red convertible Cadillac. They get a break in the case from a juvenile pick up for grand theft auto who mentions seeing the Cadillac at a drive-in food joint. After talking to a waitress from the drive-in the find out one of the teenagers involved in the robberies is married to an older woman. This leads them to their first suspect Larry Hubbert who happens to own a red Cadillac and a red face mask at his premises. Hubbert points them in the direction of a second suspect who he used to work with. They arrest a second suspect after staking out his apartment. Will they get the young suspect to admit his guilt in the crimes.
Ingredients in Bill Gannon’s Sandwich: Corned beef, imported Swiss, lettuce, Italian dressing, coleslaw, kosher pickle, slice of tomato, mayonnaise, peanut butter, horseradish and a little hot mustard.
Notable Guest Stars: Robert Brubaker makes his second appearance on the series as Al Tucker. He played recurring roles on ‘Gunsmoke’ (1957-1975) as
stagecoach driver Jim Buck and as Floyd the bartender. He appeared in numerous movies and televisions
series in the 50s, 60s, and 70s. He died
in 2010 at the age of 93.
Character actress Virginia Vincent makes her first appearance
on the show as Edna Hubbert. She is best
known for her role as the mother, Ethel Carter, in the horror film ‘The Hills
Have Eyes’ (1977). Other notable roles
include recurring character Daisy Maxwell on the television series ‘Eight is
Enough’ (1977-1979) and as Betty on ‘The Joey Bishop Show’ (1961-1962). She appeared in numerous guest roles in
television and movies during the 50s, 60s, 70s, and 80s. She died in 2013 at the age of 95.
The Big Bank Examiners - Air Date: 23-Feb-1967
A couple of con men are preying on the elderly and scamming them out of their life savings. Their MO is to pose as bank examiners and then telling their victims they need them to withdraw money from their bank so they can mark it in order to catch a crooked teller. They are told a policeman will return their money within a week. Using enlarged mug shots of the suspected swindlers, their elderly victims are able to make a positive identification. With the help of the phony examiner’s next potential victim, Friday and Gannon come up with a plan to catch the con men.
Character Facts from the Show: Sergeant Joe Friday eats out most of the time. Bill Gannon is thinking of investing in Squab (Pigeons). He’s thinking of going in on raising pigeons with his wife’s cousin Carl Sawyer. Carl quit his job and put everything into breeding pigeons and was doing great – until one of the kids left the pen door open and they flew the coop. He thinks he’s solved the ‘flying the coop’ problem with cross-breeding the pigeons with homing pigeons.
Notable Guest Stars: Burt Mustin (1884-1977), who plays Fred Gregory, is a familiar old face to many of us who grew up in the sixties and seventies. The well-known character actor appeared in his first film at the age of 67. He appeared 14 times as Gus the Fireman on “Leave it To Beaver” and made numerous appearances on many televisions shows, including Dragnet, Adam-12, and Emergency!
I doubt many of us can picture Mr. Mustin as a young man. Click on the link below to see what Burt Mustin looked like as a young man. Burton Hill Mustin
Harriet MacGibbon (1905-1987) plays old-time movie actress Flobelle Mirada. Her most recognizable role was as Mrs. Margaret Dysdale on televisions “The Beverly Hillbillies.”
Regulars: Don Ross makes his second appearance as a Cameraman.
The Big Hammer - Air Date: 2-Mar-1967
A building manager is beaten to death with a hammer in his apartment. Sgt. Friday and Officer Gannon figure out who the mysterious ‘Fred’ playing cards with the manager was. After interviewing some other possible suspects like the teenage son of a tenant and a flamboyant hairstylist, they’re able to figure out who ‘Fred’ was possibly a tenant in an apartment in the building. While going through the rent receipts in the murder victims apartment they discover the case box and receipt for the renter of Room 302 has been ripped out of the receipt book. While searching the apartment of the mysterious renter they discover a torn up telegram for a Frederic L. Tosca in the garbage. They also discover that the victims watch and wedding band he kept on his nightstand are also missing from his apartment. The suspect and his girlfriend are picked up in Cottonwood, Arizona.
Character and Show Facts: Bill is on a salt-free and sugar-free diet. Bill claims to be a light-eater. Dorothy Miller has a nine-year-old daughter.
Notable Guest Stars: Merry Anders makes her first of seven appearances as police woman Dorothy Miller. Other notable role was as Mike McCall in the television series “How to Marry A Millionaire” alongside Barbara Eden.
Brian Avery plays the fresh mouthed teenage boy Brian Ridges. His most notable appearance in films was as Carl Smith in the movie “The Graduate” playing the man who Katherine Ross’ character almost marries in the film before the wedding is busted up by Dustin Hoffman.
The Big Candy Store Story - Air Date: 9-Mar-1967
Someone is targeting Rachelle Candy Store and the only description they have of the suspect is tall, thin, and gaunt and armed with a blue steel automatic. Another thing is never helping himself to one piece of candy. So far 10 stores have been robbed without hitting the same store twice. Stakeouts are planned at the five stores of the candy chain that haven’t been hit in hopes of catching the robber. A store is held-up before the scheduled stakeouts and the robber is shot dead. It turns out to be unrelated to the other robberies. The robber veers off his regular MO and returns to the last store that he robbed. An officer at the scene was able to graze the robber as he made his escape. Sgt. Friday and Officer Gannon are able to track the robber down by following his blood trail. No gun is found when they search the suspect’s room and when brought in to identify the suspect, the clerk can’t make a positive identification even though the suspect looks familiar to her, she’s still not sure if he’s the robber.
Character and Show Facts Bill Gannon’s son needs help with his advanced Calculus homework. Bill hasn’t told his son he knows nothing about calculus. Officer Dorothy Miller arrives to drive Joe home at the end of the episode after Bill tells her Joe is having trouble with his car and needs a ride home. Joe realizes his partner has been playing matchmaker behind his back.
Notable Guest Stars: ‘Jack Webb Regulars’ Art Gilmore plays Captain Mert Howe and Virginia Gregg plays the candy store clerk, Jean Hardy. Vince Howard appears as Officer Bondi.
The Big Fur Burglary - Air Date: 16-Mar-1967
Emile Hartman’s Fur Salon is robbed of a $100,000 worth of mink and chinchilla along with one of its trucks. A possible break in the case happens when an insurance broker is contacted and asked if he knew anybody who’d like to buy some fur coats. Using this as a possible way to nab the suspects, Friday and Gannon set up a fur buy. With the help of Mr. Hartman, Bill Gannon gets a crash course on being an expert furrier in order for them to go undercover to nab the thieves and recover the stolen furs.
Character and Show Facts: Bill Gannon believes he makes the best coffee in the division – the old Navy way – even though he was in the army. Seems Bill's the only one who believes that! When Mr. Hartman offers Officer Dorothy Miller a free fur, she informs him they are not allowed to accept gratuities.
The Big Jade - Air Date: 23-Mar-1967
Something doesn’t add up for Sgt. Friday and Officer Gannon when $200,000 of imperial jade is reported stolen from the Bel-Air mansion of Mrs. Francine Graham. Some of the clues don’t add up; whoever broke into the safe knew the combination, the screen appears to be cut from the inside of the house, not the outside, and no pry marks on the window. The insurance agent, a former police officer, also feels something isn’t right about the case of his client’s claim. Friday and Gannon discover that Mrs. Graham had been selling off pieces of her jade collection since her husband’s death after paying a visit to jade dealer Lin Fong. When a suspect is arrested for the robbery, the officers are only convinced that he broke into the house but not convinced he stole any jade.
Character and Show Facts: Bill Gannon gets a letter from the Department of the Army, Signal Corps informing him that Specky’s dead. Specky was a late hatch in 1954, never trained a mile. One of the fastest living birds alive. One of the greatest U.S. Army carrier pigeons. The ‘squab deal’ mentioned in “The Big Bank Examiners’ fell through. Bill decided he it was too much work and didn’t have the time to do it right. Bill decided to just get into homing pigeons. Bill and his kids went up to Lancaster and turned one loose three weeks prior. The pigeon still hasn’t come home three weeks later.
Notable Guest Stars: ‘Jack Webb Regulars’ Virginia Gregg plays Mrs. Francine Graham and William Boyett appears as Sgt. Edward H. Barr Keye Luke, Charlie Chan’s number one son Lee Chan, plays Lin Fong, he was also the original ‘Kato’ in “The Green Hornet” and should be recognized by many fans as ‘Master Po’ from the seventies series “Kung Fu.”
Keye Luke as Lin Fong in Dragnet, Master Po in Kung Fu and Mr. Wing (Grandfather) in Gremlins
Regulars: Don Ross appears as Bill Walmsley in his 3rd appearance on the show.
The Big Shooting - Air Date: 30-Mar-1967
Officer Dave Roberts is shot and left fighting for his life after routinely checking out a parked car. All they have on the suspects is a ‘Mutt and Jeff’ description. Officer Roberts can’t remember anything about the gunman. A break comes when a liquor store is robbed and the clerk is able to give them a description. An informant is able to provide names for the two suspects. However, after the suspects are arrested Sgt. Friday and Officer Gannon can only nail them for the robbery and not the attempted murder of a police officer. Character and Show Facts: Bill Gannon’s wife puts too much curry powder in her New England boiled dinner – but he won’t ever tell his wife that.
Notable Guest Appearances: “Jack Webb Regular” Art Balinger plays Capt. Hugh Brown
The Big Accident - Air Date: 6-Apr-1967
Two elderly pedestrians are killed by a hit-and-run driver. Sgt. Friday and Officer Gannon are able to get a make on the vehicle involved from a cabbie who witnessed the accident. They are able to track the vehicle down to a body shop and thus able to get a name and address for the suspect. The driver has had a prior history of drinking and driving and is unrepentant over the deaths he’s caused. He’s given a suspended sentence, 3 years’ probation, and $250 dollar fine. He’s released back onto the streets to an unsuspecting public and time will tell if he’s learned his lesson…or not.
Notable Guest Appearances:
Julian Barton makes his first appearance on the show as Ed Neiman. He is best known for his
appearances in ‘Bucket of Blood’ (1959) and ‘The Masque of the Red Death’
(1964). He died in 2006 at the age of
Standup comic, radio host, and character actor Buddy Lester
makes his firstappearance on the show as Bob Dugan. He played Nick on ‘The New Phil Silvers Show’
and played Harry the Bookie on ‘Barney Miller’ (1974-1977). He also played Vince Massler in the original ‘Ocean’s
11’ (1960) and was the opening act for Frank Sinatra many times.
Olan Soulé repeats his role as forensic expert Ray Murray (The Big LSD and The Big Explosion).
The Big Bookie - Air Date: 13-Apr-1967
Sgt. William Riddle, the police chaplain and North Hollywood Vice, teams up with Sgt. Friday to take down a bookmaking operation. Sgt. Friday makes an attempt to see if the waitress, Angie, can give him some information on the Bartender of the Domino Bar and Grille, Richard Clinger. After 3 weeks of staking out the bar they get the break, they’ve been waiting for to take down the operation. However, one sad note in this episode is the reason why Richard Clinger became involved with the operation to begin with.
Character and Show Facts: Bill Gannon is a member of the Police Post 281 of the American
Legion. Joe Friday is not a member of
the legion. According to Bill, Joe Friday is a heathen. Bill Gannon worked North Hollywood for a time which was why
he sat this case out – Captain Nelson thought he’d be recognized.
Notable Guest Appearances:
William Reynolds as Sgt. William Riddle is best known for
his role as Special Agent Tom Colby in the television series “The FBI.” Bobby Troup as Richard Clinger, bartender of the Domino Bar
and Grille and bookie on the side. Art Gilmore as Capt. Harry Nelson.
The Big Subscription Racket - Air Date: 20-Apr-1967
Sgt. Friday and Officer Gannon are looking for some con artists who are selling fake magazine subscriptions Sgt. Friday appears on ‘The Jerry Dexter Show’ as a guest to inform the public on how to avoid being victims of various bunco artists. While at the station, they run into a film cutter who informs the detectives about his wife who has been buying magazine subscriptions from a man who has been selling his wife magazines under the guise as Marine who has received Congressional Medal of Honor and also from a female posing as a nursing student trying to get points to get a scholarship to nursing school.
Character and Show Facts: A bit of Tarzan ‘Trivia Pursuit’ plays out in this episode. Mia Farrow’s mother was Jane to Johnny Weissmuller’s Tarzan (Maureen O’Sullivan) and the very first movie Tarzan was Elmo Lincoln. Answer to Bill’s question is Enid Markey (Mrs. Mendlebright on “The Andy Griffith Show.”)
Notable Guest Stars: Marianne Gordon plays Norma Bryant. She is best known as a regular on Hee Haw (Marianne Marigold) and as country singer Kenny Roger’s ex-wife (1977-1993). Another appearance by Brian Avery as Glen Procustin.
Off-the-wall, screw-ball comedian/character actor Doodles Weaver appears as Cliff Tate. He is also the uncle of actress Sigourney Weaver (brother ‘Pat’ Sylvester L. Weaver, who was a TV producer, is her father). He also had his own children’s show in Los Angeles called "Doodles Club House" that ran in the late 1950s. Sarah Selby plays Marilyn Tate and may be known to many as storekeeper Ma Smalley from the
television series “Gunsmoke” and voiced Prissy the Elephant
in the Disney classic “Dumbo.”
Regulars: "Jack Webb Regulars" Art Balinger plays Capt. Lambert in this episode and Tom Williams appears as the director/set manager for the "Jerry Dextor Show."
The Big Gun - Air Date: 27-Apr-1967
Sgt. Friday gets emotionally involved when a young, Japanese, widow is murdered. A house-to-house check in the neighborhood fails to bring about any substantial clues. The only thing that might or might not have a connection to the case is a complaint filed by another neighborhood woman who claimed she was attacked by a man in a yellow pickup truck filled with house painter gear and ladder painted red and green that threatened her with a gun. While staking out the house, a yellow pickup truck appears in front of the house of the murder victim. The suspect is connected to neighbor Agatha Edney, a religious zealot who refuses to cooperate with the officers. Will they be able to find the murder weapon and be able to tie the suspect to the crime?
Character and Show Facts: Bill Gannon finally pays off the loan on his car. Now he needs to take out another loan because he needs to fix the transmission on it.
Notable Guest Stars: Leonard Stone plays Det. Charles Higbie. He also played the father of gum addict Violet Beauregarde in the movie “Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory” (1971). Herbert Anderson plays Robert Blake. He is best known as the father of television’s “Dennis the Menace” (1959-1963). Kathleen Freeman plays Mrs. Sunshine Pound. She may be recognized as Sister Mary Stigmata aka "The Penguin" from the movie “The Blues Brothers” (1980). She was also the voice of Peg’s never seen mother on "Married with Children" (1987). Regulars: Olan Soulé puts in another appearance as Ray Murray of the Scientific Investigation Division. Don Ross appears as Sgt. Dean Burman in his 4th appearance on the show
The Big Kids - Air Date 4-May-1967
A gang of teenagers in Van Nuys known as ‘The Mod Squad’ are shoplifting for their kicks. In order to get into this ‘club’ you need to steal items that add up to 20 dollars and bring in both parts of the price tag in order to qualify (purchased items would have had half the tag ripped off during purchase). After nabbing a shoplifter, they go to the Millard Senior High School to talk to the main members of the ‘club’ in hopes of setting them straight. He fails to set their leader straight – is this upper class kid on his way to a life of crime or will he straighten himself out.
Notable Guest Stars: Roger Mobley plays Audie Fulton. This former Disney child star appeared in numerous television shows in the 50’s and 60’s. Richard Crane plays Sgt. John Pearson. He was once a B-movie leading man and may be best remembered as Rocky Jones of the 50’s Rocky Jones, Space Ranger television series and movies.
The Big Bullet - Air Date: 11-May-1967
An open and shut case for an apparent suicide turns out not to be all that open and shut. When the bullets pulled from the body don’t match the gun found near the victim, Sgt. Friday, Officer Gannon and Ray Murray pay a visit to the only two other people present at the time of the ‘suicide’ – the estranged wife and her mother. Where is the second gun involved in the case and who pulled the trigger?
Notable Guest Stars: Mabel Albertson plays Mrs. Jesse Gaynor. She is the sister of actor Jack Albertson (Chico and the Man and Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory – 1971). In her own right, was a successful vaudeville performer in the 1920s, a radio, and theater star. She played Mrs. Stephens, Darrin Stevens mother on “Bewitched.”
Regulars: Olan Soulé appears as Ray Murray from the Scientific Investigation Division.
Mabel Albertson as Mrs. Stevens and below brother Jack and Freddy Prinze (Chico and the Man)