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Mannix is coming!

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#1961 of 2195 OFFLINE   jompaul17

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Posted December 28 2013 - 09:26 AM

Awhile ago, I mentioned seeing "cat theater" on The Tonight Show -- with opening graphics clearly inspired by Mannix.   I wondered who on The Tonight Show might be a fan of Mannix.   It appears it could be Jay Leno.  Here is an excerpt of the IMDb connections page for Mannix (http://www.imdb.com/...ovieconnections) with some of the more recent entries:

 

 

 

The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #20.181 (2012) (TV Episode) 
Jay and Ben Stiller talk about 1970s crime television shows including this one
The Simpsons: To Cur with Love (2012) (TV Episode) 
mentioned in dialogue
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #21.90 (2013) (TV Episode) 
Jay says he likes the show
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #21.97 (2013) (TV Episode) 
Robin Wright says that Mike Connors from the show was the first celebrity she ever met, when she was 9
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #21.133 (2013) (TV Episode) 
Jay asks JB Smoove if he liked any cops on television like Cannon or Mannix
Watchman Video Broadcast: The Comic Con: Part 2 (2013) (TV Episode) 
Mentioned by Mike.

 

 
Someone behind The Simpsons is also a fan -- Mannix has been mentioned quite a few times in that series, over the years -- and again recently.  
Someone in Chrysler may also be a fan:  http://blogs.wsj.com...new-dodge-dart/
Actually, the new Dart isn't even the car that reminded me of one of Joe's cars -- Chrysler makes another car that reminds me of Joe's 'cuda.  I saw it on the road for the first time a few years ago, and practically did a double-take right on the highway.
My thesis is that a love for this character runs deeper in the culture than people realize.   And, of course, I have my own experiential reasons for this.  But, the basis behind those reasons also holds up to research, both in terms of evidence in the culture, as well as reasons for why love of such classically composed heroes tends to run deep.  


#1962 of 2195 OFFLINE   jompaul17

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Posted December 28 2013 - 09:28 AM

BJ,

 

Welcome to the Mannix thread.   


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#1963 of 2195 OFFLINE   Harry-N

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Posted December 28 2013 - 10:57 AM

I found the better part of an hour yesterday and decided to put on the next MANNIX in sequence, which turned out to be "Bird Of Prey, Part 1", so naturally, I'll attempt to find time for Part 2.

 

This one was just a little better the the 2-parter in Season 7 but only slightly so. At least this one didn't have long scenes of people getting from place to place. Instead it's paced more like a more typical MANNIX episode, maybe even too jumpy at times.

 

I enjoyed the casting in this one. Alexander Scourby as the Count is just wonderful. His voice was so dramatic and I recall him from narrating so many films that they showed us in school and his voiceovers were used in many a commercial back in the 50s and 60s. 

 

Andrea Marcovicci is always a pleasure to look at, and seeing familiar faces in Jay Novello and Robert Loggia was a treat. 

 

As usual though with MANNIX two-parters, something's not right. It suffers from the lack of Peggy and L.A. surroundings even though the lovely location scenery is quite attractive.

 

Harry


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A fugitive moves on, through anguished tunnels of time, down dim streets, into dark corners. And each new day offers fear and frustration, tastes of honey and hemlock. But if there is a hazard, there is also hope. - Closing narration to THE FUGITIVE, "Death Is The Door Prize".

#1964 of 2195 OFFLINE   jompaul17

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Posted December 28 2013 - 08:31 PM

I found the better part of an hour yesterday and decided to put on the next MANNIX in sequence, which turned out to be "Bird Of Prey, Part 1", so naturally, I'll attempt to find time for Part 2.

 

This one was just a little better the the 2-parter in Season 7 but only slightly so. At least this one didn't have long scenes of people getting from place to place. Instead it's paced more like a more typical MANNIX episode, maybe even too jumpy at times.

 

I enjoyed the casting in this one. Alexander Scourby as the Count is just wonderful. His voice was so dramatic and I recall him from narrating so many films that they showed us in school and his voiceovers were used in many a commercial back in the 50s and 60s. 

 

Andrea Marcovicci is always a pleasure to look at, and seeing familiar faces in Jay Novello and Robert Loggia was a treat. 

 

As usual though with MANNIX two-parters, something's not right. It suffers from the lack of Peggy and L.A. surroundings even though the lovely location scenery is quite attractive.

 

Harry

Harry,

 

Well, I pretty much agree wholeheartedly with your take. 

 

"Bird of Prey" is slightly -- but only slightly -- better than "A Race Against Time." 

 

I've said before that because of this duo of two-parters, I consider Mannix to virtually be a 190 episode series -- they seem to almost not have much of anything to do with what Mannix is all about.   The only thing I can figure is that the 24 a season episode grind became too much, and doing this became a way of cutting off an episode or two in each of seasons 7 and 8.  

 

Having said that, if you consider the episodes produced by this series in the previous six seasons -- 24 or even 25 episodes (in two seasons) per year -- and all that was in those episodes -- it still amazes that they were able to maintain such high quality, except for those suspicious two-parters.  

 

Name another series built so much around one leading character, to include action, location shooting, and lots of close-ups, that lasted so long and stayed such high quality. 

 

I can't think of another series that comes even close.   Virtually all of the others relied upon either a considerable supporting cast, or a lot of airtime devoted to the players in the story of the week, or both. 

 

So, I don't tend to watch "A Race Against Time" or "Bird of Prey" -- and I'm more than OK with that.   I remain utterly impressed with what was produced over that eight-year period.

 

One thing though -- season 1's two-part episode, Deadfall" actually is one of the best episodes of that season, even of the series.  I just love "Deadfall" and have such a clear, fun memory of it.

 

When I watched it during January of 2011, I distinctly remembered having seen that fight scene between Joe and Lew before.    I saw it as a 7 year old kid -- and, of course, because of the peculiarities of the syndication package -- not once in the intervening 43 years. 

 

When I saw it again, it was a great, sweet, fun memory -- one of those early memories that span nearly a lifetime that are somehow life affirming, seeming to tell us that we are more than mere cogs in a wheel because of the memories we choose to hold dear. 



#1965 of 2195 OFFLINE   Mark Collins

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Posted January 02 2014 - 01:49 PM

BJ welcome to the forum!! I cannot tell you how much I enjoyed your post!!!  Harry love the hat!!!


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#1966 of 2195 OFFLINE   BeeJe Thompson

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Posted January 03 2014 - 08:26 AM

Thanks, Mark! Glad you liked it.



#1967 of 2195 OFFLINE   Harry-N

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Posted January 12 2014 - 05:37 AM

Somewhere within these 100 pages on MANNIX, there was a post I made about a location shoot at a mansion-type house that was recognizable as also being used in two episodes of THE FUGITIVE. The MANNIX episode was "Pressure Point".

 

Well, just so on-one expends any more energy on it, I HAVE found the exact location of it. I happened upon the solution when I followed a link at a YouTube video with pictures taken by a group of people of a FUGITIVE location tour:

 

 

As luck would have it, the video provides the exact address of the house, so I could easily locate it on Google Maps.

 

Harry


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A fugitive moves on, through anguished tunnels of time, down dim streets, into dark corners. And each new day offers fear and frustration, tastes of honey and hemlock. But if there is a hazard, there is also hope. - Closing narration to THE FUGITIVE, "Death Is The Door Prize".

#1968 of 2195 OFFLINE   BeeJe Thompson

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Posted January 12 2014 - 07:44 AM

Harry,

 

Thanks for that video. I sometimes spend time looking for Mannix locations in L.A. I've found a bunch of them and was thinking about going there and checking them out. Wouldn't that be a fun trip?

 

BJ



#1969 of 2195 OFFLINE   jompaul17

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Posted January 14 2014 - 12:16 PM

Somewhere within these 100 pages on MANNIX, there was a post I made about a location shoot at a mansion-type house that was recognizable as also being used in two episodes of THE FUGITIVE. The MANNIX episode was "Pressure Point".

 

Well, just so on-one expends any more energy on it, I HAVE found the exact location of it. I happened upon the solution when I followed a link at a YouTube video with pictures taken by a group of people of a FUGITIVE location tour:

 

 

As luck would have it, the video provides the exact address of the house, so I could easily locate it on Google Maps.

 

Harry

Harry,

 

I think quite a few of these same locations were used in Mannix.  

 

For one, that carousel looks like the one at the Santa Monica Pier -- a self-identified place used often in Mannix.

 

I have sampled some modern-day series, but, admittedly, not too many.   One I watched (and stopped watching mid-third season) was Homeland.  Since I spent some time around the various locales they claim to inhabit, I know they do not spend a great deal of time and money documenting those locations.  Sometimes, the actors even mis-pronounce some locations, or emphasize the accents wrong, in a way locals would never do.  

 

But, Mannix was proud of being set in LA.  And, while it seemed to use some locations to substitute for other things (for example, a building on the campus of USC used as an office building and a government building in Santa Monica used for a university building), it tended to be comfortable documenting the local environs.  That seemed to add to the fun -- and energy -- of the series.

 

Of course, quite a bit of it was also filmed on the Paramount lot.   That lot has a famous main gate which was used for "Majestic Studios" in "The Deadly Madonna."    You once mentioned that the tops and sides of the images we see on the DVDs were cut off for the original TV broadcasts.   I assume they were counting on that, because you can see the bottom of the famous "Paramount Studios" sign at the top of the frame when Joe enters "Majestic Studios."

 

Curiously, I recently also watched "Cry Danger" (perhaps no accident, since they are on the same disk).    It is very impressive the way MC moves around San Francisco in that episode.   It sure seems like it had to be him climbing up that giant rock under the Golden Gate bridge -- an activity that does not seem entirely safe!     Aside from that, perhaps someone could let me know how they got away with MC up on that ledge in what seems to be a real situation where it would be pretty easy to fall off.  It looks real. 

 

But, Joe just seems wrong there.   Oddly -- very oddly since Mannix was a product of the late 60's -- SF seems too stuffy for Joe!


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#1970 of 2195 OFFLINE   jompaul17

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Posted January 14 2014 - 12:16 PM

Harry,

 

Thanks for that video. I sometimes spend time looking for Mannix locations in L.A. I've found a bunch of them and was thinking about going there and checking them out. Wouldn't that be a fun trip?

 

BJ

BJ,

 

You might try joining the Yahoo discussion group on Mannix (if you haven't already).  Sometimes people post locations there -- and those posts are also archived as well.



#1971 of 2195 OFFLINE   Harry-N

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Posted January 14 2014 - 03:25 PM

But, Mannix was proud of being set in LA.

 

A profound statement - and oh, so true. Thanks for pointing that out.

 

Harry


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A fugitive moves on, through anguished tunnels of time, down dim streets, into dark corners. And each new day offers fear and frustration, tastes of honey and hemlock. But if there is a hazard, there is also hope. - Closing narration to THE FUGITIVE, "Death Is The Door Prize".

#1972 of 2195 OFFLINE   Harry-N

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Posted January 15 2014 - 08:03 AM

Poster.jpg

 

I finally got around to watching the second half of "Bird Of Prey". While it was somewhat more enjoyable than the first half, I did find myself wondering the very question asked on that poster above - "Have you seen this man?"

 

There were some very long sequences where Joe is nowhere to to be seen. Oh, we know where he is, but he's just not visible - like being transported in a casket or tied up in a theater, or unconscious on a balcony. I know that filming these shows is reported to be grueling, and for the most part, shows that focus on one man are pretty intensive for that actor. So I guess episodes like this are somewhat designed to give that actor a bit of a break.

 

There was a sequence where Joe was escaping in an elevator and a neat music cue of the MANNIX main theme appears - and there were other places where I could swear that some MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE music cues were recycled.

 

Just three episodes left.

 

Harry 


My DVD Collection

A fugitive moves on, through anguished tunnels of time, down dim streets, into dark corners. And each new day offers fear and frustration, tastes of honey and hemlock. But if there is a hazard, there is also hope. - Closing narration to THE FUGITIVE, "Death Is The Door Prize".

#1973 of 2195 OFFLINE   jompaul17

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Posted January 16 2014 - 11:22 AM

attachicon.gifPoster.jpg

 

I finally got around to watching the second half of "Bird Of Prey". While it was somewhat more enjoyable than the first half, I did find myself wondering the very question asked on that poster above - "Have you seen this man?"

 

There were some very long sequences where Joe is nowhere to to be seen. Oh, we know where he is, but he's just not visible - like being transported in a casket or tied up in a theater, or unconscious on a balcony. I know that filming these shows is reported to be grueling, and for the most part, shows that focus on one man are pretty intensive for that actor. So I guess episodes like this are somewhat designed to give that actor a bit of a break.

 

There was a sequence where Joe was escaping in an elevator and a neat music cue of the MANNIX main theme appears - and there were other places where I could swear that some MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE music cues were recycled.

 

Just three episodes left.

 

Harry 

Harry,

 

I hadn't noticed that about "Bird of Prey."  Then again, the episodes have so little appeal to me that I've probably watched them a total of no more than four times -- a "record" for me for episodes of Mannix!  The only potential rival for this record are the two episodes of "Race Against Time."

 

During seasons 7 and 8, Mannix started to go up against that NBC Mystery Movie.  Look at the episodes they produced there -- only a few of each series per year.  Even so, most of those were not really about a central, heroic character so much as Mannix was -- and they tended to have significantly less action and location shooting. 

 

So, I'm not surprised they compromised on those two episodes in each of seasons 7 and 8.

 

I remain simply amazed that Mannix produced 24 episodes per year, each one about a central character where his emotional reaction mattered as much as the complex plot he was dealing with and the physical energy conveyed on the screen.  Each of those 50 minute episodes comes across like a mini-movie. 

 

I've said before, I can think of no other series that had a central character so important to the whole series -- his emotional response to what was happening around him -- that also included intricate plots and action - and it kept on going for eight seasons!

 

That, to me, puts Mannix in a category all by itself. 

 

The fact that it pulled that off so well puts the series in another category, still -- a category all by itself. 



#1974 of 2195 OFFLINE   jompaul17

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Posted January 26 2014 - 11:13 AM

I've been meaning to do this for some time now -- and the coming of the second "polar vortex" of the year seems a good time to deal with some odds and ends.

 

Awhile back, I watched Mission: Impossible, which is, of course, Mannix's sister show.  In so doing, I got to see how so many of the sets were shared between the two series, including the use by Mission of Joe's apartment and even his office -- often used to depict the inside of buildings in third world countries!  This is probably why the pictures moved around on Joe's walls so much until the seventh season, when Joe's office got remodeled.  Mission went out of production that season. 

 

But, even more curious, to me, was the discovery of the foundational parts of the exterior of Paseo Verde well before the thought that Joe was going to make that his home for the next seven years. 

 

An opening sequence of Mission, used more than once, reveals the buildings of the Paseo behind Jim Phelps.   This one is taken from "The Emerald" which first aired on January 21, 1968 -- during the season Joe still worked for Intertect! 

 

pre-joe-paseo1.jpg

 

pre-joe-paseo2.jpg

 

The sign, "Paseo Verde" isn't there yet -- one can only presume that was made-up for the re-tooling of Mannix in its second season.   Also missing are some vines.  The color of the building in the background also seems different -- more gold than white.  My guess is that the fountain isn't there yet either, although it's hard to tell.  

 

I once read that the Paseo was modeled after a place in Santa Barbara -- and even found a picture for that place, at one point.  It had a fountain, and so the fountain must have been added to that group of buildings to make that space on the Paramount lot look more like what either Bruce Geller or Ivan Goff and Ben Roberts projected it to be.  I seem to recall that all of those producers had connections to Santa Barbara. Certainly, Bruce Geller died in an airplane crash when he was flying there.

 

All of this has made me wonder what that set of buildings was originally built for.   The buildings directly to the left of the Paseo, the ones with the white window panes, appear to be depicting European buildings, of the sort you see a lot in WWII movies.   The pre-Joe buildings in the middle of the Paseo seem more bland, especially before the tiles were added with the numbers of the other places in the Paseo.    They were probably all built for movies -- since the filming of TV series on the Paramout lot was new in the late 60's. 

 

Of course, these are all exteriors -- just facades.  Each time you see Joe enter his office with the camera placed inside his office, he is entering an interior set.   Notice how there is a step for the exterior of Joe's office, but no such step for the interior version of the same!    And, if you pay close attention to the exterior shots of Joe's office door, the stuff behind it never makes sense.  In the early years they showed some cabinet that was never there, and in later years they angled shots to that you saw bits of gold, but never Peggy's desk.  

 

There are two versions of the outside view of Joe's office door -- one taken on the lot (the façade) and another taken on the soundstage.  They are not quite the same.  But, for the one on the soundstage, you can at least look all the way into the office and see both Peggy's and Joe's desks!

 

So, now I wonder if anyone can point out what the pre-Joe Paseo facades might have been used for -- what movie(s) in particular.

 

And, it also makes me wonder, when Mannix was re-tooled for its second season, how they decided Joe would move into this place called the Paseo Verde.  Did the producers simply walk around the Paramout lot and say -- that space looks good, let's move in there!  We just need to add a few more details, a coat of paint, some numbers, a vine, a sign...

 

Then, once Joe moved in, that place on the lot was not going anywhere for the next seven years!

 

It boggles the mind -- in a good way!



#1975 of 2195 OFFLINE   jompaul17

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Posted February 01 2014 - 02:49 PM

So, I may be the only one interested in this topic, but that has never stopped me before. 

 

Curious about the existence of the foundation of the pre-Joe Paseo on the Paramount lot, I went back to season 1 to make sure there was no evidence of Joe being in the Paseo before season 2. 

 

It was actually kind of fun to watch season 1 with a mission like that.  It led to other things, as missions often do. 

 

For example, season 1, even the pilot episode, features Joe with the cigarette lighter bit.   The running bit is that Joe never has a light.   He has cigarettes, but no match or lighter on him.   He's always getting a light from friends, such as Lew, and even bad guys. 

 

So, they carried this into season 2 some.  It's noticeable in "The Silent Cry" when he has to grab a light from the deaf woman's coffee table.  

 

But, it sort of dies down, even before it had to -- before Joe was forced to quit smoking, by CBS.  The last I remember seeing it was in s4's "The Only Game in Town" when Art Malcolm gives Joe a light.   That episode was actually produced late in the season, it had to have been aired very shortly after it was filmed, which is curious in and of itself, since it ran on Halloween night.   But, that was also the same week Joe was featured on the cover of the TV Guide (the famous one with the multiple exposure action shot). 

 

Then, the whole lighter bit disappears completely.    But, it was fading away anyway, even when Joe continued to smoke. 

 

What made this interesting to me was that this was a gimmick -- and the producers did not feel the need to hold onto it.

 

So many TV series are formed around a collection of gimmicks, so much so that they seem to think viewers will be unable to identify the main characters unless the gimmicks are in place -- Kojak and his lollipop, Colombo and his raincoat -- actually, quite a few characters are identified by wearing pretty much the same clothing all of the time.

 

But Mannix was never afraid to move beyond its gimmicks. 

 

Heck, it didn't even always include Peggy in episodes, and quite a few episodes don't have Joe in his car or at the Paseo at all!   But, those episodes are still clearly Mannix episodes. 

 

This goes to the strength of its main character as being identifiable for a set of properties that were more important than a set of gimmicks.

 

Over the years, Mannix saw Joe giving up his convertible to spend two season in hardtops and Joe dressing in all manner of clothing -- not just a sport jacket and tie.    It even moved the red golf bag out of its prominent spot in Joe's office, by the safe, to be replaced with a set of skis. 

 

I find this yet another marker of the singularity of this series -- in addition to it being the only series I know of that is so much about a single character that ran for so long and included action and exterior shooting in addition to emotional scenes.  

 

This series was all about strength of character -- and it displayed that in pretty much every way it could. 

 

So, it seems Mission used the pre-Joe Paseo during 67-68 (see the previous post), but, unless I am missing something, Mannix did not.   This is odd, since Mannix filmed so much on the Paramount lot, just like Mission did.  But, it avoided accidentally using the pre-Joe Paseo. 

 

I don't know if the producers took that into consideration or not when they picked Joe's new office location for season 2.  

 

But, they did get close once -- in the scene in "Warning: Live Blueberries" where Joe takes the drugged out basketball player to the hotel.  The exterior is one of the buildings that borders the Paseo. 



#1976 of 2195 OFFLINE   jompaul17

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Posted February 02 2014 - 09:47 AM

Occasionally, I check the sales rankings of Mannix, especially the complete series.

 

Today, I am happy to report that the sales ranking of the complete series is dramatically up on Amazon:

 

  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,445 in Movies & TV 

 

The series is also back to being shipped and sold from Amazon, as opposed to from third party sellers.  And, the price is down to 199.99.

 

This number in the top 5000 has to be put into perspective, because it is actually pretty darn good for an expensive, classic series that has no current buzz about it and has been out for a year.

 

There is another element to this number.   Recently, I realized that quite a few series do not have complete sets.  You can buy all of the years of a series, but they are not packaged as complete sets.   This means that series with complete sets actually compete against themselves in the rankings.   Lots of people buy the individual years as they are released or because they only want certain years, so they never do buy the complete series.   For Mannix, lots of people seem to be interested in obtaining the whole series.   But, lots of people also still buy individual seasons. 

 

Curiously, I occasionally see this sort of thing for the sales of the complete series.   It seems to lose traction, then picks up dramatically.  

 

I remain convinced there is an undercurrent of love for this series, one that is related to themes that used to define us, themes we have lost.  



#1977 of 2195 OFFLINE   Harry-N

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Posted February 02 2014 - 12:50 PM

Actually, check again. It turns out that MANNIX, the complete series is one of Amazon's Deals of the Week. It's now only $119.99, and is number 1,938 in Movies and TV!

 

Harry


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A fugitive moves on, through anguished tunnels of time, down dim streets, into dark corners. And each new day offers fear and frustration, tastes of honey and hemlock. But if there is a hazard, there is also hope. - Closing narration to THE FUGITIVE, "Death Is The Door Prize".

#1978 of 2195 OFFLINE   jompaul17

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Posted February 02 2014 - 01:22 PM

Yep, you are right -- and the 199.99 number I reported in the previous post was actually a typo (didn't cut and paste that number, unlike the amazon ranking line).

I was just finishing up some work, and checking the Amazon number again, ready to post it -- only to see that you reported the higher ranking fist, which is great!

That number is really great to see. The top 2000 is an extremely good number for a classic complete series at this stage of its release, even if it is the deal of the week. Again, that number includes all sorts of things that fall under the category of TV and Movies on Amazon. Currently, the top-ranked item on that list is an instant download -- worth only $3.99! How many instant downloads must populate that list these days -- of movies that people in their 20s and 30s are likely to buy.

But, Joe is hanging in there, competing, all these years later.

One tough PI.

#1979 of 2195 OFFLINE   jompaul17

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Posted February 02 2014 - 03:31 PM

For those enjoying this, the ranking of sales of the complete series moved way up since I last checked, essentially chopped in half:

 

 

So, instead of having a Super Bowl party, people are buying the complete series of Mannix.

 

Cool!

 

This makes me so happy -- I absolutely love seeing this.  

 

Who needs a groundhog when this is out there to warm a person's heart?   



#1980 of 2195 OFFLINE   jompaul17

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Posted February 02 2014 - 07:46 PM

Looks like sales of the complete series have cracked the top 1000 on Amazon -- actually it cracked the top 900!

 

 

So sweet!

 

:)

 

I realize it is on sale, but this is still a very tough thing for a classic series that still costs over $100 to do.  

 

As I've said here before, this series gets virtually no publicity, has no re-make, no follow-on movie, and is not in active re-runs (to my knowledge).   It is not derived from a cartoon, a book series, nor its its major star well known for other things -- other movies and TV series.  

All sales of this series come from word of mouth about it or people remembering it.  

 

And people are still putting the DVD sales for this series in the top 1000 (top 900) on Amazon over a full year before the full series was released.  

 

This has to speak directly to the quality of what is on those DVDs.  

 

So very sweet, indeed.  







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