Crime drama series McMillan And Wife was part of the NBC Mystery Movie series and detailed the often murderous cases of Commissioner Stewart McMillan who usually managed to get his wife Sally involved (although to be fair it was more often than not Sally who got McMillan involved).
This light-hearted and mostly fun series probably had its roots in the Nick and Nora Thin Man films of the 1930’s and 1940’s and featured much of the same banter between the leads that characterised those films. Also heavily involved in the series was Mac’s right hand man Sgt Charles Enright and their none too polite housekeeper Mildred.
The show was one of three debut Mystery Movie segments (along with McCloud and Columbo) and appeared on a rotating basis with them.
There were major changes for the final season which saw the shows title shortened to simply McMillan, this was necessitated by a number of factors including the fact that due to a contract dispute Susan Saint James didn’t appear (Sally was supposed to have died in an air crash) and also the fact that the character of Mildred had graduated to her own sitcom. A new housekeeper (Mildred’s sister Agatha was brought in to replace her). To help him on his cases in this season McMillan got two new helpers in the shape of Sgt DiMaggio and secretary Maggie.
Although Susan Saint James was handpicked for the role by Hudson the pair didn’t in fact get on off screen, especially as Saint James was nominated for an emmy for four years running.
USA / NBC – Universal – Talent Associates – Norton Simon / x90m-e / Broadcast Wednesday 29 September 1971 – Sunday 21 August 1977
Creator and Executive Producer: Leonard B. Stern / Executive Story Consultant: Robert Lewin / Producer: Paul Mason
ROCK HUDSON as Commissioner Stewart McMillan
SUSAN SAINT JAMES as Sally McMillan (1971-76)
JOHN SCHUCK as Sgt Charles Enright
NANCY WALKER as Mildred (1971-76)
MARTHA RAYE as Agatha (1976-77)
RICHARD GILLILAND as Sgt Steve DiMaggio (1976-77)
GLORIA STROOCK as Maggie (1976-77)
PILOT 17 Sep 1971
ONCE UPON A DEAD MAN
SEASON ONE 29 September 1971 – 1 March 1972
1. MURDER BY THE BARREL
2. THE EASY SUNDAY MURDER CASE
3. HUSBANDS, WIVES AND KILLERS
4. DEATH IS A SEVEN POINT FAVORITE
5. THE FACE OF MURDER
6. TILL DEATH US DO PART
7. AN ELEMENTARY CASE OF MURDER
SEASON TWO 24 September 1972 – 1 April 1973
1. NIGHT OF THE WIZARD
2. BLUES FOR SALLY M.
3. COP OF THE YEAR
4. TERROR TIMES TWO
5. NO HEARTS, NO FLOWERS
6. THE FINE ART OF STAYING ALIVE
7. TWO DOLLARS ON TROUBLE TO WIN
SEASON THREE 30 September 1973 – 17 February 1974
1. DEATH OF A MONSTER… BIRTH OF A LEGEND
2. THE DEVIL YOU SAY
3. FREEFALL TO TERROR
4. THE MAN WITHOUT A FACE
5. REUNION IN TERROR
6. CROSS AND DOUBLE CROSS
SEASON FOUR 29 September 1974 – 16 February 1975
1. DOWNSHIFT TO DANGER
2. THE GAME OF SURVIVAL
3. BURIED ALIVE
4. GUILT BY ASSOCIATION
5. NIGHT TRAIN TO L.A.
6. LOVE, HONOR AND SWINDLE
SEASON FIVE 28 September 1975 – 7 March 1976
1. DEADLY INHERITANCE
2. REQUIEM FOR A BRIDE
4. SECRETS FOR SALE
5. THE DEADLY CURE
7. POINT OF LAW
SEASON SIX 5 December 1976 – 24 April 1977
The series is now known as McMillan, internecine bickering has meant the departure of Susan St James. Mac is now a widow but not averse to dallying with a different woman every episode.
1. ALL BETS OFF
2. DARK SUNRISE
3. PHILIP’S GAME
4. COFFEE, TEA OR CYANIDE?
5. AFFAIR OF THE HEART
6. HAVE YOU HEAR ABOUT VANESSA?