Reynolds as John Hawk.
|Created by||Allan Sloane|
|Written by||Allan Sloane|
|Directed by||Sam Wanamaker|
|Theme music composer||Kenyon Hopkins|
Nelson Riddle (one episode)
Shorty Rogers (one episode)
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||1|
|No. of episodes||17|
|Paul Bogart (producer)|
Stan Schwimmer (associate producer)
Kenneth Utt (associate producer)
|Production location(s)||New York City|
Donald W. Starling
|Running time||60 minutes (with commercials)|
|Original release||September 8 -|
December 29, 1966
Hawk is a crime drama series starring Burt Reynolds, which aired on ABC from September 8, 1966 to December 29, 1966. The Screen Gems series was Reynolds' first starring role in a television series since leaving Gunsmoke the previous year.
Reynolds stars as police lieutenant John Hawk, a full-blooded Iroquois working the streets of New York City as a special detective for the city's District Attorney's office. Hawk is assisted by his African American partner, Dan Carter (played by Wayne Grice). Hawk and Carter deal with various common cases such as murder, organized crime and arson. While facing the brutal daily life of being a detective, Hawk's native heritage and ancestry also cause him to be subjected to discrimination and racism, both on the streets and in the office.
Notable guest stars who appeared in this series include Gene Hackman, Martin Sheen, Robert Duvall, Diana Muldaur, Scott Glenn, Diane Baker, James Best, Bert Convy, Elizabeth Ashley, Kim Hunter and Lou Antonio.
The show was announced in June 1966. ABC made a commitment for 17 episodes. The lead role was given to Reynolds who had some Native American ancestry and played Native Americans in Gunsmoke and in Navajo Joe.
"I wanted the Indian thing to come naturally," said Reynolds.
"The emphasis will be on how cops function at night," said producer Paul Bogart. "The people who come out at night would astonish you. They're the weirdos of all time."
A representative of ABC said "it won't be another Naked City where they want to know why the killer pulled the trigger. Hawk won't answer that question."
"We're not going for the psychological approach," said Reynolds. "We're an action adventure show. It's fast paced the music is all brass there's a lot of cutting."
"Hawk is quite a character," said Reynolds. "He's very hostile. I'm hostile too. I don't know why."
Reynolds says his performance was inspired by Kirk Douglas in Detective Story and John Garfield. "Tough and hard... I play Hawk as a catalyst. And how things affect me."
"We're placing no special emphasis on the fact that Hawk is an Indian," said Reynolds. "I'm not running around in moccasins or anything like that."
Reynolds added,"Having been in two TV series... where I hold the horse for someone else this feels great. But I'm not going to fall into the trap of thinking this is my one big chance and if I blow it Im finished. I've had so many disappointments over the years that I've made up my mind: if it doesn't go it's the audience's fault, not mine."
Reynolds says Hawk was originally meant to wear knives on his sleeves but he got that changed feeling it was too gimmicky.
The show was shot on location in New York.
"I do all the stunts because I can do them better than anyone else," said Reynolds.
Despite being a short-lived series, repeats of Hawk have resurfaced at least three times, as a way to present Reynolds' early work before he became a successful movie celebrity:
|No.||Title||Written by||Original air date|
|1||"Do Not Mutilate or Spindle"||Allan Sloane||September 8, 1966|
|Hawk is on a case of a murdered office worker, with its possible link being a religious fanatic named Houston Worth (Gene Hackman).|
|2||"The Longleat Chronicles"||Albert Ruben||September 15, 1966|
|Hawk falls in love with a girl involved in a murder (Diane Baker).|
|3||"Thanks for the Honeymoon"||David Ellis (story)|
Don M. Mankiewicz (teleplay)
|September 22, 1966|
|Hawk tries to prove that a man is innocent of murder.|
|4||"Game with a Dead End"||George Bellak||September 29, 1966|
|Hawk searches for a missing girl. Guest stars include Bert Convy.|
|5||"Death Comes Full Circle"||Lou Shaw (story)|
Edward Adler and Lou Shaw (teleplay)
|October 6, 1966|
|With the help of his shrewd lawyer, a hit and run killer avoids prosecution. Guest stars include Martin Sheen.|
|6||"The Theory of the Innocent Bystander"||Edward Adler||October 13, 1966|
|Hawk is in search of a stolen limousine. But its contents are even more valuable -- $1 million in securities. Guest stars include Robert Duvall.|
|7||"The Man Who Owned Everyone"||Andy Lewis||October 20, 1966|
|Hawk catches a crook, known to have friends in the political arena. Diana Muldaur guest stars.|
|8||"How Close Can You Get?"||Lewis Reed (story)|
Don M. Mankiewicz (teleplay)
|October 27, 1966|
|A Shakespearean actor receives anonymous letters from a murderer, telling him of his heinous crimes.|
|9||"The Living End of Sisterbaby"||Ellen M. Violett||November 3, 1966|
|A model gets murdered, and Hawk suspects that the murderer works in the upper ranks of the business. Guest-starring Vincent Gardenia.|
|10||"The Shivering Pigeon"||Leon Tokatyan||November 10, 1966|
|Hawk is in search of a stool pigeon (Lou Antonio), hoping that he finds him before the mob does.|
|11||"Ulysses and the Republic"||Edward Adler||November 17, 1966|
|Hawk's old friend, Ulysses, was murdered in his apartment building; it is up to him to find out who was responsible.|
|12||"Legacy for a Lousy Future"||Albert Ruben||November 24, 1966|
|Hawk tries to recover $250,000 that a crook has hidden before he was sent to prison.|
|13||""H" is a Dirty Letter"||Philip S. Goodman (story)|
Robert Hamner (teleplay)
|December 1, 1966|
|Hawk searches for the ringleader in New York City's heroin trade. Guest stars include Frank Converse.|
|14||"Some Devil Whispered in His Ear"||Mann Rubin||December 8, 1966|
|A killer threatens customers at an East Side bar.|
|15||"The Hands of Corbin Claybrooke"||Robert Van Scoyk||December 15, 1966|
|Hawk looks for answers when an artist is framed for murder.|
|16||"Wall of Silence"||Robert Crean||December 22, 1966|
|Hawk reaches out to a mentally disabled girl (Emily Prager), who was an only witness to a murder. Guest stars include Kim Hunter.|
|17||"Blind Man's Bluff"||Edward Adler||December 29, 1966|
|Hawk is on a hunt for a murderer with an unusual motive -- all his victims were cab drivers with 7-year-old daughters. Guests include James Best.|
Reviewing the pilot the New York Times said it was "too shrill and intense to be entirely winning but it did have enough virtues to suggest the series may find a niche for itself."
Ratings were poor and ABC announced the show's cancellation in October, when 12 episodes had been filmed.
Reynolds later called it "a good show but it went off quickly."