The Beverly Hills Buntz TV show was a 30 minute private detective comedy series on NBC about a New York City police detective who relocated to sunny Southern California and opened his own detective agency. He even took along the guy who was his snitch in the Big Apple.
Beverly Hills Buntz CastDennis Franz ............... Norman Buntz
Peter Jurasik .............. Sid Thurston
Guy Boyd ................... Lieutenant Pugh
Dana Wheeler-Nicholson ..... Rebecca Griswold
Beverly Hills Buntz Trivia
Four episodes of Beverly Hills Buntz were not broadcast due to early cancellation of the series. Their titles were "Ad Astra Per Peoria", "A Falcone in Hand", "Cannon-Aid", and "Terry and the Pirates".
Norman Buntz was not the only role that Dennis Franz played on Hill Street Blues. He played a character named, "Sal Benedetto" on the series for a few episodes before joining the cast regularly as Norman Buntz.
Most likely, the main reason that Beverly Hills Buntz didn't last long was because the personality of Norman Buntz changed pretty dramatically from what it was on Hill Street Blues. Detective Buntz was a strong, determined, sometimes even violent cop who was more than willing to break the rules in order to take criminals off the street. After moving to Beverly Hills Buntz, P.I. Buntz suddenly became almost a goofball with high professional principles! Fans who watched the show didn't care for the change!
Many fans felt that the producers of Beverly Hills Buntz were trying to capitalize on the huge popularity of the movie, "Beverly Hills Cop" that starred comedian Eddie Murphy. Of course, Eddie Murphy had a fantastic comedy background and did an amazing job of combining crime-fighting with his funny-man antics. Dennis Franz had no such experience in comedy and his character had never had a funny bone in his body on Hill Street Blues.
Obviously, none of those problems were caused by Dennis Franz. He is an excellent dramatic actor. Very few actors can combine drama and comedy successfully. Most of his fans were happy to see Dennis return to what he does so well when he starred on the hit cop drama series, "NYPD Blue" for its full 12 season run!
Dennis Franz served in two airborne reconnaissance units for nearly a year during the Vietnam War. You know ... the guys who go into territory that's often infested with enemy soldiers! Like many Vietnam Vets, he had some depression issues for a time after returning from Vietnam but wasted no time in beginning his career as an actor.
Episodes List With Original Air Dates
Beverly Hills Buntz - The First and Only Season
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