The Greatest American Hero TV show was a 60 minute adventure / comedy series on ABC with a sci-fi twist about a Los Angeles high school teacher (Ralph Hinkley) who was given a red flying suit by aliens during a field trip to the desert. An F.B.I. agent convinces him to use the suit to fight crime. Ralph later discovers that the suit also gives him the power to become invisible, to see things from great distances and to see through solid objects. During the first season only, Ralph also sometimes included his students in his crime-stopping adventures.
Greatest American Hero CastWilliam Katt ................... Ralph Hinkley
Robert Culp .................... Bill Maxwell
Connie Sellecca ................ Pam Davidson
Faye Grant ..................... Rhonda Blake
Michael Pare ................... Tony Villicana
Brandon Williams ............... Kevin Hinkley
Marc Price ..................... Rodrigeuz
Don Cervantes .................. Cyler Johnson
Greatest American Hero Broadcast History:First Two Seasons: Wednesday Nights from 8:00 to 9:00 PM on ABC
First 4 episodes of Third Season: Friday Nights from 9:00 to 10:00 PM on ABC
Final 9 episodes: Thursday Nights from 8:00 to 9:00 PM on ABC
Greatest American Hero Trivia
The owners of the Superman copyright threatened to sue citing similarities in the suits and of the superpowers.
Connie Sellecca starred on another TV series before, the Greatest American Hero titled, "Flying High". Before the final season of the Greatest American Hero began, Connie appeared in a TV movie titled, "Hotel". She went on to re-create the role on a Hotel TV Show. The first episode of that series aired a measley 6 1/2 months after the final episode of the Greatest American Hero so Connie didn't have any substantial gap in her resumé! Before becoming an actress, Connie had a career modelling lingerie. The actors and crews that Connie works with know her as an expert practical joker. When she and Gil Gerard were married he would come home to find Connie on the floor, seemingly dead, with a huge pool of fake blood all around! That happened so often that Gil started rating how good her attempts were compared to previous ones!
On March 30, 1981, a man named John Hinckley attempted to assasinate President Ronald Reagan. Fearing public disgust over the similarity in last names (Hinkley & Hinckley), scripts were quickly rewritten to refer to the hero of the series as simply, "Mr. H" and sometimes even "Mr. Hanley". Eventually, however, things cooled off and his name was changed back to Hinkley.
Robert Culp's grandfather inspired him in his role as Bill Maxwell. He had also written an episode of his series, "I Spy" where he developed a character (Uncle Harry) who was also inspired by his grandfather.
Robert Culp wrote several of the Greatest American Hero scripts. He had previously written scripts for his first series "Trackdown (1957)" and also for "I Spy (1965)". He even won an Emmy for one of the "I Spy" scripts!
Thirteen years before appearing as an FBI agent in "The Greatest American Hero", Robert Culp played the role of a U.S. secret agent on "I Spy". Actually, the rugged schedule of shooting "I Spy" caused him on many occasions to say that he didn't even want to see scripts for TV pilots. Fortunately, a friend convinced him to change his mind for "The Greatest American Hero".
Greatest American Hero Theme Song Lyrics
Title: "Believe It Or Not"
Written By: "Mike Post and Stephen Geyer"
Performed By: "Joey Scarbury"
Look at what's happened to me,
I can't believe it myself.
Suddenly I'm up on top of the world,
It should've been somebody else.
Believe it or not,
It's like a light of a new day,
Believe it or not,
Episodes List With Original Air Dates
The First Season1... The Greatest American Hero (3/18/1981)
2... The Hit Car (3/25/1981)
3... Here's Looking At You, Kid (4/1/1981)
4... Saturday Night On Sunset Blvd. (4/8/1981)
5... Reseda Rose (4/15/1981)
6... My Heroes Have Always Been Cowboys (4/29/1981)
7... Fireman (5/6/1981)
8... The Best Desk Scenario (5/13/1981)
The Second Season9... The Two-Hundred-Mile-An-Hour Fast Ball (10/28/1981)
10. Operation: Spoilsport (11/11/1981)
11. Don't Mess Around With Jim (11/18/1981)
12. Hog Wild (11/25/1981)
13. Classical Gas (12/2/1981)
14. The Beast In The Black (12/9/1981)
15. The Lost Diablo (12/16/1981)
16. Plague (1/6/1982)
17. Train Of Thought (1/13/1982)
18. Now You See It (1/20/1982)
19. Hand-Painted Thai (1/27/1982)
20. Just Another Three-Ring Circus (2/3/1982)
21. The Shock Will Kill You (2/10/1982)
22. A Chicken Every Plot (2/17/1982)
23. The Devil In The Deep Blue Sea (2/24/1982)
24. It's All Downhill From Here (3/3/1982)
25. Dreams (3/10/1982)
26. There's Just No Accounting... (3/24/1982)
27. The Good Samaritan (3/31/1982)
28. Captain Bellybuster And The Speed Factory (4/7/1982)
29. Who's Woo In America (4/14/1982)
30. Lilacs, Mr. Maxwell (4/28/1982)
The Third Season31. Divorce Venusion Style (10/29/1982)
32. The Price Is Right (11/5/1982)
33. This Is The One The Suit Was Meant For (11/12/1982)
34. Resurrection Of Carlini (11/26/1982)
35. The Newlywed Game (1/6/1983)
36. Heaven Is In Your Genes (1/13/1983)
37. Live At Eleven (1/20/1983)
38. Space Ranger (1/27/1983)
39. Thirty Seconds Over Litle Tokyo (2/3/1983)
40. Wizards And Warlocks (2/10/1983)
41. It's Only Rock And Roll (2/17/1983)
42. Desperado (2/24/1983)
43. Vanity, Says The Preacher (3/3/1983)
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