Hunter (1984–1991)
6 user 1 critic


Brash detectives Rick Hunter & Dee Dee McCall team up to catch a psychopathic serial murderer, eventually found to be a colleague.


Ron Satlof


Frank Lupo (created by), Frank Lupo


Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Fred Dryer ... Rick Hunter
Stepfanie Kramer ... Dee Dee McCall
Brian Dennehy ... Dr. Bolin
Michael Cavanaugh ... Captain Cain
James Whitmore Jr. James Whitmore Jr. ... Sgt. Bernie Terwilliger
Joanna Kerns ... Dr. Kettering
Steven Williams ... King Hayes
David Labiosa ... Whispering Willie
Richard Young ... Jesse
Lee Patterson ... Uncle John
Luke Andreas Luke Andreas ... Big Cowboy
Marilyn Tokuda Marilyn Tokuda ... Gretchin
Tawny Moyer ... Cathy O'Neil
Richard McGonagle ... Det. Levine
Michael Mancini Michael Mancini ... Tony




This was the pilot to the long running series, about a cop, Rick Hunter, who has two things going against him. The first is that his family is involved with organized crime. So, most of the cops don't trust him. And most of his partners get seriously injured. Now his commanding officer, Captain Cain, has it in for him. Currently, he is forcing him to see a psychiatrist, and that if he wants to work in the field, he has to have a partner and the only one who is willing to work with him, Bernie Terwilleger, a less than competent cop. Hunter then decides to team with the only other cop, who has a hard time with partners, too, Dee Dee McCall. Currently, they are working on a case involving a possible serial killer, but since Terwilliger was the first cop at the scene, it's his case. But Hunter sensing that Terwilliger will not give it his all, decides to investigate on his own. Written by <>

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Did You Know?


Hunter and McCall do not use the term "serial killer" to describe the murderer. Although the term is generally credited to two FBI agents who came up with it in the 1970s, it does not seem to have filtered into mainstream usage until 1981, when it first appeared in an article about an Atlanta murderer, and was likely still not in popular usage in 1984 when this episode aired. See more »


Hunter is an officer for the Police Department of the City of Los Angeles. However, in the briefing room, seen while the Captain is haranguing his detectives, the wall map behind the lectern is clearly of Orange County, which is an entirely different jurisdiction. See more »


Followed by The Return of Hunter: Everyone Walks in L.A. (1995) See more »


Easy Ride
Performed and Written by Herb Pedersen
See more »

User Reviews

Well Punk, ya gonna go for it?
6 September 2012 | by JasonDanielBakerSee all my reviews

In this pilot for the highly popular TV series loose cannon Los Angeles cop Sgt. Rick Hunter (Fred Dryer) is investigating serial murders of attractive blonde women who frequent a country western bar. He would have an easier time doing his job if police bureaucracy i.e. his superior Captain Cain didn't interfere.

Hunter is ordered (department regulations) to see police shrink Doctor Bolin (Brian Dennehy) a duplicitous quack colluding with Captain Cain to get Hunter thrown off the force.

Meanwhile Hunter, having been paired with Bernie Terwiliger (James Whitmore Jr.) an incompetent yo-yo he loathes strikes an arrangement with outcast cop Sgt. Dee Dee McCall (Stepfanie Kramer) - a trigger-happy, Lynda Carter lookalike referred to as "The Brass Cupcake" by her more sexist colleagues like Terwiliger.

They will be partners in name only. Since neither could keep a partner and they both worked better on their own the arrangement appeared to make sense. They would sign each others reports and vouch for one another conducting investigations separately. But somehow they manage to co-operate long enough to catch the killer.

The biggest criticism of the show was the acting chops or lack thereof of ex-pro football player Fred Dryer. Dryer actually appeared to be affecting an impression of Eastwood with an angry glare and clenched teeth sneering his lines early in the series. That worked quite well for the role and the simplistically formulaic rip-off of "Dirty Harry" made the show popular as a vapid guilty pleasure.

The fantastic performance given by Brian Dennehy makes this episode worth watching all the more. Dennehy is the type of actor who might be seen in Bronson/Eastwood vigilante action movies and was thus an impeccable casting choice who fit the formula perfectly.

The series production team should have gotten more supporting cast members from Bronson/Eastwood movies - as many as they could and copied the plot-lines of those films as they appeared to be doing in the first couple of seasons and in this episode.

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Release Date:

18 September 1984 (USA) See more »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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