Starsky And Hutch: The Complete First Series Review

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The first season of the sexy and seminal series


Minutes into an episode plucked at random from the first season DVD set, David Starsky (Paul Michael Glaser) and Ken ‘Hutch’ Hutchinson (David Soul) have been bawled-out by their fulminating chief (Bernie Hamilton), stopped to grab a chilli dog, and jived into The Jungle Club to get the low-down from city-slick supergrass, Huggy Bear (Antonio Vargas). On the way out, a gyrating sex kitten gives Hutch the wink, despite the fact he’s wearing the entire United Colours Of Benetton in a single garment.

For those of a certain age, it’s an entire childhood encapsulated in a turtleneck. Lumbered amongst the detritus of ’70s kitsch, it’s a surprise to recall what a sexy and seminal series this truly was.

For the first time, cops were played as craggy-cool characters, the beats and whistles of their crime-fighting fuelled by the leads’ terrific chemistry and the crisp, wiseacre writing.

The action clicked, too — this is where they invented the bonnet bounce, the rugby-tackle bust and decreed that every car chase needed at least two 180 degree spins to count. Then again, it could just have been that scarlet Gran Torino, a white go-faster stripe borrowed from a jumbo jet, rubber-burning its way around LA. It’s why we all wanted to be Starsky: even if Hutch got the chicks, he got to drive.