This was a rare find! Who knew that this TV show was available? I uploaded it to YouTube (unlisted) for you, my Blog Readers, to watch.
James Hunter worked for an unnamed United States government intelligence agency – referred to merely as “the Agency” – until 1969, when he resigned because he disapproved of the Agency‘s methods. He retired from the espionage business to run a rare books store in Santa Barbara, California. In 1977, General Baker is ordered to recruit six counterespionage agents to form a new covert agency – also unnamed – charged with protecting the United States from a variety of threats whether they arise domestically or abroad. Baker‘s first choice for the new agency is Hunter. In Baker‘s new agency, Hunter either works alone or is assigned someone to assist him, all the while continuing to pose as a rare books dealer.
In all but two episodes, Baker assigns another of his agents, Marty Shaw, to assist Hunter. Marty lives in a different part of the United States and is also undercover – as a famous model. She also has her own assignments separate from Hunter‘s. Marty is Hunter‘s lover, and the two share a bed when traveling together on their assignments.
As undercover couterespionage agents, they battle in locales across the United States with a wide variety of international foes, ranging from communists to organized crime to rogue American agents.
After the cancellation of the series Executive Suite and its last broadcast on February 11, 1977, CBS needed a replacement to fill the void in its schedule. It had bought Hunter for just such a contingency. Hunter premiered a week later, on February 18, 1977, and aired on Fridays at 10:00 p.m. through April 22, 1977. After a five-week hiatus, its last original episode was broadcast on Friday, May 27, 1977, also at 10:00 p.m. Four additional episodes never aired.
Stephen Boyd appears in an episode called “The Costa Rican Connection”. The show aired on March 18, 1977, so it is one of the very last television or movies in which Stephen appeared, as he would pass away only 3 months later on June 2, 1977. In this episode, Stephen plays a slippery businessman names Garth Roberts who also ends up being the main villain in the episode (of course!). If he was sporting his Ulster accent Boyd would be straight out of “The Squeeze” in this. Despite being older and a little thinner, Stephen still looks very handsome sporting his immutable 1970’s mustache and flashing that devilish Irish grin.
The episode also features “2001: A Space Odyssey” veteran Gary Lockwood and model Susan Anton. The main television actors for this series were Linda Evans (soon to be of “Dynasty” fame), and James Franciscus, who took Charlton Heston’s place as the main character in the popular sequel to “The Planet of The Apes”, “Beneath The Planet of the Apes” (1970).