Monday, July 21, 2008

Highway Patrol

"Whenever the laws of any state are broken, a duly authorized organization swings into action. It may be called the State Police, State Troopers, Militia, the Rangers or the Highway Patrol. These are the stories of the men whose training, skill and courage have enforced and preserved our state laws."
Besides that snappy intro I can't figure out now why I liked this program
Frequently Asked Questions about Highway Patrol:
When did the Highway Patrol pilot Prison Break premiere?
Monday, October 3, 1955. The episode was filmed April 11-13, 1955.
What are the locations of the opening shot of the auto driving around a curve, and the "roadblock" shot?
Both locations were on the 101 freeway before it was finished; it was closed and therefore they could have full control of it. The precise locations are still unknown, but probably near Thousand Oaks.
Driving his car going up to the roadblock was Babe Unger with Guy Daniels as passenger [according to Guy].
What about the closing turnout sequence, backing out of the restaurant parking lot ?
This was at the Golden Pheasant restaurant on Highway 101, probably near Medford Road. This turnout sequence was the closing shot of the pilot episode.
A contemporary photograph of the Golden Pheasant , taken by Ron Hurwitz, is available.
How long did Highway Patrol run ?
For 4 seasons, from 1955-1959, and a total of 156 episodes. It was one of the most popular syndicated programs in television history. After the original run, it was sometimes rerun with the name "Ten-4".
When and where was Highway Patrol rerun ?
In the United States, reruns could be seen daily throughout the 1960s. Any American over 40 can probably remember Broderick Crawford bellowing "10-4" into his microphone. The reruns continued to be seen sporadically in some cities in the 1970s and even the 1980s.
In some reruns, the show was called Ten-Four. The opening of Ten-Four had Mathews in a '58 Dodge doing a turnout from a 4th season episode calling in on his radio - "I'm on my way, 10-4."
an Emmy Award ?
No. Syndicated programs were not eligible at that time (is this correct?).
What is a syndicated program ?
A program that is sold to independent TV stations all across the country; this is an alternative to selling a show to one of the major networks (ABC, CBS, Dumont, NBC) which would, in turn, feed the programming to its affiliates.
Who created Highway Patrol ?
Guy Daniels, who was the CHP's civilian public relations man, was told by the Commissioner, Bernard Caldwell, to go to Hollywood and "get us a show like Dragnet". So Guy approached Jack Webb who accepted the idea and was set to do a pilot. However, at about the same time Jack, who was passionate about jazz, got his pilot for Pete Kelly's Blues picked up by the network so he reneged doing a show based on the CHP. In the end, Ziv productions who needed a couple more shows to fill out it's 1955 season decided to do the pilot using Broderick Crawford as the lead. A lunch meeting between Brod Crawford and Herb Strock with Ziv executives was then arranged to discuss its filming.
A quote from Frederick Ziv:
"Well, in television my favorite program was Highway Patrol. It was a dynamic program. It was a dynamic program because the man with the badge had proved its appeal. Not the man in uniform. You put a man in uniform and you downgrade him. So, Dan Mathews, our head of our highway patrol, was not in uniform - he was head of the patrol. And the part was played by Brod Crawford who moved so fast that we edited our film accordingly. Today we hear about quick cuts, but quick cutting technique really was first put into television film in Highway Patrol. And if you look at previous television film, you'll find that it is not cut the way Highway Patrol is cut. It started a whole new trend." - Frederic W. Ziv (September 6, 1974)
source: Rouse, Morleen Getz. A History of the F.W. Ziv Radio and Television Syndication Companies, 1930-1960. Ph.D. dissertation, University of Michigan,

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