Barbary Coast (TV series)

Barbary Coast is an American television series that aired on ABC. The pilot movie first aired on May 4, 1975 and the series itself premiered September 8, 1975; the last episode aired January 9, 1976.

Barbary Coast was inspired by a similar 19th-century spy series, The Wild Wild West, and like the earlier program, Barbary Coast mixed the genres of Western and secret agent drama.

Barbary Coast
Barbary Coast Title Card
Created byDouglas Heyes
Written byHoward Beck
Michael Philip Butler
Cy Chermak
James Doherty
William D. Gordon
Douglas Heyes
Harold Livingston
Stephen Lord
Directed byHal DeWindt
Alexander Grasshoff
Don McDougall
Herb Wallerstein
Don Weis
StarringWilliam Shatner
Dennis Cole
Doug McClure
Composer(s)John Andrew Tartaglia
Country of originUSA
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons1
No. of episodes13 (+1 TV movie)
Executive producer(s)Cy Chermak
Producer(s)Douglas Heyes
William Cairncross (assistant)
CinematographyRobert B. Hauser
Editor(s)James Doherty
William D. Gordon
Running time45 mins.
Production company(s)Francy Productions
Paramount Network Television
DistributorCBS Television Distribution
Original networkABC
Audio formatMonaural
Original releaseMay 4, 1975 –
January 9, 1976


Barbary Coast features the adventures of 19th century government agent Jeff Cable (played by William Shatner), and his pal, conman and gambler Cash ("Cash makes no enemies") Conover (Doug McClure; played by Dennis Cole in the pilot) who is the owner of the Golden Gate Casino.[1] This was Shatner's first attempt at a live-action series since Star Trek (also produced by Paramount Television).

In their battle against various criminals and foreign spies, Cable and Conover operated out of the latter's saloon and casino located on San Francisco's notorious Barbary Coast. Like Wild Wild West's Artemus Gordon, Cable frequently donned disguises in the course of his investigations.[1]

The producers modeled the show's Byzantine plotlines/conspiracies on the Mission: Impossible paradigm (in fact, they hired a number of Mission: Impossible's writers). Other regulars on the series included recurring Wild Wild West villain actor Richard Kiel as Moose Moran and Dave Turner as Thumbs.


No. Title Directed by Written by Original air date
Pilot"The Barbary Coast"Bill BixbyDouglas HeyesMay 4, 1975
Two-hour TV-movie and backdoor pilot.
1"Funny Money"Don WeisDouglas HeyesSeptember 8, 1975
2"Crazy Cats"Don WeisHarold LivingstonSeptember 15, 1975
3"Jesse Who?"Bill BixbyHoward BerkSeptember 22, 1975
4"The Ballad of Redwing Jail"John FloreaTeleplay by: William D. Gordon & James Doherty
Story by: Douglas Heyes
September 29, 1975
5"Guns for a Queen"Don McDougallTeleplay by: William Putnam
Story by: Matthew Howard
October 6, 1975
6"Irish Luck"Alex GrasshoffHarold LivingstonOctober 13, 1975
7"Sauce for the Goose"Don McDougallTeleplay by: Stephen Lord
Story by: Michael Lynn & George Reed
October 20, 1975
8"An Iron-Clad Plan"Herb WallersteinTeleplay by: L. Ford Neale & John Huff
Story by: George Reed & Michael Lynn
October 31, 1975
9"Arson and Old Lace"Alex GrasshoffMax HodgeNovember 14, 1975
10"Sharks Eat Sharks"Bruce BilsonJames L. HendersonNovember 21, 1975
11"The Day Cable Was Hanged"Alex GrasshoffTeleplay by: Stephen Ford
Story by: Howard Rayfiel & Kellam de Forest
December 26, 1975
12"Mary Had More Than a Little"Herb WallersteinWinston MillerJanuary 2, 1976
13"The Dawson Marker"Alex GrasshoffWilliam D. Gordon & James DohertyJanuary 9, 1976

Awards and nominations

The pilot episode, an ABC Sunday Night Movie, was nominated for an Emmy Award for Art Direction for Jack De Shields and set decorator Reg Allen.[2]

Home media

The series was released on DVD and Blu-ray in June 2014.[3]

Cultural references

The Mad Magazine Star Trek musical satire "Keep on Trekkin'" (1976) depicts William Shatner as Captain James T. Kirk on the bridge of the U.S.S. Enterprise singing a version of Send in the Clowns[4] that includes the lyric "Look at me now/At my old post/Happy that I can forget Barbary Coast!"


  1. ^ a b Tim Brooks; Earle Marsh (2003). "Barbary Coast, The (Western)". The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network and Cable TV Shows 1946–Present (Eighth ed.). New York: Ballantine Books. p. 86. ISBN 978-0-345-45542-0.
  2. ^ Emmy Nomination Certificate
  3. ^ Announcement Archived 2014-10-18 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ Mark Clark (April 1, 2012). Star Trek FAQ: Everything Left to Know About the First Voyages of the Starship Enterprise. Applause Theatre & Cinema. pp. 44–45. ISBN 978-1557839633.

External links

Alex Grasshoff

Alexander Grasshoff (December 10, 1928 – April 5, 2008) was an American documentary filmmaker and director who received 3 Oscars nominations.

Along with fellow producer Robert Cohn, he is possibly best known for writing and directing the documentary Young Americans, which "won" an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature in April 1969. However, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences soon found out the film had been shown first in October 1967, thus making it ineligible for a 1968 award and the Oscar status was revoked. Grasshoff, who reportedly slept with the Oscar on the first night, also directed Academy Award-nominated films The Really Big Family (1966) and Journey to the Outer Limits (1973). He also directed the award-winning The Wave (1981), based on Ron Jones' The Third Wave experiment, and Future Shock (1972), based on Alvin Toffler's book and hosted by Orson Welles.

Bruce Bilson

Bruce Bilson (born May 19, 1928) is an American film and television director. He is the grandfather of actress Rachel Bilson. He is most notable for his work as a regular director on the popular spy spoof Get Smart. He won the 1967-68 Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series for the third season Get Smart episode "Maxwell Smart, Private Eye".

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