Harry O is an American crime drama series that aired for two seasons on ABC from 1974 to 1976. The series starred David Janssen and was executive produced by Jerry Thorpe. Harry O followed the broadcast of two pilot films: Such Dust as Dreams Are Made On (airing March 11, 1973) and Smile Jenny, You're Dead (airing February 3, 1974), both starring Janssen.
Janssen starred as the title character Harry Orwell, a San Diego cop forced into retirement when he is shot in the back. To support himself, he sets up a private investigation practice in San Diego. Henry Darrow originally starred as Lt. Manny Quinlan. During the series' first season, the location of the series shifted to Santa Monica, California due to the high production costs of filming in San Diego. Quinlan was killed off, and Anthony Zerbe (who later won a Primetime Emmy Award for his role on the series) became Orwell's foil/contact, Lt. K. C. Trench of the Santa Monica Police Department.
Additional characters included Farrah Fawcett-Majors, who was seen in a handful of episodes as Harry's attractive next-door neighbor and sometime girlfriend; Paul Tulley as Sgt. Don Roberts, Lt. Trench's assistant; and Les Lannom as Lester Hodges, a bumbling private-eye wannabe.
Reception and cancellation
Ratings for the series were initially fair and got a boost after the series was retooled in January 1975. Harry O was picked up for a second season and continued to gain viewership, however, then-ABC president Fred Silverman decided to take the network in a different direction and canceled the series. The last original episode aired on April 29, 1976.