Short-Lived Shows: Sonny Spoon
Hey, say that headline 5 times real fast.
I was watching Ebert & Roeper this weekend, and the fill-in for Ebert (he should be back in 2007) was actor and director Mario Van Peebles, who most recently won acclaim for directing the movie Baadasssss!, playing Malcolm X in Ali, and as a cast member on the show Rude Awakening a few years back. But back in the late 80s he starred in a really fun Stephen J. Cannell show titled Sonny Spoon, about a con man who helps people (and himself) out of various jams. He used his connections on the street, the help of a bar owner (real-life dad Melvin Van Peebles), and, best of all, several disguises to solve the crime. You don't see that enough on television these days, people using funky disguises. I think some of the heist shows have used them here and there, but it was a major part of Sonny Spoon. And the show was hip without being annoying, and was just really entertaining.
One of the writers on the show was Randall Wallace, who went on to write the movies Braveheart, Pearl Harbor, The Man in the Iron Mask, and We Were Soldiers, and is currently writing the big screen adaptation of Atlas Shrugged.
I think the show got OK ratings and some buzz (it was a midseason replacement), but I think viewers went away after that and the show was canceled the following fall.
You can add this to the list of shows I'd love to see on DVD, but probably won't make it.