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October 6, 2015

Remember the great Edward Woodward with Callan

by John Scott Lewinski, posted Dec 14th 2009 1:02PM
Edward Woodard kicked backside as Callan before he was The Equalizer.Most American TV viewers know Edward Woodward from his run as Robert McCall as The Equalizer. But, British TV aficionados know he trained in backside-kicking on the dark, gritty British spy series, Callan.

Written by James Mitchell, the show featured David Callan -- a spy working for an ultra-secret arm of the British Intelligence service specializing in assassinations. Unfortunately, the former soldier and convict was cursed with a conscience that led him to hate his job, his superiors and himself.

Woodward was perfect in the role -- blending haunted humor with genuine menace to create an intelligent, tortured man who you believed could kill anyone without having to look like Rambo while he did it.

While many fans wonder if The Equalizer's Robert McCall was really meant to be an older Callan. But, it's more reasonable to suggest Woodward's portrayal of McCall possessed echoes of the British spy. And it's certain the original spy series enabled the then-unknown Woodward to earn the lead role in an American series.

The first two sets of Callan episodes are now available on DVD from Acorn. Do yourself a favor and pick them up, mate.

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