burke1

Publisher: Dell
Publication Dates: January-March 1964 – March-May 1965
Number of Issues Published: 3 (#1 – #3)
Color: Color
Dimensions: Standard Silver Age U. S.
Paper Stock: Glossy cover; Newsprint interior
Binding: Saddle-stitched

Based on ABC-TV series “Burke’s Law,” which aired from September 20, 1963, to January 12, 1966. All issues feature Gene Barry photo covers.

Information thanks to the Grand Comics Database

Burke’s Law is an American detective series that ran on ABC from 1963 to 1965 and was revived on CBS in the 1990s. The show starred Gene Barry as Amos Burke, millionaire captain of Los Angeles police homicide division, who was chauffeured around to solve crimes in his Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud II. Though the original series was converted from a detective show to a spy drama in its third and final season, the revived series was again a cop show.

There were stylistic similarities to Barry’s previous series, Bat Masterson, in which he had played the debonair lawman of the old west. During the opening credits, as the title flashed onscreen, a woman’s voice was heard seductively pronouncing the words “It’s Burke’s Law!” The title also reflected Burke’s habit of dispensing wisdom to his underlings in a professorial manner, e.g.: “Never ask a question unless you already know the answer. Burke’s Law.”

The title of each episode started with the words “Who Killed…?” with the name or description of the victim (who inevitably died in the show’s opening minutes) completing it. Five or six “special guest stars” would comprise the list of suspects.

In the original series, Burke was assisted by Detective Tim Tilson (Gary Conway), Detective Les Hart (Regis Toomey) and chauffeur Henry (Leon Lontoc). Two recurring characters were coroner George McLeod (Michael Fox) and lovely desk sergeant Gloria Ames (Eileen O’Neill). Tilson was a go-getting young man whose skill at finding clues and trace references didn’t result in his solving the murders, being always outflanked by Burke’s cool intuition, while Hart was a no-nonsense, seen-it-all veteran, perhaps a nod to Toomey’s numerous roles as cops in feature films.

A guest appearance by Anne Francis as female detective Honey West led to a short-lived spin-off series.

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