The first of five seasons for the popular CBS detective drama Kojak premiered on this date, following a pilot movie the previous spring. Telly Savalas starred as the eponymous cop, Lt. Theo Kojak of the NYPD, known for his Greek heritage, bald pate, sweet tooth for lollipops, and swaggering catch phrase, “Who loves ya, baby?”
The pilot movie which launched Kojak, originally titled The Marcus-Nelson Murders, was a dramatization of the events that led to the Supreme Court’s landmark ruling in Miranda v. Arizona. This formula was repeated successfully by CBS later when the network spun Jake and the Fatman out of a TV movie about the events behind McCulloch v. Maryland. -A.D.
Today’s Birthdays: John Kassir, cryptkeeper (55); David Nelson, Ozzie and Harriet offspring (d. 2011); Casey Wilson, happy ender (32), BD Wong, doctor (52).