Saturday, September 03, 2011

Max Monroe

We were standing outside with our neighbors, watching as a police helicopter buzzed overheard, when the conversation turned to previous crime incidents on our block. In our 13 years here, we had seen 2 car chases zoom by and knew about a shooting that occurred on the street before we moved in.

Then our next-door neighbor to the right pointed to the next-door neighbor on our left and casually said, “Oh yeah, and of course you know that the front of your house was blown-up several years ago.”

“WHAT?!!” we all yelled. None of us had ever heard this story before.

Turns out our three houses were featured briefly in an episode of a short-lived 1990 TV show called Max Monroe, starring Shadoe Stevens as an “unconventional” L.A. detective. That bit of news sent us all scurrying back home to find Max Monroe footage on the Internet.

Well, the show lasted only 6 episodes and none of the YouTube snippets (apparently uploaded by Shadoe Stevens himself) were shot on our street. Nor could we find any evidence of recorded copies of the show. So I started hunting for bootleg DVDs of the entire series.

About 5 screens into an intense Google search, I found a dealer (who shall remain nameless) selling a DVD collection of all the show’s episodes. I called a good friend (who shall also remain nameless and who buys lots of bootlegs herself) to see if she thought this guy was reputable. Looking at what he promised, plus his ratings (consistently 4 stars out of 5), I decided to proceed and bought the set sight-unseen. The DVDs arrived in the mail yesterday.

“I know what we’re doing tonight!” I emailed Tim.

Sure enough, as soon as we finished dinner, Tim inserted the first of four DVDs. We fast-forwarded through the first two, containing two episodes each. Lots of scenes of downtown L.A. and other local landmarks, but no house. I was starting to worry that maybe our neighbor was wrong.

But then we started watching “Flashback,” a two-hour episode that aired on April 14, 1990. About 3/4 of the way in, we suddenly saw something very familiar.

“THERE IT IS!” we both yelled, as the bad guys’ car turned the corner onto our street.

The cameras were obviously filming from our front yard, because we could see everyone’s house but ours. Then the south side of our house appeared and we were ecstatic. Our house was famous, if only for half a second! And, indeed, the front of our neighbor’s home got pretty much blown-up. See for yourself:


Ginny said...

Love it! I'm always looking for familiar Venice sites in movies and TV shows. My favorite is Orson Welles' "Touch of Evil" in which Venice stands in as a sleazy Mexican border town. But my actual home or apartment hasn't shown up on film yet.

Osder said...

How cool are you, thanks for sleuthing this out.... That neighbor : )