The 1985 series Half Nelson starred Joe Pesci and featured bull terrier Spuds MacKenzie plus three NFL football players, two of whom, Dick Butkus and Bubba Smith, got lower billing than Spuds.
This may be the most 80s thing I’ve ever fucking seen and that’s saying a lot. Just stick with it the whole way and thank me later. pic.twitter.com/ebeyL77X08
— Super 70s Sports (@Super70sSports) January 4, 2022
Rocky Nelson is a former New York City cop who moved to Beverly Hills, where he got a job at a private security service for the rich and famous, while attempting to make it as an actor. In addition to guarding celebrities, he also helps solve crimes.
Presumably, the pitch was that it’s like three 1984 hits, Beverly Hills Cop, The Karate Kid, and Miami Vice, all rolled into one. Joe Pesci playing Axel Foley / Daniel LaRusso / Sonny Crocket lasted 9 episodes.
This reminds me that Los Angeles was really fashionable for a half dozen years after the 1984 Olympics. No cities in the world except L.A. and Tehran wanted the 1984 Olympics, and then the Ayatollah happened, so L.A. was it.
Everybody decided that the L.A. Olympics were going to be a disaster due to smog, terrorism, traffic jams, or earthquakes, so few came from outside SoCal.
But the 1984 Olympics turned out to be a big success, the perfect illustration of the Reagan re-election slogan of “Morning in America.” So, Los Angeles triumphalism reigned until Dick Cheney turned off the aerospace budget spigot after the fall of the Soviet Union, which ushered in Los Angeles’s 1990s time of troubles of riot, earthquake, and OJ.
Do football players still get cast in TV shows? It was a Thing in the 20th Century.