SERIES: The Fall Guy
Lee Majors – Colt Seavers
Dougles Barr – Howie Munson
Heather Thomas – Jody Banks
Joann Pflug – Samantha ‘Big’ Jack (Series 1)
Markie Post – Terri Michaels (Series 2-4)
Nedra Volz – Pearl Sperling (Series 5)
Robert Donner – Edmund Trench (Series 5)
Lee Majors plays Colt Seavers, a Hollywood stunt man who moonlights as a bounty hunter. He uses his physical skills and knowledge of stunt effects (especially stunts involving cars or his large GMC pickup truck) to capture fugitives and criminals. He is accompanied by his cousin and stuntman-in-training Howie Munson, and occasionally by fellow stunt performer Jody Banks.
Typically, an episode starts with Seavers’ crew performing a stunt for a film or TV series. They are then assigned to finding, for example, a man who has skipped bail. His case turns out to be more complicated than it first seemed. In the course of dealing with the villains, Seavers performs a stunt similar to the one shown at the beginning of the show.
The series is known for its frequent cameos by Hollywood celebrities and the occasional in-joke referring to Majors’ previous series, The Six Million Dollar Man.
The show’s theme song, “The Unknown Stuntman”, was written by Glen A. Larson, Gail Jensen, and David Sommerville, and performed by Lee Majors. The lyrics include a reference to Majors’ then-estranged wife, Farrah Fawcett. The song became a minor hit for Majors and is now considered a minor classic in countries such as Germany, where the show was greeted with high popularity during its initial run.
Colt’s truck was an early 1980s GMC 4×4 pickup. It had a 6-inch lift and 35-inch Dick Cepek off-road tires mounted on a 16-inch chrome wagon style wheel. The truck also had a custom-made chrome roll bar mounted with 4 off-road lights, and a custom chrome grille guard mounted with 2 off-road lights and a Warn winch. One unusual characteristic was a secret compartment in the truck’s bed, which was used to stash away villains or to hide weapons.
The vehicle was painted brown and tan two-tone; it had an eagle painted on the hood with the phrase “Fall Guy Stuntman Association” underneath. The truck was very often involved in high-speed chases and huge jumps. As a result, it became very popular, especially with children, and numerous toy and model versions were produced.
During the show’s run, the stunts took their toll on the trucks, so several different year model trucks are used during the show’s initial run. As a result, there are some inconsistencies in the episodes. For instance, in the pilot episode the truck (a 1980 model) has two square headlights and a light tan interior. For the remainder of the series, it almost always had the quad headlight configuration of the 1981 and newer models, with a dark brown interior. The truck always appeared to be a long bed model, but in a couple of episodes a short bed model was used. After destroying several trucks due to the huge jumps, a custom built jump truck was built as a solution. It had a reinforced frame and axles, and a mid-mounted engine. This greatly reduced the number of trucks scrapped during the show’s production.
At the end of the series, the remaining trucks were either auctioned or given away in a contest.