Dicks on Wheels

(Above: Bruno Debrandt in ‘Cain’ on Walter Presents)

A guide to wheelchair detectives in TV shows and movies.

Wheelchair detectives don’t come along too often on TV, so let’s start by saying that Cain ain’t Ironside!

While Ironside (NBC, 1967-1975) policed by the book and didn’t let his disability get him down, Cain (France, 2002 – present) possesses “a black sense of humor and a healthy disregard of sticking to the rules.”

Cain’s first season of eight episodes will debut tomorrow, June 21, on subscription streamer Walter Presents, which costs $6.99 monthly or $69.99 annually following a seven-day trial.

Starring Bruno Debrandt, Cain has run for five more seasons (46 episodes) in France. No word on if and when they’ll show up on Walter Presents, but you can buy season two (as well as season one) on Amazon  for $2.99 per episode or $19.99 per season.

Ironside, starring Raymond (“Perry Mason“) Burr, ran for 199 episodes over its eight seasons. Hulu subscribers can stream the first three (82 episodes). Non-Hulu subscribers can stream the first season (30 episodes) for free, with ads, on Yahoo View.

You can also see Ironside for free on over-the-air channel Cozi TV, Saturday and Sunday nights from midnight to 2 am ET.  Just hook up an antenna up to your TV set and find your local channel number by visiting “Get Cozi TV.

NBC has revived Ironside a couple of times since its initial run. First, a reunion movie, The Return of Ironside, aired in 1993. Then, a year after Cain premiered in France, NBC tried a grittier remake of the series, starring Blair Underwood. It lasted four episodes

Finally, let’s not forget Denzel Washington’s turn as depressed wheelchair detective Lincoln Rhymes in 1999’s The Bone Collector. HBO Now subscribers can stream the film, based on Jeffrey Deaver’s novel of the same title. It’s also available for $2.99 from various providers.


About Les Luchter

Les Luchter is a former managing editor of Multichannel News, editor-in-chief of Cable Marketing, and news editor of Broadcast Week.

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