86 Episodes of Agent 86

(Above source: JustWatch)

Maxwell Smart, Agent 86: “NBC will run all 138 episodes of ‘Get Smart’ this weekend. Would you believe it? 138 episodes!”

You: “I find that hard to believe.”

Max: “Would you believe 99 episodes on PBS?”

You: “I don’t think so.”

Max: “How about 86 episodes on Decades?

The “Would You Believe” gag above, done much better on the actual series, was one of several hot catchphrases on Get Smart, which ran for five seasons (four on NBC, one on CBS) from 1965 to 1970. Others, per Wikipedia, were: “missed it by that much,” “sorry about that, Chief,” “the old (such-and-such) trick,”, “…and loving it” and “I asked you not to tell me that.”

Don Adams starred as Maxwell Smart, Agent 86, and Barbara Feldon as his partner, 99 (no name, ever), in the spy spoof co-created by Mel Brooks and Buck Henry.

Decades’ marathon will start at noon ET Saturday, September 5, with the pilot episode, “Mr. Big,” and run through Labor Day at 7 am. And yes, they will be showing 86 of Agent 86’s 138 episodes over 43 hours.

Get Smart isn’t on any streaming service, nor running regularly on any over-the-air classic channel, so you might want to find your local Decades channel number – either free over-the-air, or on cable — from the network’s Where to Watch page.

Streaming purists can buy individual episodes for $1.99 from several sources.

Revivals

Get Smart was first revived 10 years after it went off the air via a 1980 theatrical feature, The Nude Bomb (later retitled The Return of Maxwell Smart). Adams returned as Smart, but Agent 99 was completely missing. You can stream The Nude Bomb with a free Hoopla subscription, available via participating local libraries.

Feldon was back on the case with Adams in 1989’s Get Smart, Again!. a TV movie on yet a third network, ABC. You can stream the film for $3.99 from several sources.

Don Adams returned yet again as Agent 86, but he was now The Chief, in a 1995 TV revival. The show landed on network number four, Fox, but lasted just seven episodes. Andy Dick played Max’s son, who took over as the show’s the bumbling secret agent, and Feldon returned as 99. The series is not streaming anywhere.

A theatrical movie reboot, almost obligatory for classic TV hits fading from memory, came in 2008, and was surprisingly pretty good. Steve Carell played Agent 86, with Anne Hathaway as 99. It’s available to HBO Max subscribers or for $2.99 from several sources.

Let’s end with the original ending:

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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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