Watch the Opening Credits of an Imaginary 70s Cop Show Starring Samuel Beckett

Samuel Beck­ett: avant-garde drama­tist, brood­ing Nobel Prize win­ner, poet, and…gritty tele­vi­sion detec­tive?

Sad­ly, no, but he had the mak­ings of a great one, at least as cut togeth­er by play­wright Dan­ny Thomp­son, cofounder of Chicago’s The­ater Oobleck.

Some twen­ty five years after Beckett’s death, Thompson—whose cred­its include the Com­plete Lost Works of Samuel Beck­ett as Found in a Dust­bin in Paris in an Enve­lope (Par­tial­ly Burned) Labeled: Nev­er to Be Per­formed. Nev­er. Ever. Ever! Or I’ll Sue! I’ll Sue From the Grave!!!repur­posed Rosa Veim and Daniel Schmid’s footage of the moody genius wan­der­ing around 1969 Berlin into the open­ing cred­its of a nonex­is­tent, 70s era Quinn Mar­tin police pro­ce­dur­al.

The title sequence hits all the right peri­od notes, from the jazzy graph­ics to the pre­sen­ta­tion of its sup­port­ing cast: Andre the Giant, Jean Paul Sartre, and Jean “Hug­gy Bear” Cocteau. (Did you know that Beck­ett drove a young Andre the Giant to school in real life?)

Thomp­son ups the verisimil­i­tude by cop­ping Pat Williams’ theme for The Streets of San Fran­cis­co and nam­ing the imag­i­nary pilot episode after a col­lec­tion of Beckett’s short sto­ries.

He also notes that a DVD  release of the first, only and, again, entire­ly non-exis­tent sea­son has been held up by the noto­ri­ous­ly liti­gious Beck­ett estate. Alas.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

When Samuel Beck­ett Drove Young André the Giant to School: A True Sto­ry

Rare Audio: Samuel Beck­ett Reads From His Nov­el Watt

Samuel Beck­ett Directs His Absur­dist Play Wait­ing for Godot (1985)

Ayun Hal­l­i­day is an author, illus­tra­tor, and Chief Pri­ma­tol­o­gist of the East Vil­lage Inky zine. Fol­low her @AyunHalliday

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