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“One More Thing, Sir…”: A Memoir by Michael Sloan (book review).

July 26, 2019 | By | 2 Replies More

I remember the name Michael Sloan with his association with ‘The Return Of The Six Million Dollar Man And The Bionic Woman’ and its two sequels but hadn’t really realised just how much other work he’d done over the years. Remembering credits isn’t something I normally did or made the connections.

Sloan first did a spec script for ‘Columbo’ and was the only freelancer who worked on the detective series. His second series was ‘Harry O’ and wrote several episodes of that before rising to becoming story editor and onto ‘McCloud’ before rising to becoming a showrunner.

As the title, “One More Thing, Sir…”: A Memoir points out, this isn’t so much an autobiography but Michael Sloan putting out his various memories from this childhood and TV movies and series he worked on as well as the various fellow showrunners and actors he was friends with. As I’ve commented elsewhere, writers tend to have a raconteur’s ability and this book is like showing Sloan a picture or him a title and him relating a story or more about it. In many respects, his randomness means you’re there for the story more than historical context.

Oh, the chapters aren’t there for each subject. The bionic comebacks were spread over three chapters and I defy anyone not to shed a tear over the Richard Anderson memorial. Most of the time, everything is funny and often giving insights in Hollywood along the way. He also created ‘The Equilizer’ and had an uncredited hand in ‘Magnum’s creation and giving Sandra Bullock her breakout role. I wish he’d named the LP where he found the 1960s ‘Ghost Squad’ TV show’s theme on though.

It’s very weird reading this book and seeing Sloan calling a long list of actors for various roles in all the series he makes as it reminds me of how British directors do a similar thing as a repertoire company. Indeed, when he goes back to the start of his career in the UK, it becomes a tour de force of shows if you’re familiar with the era. From the sound of it, I think it was John Inman that Sloan appeared as the back of a horse in a panto.

I hadn’t realised Robert Lansing was also a magician. He mentions Nick Lewin’s ‘The Four Kings’ magic trick and I decided to look it up, you’ll find yourself doing this a lot with this book, specifically for DVD availability, anyway have a look at: https://www.magicana.com/video/nick-lewin-card-magic-0 Speaking of DVDs of the series Sloan was involved in, I was surprised on how few there actually are out there. I hadn’t really paid much attention to ‘Kung Fu: The Legend Continues’ TV series but seeing the various guest stars he got involved has made me interested. Shame it’s not out there on DVD.

Sloan gives a lot of insight into a variety of actors and I defy you when reading this book not to look some of them up and discovering those who do the most serious roles tend to be pranksters in normal life.

Only once does Sloan reference he was fired off a show but not why. Even so, this book is more a feel good book and if you want to get a feel of his job and the people he got on with, then this makes for an enjoyable few hours and a lot of laughs.

GF Willmetts

July 2019

(pub: BearManor Media, 2019. 257 page illustrated small enlarged paperback. Price: $ (US), £19.08 (UK). ISBN: 978-1-62933-471-4)

check out website: www.bearmanormedia.com

Category: Movie books

About the Author ()

Geoff Willmetts has been editor at SFCrowsnest for some 15 plus years now, showing a versatility and knowledge in not only Science Fiction, but also the sciences and arts, all of which has been displayed here through editorials, reviews, articles and stories. With the latter, he has been running a short story series under the title of ‘Psi-Kicks’ If you want to contribute to SFCrowsnest, read the guidelines and show him what you can do. If it isn’t usable, he spends as much time telling you what the problems is as he would with material he accepts. This is largely how he got called an Uncle, as in Dutch Uncle. He’s not actually Dutch but hails from the west country in the UK.

Comments (2)

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  1. Lynn Strzelecki says:

    KUNG FU: THE LEGEND CONTINUES is on dvd. I’ve had them for years.

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