Most Wanted (TV series)

For the MTV Europe show, see MTV's Most Wanted. For the unproduced Marvel pilot, see Most Wanted (TV pilot).
Most Wanted
Genre Crime drama
Written by Robert Janes
Larry Heath
Directed by Walter Grauman
Richard Lang
Leslie H. Martinson
Virgil W. Vogel
Starring Robert Stack
Composer(s) Lalo Schifrin (pilot)
Richard Markowitz (1.2)
Patrick Williams
Duane Tatro
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 1
No. of episodes 21
Producer(s) Quinn Martin
Running time 60 mins.
Original network ABC
Original release October 16, 1976 – August 20, 1977

Most Wanted is an American crime drama series shown on ABC from October 16, 1976 until August 20, 1977. It stars Robert Stack, Jo Ann Harris, Shelly Novack, and Hari Rhodes. This program marks the reunion of series star Stack with noted producer Quinn Martin, as the two had worked together previously on the series The Untouchables.

This is one of only three series from QM Productions not to have an announcer reading out or accompanying the opening credits (the others are Quinn Martin's Tales of the Unexpected and A Man Called Sloane).


The series focused on an elite task force of the LAPD named "Most Wanted". The Mayor of Los Angeles, Dan Stoddard (Hari Rhodes), created the force to concentrate exclusively on criminals on the mayor's most-wanted list. In bringing them together, Mayor Stoddard specified "As few people as possible", and that their motto would be "Brainpower instead of manpower- focus instead of force". Captain Linc Evers (Stack) headed the force accompanied by his two assistants (Harris and Novack) who used undercover tactics to bring down the city's most wanted and dangerous criminals. The series' original pilot featured a fourth member, played by Tom Selleck, but he was not used for the series. Also actress Leslie Charleson was also in the series pilot as the female member of The Most Wanted Unit, but was replaced in the series by Harris.

According to Robert Stack, in his autobiography, Straight Shooting, Most Wanted had become a Top 10 Nielsen ratings hit, (#7) but was cancelled by ABC due to network politics after one season.

The theme song was composed by Lalo Schifrin and later used by the Sunburst Band for the house song "New York City Woman."


Actor Role
Robert Stack Captain Linc Evers
Hari Rhodes Mayor Dan Stoddard
Shelly Novack Sergeant Charlie Benson
Jo Ann Harris Officer Kate Manners


Episode # Episode Title Original Airdate
1 "The Sky Killer" October 16, 1976
2 "The Slaver" October 23, 1976
3 "The Corrupter" October 30, 1976
4 "The Two Dollar Kidnappers" November 6, 1976
5 "The Wolf Pack Killer" November 20, 1976
6 "The Heisman Killer" November 27, 1976
7 "The Torch" December 18, 1976
8 "The Ten-Percenter" December 25, 1976
9 "The White Collar Killer" January 1, 1977
10 "Ms. Murder" January 8, 1977
11 "The Pirate" January 15, 1977
12 "The Hit Men" February 5, 1977
13 "The Ritual Killer" February 12, 1977
14 "The Tunnel Killer" February 19, 1977
15 "The Parasite" February 26, 1977
16 "The Spellbinder" March 7, 1977
17 "The Driver" March 14, 1977
18 "The Insider" March 21, 1977
19 "The People Mover" April 25, 1977
20 "The Death Dealer" August 13, 1977
21 "The Dutchman" August 20, 1977
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