Highly enjoyable spy/detective series made in 1967/68, featuring Richard Bradford as John McGill, ex-CIA agent forced to resign and now freelances as a pricey, globetrotting private detective.
Another fine series from the ITC Television Network, responsible for shows like "The Prisoner" and "Gideon's Way," this is a gritty, realistic and exciting set of episodes well-written with fast-moving plots and never short on action.
Bradford plays McGill with a degree of toughness and a laconic ease so well that he seems to be perfectly cast for the role. Trained at the NY Actor's Studio, Bradford was a Method actor and claimed Brando as his inspiration; in fact, Bradford had a supporting role with the Academy Award winning actor in the controversial film, "The Chase" (1966), directed by Arthur Penn. Supporting players, all fine character actors from ITC's stable, like Donald Houston, Angela Browne, and Judy Geeson, raise the bar of this rarely seen, but popular, detective series.
Compared to 'Danger Man's" John Drake, McGill is the antihero--a man for hire, keen and distrustful of others, with an eye for the ladies, but a man not without scruples. Shot in color, the series is markedly violent and in the fisticuffs McGill often finds himself in, the blood flows freely. But there is more: the stories and assignments McGill takes on are interesting as they are unusual at times. The international locales also add a bit of flair in contrast to the typical "Mannix" episode that was limited to that metropolis called Los Angeles.
This is from the original Network DVD set that should be held up as a model of what all DVD sets should aspire to: pristine transfers from the original print (so clean they look as if they were shot yesterday), tons of extras including trailers, foreign titles, bumpers, behind-the-scene stills, a Richard Bradford interview (today, a mere shadow of the lean, handsome actor he was 40 years ago!), a full-color booklet, and more.
Nonetheless, "Man in a Suitcase" is a tight and shut case to hours of viewing enjoyment. And if the incidental music in "Man in a Suitcase" seems awfully familiar to that of 'The Prisoner" it should be--both were composed by Ron Grainer.