Airwolf (TV Series 1984–1986) Poster


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Ahead of it's time.
chris0227 September 2002
This show was very well written in the first three seasons, we will not talk of the fourth season,(Airwolf II -a disgrace to the original series). The scenes were spectacular and the plots where well knitted in most of the episodes. I liked the attention to detail and the ability for it to be fairly believable, despite the fictional capability of Airwolf. The characters complimented each other and made the show very dynamic. Even the music created by S. Levay was really good. It is very unfortunate that the series ended the way it did. Jan M. Vincent had problems with alcohol and the politics with universal infringed on Bellisario's ideas. The "lady" did not go down with a blaze of glory but rather an un-answered and open ended destruction with the final series. I think that is why so many enthusiast still hang on to Airwolf, it was a killer show that just suddenly ended, even though the ratings were so high. It would be cool to have a new movie produced to give Airwolf a final resting place in T.V. history. But that is unlikely. However, there are all kinds of fan clubs and sites that celebrate this one of a kind 80's show, you will see that Airwolf is very much alive out on the internet. C.L.
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Classic 80's TV Show
weedheid17 July 2001
This show was one of my favourites as a child. Everyone I knew wanted to be stringfellow hawke, if only for the chance to fly Airwolf. The characters were good and interacted well (hawke being the moody one, Dom the comic relief). The only bad thing was towards the end of Airwolfs run they changed all the characters (actually killing off "Dom" (or a lookalike)) and making String disappear giving the helicopter to the now magically rescued St John Hawke! IF you want to enjoy this show then under no circumstances should you watch the pathetic end season (aka Airwolf II) and stick with the original characters!
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Fun Flight While It Lasted! Warning: Spoilers
louiepatti5 March 2005
Warning: Spoilers
From the opening music (possibly the coolest theme song in the history of television) to the sleek dark helicopter, to the brooding pilot movie for this series, there was everything for action fans to love! Airwolf began with so much potential: Its brooding anti-hero Stringfellow Hawke and his search for spiritual cleansing and atonement after his experiences in Viet Nam; his gruff mentor, Dominic Santini, whose checkered past sometimes caught up with him; and Archangel, real name Michael Coldsmith Briggs III, a suave and occasionally very dangerous spy with whom the first two form a reluctant agreement. Add to these three different characters some female help and a dose of high-tech espionage, and what emerged was a winner from the mind of Donald P. Bellisario, who also brought the public Quantum Leap and Murder, She Wrote.

Airwolf began as a mid-season replacement show and started off the series with the top secret chopper being stolen by its developer, Dr. Charles Moffett, and taken to Libya to be used as Qaddafi's personal weapon against anyone he dislikes. Stringfellow is approached by Archangel, who very nearly died when Moffett stole Airwolf, and is offered plenty of money to get Michael's pet project back. Hawke, however, has little need of money; he's already comfortable and cultured, so the offer of riches means little to him. There IS something else Hawke wants and, being a top-level spy with access to classified information, Archangel may be able to get it for him. String wants his MIA older brother St. John found. Alive or dead, he doesn't care, but he wants his brother brought home from Viet Nam. Dominic objects vigorously to Hawke having anything to do with Archangel, but he's talked into the deal. He and String retrieve the stolen Airwolf but then refuse to return it to Michael. Hawke wants to use the chopper to force the spy to help him. Archangel seems more amused than annoyed at Hawke's actions, and is amazingly unsurprised by Airwolf's theft. The three men form a shaky alliance: Archangel will try to use his resources to find St. John Hawke, and String and Dom will fly missions for the spy and his organization, the FIRM.

The implausible technology aspects aside(helicopters cannot attain supersonic speeds without destroying themselves), this was a decent show. The effects were passable, the writing generally good, and the acting was solid. Airwolf was unusual in that it had three former movie veterans in its lineup. Jan-Michael Vincent was great as gloomy Stringfellow Hawke, Ernest Borgnine was perfect for tough old Dominic Santini, and Alex Cord made a sophisticated yet vulnerable Archangel. Deborah Pratt played Michael's assistant Mirella for the first half-season. She was later replaced by Jean Bruce Scott as spunky Caitlin O'Shaughnessy, a pilot that Hawke had helped in a previous episode.

Airwolf never sank significantly in the ratings but was pulled after the second full season. Part of the problem was CBS's efforts to tone down the brooding dark quality of the show that made it so unique. The network wanted a more "family-friendly" program, which caused the episodes to veer almost schizophrenically between human interest fluff and cool espionage stuff. The biggest obstacle to the show's success was the escalating substance abuse problem of its main star, Jan-Michael Vincent, which negatively affected his work. Airwolf was a fantastically expensive series, even by 80's standards, and having its star showing up with increasing frequency unprepared for work couldn't be tolerated for long. We at first thought it was a cross between Blue Thunder and Firefox, but soon realized that it was neither. It was, and remains, a very original program that we seriously hope comes out on DVD someday---soon! It was a fun flight of imagination in the 80's and is still one today.
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One of the last intelligent suspense shows!
sp2734311 February 2002
AIRWOLF, which debuted as a heavily promoted CBS movie of the week in January 1984 (and continued as a weekly series until July 1986); was well written, produced (CBS kicked in a great deal of money for its production) and acted. It was a thinking person's action (and espionage) show, that truely emphasized personal relationships over technical gimickery. Every week Stringfellow Hawk and Dominic Santini (J.M. Vincent and Ernest Borgnine) fetched the ultra high tech AIRWOLF helicopter from its lair in the California desert to do the bidding of Archangel (Alex Cord) of the CIA to do one thing or another, though not usually until the last third of the episode which gave time to build a story amongst the players. The stories mostly centered around SoCal, but occasionally AIRWOLF took a trip overseas (curteousy of USAF tanker support) to fight a cold war type battle. Like most show's, the best episodes were in the first two seasons. However, by season three AIRWOLF started to look tired. By that time Jan Micael Vincent's alcholism problems caused serious production delays (in several 3rd season episodes Vincent is noticably intoxicated), such that CBS ultimately canceled the show; though not with out giving Vincent ample attempts to straighten himself out. The show still had legs, and was taken over by the USA Network (shot in Canada on a much tighter budget) for a fourth season with a new cast (Barry Van Dyke stepped in as Hawk's long lost older brother St John Hawk) to carry on the CIA's "chores". For the USA show's; cold war espionage was the theme of most of the stories as oposed to the CBS show's getting involved more in current events and family interests of Hawk's and Santini's. I liked the show alot, and was fortunate to have recorded many when USA rebroadcast them. It is of interest to note that Jan Michael Vincent went from a per episode salary of $250,000 (for the 58 CBS episodes 1984-1986) to now (2002) near poverty, and is living in a minimum security re-hab type jail, due to several arrests for public intoxication.
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Big Movie Fan6 May 2002
If you've read my review of the pilot movie for this series you'll notice I have nothing but praise for Airwolf. It really was the best show of the 1980's.

There were so many good things about this series. Alex Cord, Jan-Michael Vincent and Ernest Borgnine were very good in their roles (the lovely Jean-Bruce Scott joined them in season 2)and very convincing.

The plots were good. Throughout the series Airwolf went to battle against rogue dictators, wicked scientists and bad guys who wanted their hands on Airwolf.

The action scenes were always fantastic. The music accompanying the action was brilliant. There was always an action scene at the end where Airwolf went to war against the bad guys who usually had their own helicopter/plane.

It was a typical 80's show which aired when the cold war was still very hot. No-body knew who to trust. Even Michael Archangel played by Alex Cord seemed to have his own agenda. Stringfellow Hawke also had his own agenda. He was holding onto Airwolf until the government found his missing in action brother. Until that time Hawke flew Airwolf on missions to protect the free world.

A fantastic series.
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what Airwolf laid ground for
cynvision16 November 2008
I think a lot of reviews look at this series and complain about recycled footage without taking into account this series was before effects computers. It's a large way humbling just how that and video changed TV and movie production in just a few short years. Years where Airwolf 'coming ahead of its time' by just three years or so, the show suffers for trying to do things with pre-computer-age film technology. I have to think they did more hours filming Airwolf cruising around the southwest than the studio suits thought they needed and budget complaints prevented more because it wasn't until season three that stuff got notable as repeated. Like things happen with the Stargate series and Cheyenne Mountain exterior for *six seasons*. It would have continued if HD tech didn't prompt needing a new set of Cheyenne exteriors shot. As with Stargate SG-1, if Airwolf had kept a driving force behind it's direction from the start we well could have seen a new round of footage. And probably with newer cameras of the day, too. But it was not to be. The budget item kept getting dropped. By season two the writing was on the wall that it just wasn't going to be needed.

Besides suffering from a divided series vision and objective where some shows were fluff and some writing actually had a message and a way to drive it home, Airwolf series was as much a victim of small-studio Hollywood limitations. As X-files suffered Vancouver-itis, Airwolf suffers from outdoor locations being a bit too southern California or blatantly the Universal back lot to pull off Russia, Germany or the snowy waste of Northern Alaska. And the show had to fake glaciers, volcanic explosions, Mexican deserts, and Russia and night flights time with refilming existing film with filters. With scale models and wind machines. People tugging on strings and pushing buttons. The old fashioned way. Like thirty years of TV before it. In time to make a schedule. So someone better get off their backs! They made that flying prop look gooood.

I think people also slam the believability factor without considering audiences back in 1984 weren't all that sophisticated. They didn't question if the Road Runner and Coyote cartoons had proper physics. Those were fun because it didn't. Consider that the Airwolf show (all TV shows) was a one-off, once a week thing to catch on TV and not see again unless you had one of them new, expensive VCRs. People saw shots once and the human mind filled in any mistakes. And people didn't have the Internet to hop onto and find out choppers don't surpass X knots of speed. The Boob Tube was the source of news and entertainment everyday. And people would simply believe it if the pretty scientist lady says it turns off the blades and acts like a jet.

Then they go on about how the Bell 222A was a dog of a ship to fly around. And when they weren't making it look like a Travel California tourism film, they made that thing look like a barn swallow dogging cats on a lawn. That's true magic! The ability to turn that worked up Bell into The Lady people still fill Internet boards discussing so seriously. I just don't think we have the same kind in the present day. At least not in this age of 'reality' TV... It got young people interested in helicopters and general aviation. And maybe just a touch of science? I almost can't call it an action show. It's a science fiction show actually set on the planet Earth. You really just have to roll with it without there being cell phones and fax machines and personal computers. The hero can't type a letter, but can redirect a sidewinder. He and his mentor actually get their hands dirty and fix aircraft and basic electronic circuitry. About the only show I can think of as its descendant is Heroes for bending the "they can't do that" suspension of disbelief like Airwolf did. And now all TV adventure shows/cop shows are done with a bit more attention to how long it takes to fly and drive places. To way more medical science, bombs, physics and laptops than people in 1984 ever cared to think about... As a result from shows like Airwolf and Nightrider. And who knows? Maybe fifteen years from now people will be slamming Heroes the same way?
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Airwolf - a show a head of it's time?
gillian_16 February 2005
In my opinion - the answer is definitely yes. I'm not speaking of the monstrous super-copter, or at least, not mainly of it. The character of Stringfellow Hawk, who is the main attraction of the show, is one you might find in nowadays shows. Not a shallow hero, but rather a complex and deep one. In fact, I found Hawk's character to be very similar to another, more recent one - that of FBI's legendary agent Fox Mulder. I'm sure many eyebrows must be raised right now but think of the following - Both characters are eccentric, isolated and have only one close friend whom they trust, both Hawk an Mulder are obsessed with a missing sibling and their lives are centered around that issue. Both have their own truth and won't hesitate risking their lives for that truth. Need I say more? Jan Michael Vincent was the perfect choice for Hawk's roll - Hawk and Vincent are one. JMV brought a lot of him self into his character, the two are one, practically inseparable. In on of the discussions forum I'm participating in, a question was raised regarding the possibility of making an Airwolf movie. I said that I hope no such movie will be made because I can't see anyone entering JMV shoes as Stringfellow hawk. All of the forum members agreed. All in all, I think that what made Airwolf the great show it was, is JMV and of course we must not put down Ernest Borgnines contribution. Airwolf will always remain a classic.
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A classic show, better than Knight Rider
Hawke-318 October 1998
Even though most people remember Knight Rider from the fad of the 80's to have vehicles as the stars of TV shows, Airwolf was a far superior product. Donald 'Quantum Leap' Belissario created this show about a high tech attack chopper, and oversaw its best years. Even though near the end Belissario left and the stories began to degrade, the earlier episodes are classic examples of good 80's TV, with good solid performances and breathtaking aerial sequences that put the Blue Thunder TV series to shame. A series that should be brought back.
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Cowboys and Indians ... with missiles
tsl0410 January 2008
As a young teenager at the time, Airwolf was compulsory viewing for a generation who wanted their "Cowboys and Indians" to have amazing gadgets and whizz-bang explosions.

In many ways, the show was essentially Knight Rider in the skies: similar comic-book technology, a central character who was essentially a loner, and echoing the concept of one man making a difference.

But in other, important ways, it was thematically very different from Knight Rider, Street Hawk, The A-Team and other action shows of the time. For one thing, the premise of the series is built not on a desire to help those in need, but by Stringfellow Hawke's possession of Airwolf for essentially selfish reasons (as leverage to try to find his MIA brother, St John). And then there is the dark edge provided by basing the series firmly in an 80s Cold War context, complete with Soviet espionage and Central American dictators, not to mention the enemy within. Sure, The A-Team constantly referred back to Vietnam and the team's status as fugitives, but it was generally done with a light touch and was rarely central to the plot itself. With Airwolf, the intrigue was key to the tone and direction of the show - although this was (ill-advisedly) diluted as the series went on.

With hindsight, the Cold War setting clearly dates the series, many of the stories are creaky and contrived, and much of what Airwolf does is clearly implausible even with today's technology. But that's really not the point. Airwolf was rip-roaring fun, it tried to tell interesting stories without relying solely on the big action sequences, and it didn't sugar-coat everything by miraculously ensuring nobody died. Sometimes it failed, but often it succeeded admirably - and on a TV budget to boot.

For UK readers, DMAX (Sky channel 155) have just started (Jan 2008) daily re-runs of Airwolf. Set your Sky+ box for this blast from the past - we may even get the re-tooled, re-cast (and sadly vastly inferior) fourth season, which to my knowledge has never previously been shown in the UK.
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A classic
Diamond UK8 September 2000
What a great TV show, that deserves to have been made into a movie, the flying squences are great,the cast were so right. The only stain on the series are the people that tried to remake the series on a home movie budget and replaced all the actors from the original series. This is a show that deserves to be rerun for many years to come.
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String and Dom kicked @$$ when they showed 'em The Lady
HUAhmad9 August 2003
Of course, Airwolf was one of the premier action shows of the 80s and was more believable than the sugar-coated antics of Knight Rider and A-Team, because it was set in the world of espionage and Stringfellow killed LOADS of bad guys when he battled them in The Lady. The series started off as a spy thriller with Airwolf duking it out with Russians, German terrorists, war criminals, renegade US agents and hardened mercenaries. If I remember rightly, ITV showed these episodes on Friday nights at 7pm back in November '84.

When the 2nd season kicked in, they moved it to an afternoon Saturday slot. This is when a new co-pilot Caitlin was introduced. She wasn't bad, and they still did good intrigue episodes such as the gripping thriller Moffatt's Ghost, Fallen Angel and HX-1 (Once A Hero was a spectacular actioner), but gradually, the series became cornier, as the Airwolf team began helping out ordinary people and there were some soapy stories such as String falling for a rock singer. They also started using stock footage in some episodes, more so in the third season.

The 3rd season got off to a cracking start with the menacing Horn Of Plenty. Richard Lynch did a good job as the manipulative Van Horn and Caitlin proved she could be a bad*** as well. Other top episodes were Airwolf II, Annie Oakley and Deadly Circle, but as I said before, they started over-using stock footage from previous series and the stories were becoming slushy. Despite this, Airwolf was arguably the best action-packed thriller on the small screen during the Reagan era.
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Another great 80's show
Roverthemoon2528 January 2008
Warning: Spoilers
Why isn't this kind of show made anymore, in the 80's two producers ruled the roost of TV action series, Stephen J Cannell and Donald Belasarius, Cannell was the more the family kind of show, The A Team, Hunter, Simon And Simon etc. Belasarius produced a little darker drama such as Magnum and Airwolf and has carried it on lately with the brilliant NCIS.

Airwolf was the story of a super powered battle helicopter that had been stolen by it's creator Moffit and taken to Libya, Micheal Archangel who was nearly killed in Moffits stealing of Airwolf tried to recruit Stringfellow Hawke to retrieve Airwolf.

Hawke at first rejects the offer and pressure is put on him by his art collection being taken from his home, Hawke wants Archangel to trace his brother St John who is MIA in Vietnam. Hawke agree's to get Airwolf back and with the help of his friend Santini, they both get Airwolf back and kill Moffit in the process and blow any planes out of the sky that get in their way.

Hawke decides to keep Airwolf and will fly missions for Archangel on the understanding that Archangel continues looking for Hawke's brother.

Overall a great action drama series, the music was fantastic, Sylvester Levy's theme tune fitted the show so well not just at the beginning and end, but when Airwolf was starting up, you would see Hawke pushing the button's to start Airwolf, the blades would slowly turn as the music started to build up, the music got faster and the blades on Airwolf got faster, you would see the instrument panels light up ready for action.

Thye air battles were great although some scenes were reused quite a lot especially in the disaster of a 4th series. A movie would be a fitting tribute to the series and the unfortunate Jan Micheal Vincent who has suffered over the years through various abuses of substances, but knowing Hollywood it wouldn't be right unless Belasarius was involved as producer.
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Airwolf beats Knight Rider
aprils-geo7 November 2011
Warning: Spoilers
Airwolf beats Knight Rider any day of the year, even though I think KITT is awesome. The ship's heroic action is great to watch. But stick with the first three seasons. The fourth season doesn't even have any new footage of the ship. It's a shame that anyone ever bothered to continue the show under that detriment. How can you have a show about a super-secret helicopter that doesn't actually have a helicopter in it? Avoid the fourth season if you really love Airwolf. Although there were some plot problems with the first three seasons, especially when Caitlyn was brought on board and kept dating murderous evil men and falling into danger wherever she went, it's nothing compared to the fourth season. For some unexplained reason, the entire original crew is done away with (literally), except for Caitlyn, who vanishes (poof) without a trace. (Maybe her dating taste finally caught up with her?) At any rate, the fourth season is so obviously a cheap imitation of the real thing, it should have never been called Airwolf. It's not.
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My favourite show as a kid.
drew_atreides14 September 2011
...if i had to pick one show that defined my youth, it would have to be AIRWOLF.

It defined the very essence of awesome, from the memorable score to the tremendously cool performance by Jan-Michael Vincent as Stringfellow Hawke. He was the ultimate hero, for me, and Ernest Borgnine's Dominic has always been my definition of what a true friend should be.

When my son gets old enough, I plan on showing him the DVDs. He'll probably find it incredibly lame at the time, but dammit I need to share this with him! That's how important it was to my development growing up.
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This briefing is from File A56-7W. Codename: AIRWOLF!
vkfro14 May 2011
Warning: Spoilers
Airwolf would have to have been one of my favourite shows from the late 80's. It had everything I was into as a late teen, helicopters, electronics, guns, rockets, all that sorta macho stuff. One of the better sequences was seen in the first series of a full startup of airwolf. It began with the camera zoomed in on an iguana sleeping peacefully on the nose gear wheel of the super-helicopter. Dominic Santini (Ernest Borgnine), and String-Fellow Hawke walked up to the aircraft, and boarded, this sequence was complete with the sounds of escaping air from the (presumably) constantly pressurized cabin. The Airwolf helmets and uniforms were unique, especially the helmets that (imaginationally) had a heads up display that the wearer could see. This was pronounced by a [ ] on the helmets outside when the visor was dropped and the pilot was locking onto a target. Continuing the scene, Dominic reaches up and presses the "Start 1" button. Following a sequence of beeping from the on-board computers, the aircrafts twin turbines would begin to spool up. The scene was further dramatized by the slowest ever startup of a turbine helicopters rotors, with the whoop whoop of the blades as they began to pick up speed, and different angles of the rotor blades, different views inside the cockpit of the different guages including : Weather Radar, Interstage Turbine Tempurature, Gas Generator RPM, Oil pressure, Exhaust gas temperature, Main Rotor rpm, Whacky(TM) compass thing, Electrical diagnostics panel, radar or gps map, fuel guages and a few others that flashed by so quick I don't recall. Following this, String raised the collective now that the rotors were at 100% rpm governor locked, and you see Airwolf get light on its heels, then lift off. Thanks to the magic of gravity, the end of the scene sees poor Mr Iguana suddenly find himself upside down, and drop to the ground (landing like a cat on all fours!), and Airwolf climbing, turning tail, igniting turbos (two rocket engines either side of the right and left wheel/chain-gun nacelles), and flying off into the distance.

Then the opening credits start! Other cool sequences from the series include Dom and String dropping airwolf out of a C130 Hercules (a bell222 b is too wide by several inches to fit inside a C130!), airwolf taking out fighter jets with their OWN rockets (she was demilitarized for some reason), and the best episode of all, was the first, with the big desert chase sequence, with hawke chasing down moffat, after he killed his girl by cooking her in the desert heat.

The show had many twists and turns, and lots of action to keep it watchable, and the theme is unmistakable, played by Sylvester Levy, had that 80's "synthesizer" sound, yet was upbeat enough to tap your foot along to when the action sequences, or titles came on.

All in all, still my favorite show, its why I have the boxed set and the episodes on my hard drive :)
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Action, drama, adventure, helicopters!
mike_cable1 August 2010
Airwolf is a good example of dramatic action television that came out of the 1980s. What makes this different is that most, if not all, of its episodes involves aircraft at some stage in the story.

The four seasons of Airwolf feature the main characters getting mixed up in all kinds of drama that eventually needs the Airwolf helicopter to help. Airwolf is an advanced prototype combat helicopter capable of supersonic speed that is deployed on missions of personal and national interest, flown by two of the main characters described below.

Jan Michael Vincent plays Stringfellow Hawke, an ex-Vietnam helicopter pilot and Ernest Borgnine who plays Domenic Santini, an old pilot from way back. Together as buddles, they secretly fly Airwolf with funding provided by an FBI-like firm that agrees to support them until they can locate String's brother, believed to be missing and still in Vietnam.

After an ambitious pilot two-part episode (later re-trimmed into a telemovie) which sets up the ongoing series, Airwolf settles into a typical action TV show formula, however the overuse of repeated aerial footage of the Airwolf helicopter (often sped up to make it more exciting) will spoil it for late comers to the series.

For helicopter enthusiasts it will reward them with countless sequences involving Airwolf (a modified Bell 222) and many other types, often seeing Hughes 500s deployed as the enemy gunships.

For trainspotters, it's always "fun" to see the footage from the pilot or early episodes being used in later episodes, or being surprised to see they have shot new footage. It's easy to assume that the running costs of the helicopters had a major impact on the production. The "dramatic" original landing sequences were often a highlight.

Some episodes were grounded in personal drama, some were just ridiculous by today's science and some were standout stories and made you wish for more. Many episodes end with a montage of Airwolf flying around with the wonderful Slyvestor Levay electronic theme music as the credits roll.

Season 4 was a low-budget cable-funded continuation of the series featuring new characters mixed with old helicopter footage. It is almost dis-owned by fans of the earlier 3 seasons in much the same way Galactica 1980 was by Battlestar Galactica fans.
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archangel2520 February 2009
One of my favorite shows in the 80's. After the first season, it started going downhill when they decided to add Jean Bruce Scott to the cast. Deborah Pratt was wonderful and it was fun watching her and Ernest Borgnine's character go at it with each other. The last episode she appeared in was one of my favorites for in the second season. Unfortunately during those days, blacks did not last long on television shows. Some of the episodes in the second season where okay but the third season it was more about the human characters than Airwolf and it was not shown until almost at the end of the show. When it went to USA, it was disgusting!!!
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This was one of my Dad's favourite shows ...
catrow386518 December 2007
so yes it is quite nostalgic watching the 1st episode because this is the one episode i definitely remembered. i enjoy watching the first season and yes compared to the action packed shows we have now this show seems lame. but frankly i like the "less violent" part of the show and the story line has more substance than the new ones now. I thought it interesting that Belisario's Airwolf and JAG have similar theme - the lead actor (Hawke and Harm) both are looking for an MIA relative (brother, father). wonder if Robert Belisario's personal life mimics these 2 shows' theme.

Question - does anyone have pictures of Hawke's cabin. I love that cabin (kinda like a dream cabin of mine) and that is one of the scenes i remember about Airwolf.
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great variation on the pilot show
rogerbleep6 July 2006
Airwolf The Movie, A variation on the original 2 part pilot, Yet the movie although shorter, does contain extra footage Unseen in the 2 hour pilot The pilot is much more of a pilot than the movie Where as a pilot movie is normally the same (2 parter combined) But the movie is actually a different edit with extras here and cuts there.

Worth a look, even if you have the season 1 DVD set, I'd still pick up a copy of the "movie" It's still in some shops like virgin, Woolworths and the likes of mixed media stores, although it generally needs ordering, But it saves needing to buy online (as many of us still don't do or trust online shopping) but if you look around airwolfs in stores

Airwolf was truly 1 of the 80's most under rated shows.

A full size Airwolf is currently being re-built for a Helicopter Museum :) Info and work in progress pictures are over at Also with Airwolf Mods for Flashpoint and Flight Sim Games It seams she's finally here to stay :)
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Good show
I used to watch this show when I was a little girl. Although I don't remember much about it, I must say that it was a pretty good show. Also, I don't think I've seen every episode. However, if you ask me, it was still a good show. I vaguely remember the theme song. Everyone was ideally cast, the costume design was great. The performances were top-grade, too. I just hope some network brings this series back one day so that I'll be able to see every episode. Before I wrap this up, I'd like to say that I'll always remember this show in my memory forever, even though I don't think I've seen every episode. Now, in conclusion, when and if this show is ever brought back on the air, I hope that you catch it one day before it goes off the air for good.
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Airwolf kicks Blue Thunders Ass
Joe-40222 September 1999
There are those who claim that Blue Thunder was the real McCoy.. Airwolf is the King of the skies.... After all who remembers the Blue Thunder theme!!! Airwolf supersonic. Blue Thunder desperately slow Airwolf ultimately manouverable Blue Thunder Ponderous!!
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Blue Thunder Vs Airwolf
elijah210022 October 2007
I would like to state first that once again I enjoyed the Airwolf TV series of the fictional action entertainment it provided. As well as one of the best writing of an action series of its type of the 80s.

But I do remember Blue Thunder as well as being the more realistic of the two but had some the most awful writing that I have ever seen (which is the primary reason that it failed horribly).

How ever to compare the two's combat abilities and prowess is like comparing an urban gorilla fighter to the classic field army solider. If anyone paid any good detail to the Blue Thunder Movie. It wasn't about supersonic speed or multiple types of weapons. But about reaction time relative to speed and knowledge of the city. BT took out an F-16 Falcon armed with heat seeking missiles and Mach 2 speed by first avoiding it missiles by decoying it to other heat sources within the city. Then it hid in between buildings and used its 20mm cannon to saw off its wing. Jets fighting a helicopter in a city is like a car trying to out maneuver a motorcycle in an alleyway, and down park steps and sidewalks. Airwolf likes its pray more out in the open where its speed and long range weapons are at an advantage. If Airwolf stepped into BT type of battle ground it would be at a disadvantage sense its main weapons (missiles) would be at a disadvantage (even the radar guided ones because of the greater radio interference and tall buildings). Also Airwolf's guns lack the turret option of BT.

If BT tried to meet Airwolf in open ground it would be in Airwolf advantage.
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General Info
micknascar27 February 2016
Warning: Spoilers
There were a LOT of shows that reused footage. It was inexpensive to do so. Airwolf used some post production animation for some shots as well (the orange highlighted missiles for example. Airwolf was border line Sci-fi in the sense that, a rotary wing aircraft, in theory could NEVER achieve mach 1 or anywhere near it as it would shear off the rotor. According to the pilot ep (sometimes referred to as "Airwolf: the Movie", they figured out how to disengage the rotor to create less drag which would prevent that. There was even an episode where Airwolf sort of crashed. But they were able to fix it enough so it could fly, but not under the turbo power that allowed them to break the speed of sound. String even ordered up the 'turbos' but Dom admonished him, "NO String. The disengage isn't working." Technically, Airwolf shouldn't' have been able to fly or shoot missiles or chain guns or really ANYTHING that it could supposedly do. But the acknowledged some of it and it's Sci-fi (sort of) AND it's TV. Just roll with it.
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starts out strong but crashes hard
SnoopyStyle28 July 2015
Airwolf is a highly sophisticated supersonic secret military helicopter built by the Firm. Its psychopathic creator Dr. Moffet steals the prototype killing a senator. Deputy director Michael Coldsmith Briggs III (Alex Cord) recruits Stringfellow Hawke (Jan-Michael Vincent) to steal Airwolf from Moffet who is using the weapon for Gaddafi. In return, Stringfellow wants the Firm to find his brother Sinjin who is MIA in Vietnam. He asks his mentor Dominic Santini (Ernest Borgnine) to join him in the secret mission. Caitlin O'Shannessy (Jean Bruce Scott) joins the crew in the second season after running into Airwolf as a Texas Highway Patrol helicopter pilot.

As a cold war military action adventure, I really like the darker faux spy militarism stuff. The helicopter is loads of fun but I like the show less and less as it goes on. The second season tries to add air to the show and make it a procedural more in line with other shows like the A-team. It becomes a hybrid that doesn't quite work. I've never seen the fourth season and I probably never will. This is a show that burnt itself out after a great opening.
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just watched the pilot
phelpsmarc30 July 2011
I just watched the pilot of this series on DVD yesterday. Good action, decent acting and an interesting premise. JM Vincent was a good fit as the brooding, tough Stringfellow Hawke. Also, I think the production value is pretty good. It doesn't seem cheesy, even now over 25 years later. I thought it would appear hokey and cheesy, but was pleasantly surprised. The scenery around Hawke's cabin is very nice. This must have been shot in northern California or Oregon, Maybe Washington state. Also, It's interesting to be reminded that Lybian leader General Quadafi was a thorn in the side of the U.S. even more so in 1984 then he is today. Sure, some of the situations depicted are implausible, but as long as you can suspend disbelief, and go with the flow, you'll enjoy this pilot. Haven't seen the rest of the episodes yet but plan on viewing the entire DVD set for some fun 1980's nostalgia
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