How much do you remember about The Rockford Files?


By: Bambi Turner

6 Min Quiz

Image: tmdb

About This Quiz

"The Rockford Files" added a new spin to the traditional detective persona -- transforming the role from cool and collected to scattered and barely scraping by -- with a criminal record to boot. Take our quiz to see how much you remember about this classic '70s TV series!

Each episode of "The Rockford Files" opened with what action?

Rockford's answering machine opened each episode of the show, letting viewers know right away that the detective was pretty down on his luck. Usually, the message came from a debt collector or other source of bad news, and the message was almost always unrelated to the plot of the episode.


What is Rockford's first name?

James Rockford went by Jim, Jimmy or even Jimbo, depending on who was addressing him.


Who starred as Rockford on the series?

Before he starred on "The Rockford Files," James Garner played a stylish Wild West gambling man on "Maverick," from 1957 to 1962. The two series shared many of the same producers and creative minds.


Where was the show set?

The show took place in Los Angeles and the surrounding area, with Rockford living in a run-down trailer near the beach in Malibu.


True or false: Rockford worked for the LAPD.

Rockford maintained a careful distance from the police department in his work as a private investigator. He mostly took on cold cases so that he wouldn't get in the way of the LAPD as they worked to solve an active case.


True or false: Rockford was an ex-con.

Before he became a private investigator, Jim Rockford spent years locked up at San Quentin for a crime he didn't even commit.


What was Rockford's going rate?

PI Rockford famously charged $200 per day plus expenses for his services. While he may have seemed broke, that daily rate was not exactly chump change back in the 1970s when the series aired.


What kind of car did Rockford drive?

Rockford chased bad guys in his Pontiac Firebird Esprit -- really a Formula model modified to look like the cheaper Esprit. Producers needed the Formula model to handle the stunt driving on the show, but knew that viewers wouldn't believe Rockford could afford the more expensive car.


What was the name of Rockford's closest friend on the LAPD?

Even the best PI needs someone on the inside to help him with official information. For Rockford, that source was LAPD Sargent Dennis Becker, played by Joe Santos.


What did Rockford's dad do for a living?

Joseph "Rocky" Rockford was a truck driver -- mostly retired, but still willing to take on certain jobs -- who wanted nothing more than for his son to settle down and find a more stable career than sleuthing.


Who was Rockford's cellmate in prison?

Evelyn "Angel" Martin was Rockford's cellmate during his time in San Quentin. The two remained friends after release, and Rockford often used Angel to help him solve cases.


Where did Angel work?

Angel's less-than-legal activities threatened his parole at times, as well as his job as a file clerk at the local newspaper. Fortunately, the paper was owned by Angel's brother-in-law, which made it a lot more difficult to get fired.


Where did Rockford usually keep his gun?

Rockford preferred to investigate cases without a weapon most of the time. Often he left his gun in the cookie jar at home.


Which actor played Rockford's rival, the smarmy PI Lance White?

Rockford wasn't too fond of rival PI Lance White, played by Tom Selleck. While White had many fans on the show, Rockford felt that the PI was dangerous due to his lack of experience and naivety.


What was Beth Davenport's job?

Gretchen Corbett played Beth Davenport, who was both attorney and casual girlfriend to Rockford. Davenport often hired Rockford to help her investigate her clients when she was trying to crack tough cases.


Who gets caught up in a timeshare scam in "The Farnsworth Stratagem"?

In one of the show's most memorable episodes, Dennis Becker from the LAPD winds up entangled in a timeshare scheme, and he needs help from Rockford to get out of the deal before he gets in any further. Rockford pretends to strike oil on the property, making it easy for Dennis to unload the property back on the unscrupulous sellers.


What nickname does Gandy give to Rockford?

Rockford spent time at San Quentin with "The Hammer of C Block" Gandolph Fitch, better known as Gandy. Played by Isaac Hayes, Gandy calls his buddy Rockfish and enlists his help in proving Gandy is innocent of the murder of his girlfriend -- the crime that sent him to San Quentin.


What role does Gabby Hayes play?

Played by Louis Gossett Jr, Gabby Hayes is a parole officer turned private investigator. He has a much more flashy style than Rockford and usually wears elaborate disguises. He relies on a chauffeur to transport him from case to case.


What is Rockford caught with in the season two finale, thanks to his ex-girlfriend Karen?

Rockford lands in hot water in the season two finale after his ex-girlfriend asks him to hold onto some papers -- which turns out to be wads of counterfeit money.


Who is set to marry in the season three episode, "Rattlers' Class of '63"?

In yet another of his elaborate cons, Angel needs Rockford's help after he tries to marry a woman named Regine as part of a scam to score some quick cash.


What does Rocky mysteriously receive in the mail in the season three finale?

Rockford is perplexed when Rocky receives large amounts of cash through the mail in the season three finale. Turns out, the money is marked -- which is bad news for Angel, who already stole some of the cash.


Where is Rockford vacationing while someone is busy stealing his identity?

In the season four premiere, Rockford returns from a trip to Puerto Rico only to learn that someone has stolen his identity -- and lived in his house, spent his money and totaled his car.


Which PI on the show got his own spinoff?

After pairing up with Rockford to solve a case in season four, the young PI Richie Brockelman got his own spinoff show in 1978.


What is Rocky delivering when his truck is forced off the road in the season five premiere?

Rocky takes a job delivering sausage when his truck is mysteriously forced off the road in the season five premiere. The sausage company's spokesperson, a country singer, holds the clue to solving the case.


What's buried under Rockford's trailer?

In the season six premiere, Rockford discovers that a stash of gold bars was hidden under his trailer in Paradise Cove more than half a century ago.


Which screen legend played a woman named Kendall in the season six episode "Lions, Tigers, Monkeys and Dogs"?

Famous film actress Lauren Bacall starred as Kendall, a woman who Rockford is trying to keep from being murdered in the season six episode of "The Rockford Files."


Rockford wins a trip to this exotic locale in season six -- except it's really a trick.

Rockford is thrilled to win a vacation to Hawaii in season six. Turns out, the trip is really just a plot by an old Army buddy seeking Rockford's help solving a case for the CIA.


How many TV movies were made after the show was canceled?

"The Rockford Files" was still so popular after the series was canceled that producers made eight more films to continue the story. The TV movies ran from 1994 to 1999, starting with "I Still Love L.A.," ending with "If It Bleeds, It Leads."


What is the name of the old friend Rockford is trying to help in the final "Rockford Files" movie?

Rockford is hired to help old friend Rita Capkovic -- who is both a former prostitute and police informant -- after her husband is accused of rape in the 1999 film, "If It Bleeds, It Leads."


How many seasons did the show run?

"The Rockford Files" ran for 122 episodes over six seasons, from 1974 to 1980. James Garner's bad health -- which was partially attributed to performing his own stunts -- was blamed for the show's cancellation.


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