Two Hundred a Day is a podcast by Nathan D. Paoletta and Epidiah Ravachol. We are exploring the intensely weird and interesting world of the 70s TV detective show The Rockford Files. Half celebration and half analysis, we break down episodes of the show and then analyze how and why they work as great pieces of narrative and character-building.
In each episode of Two Hundred a Day, we watch an episode, recap and review it as fans of the show, and then tease out specific elements from that episode that hold lessons for writers, gamers and anyone else interested in making better narratives.
February 21st, 2021 | 1 hr 51 mins
1970s, 70s, big store, con game, egyptomania, james garner, jim rockford, p.i, racing, richie brockelman, rockford files, television, tv
Nathan and Eppy complete the Richie Brockelman duology with S5E19-20, Never Send a Boy King to Do a Man's Job. Richie's dad has been muscled out of the family printing business by an unscrupulous villain. The only way he can see to get it back is to run a con game on the mark... and that's where Jim comes in. Split into two episodes for syndication, this is another 2-hour-timeslot episode which gives us plenty of breathing room to appreciate all of the work that goes into a "big store" con game. This is really a wonderful episode, and we break it down in terms of the con game strategy Jim and Richie use before going into the scenes. Highly recommended!
December 27th, 2020 | 2 hrs 4 mins
1970s, 70s, computers, information society, jackie cooper, james garner, jim rockford, p.i, pilot, richie brockelman, rockford files, spinoff, television, tv
Nathan and Eppy finally tackle a long-anticipated long episode, S4E21 The House on Willis Avenue. Split into two episodes for syndication, this episode is both a pilot for a spinoff show about young investigator Richie Brockelman, and an issue episode tackling the growing use of private data by unscrupulous private entities (in this instance, a technophile villain played to great effect by Jackie Cooper). Still relevant today, we found this episode to be a well-told story that blended all of its agendas well into an entertaining and memorable whole. Highly recommended!
November 29th, 2020 | 1 hr 21 mins
1970s, 70s, beth, family, flute playing, james garner, jim rockford, p.i, rockford files, television, turkey, tv
Nathan and Eppy spend some quality family time with Jim, Beth and her annoying cousin in S3E11 The Trouble with Warren. When Warren is framed for murder, Beth turns to Jim for help. Despite his best efforts Jim ends up investigating the case, and then once another body surfaces he needs to solve it in order to save both their hides. We found this one to be a "meaty middle" episode, with a lot of things to like but nothing in particular to recommend it. That's the problem with this show, the episodes are all too good!
October 25th, 2020 | 1 hr 29 mins
1970s, 70s, blue jeans, hit man, james garner, jim rockford, kgb, mr jones, p.i, rockford files, television, tv
Nathan and Eppy go under cover to talk about S5E19 A Material Difference. Angel has the perfect scam - pretend to be a hit man, take the half up front and move on. Unfortunately his first gig involves international espionage, and a chance meeting with Jim draws Rockford in against his will. This is a wild romp of an episode! We found it to not be totally solid around the edges but a joy to watch, especially for the focus on the Jim-Angel dynamic, one of our favorites!
September 27th, 2020 | 1 hr 27 mins
1970s, 70s, bananas, james garner, jim rockford, p.i, rockford files, salvador allende, television, therapy, tv
Nathan and Eppy join Jim and Angel in group therapy for S4E5 The Dog and Pony Show. In lieu of a jail sentence for something Angel stole and hid in Jim's car, this therapy group is a pretty good deal, until fellow participant Mary Jo has someone actually break into her house. Jim agrees to help, and a couple of goons and one Firebird chase later realizes that something Mary Jo knows is putting them all in danger. A listener suggestion, we really enjoyed this David Chase-written episode - it has all the elements we love about the show, as well as a familiar face that delighted us upon his surprise appearance!
August 30th, 2020 | 1 hr 20 mins
1970s, 70s, fast harry, helicopter, james garner, jim rockford, land swindle, p.i, rockford files, television, tv
Nathan and Eppy take a road trip to S2E6: The Great Blue Lake Land and Development Company. After Jim is ripped off in a small town, he needs to get his 10 grand back - but nobody is talking. He brings in Rocky and a fast-talking con buddy, but everything changes before they can run the con! While it felt to us like it didn't have the full Rockfordishness that we see in later seasons, this is a fun episode with a lot of individual points to like!
July 26th, 2020 | 1 hr 30 mins
1970s, 70s, boat chase, james garner, jim rockford, math, oreos, p.i, rockford files, russ mayberry, television, tv
Nathan and Eppy talk about S2E8 Resurrection in Black & White. Jim is hired by a magazine reporter named Susan to help clear the name of a man who's been in jail for 6 years for a murder he says he didn't commit. The case is pretty cold, but with Jim and Susan's powers combined they manage to figure out what happened and track down the culprits - in a motorboat, no less! We really enjoyed this episode, especially the chemistry between Jim and Susan and the nuanced character work woven into their story. Plus, we get to talk about director Russ Mayberry, as this is his last appearance on our show!
June 28th, 2020 | 1 hr 23 mins
1970s, 70s, fruit cart, james garner, jim rockford, jimbo like bimbo, p.i, rockford files, romanov, television, tv, wrong number
Nathan and Eppy get a look at the wild party scene of 70s LA in S4E17 Dwarf in a Helium Hat. Jim gets a threatening phone call, but to the wrong number! His conscience can't let this sit, and in trying to track down Jay Rockfelt to warn him of the impending danger, he gets dragged in to a life-and-death situation with a jersey mobster who just wants to be taken seriously. Though this one has a bit of a thing plot, it's a fun episode with some particularly amazing dialogue!
June 14th, 2020 | 1 hr 5 mins
1970s, 70s, black lives matter, james garner, jim rockford, p.i, plus expenses, rockford files, television, tv
Black Lives Matter. We support the ongoing uprisings against police brutality in the wake of the murder of George Floyd, and we wanted to both reflect on what this means for us and talk to our audience directly about how you can help. We start the conversation with our standard Plus Expenses-style check-in, and transition about half an hour in to talking about the protests and what we're currently grappling with as next steps towards a future without police.
May 31st, 2020 | 1 hr 33 mins
1970s, 70s, country beef, james garner, jim rockford, oil, p.i, rockford files, television, tv, want to see my bunker
Nathan and Eppy go wildcatting with Jim and Rocky in S3E6 Coulter City Wildcat. Rocky is forced to sign over the mineral rights to a oil lease he won in a lottery he's been playing, and Jim is determined to find out why his dad was roughed up and what scam is at the heart of the matter. They take a road trip to Coulter City to unravel a stubborn mystery, and we have a great time riding along with them in their efforts. While we found the mechanics of the plot to be little obscure, this is a hell of a fun episode overall!
April 26th, 2020 | 1 hr 26 mins
1970s, 70s, aloha-ha-ha-ha, be a tiger, hawaii, hound dog, james garner, jim rockford, p.i, ping-pong diplomacy, rockford files, television, tv
Nathan and Eppy take a sun-soaked trip to S6E8 The Hawaiian Headache. Jim and Rocky won a trip to Hawaii! Jim doesn't get to enjoy a minute of it before being brought into an issue of national security by an old Korean War sergeant. Things go from bad to worse as he juggles a missing agent, a briefcase with $10K, gangsters and a murder charge. A silly episode, without much mystery to speak of but a lot of good gags!
April 1st, 2020 | 1 hr 7 mins
1970s, 70s, ds9, james garner, jim rockford, p.i, rockford files, star trek, stretch, television, too many guys named paulie, tv, vegas, vic fontaine