About the show

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.

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  • Episode 56: A Plus Expenses Special

    September 15th, 2019  |  44 mins 54 secs
    1970s, 70s, james garner, jim rockford, p.i, plus expenses, rockford files, special episode, television, tv

    This is our latest Plus Expenses episode, the show we release to our patrons over at our Patreon. Plus Expenses is our pre-show chatter, where we catch up with each other and talk about other media we've been into and what's going on in our lives as self-employed game designers. In this episode, we talk about: Amazon and capitalism, pricing games, Youtube radicalization, the Star Wars Minute podcast, Godzilla, meat shields vs jobbers, pro wrestling in Japan, a book of essays on David Chase, the cultural influence of television, location as character, place in RPGs, psychogeography, the World of Darkness "By Night" books, "I lived in New York for 5 years" stories, Mill Creek DVD collections, and of course the value of public libraries.

    Plus Expenses is a free podcast available to all of our patrons. If you like what you hear, please consider joining them in supporting the show for only $1 an episode!

  • Episode 55: Profit and Loss (Two-Part Episode)

    August 25th, 2019  |  1 hr 54 mins
    1970s, 70s, chili thing, fraud, james garner, jim rockford, ned beatty, p.i, rockford files, television, tv

    Nathan and Eppy take a look at the first two-part episode from the first season, Profit and Loss (E12 and 13). Starring Ned Beatty as the villainous CEO of a fraudulent investment firm, this two-parter is very much one linear story through both episodes. Though it features a number of wonderful Jim Rockford moments, and gives us a lot of good Rocky material, we can't help but feel like the big climax is a bit of a let-down given the extensive buildup. On the other hand, it does have perhaps the greatest 3-minute hot-dog related scene in all of the Rockford Files!

  • Episode 54: Gigi Garner Interview + Q&A Special

    August 4th, 2019  |  1 hr 50 mins
    1970s, 70s, james garner, jim rockford, p.i, rockford files, television, tv

    Nathan and Eppy are super excited to welcome Gigi Garner, daughter of James Garner and animal rescuer, to the show! We talk to Gigi about the James Garner Animal Rescue Fund she recently launched, get some of her reflections on the Rockford Files and her father's legacy, and hear some great stories! We then answer questions from our patrons and listeners, including the monumental task of picking a favorite episode!

  • Episode 53: The Reincarnation of Angie

    July 28th, 2019  |  1 hr 33 mins
    1970s, 70s, james garner, jim rockford, p.i, rockford files, television, tv

    Nathan and Eppy talk about S2E12 The Reincarnation of Angie. Jim gets a call from the panicked Angie, concerned about a mysterious call from her now-missing brother Tom. Things escalate after they find half a million in cash in Tom's wall safe, and Jim calls in a friend from the FBI to help track down what happened to Tom, and why someone is now after Angie. A curious episode that showcases Jim's tradecraft, we found that it has a bit of a mismatch between the emotional beats and the narrative, both of which are very strong on their own.

  • Episode 52: The Paper Palace

    July 14th, 2019  |  1 hr 31 mins
    1970s, 70s, james garner, jim rockford, p.i, rockford files, television, tv

    Nathan and Eppy talk about the first appearance of Rita Moreno on The Rockford Files in S4E16 The Paper Palace. When a pair of French-speaking tough guys assault Moreno's character, Rita Capkovic, the police don't seem very interested in helping out a known prostitute. While Dennis is a friend, she ends up hiring Jim to find out why anyone would want to hurt her - and when one of her only other friends, an elderly woman, is killed, it ups the stakes of the mystery. This episode shines as a nuanced portrait of a woman who lives her life unapologetically in the face of judgement, and the character work throughout is fantastic - overall, one of the great episodes of the show!

  • Episode 51: Drought at Indianhead River

    June 30th, 2019  |  1 hr 32 mins
    1970s, 70s, angelo, anger, james garner, jim rockford, mob, p.i, rockford files, snails, television, tv, wawa

    Nathan and Eppy discuss S3E5 Drought at Indianhead River. Jim gets a tip that Angel's life is in danger, but "Angelo" is too high on his newfound success in real estate to take the threat seriously. Determined to save Angel despite himself, Jim drags him along as he fends off both the mob and the cops to try and figure out why his friend is on a hit list. A wonderful showcase of the Angel-Rockford relationship, focusing on just how much Jim can take, we really like this one! It has some unexamined plot devices and uses institutionalization for comedic effect, which aren't our favorite elements, but in terms of watching Jim and Angel at their best, it's hard to top!

  • Episode 50: If The Frame Fits...

    June 16th, 2019  |  1 hr 43 mins
    1970s, 1990s, 70s, james garner, jim rockford, p.i, rockford files, television, tree with lips, tv, tv movies

    To celebrate our 50th episode, Nathan and Eppy discuss the third 90s Rockford Files TV movie: If The Frame Fits... This feels like the first true reunion movie, as it features not only Angel and Dennis, but Chapman, Diehl and, triumphantly, a returning Beth Davenport! Jim has been framed for the murder of another PI, and this movie hums right along just like the best of the 70s shows as he figures out what's going on while on the run from the law. Our favorite so far!

  • Episode 49: Second Chance

    May 26th, 2019  |  1 hr 32 mins
    1970s, 70s, dionne warwick, gandy, isaac hayes, james garner, jim rockford, p.i, rockfish, rockford files, television, tv

    Nathan and Eppy discuss S4E4 Second Chance. Following up on our last episode (The Hammer of C Block), we visit the final Gandalf Fitch episode to see how the character has been handled since that debut. Gandy seems to have found a niche for himself bouncing at nightclubs, but when he decides to manage the career of a promising lounge singer (played by Dionne Warwick), he ends up hit on the head and chasing down ghosts from the past - and, of course, turns to Jim for help. Also featuring a complicating Angel appearance, this episode is both action-packed and very funny, paying little attention to Gandy's tragic origin story and leading us to the conclusion that the show essentially treats Gandy as a different character in the subsequent episodes, not a continuous one. This one gave us a lot to talk about, and we really enjoyed watching it!

  • Episode 48: The Hammer of C Block

    April 28th, 2019  |  1 hr 31 mins
    1970s, 70s, gandy, isaac hayes, james garner, jim rockford, p.i, rockfish, rockford files, television, tv

    Nathan and Eppy discuss the first appearance of Isaac Hayes as Gandolf Fitch in Season Two's The Hammer of C Block. Gandy has been in prison for 20 years for a murder he swears he didn't commit, and since Jim owes him money from their time together in the slammer, his first stop is Rockfish's trailer. The plot of this one revolves around discovering the truth behind the murder of Lila, Gandy's ex-girlfriend; but what we struggled with as we watched is how Gandy is, at root, the actual villain of the piece. Content warning! This episode (and thus our discussion) include direct focus on emotional and physical abuse, and suicide. It's an engaging, effective episode that isn't reducible down to a clear "yes, watch it" or "no, don't."

  • Episode 47: Star Trek TNG - Ship in a Bottle

    April 1st, 2019  |  1 hr 12 mins
    1970s, 70s, james garner, jim rockford, p.i, rockford files, television, tv

    Welcome to Twenty Dollars a Day, the podcast where we explore our favorite fictional characters in the Star Trek: TNG universe! Nathan and Eppy discuss the second appearance of holographic Prof. Moriarty in S6E12 Ship in a Bottle. Data and Geordie are just trying to enjoy some simple Sherlock Holmes programs on the holodeck, but there's some kind of fluctuation - and when Reg Barkley takes a look, it allows Moriarty to escape the hell of being trapped in system memory. He quickly launches a plan to con the access codes to the Enterprise out of Captain Picard, bringing us into a fun con-counter-con story. (Happy April, everyone!)

  • Episode 46: Counter Gambit

    March 24th, 2019  |  1 hr 19 mins
    1970s, 70s, angel, con game, james garner, jim rockford, p.i, pearl necklace, rockford files, television, thirst, tv

    Nathan and Eppy discuss S1E16 Counter Gambit. Jim is hired by an unsavory acquaintance to find a woman, which he quickly realizes is a cover for some kind of valuable that this woman may or may not have with her. Once Jim does find her, however, the situation quickly becomes more complicated. This is a con game episode, and we really enjoyed the twists and turns of the con, and (as titled) the counter-con. Of particular delight is the first regular-season appearance of Angel Martin! If you can see this one cold, you should - there's a lot to appreciate once you know the story, but the layers of misdirection are deftly handled and worth experiencing at full effect, if possible!

  • Episode 45: The Trees, The Bees and T.T. Flowers (Two-Part Episode)

    February 25th, 2019  |  2 hrs 9 mins
    1970s, 70s, james garner, jim rockford, p.i, rockford files, television, tv

    Nathan and Eppy cover our second two-parter episode, a Season Three gem featuring notable character actor Strother Martin as the titular T.T. Flowers, an elderly farmer who refuses to sell his land to a predatory real estate developer. Through a scheme involving his shady son-in-law and an ethically bankrupt psychiatrist, T.T. is hauled off against his will to a mental institution; but Rocky knows that something isn't right. Once he get Jim on the case, it's just a matter of time until he starts to uncover the scheme, but he faces numerous attempts on his life as he tries to find some hard evidence to prove the wild conspiracy. With a genius framing device that unites both episodes as one story, great performances all around and some great action sequences, we really enjoyed this one. Recommended!