Dr. Richard Kimble was on the run because he was convicted of killing his wife. He knew he didn't do it. For four years we watched 120 episodes from '63 to 47 to see if Richard Kimball would ever catch up with the elusive one arm man. Kimble was looking for his wife's killer, while trying to elude Lt. Phillip Gerard, who was always in hot pursuit. The show was an ongoing cat and mouse game.
Dr. Kimble became a nomad, taking on small jobs here and there, always looking for his wife's real killer. He'd always run into folks that seemed to be in some kind of trouble of their own. Richard would help someone out during each episode and then have to start running again.
The Fugitive was in no way an original concept. There are several old movies with the same general premise. There was also a real incident that happened at that time that is believed to have inspired the story of the show. There was a doctor convicted of killing his wife, but the doctor said that a 'bushy haired man' was the murderer. I must admit that the one arm man is more intriguing than a busy hair man. Other shows have come and gone with a like premise; The Incredible Hulk and The A-Team come to mind. They were all portraying innocent fugitives on the run, helping people in need along the way.
David Janssen played the desperate roll of Dr. Richard Kimble. The big voice of William Conrad read opening narrative intro of The Fugitive. By the way, William Conrad was the original voice of Matt Dillon in the radio's Gun Smoke. You all might remember Conrad playing a private investigator Frank Cannon in Cannon. He was a big guy with a big voice.
Yes, Richard finally caught up with the one arm man on the show's finale. During those four years we saw very little of the one armed man, he was always there, out there somewhere. Pretty much everyone who owned a television set made sure to watch it.