Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Happy Birthday, Rico

How can this be? Philip Michael Thomas, the Columbus, Ohio-born actor and singer who played undercover cop Ricardo Tubbs, opposite Don Johnson (as Sonny Crockett), on the style-setting 1984-1989 TV series Miami Vice, turns 60 years old today.

After NBC-TV canceled Vice, Johnson went on to movie roles and a six-season stint playing another detective in Nash Bridges. Thomas, meanwhile, hasn’t remained nearly so visible. His Internet Movie Database (IMDb) page says he guest starred in a 1991 Perry Mason movie and played a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) agent, Cedrick “Rick” Hawks, in a couple of Nash Bridges episodes, neither of which I remember seeing. For a time, he worked as a spokesman for the Florida-based Psychic Reader’s Network, and then later voiced a character in the video game Grand Theft Auto: Vice City.

In this video, Thomas reflects on his experiences with Vice:



Today also happens to be the 85th birthday of James Arness, who played Marshall Matt Dillon for 20 years on Gunsmoke, and later appeared in two other series: How the West Was Won and a not very good 1981 cop drama, McClain’s Law. (Hat tip to David Cranmer.)

1 comment:

Picks By Pat said...

In addition, James Arness played a non-speaking role as the creature from outer space in the 1952 sci-fi thriller, "The Thing From Another World". This movie is remembered more for its fast paced and snappy dialogue, rather than any memorable special effects.