"One Eyed Jack" (1984)
Coming face-to-face with Don Johnson, his prettyboy actor contemporary, Joe appeared in the very first season of this trendy 1980s fashion-fright cop show as a wormy tough-guy in the employ of Dennis Farina. He starts out on a strong note, but quickly shrivels...and the wardrobe has to be seen to be believed! Available on DVD as part of Season 1.
Fortune Dane (1986)
Only 6 of the 13 episodes aired, but that was enough to get Joe a spot in the March 15, 1986 issue of TV Guide announcing his comeback. Carl Weathers grumped his way through this unexceptional cop series with a team that included Joe as “Perfect” Tommy Nicautri, the puffy-haired Vietnam-vet who’s always hungry. The pilot of this show is available on video as its own “feature,” but Joe doesn’t show up in that until the very end.
"Down for the Count" (1987)
A return engagement to the Don Johnson series finds Joe in a much better role as a wise-cracking wiseguy determined to hold onto his shares fixing fights in the Miami boxing racket. Some great lines and he even gets to live! They should have brought him back in a future episode. Available on DVD as part of Season 3.
"New Blood" (1987)
"The Loose Cannon" (1987)
"A Deal's A Deal" (1987)
"The Marriage of Heaven and Hell" (1987)
A great role in a first-rate show. Joe brings underworld elegance and nuance to the part of Pat “The Cat” Patrice in the most lauded and fan-worshipped arc of the series, the “Steelgrave Arc.” Undercover cop Ken Wahl infiltrates the crime empire of Sonny Steelgrave (Ray Sharkey) while rival crime boss Pat the Cat (a nickname hilariously explained) threatens to muscle in on the action. Joe’s “final exit” made for a shocking TV moment. Ken Wahl provides commentary on Disk 3's "The Marriage of Heaven and Hell" episode in the DVD-boxed set of the first season. During that commentary, he talks briefly about acting opposite Joe, as well as Joe's working with Ray Sharkey. (By the way, though Mr. Wahl only guesses, it's not true that Joe and Ray Sharkey had previously collaborated.)
"Fashion Exchange" (1988)
Episode #54 of the popular HBO (then USA) series has Joe playing dual roles as a callous fashion designer who has a hex put on him by an ex-model that brings about his troublesome doppelganger. A change of pace for Joe and he even gets to wrestle with himself.
|The Hollywood Detective (1989)
Dir. Kevin Connor
A cable-TV movie of the week starring an aging Telly Savalas as an out-of-work TV cop show star who’s engaged to take on a real-life case. Joe plays a local club owner with shady connections to the porn industry.
"The Informer" (1990)
Lead suspect Joe is just a red-herring in this offbeat pairing of underground film star (playing a thug) vs. Andy Griffith investigating a politician’s murder. Available on DVD as part of Season 4.
©2005; 2013, Michael Ferguson