you’re the heir of a multi-million-dollar oil fortune and you’re really
into mystery and crime, what do you do? Fund your own private
investigation career, of course! That’s exactly what the leading
character, Matt Houston (played by Lee Horsley), did in this cheesy yet
addictive 80s cult classic.
Cheesy plots, bikini-clad actresses, hot (well, they used to be hot) guest
stars and action and adventure effectively sum up the Matt Houston show
week Matt Houston had a different case to solve, many of them murder
cases involving society’s elite, and somehow most of the cases required
Matt to interview an attractive woman in a bathing suit. If you were to
say half of the viewers tuned in because of the “scenery,” you probably
wouldn’t be wrong.
Unlike most of the private detectives who work in the real world, Matt
Houston had a fortune at his disposal. This gave him access to fast cars
and nice toys (like helicopters and boats). While it may not have been
realistic, the glamour and excitement of it all did end up adding to the
In true 80s fashion, the Matt Houston show didn’t last very long. The Matt
Houston series first aired in September of 1982 and ended in July of 1985
– lasting not quite three years. The show obviously can’t be rated on
longevity. Interest in the show spiked in 2000 due to its syndication on
TNN. The show gained more fans and old fans became reacquainted with Matt
Houston once again.
So did Matt Houston gain as much notoriety as shows like Magnum P.I.,
Matlock or Murder She Wrote? Not necessarily. But it did have quite the
following and true fans remember every episode of the show and will never
forget Matt Houston.
Wonder what Lee
Horsley is up to now?
Read our Feature Then and Now: Lee