Kojak was one of the first to swap cigarettes for Tootsie Roll Pops in an effort to quit smoking. While the cigarette-smoking cop was once the standard, Kojak aired at a time when many adults were trying to break the habit, and TV censors were trying hard to keep smoking off of television. Starting in the eighth episode of the first season, Kojak almost always turned to a lollipop in times of stress -- though he occasionally lit up a cigarette or cigar as well.
Where is the series set?
Detective Lieutenant Kojak kept the bad guys at bay in New York City's Eleventh Precinct.
What was the great detective's first name?
Like his character Theofilides Kojak -- known as Theo, for short -- actor Telly Savalas was of Greek-American heritage.
True or false: Telly Savalas' real-life brother co-starred on the show.
Telly's brother George played Detective Demosthenes Stavros, who was also known as Curly -- or Fatso, when being yelled at by his brother.
Who was Kojak's boss at the NYPD?
Actor Dan Frazer starred as Captain Frank McNeil, Kojak's long-term supervisor. He later got promoted to Chief of Detectives.
Where does a group of robbers take bystanders hostage in the show's premiere episode?
In the series premiere, the Talaba Brothers gang robs an armored car, then takes a group of shoppers hostage in an Army surplus store. It's up to Kojak to negotiate for the release of the hostages and nab the bad guys.
Who is Kojak's partner on the force?
Actor Kevin Dobson plays Detective Bobby Crocker, Kojak's sidekick and partner who accompanies him on many of his famous missions.
Where does Kojak carry his weapon?
No holsters for him! Kojak is always ready to fire, keeping his weapon in his front jacket pocket or right in his hand, ready for shooting.
What serial killer does Kojak target in season one?
After a two-year absence, the Excalibur killer is back and Kojak is determined to nab him. The evil murderer strangles woman using stockings, then leaves them with the mark of Excalibur on their heads.
What is the name of the gang in the two-part "Chinatown Murders" episode, which is the season two premiere?
Kojak is stuck in the middle of a gang war between Don Cheech's Scalesi group and a Chinese faction led by Sammy Loo, at the start of season two.
What does Kojak go undercover as, to take on Wall Street in season two?
To blend in with the richest of the rich and solve a trio of Wall Street Murders, Kojak goes undercover as a Greek millionaire -- only to end up kidnapped when the thugs figure out that he isn't who he says he is.
In addition to being a counterfeiter, Marina is what?
Kojak gets tangled up with Marina the fortune-telling counterfeiter after she witnesses a robbery while passing fake money. Kojak one-ups her fortune-telling skills by claiming he can see the future in his lollipop.
What object gets smuggled into the U.S. in the season two episode, "Night of the Piraeus"?
After a sailor is killed after arriving in the U.S. from Greece, Kojak discovers that the man smuggled a very rare and valuable stamp into the country by hiding it in his belt.
Which of Kojak's possessions ends up at a murder scene, marking him as a suspect?
Kojak becomes a suspect after his camera turns up at a murder scene in season three. Turns out, the item was stolen from the detective by his drug-addicted nephew and the boy's friend, who sold the camera to get their fix.
Where does Kojak travel to pick up a witness in the episode, "A Long Way from Times Square"?
Kojak and Crocker head to Sin City to pick up a reluctant eyewitness named Arnold Saxler in the season three episode, "A Long Way from Times Square."
What priceless items is Kojak trying to find in the season three finale?
In the season three finale episode, "Both Sides of the Law," Kojak takes on a famous criminologist. Both seek out a series of stolen drawings by the famous post-Renaissance artist Rembrandt.
How do the bad guys punish Kojak after he spoils a liquor store robbery and captures one of the three robbers in the season four premiere?
Kojak's niece is taken in retaliation after he breaks up a robbery in the season four premiere. Fortunately, her drawings provide clues that help the detective track the child down.
What nearly gets Crocker kicked off the force at the end of season four?
Crocker is devastated when he shoots and paralyzes a female model while aiming at the bad guys during a robbery. His mistake nearly costs him his job, but thankfully, he manages to keep his place on the force.
Who inspires an insane taxi driver to kill in the season five episode "A Strange Kind of Love"?
After listening to a female talk show host while driving late at night, a deranged cab driver starts carrying out murder's based on the DJ's opinions of local wrongdoers.
Which serial killer on the show stabs his victims in the trunk of a car?
In the two-part episode, "The Summer of '69," viewers learn that Kojak killed the infamous Clothesline Killer -- who stabbed his victims and left them in the trunks of cars -- years ago. Unfortunately, another killer seems to be using the same M.O., and people are wondering if Kojak killed an innocent man back in the day.
True or false: Kojak quits the force in season five to join a private company.
Though he receives a lucrative offer of employment as an investigator for a law firm in the episode "Justice for All," Kojak decides that making a difference is more important than money. He stays on the police force.
How many seasons did "Kojak" run?
Telly Savalas proved that bald was beautiful for 118 episodes over five seasons of "Kojak," which ran from 1973 to 1978. The show won three Golden Globes over its run.
True or false: The ultra-hip detective was originally named Kojack.
A 1973 TV movie called "The Marcus-Nelson Murders" served as the original pilot for the series. In this movie, the famous detective was known as Kojack, not Kojak.
How many follow-up TV movies were made after the show went off the air?
Seven years after the original series ended, the actors returned to make seven TV movies to continue the story. The movies ran from 1985 to 1990.
Who was the young girl that the seventh and final Kojak movie was named for?
In the 1989 film "Ariana," Kojak discovers an abandoned young girl who only speaks Greek. Turns out she is bait being used by the enemy to distract Kojak from their criminal activities.
Who played Kojak when the show was rebooted in 2005?
Ving Rhames was chosen to play the legendary detective in a 2005 remake of the series, with Michael Kelly as partner Bobby Crocker.
True or false: The 2005 reboot of "Kojak" was a huge success.
Premiering more than three decades after the original series, the 2005 remake was a flop. It was cancelled after only nine episodes.
Who was a serial killer targeting in the pilot episode of the 2005 reboot?
Kojak is on the case when a serial killer starts targeting prostitutes with children in the pilot episode of the 2005 series reboot.
Who becomes a murder suspect in the finale of the 2005 reboot?
After a man who had an affair with his wife is killed, Captain Frank McNeil becomes the primary suspect in a murder -- and things heat up even more when his fingerprints are found on the scene.
Universal announced in 2015 that the company had signed on to a movie remake of "Kojak," starring which actor?
Who else but action hero Vin Diesel could play Kojak? Universal announced in a 2015 press release that the company would produce a remake of "Kojak" for the big screen, with Vin Diesel in the starring role.
Take one tenacious cop with a larger-than-life personality, throw in a bunch of bad guys willing to stop at nothing to get their way, and you've got "Kojak." Take our quiz to see how much you remember about this classic TV series.
About HowStuffWorks Play
How much do you know about dinosaurs? What is an octane rating? And how do you use a proper noun? Lucky for you, HowStuffWorks Play is here to help. Our award-winning website offers reliable, easy-to-understand explanations about how the world works. From fun quizzes that bring joy to your day, to compelling photography and fascinating lists, HowStuffWorks Play offers something for everyone. Sometimes we explain how stuff works, other times, we ask you, but we’re always exploring in the name of fun! Because learning is fun, so stick with us!
Get smarter every day! Subscribe & get 1 quiz every week.
Playing quizzes is free! We send trivia questions and personality tests every week to your inbox. By
clicking "Sign Up" you are agreeing to our
years old or over.