Matlock (TV series)

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Television series
German title Matlock
Original title Matlock
Country of production United States
original language English
Year (s) 1986-1995
length 44 minutes
Episodes 195 in 9 seasons
genre Drama , crime , lawyer series
idea Dean Hargrove
music Richard DeBenedictis
First broadcast September 23, 1986 on NBC
first broadcast
January 5th, 1988 on ZDF

Matlock is an American crime and justice series, from 1986 to 1995 a total of 195 episodes in a total of nine seasons on two US channels. The series ran from September 23, 1986 to May 8, 1992 on the US television station NBC ; from November 5, 1992 to May 7, 1995, Matlock then switched to the American broadcaster ABC . When Matlock was broadcast on NBC from 1986, the series took over the previous slot of the A-Team . In 1997 Andy Griffith returned to the screens as Ben Matlock, this time as a guest in a double episode in the series Diagnosis: Mord in the double episode Matlock, Rescuer in Need (original title: Murder Two ).


The series is about the widower Benjamin Leighton "Ben" Matlock, played by Andy Griffith . Matlock is a senior, renowned criminal defense attorney based in Atlanta . He is always involved in murder cases in which innocents are suspected and charged in court . Matlock is charged with the defense of this innocent man and with the help of his staff clarifies the real situation. In a dramatic finale in the courtroom, the real perpetrator is exposed and Matlock's client is exonerated.

Matlock has won almost all of his mandates .

In contrast to many other American crime series, this one comes without (shown) violence and chases and is therefore similar to series like Columbo or Murder is her hobby . The structure of the stories told is similar to the older television series Perry Mason .

About Ben Matlock

Matlock studied law at Harvard University and then set up his law firm in Atlanta. A hallmark Matlock are his light gray suits and his affinity for automobiles of brand Ford .

Matlock almost always wears the same type of off-white suit and has a distinct preference for hot dogs . This is partly explained by his simple origins, which he says he could not and did not want to abandon at university or later, he values ​​the simple and contemplative. Despite his success as a lawyer, he always remains thrifty, even rather stingy, and avoids any expense that is not absolutely necessary in his eyes. For example, he never lets maintenance work around the house be carried out professionally, but rather by migrant workers and the like; in order to avert a simple parking ticket, he sometimes takes to court - but in these cases he always loses. In the episode “His First Client” (season 8) you also learn that hot dogs were his favorite food even as a young man. In contrast, in his guest appearance in Diagnosis: Mord, this preference is explained by the fact that in 1969 a tip from his then friend Mark Sloan to put his money in the (unfortunately very short-lived) 8-track cassette industry almost bankrupted him and thus could only afford cheaper food until he was finally able to distinguish himself as a successful criminal defense lawyer.


Only Ben Matlock plays consistently in the series. Other contributors left the series early or came later.

Ben Leighton Matlock 01-195
Charlene Matlock (S1) 01-25
Tyler Hudson (S 1-3) 01-69
Julie March (pp. 2-7) 26-155
Cassie Phillips (S 2-7) 26-155
Michelle Thomas (S 2-6) 26-137
Les Calhoun (S 3-6) 50-137
Conrad McMasters (S 4-7) 70-155
Leanne McIntyre (S 6-8) 116-177
Cliff Lewis (S 7-9) 138-195
Billy Lewis (S 7-9) 138-195
Jerri Stone (S 9) 178-195
Lt. Bob Brooks (S 1-4) 01-93
Lloyd Burgess (S 1-4) 01-93
Judge Cooksey (S 1–4) 01-93

German synchronization

The German synchronization was commissioned by the Arena Film GmbH & Co. synchronous KG was still in Berlin-Lankwitz , for dialogue director and the German dialogue book were first for ZDF Gerhard Vorkamp and Klaus von choice , then later on behalf of ProSieben was Erik Paulsen responsible .

role actor speaker
Ben Matlock Andy Griffith Eric Vaessen
Charlene Matlock (Season 1) Lori Lethin (In Season 1, Ep. 1 and 2)
Linda Purl (From Season 1, Ep. 3)
Ulrike Möckel (In Season 1, Ep. 1 and 2)
Bettina Spier (From Season 1, Ep. 3)
Tyler Hudson (Seasons 1-3) Kene Holliday Rüdiger Joswig
Julie March (Seasons 1-7) Julie Sommars Kerstin Sanders-Dornseif
Cassie Phillips (seasons 2-7) Kari Lizer Katharina Graefe
Michelle Thomas (seasons 2-6) Nancy Stafford Karin Buchholz
Les Calhoun (seasons 3-6) Don Knotts Wolfgang Gruner (Season 3)
Harry Wüstenhagen (Season 4–6)
Conrad McMasters (Seasons 4-7) Clarence Gilyard Junior Till Hagen
Leanne McIntyre (Seasons 6-8) Brynn Thayer Liane Rudolph
Cliff Lewis (seasons 7-9) Daniel Roebuck Manuel Vaessen
Billy Lewis (seasons 7-9) Warren Frost Joachim Nottke (season 7–8)
Friedrich G. Beckhaus (season 8–9)
Achim Petry (only in season 6, ep. 1)
Jerri Stone (season 9) Carol Huston Sabine Walkenbach
Lt. Bob Brooks (Seasons 1-4) David Froman Jörg Döring
Lloyd Burgess (Seasons 1-4) Michael Durrell Eberhard Prüter (continuous)
Norbert Schwarz (only in season 3, ep. 17)
Judge Cooksey (Seasons 1-4) Richard Newton Gerd Holtenau (only in season 1, ep. 3)
Jochen Schröder (all the way)
Hans Nitschke (all the way)


  • Matlock is also mentioned regularly in the American animated series The Simpsons . This is the favorite series of the elderly residents, especially of the old people's home, who often loudly ask for Matlock.
  • Also the retired father of David Robbins calls in the series Retired at 35 in episode 3 of the 1st season after Matlock after he is woken up.
  • This stereotypical popularity of Matlock among seniors is also addressed in the Better Call Saul series . The broken attorney James McGill studied the appearance of Matlock in court in detail, in order to then advertise himself in the Matlock suit among older seniors.
  • Matlock is said to be based on the real American lawyer "Big" Ben Baker.
  • He also plays a role in the music video "Waitin 'on a Woman" by US country singer Brad Paisley .
  • In episode 3 "The Addison Case", Dick van Dyke takes on the role of a murderous judge. Later - in a crossover of the two series Matlock and Diagnosis: Murder - he plays the doctor Dr. Mark Sloan, a friend of Ben Matlock.
  • Daniel Roebuck plays the doctor Dr. Bobby Shaw and in episodes 3.02, 3.03 and 3.20 the lawyer Alex Winthrop, a friend of Ben Matlock. He later becomes the steadfast colleague and legal partner of Ben Matlock in the role of Cliff Lewis in seasons 7 to 9.

Episode list

Web links