"Try this for a deep dark secret: The great detective Remington Steele? He doesn't exist! I invented him. Follow: I'd always loved excitement, So I studied and apprenticed, and put my name on an office. But absolutely no one knocked on my door. A female private investigator seemed so... feminine. So I invented a superior. A decidedly masculine superior. Suddenly there were cases around the block. It was working like a charm. Until the day he walked in, with his blue eyes and mysterious past. And before I knew it, he assumed Remington Steele's identity. Now I do the work, and he takes the bows. It's a dangerous way to live, But as long as people buy it, I can get the job done. We never mix business with pleasure. Well...almost never. I don't even know his real name!"
And with that opening spiel from the first season, we saw the premise for an hour long criminal comedy starring Pierce Brosnan and Stephanie Zimbalist (daughter of veteran actor Efrem Zimbalist Jr) as the inevitable odd couple. Zimbalist was Laura Holt private eye and Brosnan was a.. well I don't think they ever really figured out who he was. He played a criminal with a mysterious past and an obsession with classic films who discovered Holt's secret, and manipulated his way into her life for adventure and gags and eventually sex although we never got to see it because this was NBC.
Dancing a fine line between romantic comedy and detective adventure series, Remington Steele first aired in October of 1982 and ran until February of 1987. There were ninety-one episodes in all. In 1986 the show was cancelled due to lowering ratings. However, the guys behind the James Bond films were looking for a successor to Sean Connery and Roger Moore. Brosnan found himself on the fast track for 007. However, word of this leaked out to the public, and this happened to increase the ratings for Remington Steele. NBC programming chief Brandon Tartikoff cancelled the cancellation, and since Piece Brosnan was still locked into NBC's orders due to a technicality in his contract, he was forced to do one more season, or whatever NBC asked for until his contract ran out. They only ordered six more hours of episodes (the bastards), but it was enough to keep Pierce Brosnan from being the next James Bond. Needless to say he was a bit miffed. With Brosnan out of the picture, Timothy Dalton stepped in and performed James Bond for two lackluster performances. Brosnan finally got his chance with Golden Eye in 1995 and hasn't looked back.
What happened to Stephanie Zimbalist? TV Movie hell.