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Kung Fu is an American period drama about a Shaolin monk who travels across the Old West of the United States in search of his half-brother. The series premiered as a regular series on the U.S. network ABC after its film-length pilot aired on anthology program ABC Movie of the Week.

The story of Kung Fu centers around the character of Kwai Chang Caine, played by David Carradine. The son of American Thomas Henry Caine and a Chinese woman, Caine enters a Shaolin monastery after becoming an orphan upon his maternal grandfather's death. There, he learns the ways of the Shaolin monks while he also trains in the martial arts, eventually becoming an expert.

In the premiere episode of the series, Caine's mentor at the monastery, Master Po, is murdered. When Caine discovers the culprit is the nephew of the Emperor, he exacts revenge by slaying the man. Now a wanted criminal in his homeland, Caine sails across the Pacific to hide out in the U.S. and seek the whereabouts of his half-brother, Danny Caine.

Though he tries to remain anonymous in his quest, Caine ends up in situations where his skills are needed. During these adventures, flashbacks to his days in the monastery aide Caine in determining the best course of action for him to take. These past moments feature a tween or teenage Caine and Master Kan (Philip Ahn) or Master Po (Keye Luke), who refers to the young Caine as Grasshopper.

During the third season of Kung Fu, episodes featuring the younger version of Cain while in China were mixed with his present quest to be reunited with his brother Danny, played by Tim McIntire. In a four episode arc, Caine connects with Danny's son Zeke, played by John Blyth Barrymore, and Zeke's grandfather (John Vernon), all the while avoiding fight promoter and criminal Corbino (Leslie Nielsen).

Created by Ed Spielman, Jerry Thorpe, and Herman Miller, Kung Fu was distributed by Warner Brothers Television. The show debuted on ABC in October of 1972 and ended after three seasons in April of 1975.

ABC
3 Seasons, 62 Episodes - Canceled
December 9, 1972
Action & Adventure
7.8/10
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Kung Fu Full Episode Guide

  • Kwai Chang Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) comes to the aid of a black family and a white family whose sons are kidnapped by a renegade Confederate Army officer.

  • Serenity Johnson, the blind preacher last seen in The Nature Of Evil, asks Caine to help escort him with a shipment to San Fransisco. What neither one of them knows is that stolen silver bars are hidden in the shipment, and people involved in the robbery are after them.

  • Kwai Chang Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) enlists the aid of the Prince of Thieves to restore a Chinese Duke to his royal throne.

  • Brothers Kwai Chang (DAVID CARRADINE) and Danny Caine (TIM McINTIRE) stand shoulder to shoulder in a fight for their lives as they try to reunite their family. Fourth part of a four-part episode. Leslie Nielsen guest stars.

  • Caine finds where his brother is hiding, but is unaware that Danny has been told there is a Chinese bounty hunter who wants to kill him.

  • Indians, desert killers and a Barbary Coast overlord menace Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) as he continues to search for his brother. Second part of a four-part episode. Leslie Nielsen guest stars.

  • Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) becomes a Barbary Coast prizefighter in an effort to locate his brother before he's killed. First part of a four-part episode. Leslie Nielsen guest stars.

  • Two vagabond musicians (JOSE FELICIANO and JULIAN "CANNONBALL" ADDERLEY) join Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) in an unusual adventure about a search for a boyhood dream that leads to murder.

  • Kwai Chang Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) enters the spirit world to exorcise a demon and save a woman from the horrors of drug addiction.

  • The dramatic events that forced Shaolin priest Kwai Chang Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) to flee China unfold again as Caine relives his desperate attempt to escape the Emperor's revenge.

  • Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) is forced to repay a family debt of honor--by teaching a peaceful man how to kill!

  • Death comes in three forms when Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) confronts a killer from China, a dying photographer (LEW AYRES) and an Indian youth threatened by the death of his own spirit.

  • Kwai Chang Caine--both the boy (RADAMES PERA) and the man (DAVID CARRADINE)--confront the menace of death in a bizarre mystery of the supernatural.

  • Caine's (DAVID CARRADINE) love for the intended bride of a Chinese warlord is overshadowed by the warrior's threat to destroy the Shaolin temple where she has sought refuge.Second part of a two-part episode that begins with Besieged: Death on a Cold Mountain

  • Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) leads an attack against a Chinese warlord who threatens to destroy the Shaolin temple unless a young, novice nun is surrendered to his passion.First part of a two-part episode that concludes with Besieged: Cannon at the Gates

  • Disciple opposes master when Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) takes a stand against a renegade Shaolin priest (JAMES SHIGETA) terrorizing a railroad company in America to avenge his nephew's death.

  • We return to Caine's past in China. Caine witnesses a man defeat six others in the village. The man instructs Caine to deliver a challenge. He demands a fight to the death with Master Kan or he will kill a villager every day until he gets it.

  • A mystical revelation compels Kwai Chang Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) to protect a buffalo calf whose life force is supernaturally linked to a young, expectant mother.

  • Kwai Chang Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) continues his search for his American half-brother, only to learn that Danny Caine is being drawn into a shootout by an ambitious gunfighter.

  • A charge of attempted murder spurs Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) to invade the lair of vicious killers and kidnap the only man who can clear him.

  • A journey to mysterious Indian burial grounds -- and into the frightening recesses of the human mind -- awaits Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) when he encounters a young woman (SONDRA LOCKE) who has escaped from an insane asylum.

  • The Emperor's offer of a pardon is really a trap to finally kill Caine.

  • The life of Kwai Chang Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) is threatened by two deadly forces--by the Chinese assassins sent to America by the Order of the Avenging Dragon and by Sara Kingsley (PATRICIA NEAL), a matriarch of a ranching family with a sinister secret.

  • Kwai Chang Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) is stalked by two deadly adversaries: The Order of the Avenging Dragon--who act as guardians to the Royal Household of Imperial China and have sworn to avenge the death of the royal nephew--and by Sara Kingsley (PATRICIA NEAL), the matriarch of a ranching empire, who considers Caine's insistent probing into her family's background a threat to her existence.

  • Caine and Logan arrive at the Sioux burial ground, to bury what Caine believes is Logan's wife in a huge crate, and are confronted by angry Sioux warriors who feel they are trespassing. They must also deal with two robbers as well as the US Calvary. Caine recalls his own love story, that like Logan's wife, ended tragically.

  • Caine meets Logan McBurney, a Scotsman who has hijacked a gold-transporting stagecoach named Old Ironsides, to haul an enormous box that he claims is his dead Sioux wife's coffin. Along the way to the burial ground, which is on Sioux land, Caine remembers times in the monastery, unaware that several robbers are following closely, hoping to take Old Ironsides for themselves.

  • Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) and blind preacher Serenity Johnson (JOHN CARRADINE) choose a path toward a confrontation with evil when they encounter a man possessed by the devil in his own dual nature.

  • Wu Chang has angered the Tong Sect, and is ordered to commit suicide or be executed by them. Caine tries to help him fake his death and escape from the Tongs.

  • Caine tries to visit an unjustly jailed Shaolin student, but keeps being turned away. He then commits a crime so he can be put in jail with him, hoping to clear up an old misunderstanding and help free the student.

  • Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) is injected into a war between a hate-maddened detective (BARRY SULLIVAN) and an outlaw (ANDY ROBINSON) leading a gang of ex-farmers victimized by a railroad.

  • The prostitutes of a bawdy house and their madam (ANNE FRANCIS) turn to Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) for protection against vigilantes.

  • A proud Southern belle, imprisoned in a pit with Caine (DAVID CARRADINE), learns that serving others and being served are folds of the same garment.

  • Caine (DAVID CARRADINE), pitted against a Chinese Robin Hood, teaches a boy that only the heart can truly conquer.

  • Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) sees dramatized that every man is three things -- what he thinks he is, what others think he is, and what he really is -- when some of the people in a small town (HOWARD DUFF, JOHN DREW BARRYMORE, RUTH ROMAN, TINA LOUISE) are confronted by the death of one of their leading citizens.

  • Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) changes a Texas Ranger's (ROBERT FOXWORTH) life by showing him that the law can murder justice. Slim Pickens guest stars.

  • Two emotionally repressed people learn from Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) that to accept pain as the price of love is the mark of life.

  • Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) prescribes an emotional cure for a medicine-show goddess stricken with a deadly type of independence.

  • Caine (DAVID CARRADINE), delivering a religious sect from persecution, shows that tolerance must come from a mutual understanding.

  • Caine comes to a bankrupt mining town and meets a mentally handicapped boy, who is the target of a claim jumper.

  • Caine (DAVID CARRADINE) delivers a self-accused coward from inner torment by showing him the nature of courage.

  • Caine help a young Chinese orphan boy gain his freedom from a brutal master. The master goes to the Tong for help against Caine.

  • Caine helps a young Indian man who saw his father killed and wants to kill the men who did it and rescue his mother from them.

  • Caine (DAVID CARRADINE), confronted with ignorance and prejudice, saves an outcast from turning a brief moment of glory into disaster for himself and his pregnant Indian wife.

  • While wandering in Mexico, Caine comes across an old woman and a young boy. The woman is trapped under a cart and asks Caine to take care of the boy. He takes him to a small Mexican village which believes it is under the spell of a warlock.

  • Caught between a Gatling Gun and a fort full of murderous killers, Caine must rescue a stolen chalice in order to make restitution for a dead Franciscan priest.

  • Hatfields and McCoys, with an Asian spin on things. Two familes with a longtime fued keep two potential lovers apart. One of the families has hired a ninja assassin, and Caine witnesses his actions. Caine is accused of assisting the ninja, and heals a man dying from a poisoned shuriken strike.

  • Kwai Chang Caine (DAVID CARRADINE), stricken by poisoned water, lies near death in the home of a former slave who fearfully harbors a secret so precious that it might well save the entire community from disaster.

Most Popular Kung Fu Episodes

  • Season 3 Episode 24 The Last Raid 4/26/1975
  • Season 3 Episode 1 Blood of the Dragon (1) 9/14/1974
  • Season 1 Episode 1 King of the Mountain 10/14/1972
  • Season 3 Episode 22 The Thief of Chendo 3/29/1975
  • Season 1 Episode 5 The Tide 2/01/1973

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