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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.

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ABC
3 Seasons, 62 Episodes - Ended
Action & Adventure
8.2/10
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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.

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