Kojak: “Who Loves Ya Baby?”

kojak who loves ya baby

“Who loves ya baby?”

Who loves ya baby? Who can forget Lieutenant Theo Kojak (Telly Savalas) using this catchy line? He used it often when talking with a suspect or informant.

Can you believe this swaggering, handsome, bald, Greek man was a sex symbol in the 70s? Kojak was always dressed in beautifully tailored suits. He dressed more like a lawyer, broker or banker than a police detective. In early episodes Kojak smoked a thin brown cigarette.

Later in the “Dark Sunday” episode he used a lollipop (Tootsie Pop) to try and break the smoking habit. When the younger Detective Crocker asked about the lollipop Kojak replied “I’m trying to bridge the generation gap”.

When Lt. Kojak entered a room he was the largest presence there. He was commander of New York’s Manhattan South Precinct’s detective squad. The Kojak show focused mainly on police work. Sometimes there would be a female romantic interest as a limited part of the story line.

Detective Bobby Crocker (Kevin Dobson) was one of his favorite employees. Detective Crocker and Kojak worked many, many cases together and it was very clear that Lt. Kojak was the person in charge. He was tenacious, cynical and stubborn when working to solve a case. Things had to be done his way. He would take no guff from anyone, neither employee or supervisor.

Kojak might skirt the rules a little, but we all know that he was incorruptible. Another employee on the squad was Detective Stavros (played by Telly Savalas’ real life brother George). Detective Stavros did not resemble Kojak in either dress or demeanor. Captain Frank McNeil (Dan Frazer) played Lt. Kojak’s supervisor. Telly and George Savalas, Dan Frazer and Kevin Dodson appeared in every episode of the original Kojak series.

stavros from kojak

Brother Of Telly Savalas

Kojak drove an unmarked Buick Century Regal with a red emergency light magnetically attached to the top. This type of light later became know among police as a Kojak light.

The Kojak program ran for five seasons on CBS from 1973 to 1978. At the time it ended in 1978 the ratings were not very good. Telly Savalas returned several times to play Kojak in made for TV movies on ABC.


  1. Matthias says:

    Wonderful, everything is ablloutesy correct congratulations, Mona! And, yes, I on purpose took screencaps which in a similar way pop up in the usual Tonight on Kojak’ trailer of times gone by. Else I thought it to be too hard. And no, I didn’t put the information on imdb, it was already there. Fine work, well done! Your solution was a proof of concept for people with brains still being superior to those with keyboard and mouse only ;)

  2. Inez says:

    Kojak is currently airing here in the UK on weekday afternoons, along with other classics such as Magnum P.I and Ironside. I’m loving being able to revisit my lost youth. And Kevin Dobson as Bobby Crocker – I fancied him like crazy when I was a teen! *feels old* I still have his autograph!

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