Dan Adams – Portrayed by Rod Cameron
A former United States Navy intelligence officer turned private detective in the TV series Coronado 9. (Directed by Dann Cahn)
• TV series: 1960‑1961.
|(with Mattie Hayes)|
David Addison – Portrayed by Bruce Willis
A fast-talking P.I. who partners with Mattie in the TV series Moonlighting. (Created by Glenn Gordon Caron)
• TV series: 1985‑1989.
|(renamed to Harper in movies)|
Lew Archer – Portrayed by Paul Newman
An often world-weary P.I. working in Southern California in books, a TV series and movies such as Harper. (Book written by Ross MacDonald)
• Books: 1949‑1976 • TV series: 1975 • Movies: 1966, 1974, 1975.
|with partner Jeff Spencer|
Stuart Bailey – Bailey portrayed by Efrem Zimbalist, Jr. and Spencer portrayed by Roger Smith
Two private detectives and former government secret agents with an office on Sunset Strip in LA in the TV series 77 Sunset Strip. (Created by Roy Huggins)
• TV series: 1958‑1964.
Dick Barton – Portrayed by Tony Vogel
An ex-Commando who solved all sorts of crimes in the radio series, movies and the TV series Dick Barton: Special Agent. (Produced by Raymond Raikes and others)
• Radio series: 1946‑1951 • Movies: 1948, 1949, 1950 • TV series: 1979.
Tommy and Tuppence Beresford – TV portrayal of Tommy by David Walliams, of Tuppence by Jessica
A typical upper middle class couple in novels, short stories and in the TV series Partners in Crime. (Created by Agatha Christie)
• Novels: 1922‑1973 • TV series: 2015.
Boston Blackie – Portrayed by Chester Morris
A reformed jewel thief in movies such as Meet Boston Blackie. (Written by Jack Boyle)
• Movie: 1918‑1949.
|(with Laura Thyme)|
Rosemary Boxer – Portrayed by Felicity Kendal
A gardening detective in British TV series Rosemary and Thyme. (Created by Brian Eastman)
• TV series: 2003‑2007.
Beatrice Adela Bradley – Portrayed by Diana Rigg
A widowed socialite in the novel series and British TV series The Mrs. Bradley Mysteries. (Created by Gladys Mitchell)
• Novels: 1929‑1975 • TV series: 1999‑2000.
Jackson Brodie – TV portrayed by Jason Isaacs.
A tough former soldier and policeman in several novels and the TV series Case Histories. (Created by Kate Atkinson)
• Novels: 2004‑2010 • TV series: 2011‑2013.
Father Brown – Portrayed by Mark Williams
A Catholic priest in several media including the TV series Father Brown. (Created by G. K. Chesterton)
• TV series: 1974, 2013.
Nestor Burma – Portrayed by Guy Marchand
French private detective in a series of books and the TV series Nestor Burma. (Created by Léo Malet)
• Books: 1943‑1983 • TV series: 1991.
Brother Cadfael – Portrayed by Derek Jacobi
An early 12th-century monk in the novel series and TV series Cadfael. (Created by Ellis Peters also known as Edith Pargeter)
• Novels: 1977‑1994 • TV series: 1994‑1998.
Albert Campion – TV portrayal by Peter Davidson.
An aristocrat in the early 20th century in several novels and the TV series Campion. (Created by Margery Allingham)
• Novels: 1930‑1965 • TV series: 1989‑1990.
Jack Casey – Portrayed by Richard Carlye
A photographer who helps the police solve crimes in books, movies, radio, and the TV series Casey, Crime Photographer. (Created by George Harmon Coxe)
• Books: 1942‑1964 • Movies: 1936, 1938 • TV series: 1951‑1952.
Lemmy Caution – Portrayed by Eddie Constantine
Witty, crafty womanizing private detective in the book series and French movies such as La môme vert de gris. (Created by Peter Cheyney)
• Books: 1936‑1945 • Movies: 1953‑1991.
Nick and Nora Charles – Movie portrayal of Nick by William Powell
An alcoholic former private detective and a wealthy heiress in the novel and several movie adaptations such as The Thin Man. (Created by Dashiell Hammett)
• Novel: 1934 • Movies: 1934‑1947 • TV series: 1957‑1959.
Dennis Chase – Portrayed by Dennis Morgan
Private investigator who would pass each case to the police after solving the crime in the TV series 21 Beacon Street. (Produced by Al Simon)
• TV series: 1959.
|(with partners Jed Sills and Dr. Carl Hyatt)|
Don Corey – Portrayed by Anthony George, with partners Doug McClure and Sebastian Cabot
Owner of a detective agency named Checkmate, Inc. in San Francisco in the TV series Checkmate. (Created by Eric Ambler)
• TV series: 1960‑1962.
Jonathan Creek – Portrayed by Alan Davies
A creative consultant to a magician in the British TV series Jonathan Creek. (Written by David Renwick)
• TV series: 1997‑2004.
Alex Cross – Portrayed by Morgan Freeman
Even tempered psychologist and former FBI agent in several books and movies such as Along Came a Spider. (Created by James Patterson)
• Books: 1993‑2014 • Movies: 1997, 2001.
Richard Diamond – Portrayed by David Janssen
A former police officer and a hard-boiled private detective in the TV series Richard Diamond, Private Detective. (Written by Blake Edwards)
• TV series: 1957‑1960.
Nancy Drew – Portrayed in the 2007 movie by Emma Roberts
A young teenager, then young woman in several novel series including Nancy Drew Mystery Stories. (Created by Edward Stratemeyer)
• Novels: 1930‑2003, 2002‑2012 • Movie:2007.
Bulldog Drummond – Portrayed by Ronald Coleman
A gentleman adventurer in novels, short stories, and several movies including Calling Bulldog Drummond. (Created by H. C. McNeile)
• Novels: 1920‑1969 • Short stories: 1937 • Movies: 1922‑1969.
C. Auguste Dupin – Image here as depicted in the comic The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen
An upper class gentleman appearing in stories by such as The Murders in the Rue Morgue. (Created by Edgar Allan Poe)
• Novels: 1841,1842, 1844.
|(and many aliases)|
Gay Falcon – Portrayed by George Sanders, then his brother Tom Conway
A suave English gentleman detective solving mysteries in various venues, such as
The Gay Falcon. (Created by Michael Arlen)
• Movies: 1941‑1949.
Dr Gideon Fell – Image cropped from the book cover
A lexicographer and drinker in a series of novels such as The Man Who Could Not Shudder. (Created by John Dickson Carr)
• Novels: 1933‑1967.
|(aka Prodosh Chandra Mitra)|
Feluda – Portrayed in 1974 movie by Soumitra Chatterjee
An Indian detective of Bengali origin in novels and movies such as Sonar Kella. (Created by Satyajit Ray)
• Novels: 1966‑1997 • Movies: 1974‑2014.
Sister Fidelma – Image cropped from book cover for Suffer Little Children
A Celtic nun in the middle of the 7th century who solves mysteries in the book series Sister Fidelma Mysteries. (Created by Berresford Ellis, aka Peter Tremayne)
• Books: 1994‑2015.
Phryne Fisher – Portrayed by Essie Davis
A wealthy aristocrat in a series of novels the TV series Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries. (Created by Kerry Greenwood and others)
• Novels: 1989‑2008 • TV series: 2012‑.
Jessica Fletcher – Portrayed by Angela Lansbury
A widowed writer residing in Cabot Cove, Maine in the TV series Murder She Wrote. (Written by William Link and Richard Levin)
• TV series: 1984‑1996.
Garrett – Image cropped from the book cover
A P.I. in a fantasy universe with his partner, the Dead Man, in a series of novels such as Old Tin Sorrows. (Created by Glen Cook)
• Novels: 1987‑2013.
|(real name is Svlad Cjelli)|
Dirk Gently – Portrayed by Stephen Mangan
a "holistic detective" and psychic in the book series and TV series Dirk Gently. (Created by Douglas Adams)
• Books: 1987, 1988, 2002 • TV series: 2010, 2012.
Cordelia Gray – Portrayed by Helen_Baxendale
A shy young woman who inherited a detective agency in two novels and several TV series including An Unsuitable Job for a Woman. (Created by P. D. James)
• Novels: 1972, 1982 • TV series: 1997‑2001.
Peter Gunn – Portrayed by Craig Stevens
A sophisticated, well-dressed P.I. in the TV series Peter Gunn. (Created by Blake Edwards)
• TV series: 1958‑1961.
|(with Shawn Spencer)|
Burton Guster – Portrayed by Dule Hill
Shawn's partner in the TV series Psych . (Created by Steve Franks)
• TV series: 2006‑2014.
Mike Hammer – Portrayed on TV by Stacy Keach
A P.I. who doesn't shy away from violence in the series of novels, movies, and several TV series such as Mike Hammer, Private Eye. (Created by Mickey Spillaine)
• Novels: 1947‑2014 • Movies: 1952‑2003 • TV series: 1958‑1947, 1960,1984‑1987, 1998‑1998.
|(The Hardy Boys)|
Frank and Joe Hardy – Portrayed by Parker Stevenson and Shaun Cassidy
Teenage brothers and amateur detectives in a series of books and a TV series The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries. (Created by )
• Books: 1929‑present • TV series: 1974‑1977.
Jonathan and Jennifer Hart – Portrayed by Robert Wagner and Stefanie Powers
A millionaire couple in the TV series Hart to Hart. (Created by Sidney Sheldon)
• TV series: 1979‑1984.
|(with David Addison)|
Madelyn "Maddie" Hayes – Portrayed by Cybill Shepherd
A clever former model who owns a detective agency in the TV series Moonlighting. (Created by Glenn Gordon Caron)
• TV series: 1985‑1989.
Sherlock Holmes-1 – Portrayed in the 1983 movie by Ian Richardson
A renowned detective in four novels, 56 short stories, and many movies including The Hound of the Baskervilles . (Created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle)
• Novels: 1887‑1915 • Short stories: 1891‑1927 • Movies: many • TV series: many.
Sherlock Holmes-2 – Portrayed in the 2009 movie by Robert Downey Jr.
A renowned detective in adaptations on stage and radio, in TV series, and movies, including Sherlock Holmes . (Directed by Guy Ritchie)
• Movies: 1900 and on • TV movies and series: 1951 and on.
|(with Joan Watson)|
Sherlock Holmes-3 – Portrayed by Jonny Lee Miller
A modern-day version of the famous detective in the TV series Elementary . (Created by Robert Doherty)
• TV series: 2012‑.
Jack Irish – Portrayed by Guy Pearce
A former criminal lawyer turned P.I. in the three Australian TV movies inclucing Jack Irish: Bad Debts. (Created by Peter Temple)
• Books: 1996‑2003 • TV movies: 2012, 2013.
Patrick Jane – Portrayed by Simon Baker
A con artist and police consultant in the TV series The Mentalist. (Created by Bruno Heller)
• TV series: 2008‑2015.
Barnaby Jones – Portrayed by Buddy Ebsen
A private eye who comes out retirement after his son is murdered in the TV series Barnaby Jones. (Developed by Edward Hume)
• TV series: 1970‑1983.
Bernie Little – Image from 2015 book cover of Bernie's canine companion
A down-on-his-luck P.I. in the series of novels beginning with Dog on It. (Created by Spencer Quinn, aka Peter Abrahams)
• Novels: 2009‑2014.
Sally Lockhart – Portrayed by Billie Piper
A teen-age girl in the novel series and TV movies such as The Shadow in the North. (Created by Philip Pullman)
• Novels: 1872‑1882 • Movie: 2006,2007.
Arsène Lupin – Portrayed by Georges Descrières
Gentleman thief and master of disguise in books, stage, comics, numerous movies, and several TV series including the French show Arsène Lupin. (Created by Mauraice Leblanc )
• Books: 1907‑2012 • Movies: 1908‑2011 • TV series: 1971‑2007.
Thomas Magnum – Portrayed by Tom Selleck
A private eye living a luxurious life in Hawaii in the TV series Magnum, P.I.. (Created by Donald P. Bellisario)
• TV series: 1980‑1988.
Joe Mannix – Portrayed by Mike Connors
An even tempered P.I. and former POW in the TV series Mannix. (Created by Richard Levinson and Willam Link)
• TV series: 1967‑1975.
Philip Marlowe – Portrayed in the 1978 movie by Robert Mitchum
A wisecracking, hard-drinking, tough P.I. in novels, TV series, and movies including The Big Sleep. (Created by Raymond Chandler)
• Novels: 1939‑1989 • Movies: 1942‑1978 • TV series: 1959‑1960, 1983‑1986.
Miss Marple – Portrayed in movies by Margaret Rutherford
An old spinster is of independent means in a novels series, movies and TV series including 4.50 from Paddington. (Created by Agatha Christie)
• Novels: 1930‑1976 • Movies: 1961‑1964 • TV series: 1984‑1992, 2004‑2013.
Veronica Mars – Portrayed by Kristin Bell
A school girl whose father is a private detective in the TV series Veronica Mars. (Created by Rob Thomas)
• TV series: 2004‑2007 • Movie: 2014.
Josef Matula – Portrayed by Claus Theo Gärtner
A former police officer who becomes a private detective working with a defense attorney in the German TV series Ein Fall für zwei (A Case for Two). (Created by Karl Heinz Willschrei)
• TV series: 1981‑2013.
|(no first name mentioned)|
McGraw – Portrayed by Frank Lovejoy
Hard-hitting detective in the TV series Meet McGraw. (Written by Blake Edwards)
• TV series: 1957‑1958.
Johnny Midnight – Portrayed by Edmond O'Brien
New York City actor turned private detective in the TV series Johnny Midnight. (Produced by Jack Chertok)
• TV series: 1960.
Kinsey Millhone – Image from the cover of a Spanish edition of the novel.
A tough-talking former cop, P.I. in the alphabet mysteries series of novels including "H" is for Homicide. (Created by Sue Grafton)
• Novels: 1982‑2015.
Adrian Monk – Portrayed by Tony Shalhoub
A brilliant police consultant with obsessive compulsive disorder in the TV series Monk. (Created by Andy Breckman)
• TV series: 2002?2009.
|(aka The Continental Op)|
Hamilton Nash – Portrayed by James Coburn.
A master of deceit in the 36 short stories and two novels and the TV series The Dain Curse. (Created by Dashiell Hammett)
• Short stories: 1923‑1927 • Novels: 1929 • TV series: 1978.
Amelia Peabody – Image cropped from first edition cover
A rich Egyptologist in the novels series including The Curse of the Pharaohs. (Created by Elizabeth Peters)
• Novels: 1975‑2006.
Hercule Poirot – Portrayed in the British TV series by David Suchet
A dignified and meticulous Belgian detective in novels, short stories, movies and TV including Agatha Christie's Poirot. (Created by Agatha Christie)
• Novels: 1926‑1975 • Movies: 1931‑1986 • TV series: 1989‑2013.
Ellery Queen – Portrayed in the 1975 TV series by Jim Hutton
A mystery writer and editor of a magazine in novels, movies, and several TV series including The Adventures of Ellery Queen. (Ghost writers as Ellery Queen)
• Novels: 1929‑1971 • TV series:1950‑1952, 1954‑1956, 1975‑1976 • Movies: 1940‑1942.
Jeff Randall – Portrayed by Mike Pratt
A womanizing P.I. in the British TV series Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased). (Created by Dennis Spooner)
• TV series: 1969‑1970.
|with partner Cal Calhoun|
Rex Randolph – Randolph portrayed by Richard Long and Calhoun portrayed by Andrew Duggan
Couple of PIs with an office above the Old Absinthe House in New Orleans' French Quarter in the TV series Bourbon Street Beat. (Created by Charles Hoffman)
• TV series: 1959‑1960.
Dave Robicheaux – Portrayed by Tommy Lee Jones
Former New Orleans officer and recovering alcoholic in the book series and two movies including The Electric Mist. (Created by James Lee Burke)
• Books: 1987‑2013 • Movies: 1996,2009.
Jim Rockford – Portrayed by James Garner
A veteran and peace-loving P.I. in the TV series The Rockford Files. (Roy Huggins and Stephen J. Cannell)
• TV series: 1974‑80.
Joseph Rouletabille – Portrayed in the 1949 French movie by Serge Reggiani
A journalist in several movies and a novel series starting with The Mystery of the Yellow Room. (Created by Gaston Leroux)
• Novels: 1907‑1923 • Movies: 1913‑2005.
|(and his partners Cody Allen and Murray Bozinsky)|
Nick Ryder – Portrayed by Joe Penny, Perry King, and Thom Bray
Three buddies and their boat-based detective agency
in the TV series Riptide. (Created by Frank Lupo and Stephen Cannell)
• TV series: 1983‑1986.
John Shaft – Portrayed by Richarad Roundtree
A black P.I. in the style of James Bond in three movies beginning with Shaft. (Screenplay by Ernest Tidyman)
• Movies: 1971,1972, 1973.
Michael Shayne – Portrayed in the movies by Lloyd Noland
Detective in old style, gathering suspects in one place and naming the murderer, in a series of books, TV series, and several movies such as Michael Shayne, Private Detective. (Created by Brett Halliday)
• Books: 1939‑1958 • Movies: 1940‑1946 • TV series: 1960‑1961.
|(and brother A.J.)|
Rick Simon – Portrayed by Gerald McRaney and Jameson Parker
Brother detectives with contrasting ways in the TV series Simon & Simon. (Created by Philip DeGuere)
• TV series: 1981‑1989.
China Smith – Portrayed by Dan Duryea
A tough, shrewd, charming, and disreputable private eye in Singapore in the TV series China Smith. (Written by Jack Laird and Robert C. Dennis)
• TV series: 1952‑1955.
Sam Spade – Portrayed in the 1941 movie by Humphrey Bogart
A hard and shifty P.I. in a novel, short stories, and movies, including The Maltese Falcon. (Created by Dashiell Hammett)
• Novel: 1930 • Short stories: 1932 • Movies: 1931‑1978.
|(with Burton Guster)|
Shawn Spencer – Portrayed by James Roday
A wise-cracking sleuth in the TV series Psych . (Created by Steve Franks)
• TV series (2006‑2014).
Spenser – Portrayed by in the TV series Robert Urich
A smart-mouthed tough P.I. in novels, movies and the TV series Spenser: For Hire. (Created by Robert B. Parker)
• Novels: 1973‑2014 • TV series: 1985‑1988 • Movies: 1999, 2000, 2001.
Johnny Staccato – Portrayed by John Cassavetes
A jazz pianist and private detective in the TV series Johnny Staccato. (Produced by Everett Chambers)
• TV series: 1959‑1960.
Remington Steele – Portrayed by Pierce Brosnan
A former thief and con man hired to be a front P.I. in the TV series Remmington Steele . (Created by Robert Butler)
• TV series: 1982‑1987.
Jesse Stone – Portrayed by Tom Selleck
Former baseball shortstop and homicide detective in the book series and several movies, such as Benefit of the Doubt. (Created by Robert B. Parker)
• Books: 1997‑2015 • Movies: 2005‑2012.
Jake Styles – Portrayed by Joe Penny
An investigator working with a fat prosecutor in the TV series Jake and the Fatman. (Created by Dean Hargrove and Joel Steiger)
• TV series: 1987‑1992.
Dan Tanna – Portrayed by Robert Urich
A private detective and Vietnam War vet whose clients include the owner of multiple hotel casinos in Las Vegas. Vega$. (Created by Michael Mann)
• TV series: 1978‑1981.
|(known as The Saint)|
Simon Templar – Portrayed by Roger Moore in the TV series
A British amateur detective portrayed in books, radio, movies and TV by various actors over many years; for example, in the TV series The Saint. (Originally created by Leslie
• Books: 1928‑1963 • Movies: 1938‑1943 • Radio: 1944‑1951 • Comics: 1948‑1961.
Dr. John Thorndyke – Portrayed in the 1964 TV series by Peter Copley
A medical doctor and forensic specialist in a series of novels and short stories and TV series including The Case of Oscar Brodski. (Created by R. Austin Freeman)
• Novels: 1907‑1942.
|(with Rosemary Boxer)|
Laura Thyme – Portrayed by Felicity Kendal
A gardening detective in the British TV series Rosemary and Thyme. (Created by Brian Eastman)
• TV series: 2003‑2007.
Philo Vance – Portrayed in the 1933 movie by William Powell
An aristocrat of unusual culture and brilliance in novels and movies including The Kennel Murder Case. (Created by S. S. Van Dine)
• Novels:1926‑1939 • Movies: 1929‑1947.
Hetty Wainthropp – Portrayed by Patricia Routledge
A retired working-class woman in the British TV series Hetty Wainthropp Investigates. (Created by David Cook)
• TV series: 1996‑1998.
V. I. Warshawski – Portrayed in the movie by Kathleen Turner
A lean and athletic female P.I. appearing novels, short stories, and the movie V.I. Warshawski. (Created by Sara Paretsky)
• Novels: 1982‑2013 • Movie: 1991.
|(with Sherlock Holmes-3)|
Joan Watson – Portrayed by Lucy Liu
Holmes' former sobriety companion turned detective in the TV series Elementary. (Created by Robert Doherty)
• TV series: 2012‑.
Honey West – Portrayed by Anne Francis
A detective and ocelot owner who communicates with her partner via a radio hidden in her lipstick case in a book series and the TV series Honey West. (Created by Gloria and Forest Fickling)
• Books: 1957‑1972 • TV series: 1965‑1966.
Charlie Wild – Portrayed by John McQuade
A private detective in the TV series Charlie Wild, Private Detective. (Written by Peter Barry)
• TV series: 1950‑1952.
Lord Peter Wimsey – Portrays in the TV 1987 series by Edward Petherbridge
A wealthy English gentleman in a series of novels, short stories and TV series including Strong Poison. (Created by Dorothy L. Sayers)
• Novels: 1923‑2014 • TV series: 1972‑1975, 1987.
Nero Wolfe – Portrayed in the 2001 TV series by Maury Chaykin
An armchair detective in novels, short stories, movies, radio, and several TV series including A Nero Wolfe Mystery. (Created by Rex Stout)
• Novels: 1934‑1985 • Movies: 1936, 1937 • TV series: 1981, 2001‑2003.
The number of detectives in this listing is 92