Chico and the Man was a sitcom that aired on NBC from 1974–78, starring Jack Albertson as Ed Brown (“The Man”), the elderly owner of a run-down garage in an impoverished East Los Angeles barrio; and Freddie Prinze as the streetwise young mechanic Francisco “Chico” Rodriguez.
The initial premise saw Chico, a Chicano-Latino, arrive in Los Angeles looking for work and his next big break. One of his stops is at Ed’s Garage, where the cranky Ed is in a foul mood and – basically wanting the world to go away – uses ethnic slurs to drive Chico away (“Go away, and take your flies with you!” was generally the most quoted one in negative reviews of the pilot). Chico leaves disappointed, but late that night, he returns and cleans the garage and moves into an old van parked in the garage. Ed grudgingly gives Chico a job, and as the series progresses, the two warm-up to one another. Ed’s cynical, bitter view of the world changes (he had become a virtual alcoholic upon the death of his wife several years earlier) and he eventually comes to accept Chico as a surrogate son… read more >