Diagnosis Murder was a mystery/medical/crime drama television series starring Dick Van Dyke as Dr. Mark Sloan, a medical doctor who solves crimes with the help of his son, a homicide detective played by his real-life son Barry Van Dyke. The series began as a spin-off of Jake and the Fatman (Dr. Mark Sloan made his first appearance in a season four episode "It Never Entered My Mind"), became a series of three TV movies, and then a weekly television series that debuted on CBS on October 29, 1993. The series struggled at first and was almost canceled at the end of the second season; after returning as a midseason replacement (with several casting changes) for a third season, the series became successful and was regularly renewed thereafter. 178 episodes were made and aired in the show's eight seasons on the CBS network in the United States and two more TV movies aired after the series' cancellation on May 11, 2001.
In the Jake and the Fatman episode, Dr. Mark Sloan was a widower with no sons. Ally Walker played Dr. Amanda Bently, a role that went to Cynthia Gibb in the TV movies and, finally, to Victoria Rowell in the TV series. Stephen Caffrey played Dr. Jack Stewart in the movies, a role that went to Scott Baio in the weekly series.
The first three TV movies were shot in Vancouver, B.C. The first two seasons of the series were shot in Denver, CO and all the subsequent seasons in Los Angeles.