The Dirty Harry's movies were the best of their type and most definately superior to the Deathwish series.
I'll take the first "Death Wish" over any of the Dirty Harry films I think.
besides Eastwood's obviously cool character I think the movies were a bit lackluster.
The first film has that wonderfully cool shot at the football field (Harry is stepping on the scorpion's hands or something...) and then finally the ultimate climax on that dock...but everything else...meh.
And Scorpio is too feminine a man to be scary. He is like a little girl and he comes off annoying.
The sequels dont fair much better. You get that awful one where some hippie's get a load of rocket launchers and start to terrorize San Fran with them and then their is the Eastwood Directed one called "sudden Impact" that is just pure rubbish(the coffee shop scene where Eastwood delivers the famous line "go ahead... make my day" is classic though).
The one that really comes close to being as good as the original is "Magnum Force" I think. I believe that is the one that other policemen become vigilantes and Harry has to take em down.