One of the many variety shows available in the 1970s (along with Sonny and Cher, Captain and Tennille, Donny and Marie, etc). Hosted by black comic Flip Wilson, this show featured skits, ... See full summary »
"The story you are about to see is true", "Just the facts, ma'am", "We were working the day watch" - phrases which became so popular as to inspire much parody - set the realistic tone of this early police drama. The show emphasized careful police work and the interweaving of policemen's professional and personal lives. Written by
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Friday's partners changed early on for various reasons: Barton Yarborough died five days after shooting the second episode; Barney Phillips had a habit of wetting his lips (making reaction shots difficult); and 'Herbert Ellis (I)', who was never intended to be permanent, was hurried out for looking too much like Friday. Ironically, Ben Alexander, who became Friday's permanent partner, originally wanted to do only one episode of the show (as a character actor). See more »
Ladies and gentlemen, the story you are about to see is true. The names have been changed to protect the innocent.
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In my opinion this is the best cop show ever made. I haven't seen all the episodes, but I've seen a good deal of them, and I enjoy them very much. Jack Webb as Sgt. Joe Friday is the best cop around, and Ben Alexander as officer Frank Smith was the perfect partner for him (there were a few others in the real early shows but Smith was the best). The show was long running, and finally stopped in 1959. Although Webb brought the show back in 1967, and in color with Harry Morgan as his partner, these shows seem quieter and better in black and white. I think everyone who is a fan of Webb or just likes TV should see this cool show.
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