Norman Buntz, the gruff (and somewhat ethically questionable) detective from "Hill Street Blues" (1981) leaves the anonymous inner city and heads to the sunny climes of Southern California ... See full summary »
The original "ensemble drama," this is the story of an overworked, under-staffed police precinct in an anonymous inner city patterned after Chicago. We follow the lives of many characters, from the lowly beat and traffic cops to the captain of the precinct himself. This is the show that blazed the trail followed later by such notable ensemble dramas as "St. Elsewhere" and "L.A. Law." Written by
James Sikking based his portrayal of Lt. Howard Hunter on a drill instructor he knew in the military. See more »
When the various characters speak into the radio microphone in their patrol cars, they seldom press the "transmit" switch, and Andy Renko is occasionally seen speaking into the back of the microphone. See more »
Hill Street Blues is perhaps the best cop drama in television history. It was groundbreaking then and now! It is well-casted with a diverse ensemble. The writing is unbelievably brilliant enough to stand two decades. This is what classic shows are about. It is now seen frequently on Bravo with a fantastic theme song. The cast like Daniel J. Travanti, Veronica Hamel, Barbara Bosson, Betty Thomas, Dennis Franz, Ed Marinaro, and so many others perform brilliantly to make this show likable. The characters are real, candid, rather than just stereotypes. Watching most shows today, I miss the golden age of eighties television where the best shows like Hill Street Blues completed the NBC lineup. It was never a ratings winner but the network kept a quality show like this on to win countless awards including Emmys and Golden Globes. NBC in their Golden Age allowed Hill Street Blues and shows like St. Elsewhere and L.A. Law to flourish without worrying about ratings. Too bad, they still do not exist anymore. While the shows are now produced by networks who do a terrible show, a show like Hill Street Blues would never be approved or foreseen as a brilliant show.
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