Television police drama starring two female cops as partners. Their contrasting personalities (one is tough and the other sensitive) strengthen them as a team, allowing each a different perspective on both personal and professional situations. Written by
Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>
The screenplay for the pilot was originally written in the 1970s for a featured film that never materialized. After the success of Charlie's Angels (1976), producer Barney Rosenzweig shopped an edited version of the screenplay as a possible TV series. It took many years for the script to be produced because the networks felt that there was no audience for a realistic show about female detectives. See more »
[Cagney and Lacey have just returned from undercover work as prostitutes]
Mary Beth Lacey:
Chris, lemme tell ya: cop feet weren't meant for hooker shoes.
See more »
Actor Sidney Clute passed away during the run of the series. In every episode after his death, his name and picture still appeared in the opening credits. That was done by the producers as a tribute to him. See more »
This show was unique in that it was the first time that two basically average looking women played the leads in a TV show that was not about the fact that they were just average looking women. The show was also ground-breaking in that both detectives in the partnership were women - smart, capable women. Women had gradually been integrated into TV police forces over the 15 years prior to this series, but they were usually part of a crime-solving team such as on "Ironside". The balance in this show was not through the well-known old cop/young cop formula. Instead, both detectives were 30-something women. The contrast came in the form of their marital status and their personal situations. Lacey was married and a mother, and Cagney was single.
There was a pilot and six episodes during the 1981-1982 season starring an actress other than Sharon Gless as Detective Christine Cagney. In the 1982-1983 season the show settled into the dynamic that made it so popular and which most people remember.
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