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NYPD Blue (1993–2005)

TV Series  |  TV-14  |   |  Crime, Drama, Mystery
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NYPD Detectives of Manhattan's fictional 15th precinct investigate criminal cases.

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2005   2004   2003   2002   2001   2000   … See all »
Won 4 Golden Globes. Another 80 wins & 201 nominations. See more awards »
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Series cast summary:
 Det. Andy Sipowicz / ... (261 episodes, 1993-2005)
 Det. Greg Medavoy (254 episodes, 1993-2005)
 Lt. Arthur Fancy / ... (164 episodes, 1993-2001)
 John Irvin (156 episodes, 1995-2005)
 Det. James Martinez (138 episodes, 1993-2000)
 Det. Diane Russell (135 episodes, 1995-2003)
 Det. Baldwin Jones (121 episodes, 2000-2005)
 A.D.A. Sylvia Costas / ... (106 episodes, 1993-1999)


Each week viewers see the gritty reality of life in a New York City Police unit as the officers go about their work with a grim determination. Two partners, Detectives Andy Sipowicz and John Kelley (later replaced by Bobby Simone), are the central characters in this weekly police drama, and personify very different approaches to their difficult job. Sipowicz's brash gruffness (covering an emotional vulnerability) is tempered by the precise and controlled demeanor of the two partners with whom he has worked. Written by Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Ride along with the boys in blue.


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Parents Guide:





Release Date:

21 September 1993 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Policía de Nueva York  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


(261 episodes)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Prior to the show's premiere and immediately afterward there was enormous controversy over what was perceived to be high levels of offensive language and nudity. Many affiliates refused to air the show and several advertisers boycotted it. Steven Bochco negotiated intensely with the network for a certain amount of language and nudity to be allowed. He has said that because of the pressure on the network from this criticism the show would likely not have survived had it not been an instant hit. See more »


[an older woman is coming on to Sorenson]
Andy: You know, sad thing is, back when I was drinking, many's the night I'd have thrown a hump into that.
See more »


Referenced in Chairman of the Board (1998) See more »

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User Reviews

Will We Get More?
13 July 2008 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Taking a lot from his previous cop drama Hill Street Blues, Steven Bochco fashioned in NYPD Blue one of the biggest television hits ever. It was the kind of show that even in its last days still wanted its fans begging for more. And we may yet get more, who knows.

Two characters remained through the show's run and anchored it until it's conclusion. Dennis Franz as Detective Andy Sipowicz, a very flawed individual, an alcoholic bigot, but the best detective around. And Gordon Clapp as Detective Greg Medavoy, a decent man with a lot of issues of confidence. The rest of the cast came and went through the 15th precinct of Manhattan just like life itself.

Sipowicz took over the show after the departure of his first partner David Caruso. He was predicted to be a breakout star and he sought to take advantage of his new found fame with a major movie career. A lot of folks wondered if NYPD Blue would survive at that point. Sipowicz was supposed to be a supporting character with the problems just mentioned, Archie Bunker with a badge. But he went in Alcoholics Anonymous and preached its virtues as did Daniel J. Travanti from Hill Street Blues. And over a dozen years, Sipowicz grew in strength and character.

Dennis Franz had three succeeding partners all who had a different character and background. Jimmy Smits, Rick Schroeder, and Mark-Paul Gosselaar were all very good and very different. In the case of Gosselaar he was finally able to shake the casting specter of Zack Morris from Saved By The Bell.

The women detectives all had an individuality about them as well. Probably Kim Delaney as the alcoholic Diane Russell was the best. She was counseled by Andy Sipowicz and brought into AA, but she also wound up marrying Jimmy Smits's character Bobby DeSimone and bravely carrying on after his demise. Sipowicz married ADA Sylvia Costas played by Sharon Lawrence and after she was killed in an unforgettable court house shooting episode. Andy later married again to young detective Charlotte Ross and found again some domestic happiness.

In fact it was getting to be a running joke towards the end that it was as fatal to be around Dennis Franz as it was to be involved with a Cartright from Bonanza. Partners Jimmy Smits and Rick Schroeder died, wife Sylvia Lawrence died, and his son from an even earlier marriage was killed all during the run of the show. But Sipowicz dealt with it all.

The detective squad of the 15th precinct had four heads, James McDaniel, Esai Morales, John O'Donahue, and Graham Currie. One of them actually was a cop, John O'Donahue. He played this mediocre time server Eddie Gibson who was an absolute doofus and originally was a detective on the graveyard shift. When he took the sergeant's test, passed it and wound up succeeding Morales the whole squad was ready to flip. But Gibson wasn't totally stupid, he knew these people and he basically let them have their head.

James McDaniel had a wonderful character in Arthur Fancy and he had all the problems and frustrations of being a black man who rises in the NYPD. I remember once in an episode he was asked why he didn't get rid of a bigot like Sipowicz. To which he replied if I got rid of him it isn't like I'm going to get as his replacement some candidate for the brotherhood award. Probably I'll get another white cop with the same attitudes, but who isn't half as good on the job.

We got to know all these people and what baggage they might have brought to each case they were assigned to. Probably NYPD Blue could have kept going, but Steven Bochco decided to end it while still on high. And he did in fact give it an ending of sorts unlike Hill Street Blues. It was an ironic ending in fact for Sipowicz. But you'll have to see the final episode in fact you'll have to see the entire series which you can catch on cable television to appreciate why.

But the elements are there for a TV movie or six. I've got a good feeling that people would want to see them. We may not have seen the last of the detective squad of the 15th precinct from NYPD Blue.

15 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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