With his rumpled raincoat, ever-present cigar, bumbling demeanour and Sherlock Holmesian powers of deduction, disarmingly polite homicide detective Lieutenant Columbo took on some of the most cunning murderers in Los Angeles, most of whom made one fatal, irrevocable mistake: underestimating his investigative genius.
Dr. Cal Lightman teaches a course in body language and makes an honest fortune exploiting it. He's employed by various public authorities in various investigations, doing more when the ... See full summary »
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>
I guess I'll just review Season 1 in this review, hopefully in the future I'll have time to review each season on a one by one basis.
We all know the history of how NYPD Blue stirred an uproar when it first came out in 93, but forgotten by some is just how well done the show was.
Very minor spoilers may appear throughout the rest of this review.
Season 1 absolutely blew anything that had and has been on TV since away. Following the life of Detectives from the 15th precinct, the show opened with what may be the finest episode of any TV show ever.
In season one we're introduced mainly to two detectives, John Kelly (oh how I miss Caruso) and Andy Sipowitz (played by the amazing Dennis Franz). Kelly is an Irish-American Cop whose father was killed in the line of duty when he was but a child. Caurso plays Kelly flawlessly, and really portrays an honest man whose word is his life, but will step over other boundaries should the situation call for it. Kelly isn't without a few flaws though, and they end up causing him some trouble as time goes on.
Sipowitz starts the series as a man with a heavy drinking problem, an insatiable hatred for a member of the mob (Alfronse Geordello), problems at work stemming from his addiction to the bottle, and a slight bit of racism that seeps through from time to time. As the season goes on we see that he really isn't a bad person after all and the bond that is shown between the two partners even in their most trying times is moving to say the very least.
Other characters on the show include an African-American boss- Lieutenant Arthur Fancy (done well by James McDaniel), a troubled cop Janice Licasli (Amy Brenneman in probably the only good role in her life), Kelly's ex wife, Laurie (played by Sherry Stringfield), whom both share mutual feelings for each other but can't seem to get things to work out, and others.
To note, though he came in a couple episodes after the beginning, Greg Medavoy (played by a highly underrated Gordon Clapp) is the only detective other then Sipowitz who has been with the show since Season 1.
Season 1 unlike later seasons (starting mainly around season 6) had ongoing story lines that were spread throughout the entire season, and weren't forgotten after an episode or two. It's sad that the show started going downhill in later years (though still better than the majority of shows on TV). It's also a shame that Caruso left the show so soon. While Jimmy Smits did an excellent job playing Detective Simone for his run, it would have been wonderful to see Caruso in some more episodes. The producers of the show should really set aside their differences and attempt with everything they can to at least get him in on the finale.
A darned good show. A must see if there ever was one. Season 1 of NYPD Blue should not be missed and is well worth the money to pickup on DVD. I would recommend picking it up on DVD as I believe the show is much better uncut as it was meant to be.
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