IMDb > "CHiPs" The Watch Commander (1979)

"CHiPs" The Watch Commander (1979)

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Rick Rosner (creator)
Frank Telford (writer)
View company contact information for The Watch Commander on IMDbPro.
TV Series:
Original Air Date:
17 November 1979 (Season 3, Episode 11)
The new watch commander visits Central and begins hassling everyone for violating minor regulations. Even Getraer does not agree with the reprimands. The CHP is looking for thieves stealing trucks from loading docks. | Add synopsis »
User Reviews:
Character Development Of Lt. Bates See more (1 total) »


 (Episode Cast) (in credits order)

Larry Wilcox ... Officer Jon Baker

Erik Estrada ... Officer Frank Poncherello

Robert Pine ... Sgt. Joseph Getraer

Granville Van Dusen ... Lieutenant Harold Bates
Don Mitchell ... Tyrone

Lois Hamilton ... Marie Coselli (as Lois Areno)
Curtis Credel ... Melvin Joe Harley

Paul Linke ... Officer Arthur Grossman

Lou Wagner ... Harlan Arliss
Brodie Greer ... Officer Barry Baricza

Michael Dorn ... Officer Jebediah Turner

Gary Grubbs ... Mechanic
K.C. Winkler ... First Gir

Michelle Pfeiffer ... Jobina
Myron Healey ... Garage Owner
Patti Davis ... Receptionist
Peggy Skomal ... Girl #2
Randi Oakes ... Officer Bonnie Clark

Episode Crew
Directed by
Don Weis 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Rick Rosner  creator
Frank Telford  writer

Produced by
Cy Chermak .... producer
Paul Rabwin .... associate producer
Original Music by
Alan Silvestri 
Cinematography by
Robert F. Sparks (director of photography)
Casting by
Mike Hanks  (as Michael O. Hanks)
Set Decoration by
W. Joe Kroesser  (as W. Joseph Kroesser)
Production Management
Ronald R. Grow .... unit production manager (as Ron Grow)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Sam Baldoni .... second unit director
Robert S. Mills .... dga trainee
Sound Department
Ken Dufva .... foley artist (uncredited)
Duncan McEwan .... sound recordist (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Steve Stafford .... key assistant camera
Earl C. Williman .... gaffer (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Shelly Levine .... wardrobe supervisor
Location Management
Larry Luttrell .... location manager
Music Department
Harry V. Lojewski .... music supervisor
John Carl Parker .... composer: theme music (as John Parker)
Other crew
James Doherty .... story editor
William D. Gordon .... story editor
Rick Rosner .... executive consultant
Glen B. Craig .... with appreciation to
Series Cast
These people are regular cast members. Were they in this episode?
Lew Saunders ... Officer Gene Fritz

Series Crew
These people are regular crew members. Were they in this episode?
Directed by
Don Chaffey 
Donald L. Gold 
Alexander Grasshoff  (as Alex Grasshoff)
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Jack Hanrahan 
Ivan Nagy 
Paul Playdon  developed for television by
Bruce Reisman 
Rick Rosner  creator
Elliott Street 
Shirley Ulmer 

Original Music by
Billy May 
Casting by
Joe Scully 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Charles Norton .... first assistant director
Sound Department
Marty Church .... adr mixer
Marty Church .... foley mixer
George E. Marshall Jr. .... boom operator
Ed Osborne .... sound editor (as Edward M. Osborne)
Special Effects by
Andrew Miller .... special effects foreman
Christophor Newkirk .... special effects assistant
Dale Newkirk .... special effects foreman
Marlowe Newkirk .... special effects coordinator
Kenny Bates .... stunts
Bud Davis .... assistant stunt coordinator
Tom Elliott .... stunts
Debbie Evans .... stunt driving: motorcycles
Debbie Evans .... stunts
Greg Gault .... stunts
Chuck Hicks .... stunts
Gene LeBell .... stunts
Dennis Lehane .... stunts
Ray Lykins .... stunts
Jim McConnell .... stunts
Eddie Paul .... stunts
Camera and Electrical Department
Michael J. Jacobs .... special still photographer
Transportation Department
Randy Peters .... driver
Other crew
Sonny P. Filippini .... script supervisor
Dixie Fusillo .... production accountant
Shirley Ulmer .... script supervisor
Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

60 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

The actor who plays Watch Commander Lt. Bates is Granville Van Dusen. Interestingly enough, Robert Pine's real first name is also Granville.See more »
Factual errors: The runaway truck over a long distance is completely implausible as all the driver needed to do is turn off the ignition and friction combined with engine braking would stop the truck.See more »
Blonde Secretary:Ha ha ha ha!
Sgt. Joseph Getraer:Poncherello!
Officer Frank Poncherello:Is that you Sarge.
Sgt. Joseph Getraer:Your on limited duty, and I'm going to revoke that duty if you don't stop chasing the clerks around.
Officer Frank Poncherello:I can't help it if there delighted to see my back.
Sgt. Joseph Getraer:Now listen we have a new watch commander coming in a Lieutenant Bates first impressions count so I want you to summon up your dignity, and the take the front desk for once.
Officer Frank Poncherello:Front desk now Sarge.
Sgt. Joseph Getraer:The first he sees when he walks in the building.
Officer Frank Poncherello:But I hate checking taillights, and answering any phone calls can't he come in the back way.
Sgt. Joseph Getraer:Oh alright I need somebody to clean the shotguns, and wash motorcycles.
See more »


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1 out of 2 people found the following review useful.
Character Development Of Lt. Bates, 1 August 2013
Author: Desertman84 from United States

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

In The Watch Commander,a hard-nosed lieutenant tries to shape up CHP Central.

In the process,Lieutenant Bates alienates the entire crew at Central with his dictator style of leadership, although he's in charge of the highest rated department in the state.He tries to make sure everything runs to the rule book.But eventually sees the need for flexibility.

Also in this episode,a pair of thieves are renting tractor units and stealing packed trailers from loading bays.

What makes this one a great episode is the character development of Lt.Bates,who was played excellently by Granville Van Dusen.Interestingly,top movie actress Michelle Pffeifer makes an appearance as guest in it during the early part of her movie career as a woman named Jobina.

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