The Professionals: Season 2, Episode 5

In the Public Interest (4 Nov. 1978)

TV Episode  -   -  Action | Crime
7.8
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 27 users  
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Chief Constable Green operates a zero tolerance policing system bordering on fascist dictatorship. When a gay youth counselling centre is attacked by masked men one of the staff suspects ... See full summary »

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Title: In the Public Interest (04 Nov 1978)

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Cast

Episode complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Paul Hardwick ...
Chief Constable Green
John Judd ...
Inspector Chives
...
Pellin
Allan Surtees ...
Minister
Colin McCormack ...
Edwards
Tom Georgeson ...
Reed
Tony Calvin ...
Terry
Pamela Manson ...
Sally
Saba Milton ...
Female Clerk
Fredric Abbott ...
Big Man
Fraser Cains ...
Cop
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Storyline

Chief Constable Green operates a zero tolerance policing system bordering on fascist dictatorship. When a gay youth counselling centre is attacked by masked men one of the staff suspects the police are behind it and goes to see Cowley. Bodie and Doyle themselves become victimized after being charged with a minor traffic offence. However Green and corrupt inspector Chives are about to find out that they have picked on the wrong people - especially as Doyle has photographic evidence of police corruption. Written by don @ minifie-1

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Action | Crime

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Details

Release Date:

4 November 1978 (UK)  »

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Did You Know?

Goofs

When Bodie and Doyle are stopped by the police on the first occasion (for speeding), they pull up opposite a row of houses. When they drive off again, they are opposite a parade of shops instead. See more »

Quotes

Minister: A city sewn up tight but safely... a city where hooligans are kept in check and suspicious characters are forced to move on. For God's sake, George, to most law-abiding citizens it sounds like Utopia!
George Cowley: Aye... That's what they thought about Hitler's Germany!
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User Reviews

 
The Abuse Of Power
18 June 2009 | by (Ambrosia) – See all my reviews

'The Professionals', which ran from 1978-82, hardly springs to mind as an example of intelligent, thought-provoking drama, yet this episode - screened as part of the second series - is just that.

Brian Clemens' 'In The Public Interest' is set in a city where a zero tolerance approach to crime has led to police corruption on a massive scale. The chief constable, Green ( excellently played by Paul Hardwick ) and his inspector Chives ( John Judd ) have restored law and order, but are using their power to arrest anyone they do not like the look of ( interestingly, no black people are on view in this episode ). In the opening scene, masked men break into a gay youth centre, burn leaflets, before inflicting brutality on one of the staff. Pellin ( Stephen Rea ), the staff member in question, is convinced the police are responsible, and goes to see George Cowley ( Gordon Jackson ) of C15.

Bodie and Doyle witness first-hand the fascistic tactics of Green's regime when they see a drunken motorist arrested and then roughed up when all he was doing was locking up his car. They themselves are hounded by the police, and charged with inconsequential motoring offences.

When Doyle gains photographic evidence of the corrupt police in action, both he and Doyle are targeted by Chives, who is prepared to kill them in order to save his neck...

With vote-seeking politicians grabbing headlines these days with soundbites about about 'broken societies', this story is as relevant as ever. It is not anti-police propaganda ( the pivot of the story is an incorruptible copper ) but shows what can happen when the pendulum swings too far in the opposite direction. When a Minister defends Green's record, Cowley points out that Nazi Germany started the same way. The police themselves should not be beyond investigation.

The city in which the story is set is never named, but mention of Canal Street provides a clue.


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