Police State/Civil Liberties

Adam-12 Was ‘Copaganda’—And Cops Should Emulate It

I used to watch this show as a kid and thought that’s what real police work was. Fortunately, I eventually “put away childish things.”

By Addison Del Mastro

The American Conservative

It’s been a staple of television for decades: a dramatic or comedic show following the work of a pair of police officers as they go about their sworn duty to protect and serve.

From Dragnet to Police Squad (in color!) to NYPD Blue to The Wire to Brooklyn 99, the cop show has taken many forms. Some have merely used police as a more or less incidental backdrop to comedy (in the way that Irish cult classic sitcom Father Ted wasn’t really about religion or priests). Others have shown the darker and grittier side of police work, not altogether sympathetically. And some have managed to deal with serious issues, including critiques of police misconduct, with humor. In the wake of George Floyd’s murder, there’s been a lot of talk about canceling or reimagining cop shows. There’s also one worth watching anew: Dragnet’s late-60s, full-color cousin Adam-12.


1 reply »

  1. I am reminded of a trailer for the original “Police Academy” movie, where an old lady asks a cop, “Can you get my kitty out of the tree?” Cop says, “No problem, ma’am!”, and pulls a gun, aims, “Bang!”.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nrLrRZlCsUI at 1:50

    This ISN’T that video, but it’s funny nevertheless.
    (Presumably, no actual cats were harmed during the making of this video…I hope!)

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