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Hill Street Blues

By Brendan J. LaSalle

Hill Street Blues was a pivotal show in television history. It was a move away from the larger-than-life cop action shows such as S.W.A.T. and Starsky and Hutch, although it was still stylistically a while before the gritty realism of NYPD Blue or Law and Order. Hill Street Blues was more down-to-earth: cops could get shot, relationships were difficult, characters you loved could be killed (remember that painful moment of silence for the beloved Sergeant Esterhaus?). But there was also the occasional surreal moment that gave each episode a rare energy.

The Very Best of Hill Street Blues showcases the magic of the long-running series: the wonderful ensemble cast headed by Daniel Travanti and Veronica Hamel, the consistently excellent writing, and the multi-episode plot lines, which were engaging and significant. The moving force behind the magic was Steven Bochco, whose ingenious concept for the look and the feel of the show changed the way television was made. This seven episode series is a testament to just how good a TV drama can be.


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Your Memories Shared!

"My favourite scene from the show was wheb Joe Coffey (Ed Marinaro) was killed. The four cops Hill, Renko, Washington and Larue sit in a bar at the end of the episode, reminiscing about their buddy, telling funny stories about him. It was the most touching farewell to a character I've seen on TV."

--Steve K



Aired: January 15, 1981 - May 19, 1987

Cast: Daniel J. Travanti, Michael Warren, Michael Conrad, Charles Haid, Veronic Hamel, Ed Marinaro, Ken Olin, Dennis Franz

Network: NBC

Genre: Police Drama

Theme songHill Street Blues by Mike Post

Image courtesy of NBC

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