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Meanwhile, back in the seventies...

I should totally be a cop. Today's episode of Kojak had a young bloke dash down an alleyway in the middle of the night, and the police didn't get a proper look, so weren't sure who he was. He was clearly Erik Estrada. I kept telling them, but they wouldn't believe me. But then it was 1975, so presumably none of them had seen CHiPs yet. I am slightly concerned that I recognised him so easily, given that it was the briefest glimpse, and I haven't seen his show in thirty years, but I guess some things stay with you.

I'm having such fun with Kojak. The clothes are hilarious, the décor unsettling, the cars are all seven miles long, and look quite incapable of turning corners, and I keep recognising people, all looking much younger than they should be. Despite the frightening ties and waistcoats, the regular cast are all very good, and it manages to be admirably different from all the other cop shows on the telly. Or at least it does for the first few years. Kojak and Crocker are a particularly good double act, well suited to each other, and I especially appreciate the pacing. You get long, lingering shots of New York, and of Kojak arriving at the scenes of crimes, driving one-handed whilst drinking rubbish coffee from a plastic cup. The bad guys get nearly as much screen time as the good guys, so we know who everybody is, and their motives seem real. Sometimes chase scenes can go on for days. That's always good, as boy can Crocker run.

Sorry, I think this post was originally just going to be along the lines of "Kojak! Yay!" But I went on a bit. That's never happened before.

But still. Kojak! Yay! I do prefer Crocker and Stavros, if I'm honest, but that's not what the programme's called. Anyhow, if you have a spare hour, you could do worse than spend it in the company of the homicide department of Manhattan South. Just don't be expecting fabulous enlightenment in the gender equality stakes. Ouch.

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Comments

( 14 fierce growls — Growl fiercely )
heartonsnow
Jul. 30th, 2014 06:30 pm (UTC)
I went on a bit. That's never happened before.

:o ;p
swordznsorcery
Jul. 31st, 2014 03:48 am (UTC)
I may be boring, but at least I'm honest about it. ;)
emeraldarrows
Jul. 30th, 2014 09:59 pm (UTC)
I love Kojak so much, Especially Crocker. <3

And it's been years since I watched CHiPs. I should rewatch it again.
swordznsorcery
Jul. 31st, 2014 03:46 am (UTC)
There are a few episodes of "CHiPs" on YouTube if you want to see some of it again. I had a quick look last night, but I wasn't really in the mood. It's odd, but it's not one I've ever actively sought out again, although I'm sure I enjoyed it as a little kid. "Kojak" continues to please though. I'm often impressed by how much Kevin Dobson manages to make of the role of Crocker, and George Savalas really deserved to have a bigger career.
emeraldarrows
Jul. 31st, 2014 12:24 pm (UTC)
Ah, thanks. 'll check them out later.:D
meathiel
Jul. 31st, 2014 01:24 am (UTC)
I used to love Kojak back in the day ...
And CHIPs ... oh the memories ... *lol*
swordznsorcery
Jul. 31st, 2014 03:43 am (UTC)
Most of them involving ten tonnes of hairspray, probably! :)
liadtbunny
Jul. 31st, 2014 11:48 am (UTC)
I'll get you on The Strangers team they need a man like you - they totally failed to recognise a police officer in their midst was a villain in the last season! I'll give you a ref.

Old TV is the best. Ah, the casual sexism, racism and homophobia why don't more people watch it(!)?
swordznsorcery
Jul. 31st, 2014 02:03 pm (UTC)
Kojak keeps surprising me in that line. There's few enough women doing anything, which I suppose is a form of sexism, but there's been several episodes where gay characters get treated perfectly normally. Racism doesn't show its head much either.* It's very much a show about New York, which has always been a city that likes to see itself as inclusive. They even tackled sexism in one episode, where the department got its first female murder detective. Some of the officers weren't too happy about it, but young Crocker took it all in his stride. Then the following week it was back to business as usual, with women just being nurses and secretaries. :D


* Though the jive-talking black stereotypes frequently make me cringe. For all I know they're accurate, but still.
liadtbunny
Aug. 1st, 2014 11:52 am (UTC)
'Callan' has a decent attitude gay characters, but I've no idea if that was common on TV then (late 60's - early 70's). There was a race episode, but I had no idea what was going on there so ??? The 60's was better for women in 'Callan', well there were more of them on screen. Sometimes I think the 60's was better than the 70's as the telly was politer(?).

'Strangers' can be dodgy sometimes, 'Nigerian lager' - argh! But they have a woman on the team and it's not seen as a big thing.
swordznsorcery
Aug. 1st, 2014 09:28 pm (UTC)
I suppose TV is a liberal medium on the whole. Actors and writers do tend towards the left, and you shouldn't find many in the performing arts who are homophobic. You really never know, though. There's an episode of "The A-Team" called 'There Goes The Neighborhood' (TX: December '85) which is appalling. The guys are sharing a house for a bit, and somebody asks if Hannibal and BA are a couple. I find it quite unpleasant to watch. And yet "Simon & Simon", which is exactly the same age, and made by the same studio, was very gay friendly. Go figure!
liadtbunny
Aug. 2nd, 2014 09:45 am (UTC)
There's always one "Ben Steed" that spoils the party:/
lost_spook
Jul. 31st, 2014 04:29 pm (UTC)
Aw, well, LJ is the place to come and enthuse about old TV! I've never seen Kojak, but appreciation of 70s TV is something I can get behind. ;-)
swordznsorcery
Aug. 1st, 2014 03:19 am (UTC)
I shall never understand why the whole of the world isn't watching old TV. They're a strange lot!
( 14 fierce growls — Growl fiercely )

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