Kojak (USA, 1973-1978 and 2005) - Kojak
refers to two separate but related American
Crime drama television series, with the original
airing on CBS and the second series airing on
USA Network.  Kojak (1973 series) is an
American television series starring Telly
Savalas as the eponymous New York City
Police Department Detective Lieutenant Theo
Kojak. It aired from October 24, 1973 to March
18, 1978 on CBS. It took the time slot of the
popular Cannon series, which was moved one
hour earlier. Kojak's Greek heritage, shared by
actor Savalas, was prominently featured in the
series.  In March 2005, a new Kojak series
debuted on the USA Network cable channel
and on ITV4 in the UK. In this "reimagined"
version, Ving Rhames, an African-American
actor, portrays the character. The bald head,
lollipops, and "Who loves ya, baby?"
catchphrase remained intact, but little else
remained from the 1973 original. The series
lasted one season.  
Breaking the Rules
When you become a police officer, you’re
going to work with other cops who spend
a lot of time trying to work around rules
or ignoring rules all together.  While the
vast majority of police officers will do
their best to work within your police
department’s framework of rules, there
will be two groups that will avoid rules on
a frequent basis.  The first group will be
lazy and incompetent people who would
be lazy and incompetent in any line of
work they might find themselves.  The
second group is anything but lazy;
however, their idea of competence is
predicated on what situations,
circumstances, or rules they believe to be
worthy of their time and attention.  
Taken to the extreme, this group typifies
the statement, “The end justifies the
means.”

Police television shows and movies
frequently embrace the theme of the
crusading “rules be damned” cop who
sneers at stupid rules while he or she
pursues truth and justice.  In movie land,
all the insubordination and carnage left in
the wake of Super Cop fades away from
scene to scene.  In the end, justice
prevails and Super Cop is vindicated.
Television History
The First 75 Years
Homicide: Life on the Street (USA,
1993-1999) Homicide: Life on the Street is an
American television police procedural series
chronicling the work of a fictional Baltimore
Police Department homicide unit. It ran for
seven seasons on the NBC network from 1993
to 1999 and then was followed by a 2000
TV-movie that served as a de facto series
finale. The series was based on David Simon's
nonfiction book Homicide: A Year on the Killing
Streets, and many characters and stories used
throughout the show's seven seasons were
based on individuals and events depicted in
the book (Simon would also use them in his
own series for HBO, The Wire).  
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Police Shows
Police Television Shows
Past and Present
Page 5
Created by Emmy Award-winning
producer Dick Wolf, "Law & Order:
Special Victims Unit," now in its 15th
season, is the longest-running primetime
drama currently on television. This
hard-hitting and emotional series from
NBC's "Law & Order" brand chronicles the
life and crimes of the Special Victims Unit
of the New York City Police Department,
an elite squad of detectives who
investigate sexually based crimes.

Dedicated Detective Olivia Benson
(Mariska Hargitay), a seasoned veteran of
the unit who has seen it all, heads up the
department with empathy and
professionalism, all the while dealing with
her difficult past - as a product of rape
and a witness to her mother's grief, she
can personally relate to each victim she
tries to help.  In 2011, Hargitay
(Detective Benson) garnered her eighth
Emmy nomination for Lead Actress in a
Drama Series and won the 2006 Emmy
for that category.
by Barry M. Baker
In the real world of police work, the super
cop who routinely ignores rules has a
shelf life.  The length of that shelf life will
vary due to a lot of factors including just
being lucky.  In the real world, the
tolerance for Super Cop’s insubordination
will be limited.  As for any carnage…well,
that’s the real career killer.

You’re definitely going to work with a few
of these super cops.  You’re going to be
disappointed when you realize that your
super cops aren’t as sincere as the
television versions.  The pursuit of truth
and justice will be secondary to the
pursuit of recognition.  While everybody
likes recognition from time to time for a
job well done, Super Cop’s need for
recognition can be described as an
addiction.  Addiction to recognition is
dangerous simply because of the fleeting
nature of recognition.  When a police
officer becomes a recognition junkie, that
officer’s career will be in jeopardy in direct
proportion to the level of the addiction.   

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