Cop Rock

Cop Rock Information

Cop Rock is an Emmy Award-winning American musical police drama series that aired on ABC in 1990. The show, a police drama presented as a musical, was co-created by Steven Bochco, who also served as executive producer. TV Guide ranked it #8 on TV Guide's List of the 50 Worst TV Shows of All Time list in 2002.


Cop Rock attempted to combine police procedural with musical theatre, the former a genre in which Bochco had already been very successful with Hill Street Blues. The series featured an ensemble cast that mixed musical numbers and choreography throughout storylines. For example, one courtroom scene in the pilot episode had the jury break into song, proclaiming their verdict on the defendant ("He's Guilty") Gospel-style. Another episode had a lineup of Hispanic suspects proclaim in song "We're the local color with the coppertone skin / And you treat us like we're guilty of some terrible sin." The show also featured crossover appearances from other Bochco series; one episode featured James B. Sikking reprising his Hill Street Blues role of Lt. Howard Hunter, while another episode featured cameos by L.A. Law stars Jimmy Smits and Michele Greene.

The series' theme song, "Under the Gun," was written by Randy Newman, who also performed it in the series' title sequence music video-style in a recording studio, complete with a full backing band and the show's cast (appearing out of character) serving as an audience. Mike Post, who served as Cop Rock's music supervisor, was also part of Newman's band in that opening sequence; Post is the keyboardist in dark glasses sitting next to Newman.

The show was a critical and commercial failure and was canceled by ABC after 11 episodes. Owing to the combination of its bizarre nature (a fusion of musical performances with serious police drama) and its high-powered production talent, it became infamous as one of the biggest television failures of the 1990s. The series' final episode, which aired on December 26, 1990, concluded with the cast breaking character and joining crew members in performing a closing song. (That final episode featured Sheryl Crow appearing as a back-up singer.)

Despite its overwhelmingly negative reception and short run, the series still has been rebroadcast in later years, with VH1 and A&E Network airing it on separate occasions later in the 1990s, and Trio airing it in the 2000s.


Main cast

  • Anne Bobby - Off. Vicki Quinn
  • Barbara Bosson - Mayor Louise Plank
  • Ronny Cox - Chief Roger Kendrick
  • Vondie Curtis-Hall - Cmdr. Warren Osborne
  • David Gianopoulos - Off. Andy Campo
  • Larry Joshua - Capt. John Hollander
  • Paul McCrane - Det. Bob McIntire
  • James McDaniel - Off. Franklin Rose
  • Ron McLarty - Ralph Ruskin
  • Mick Murray - Det. Joseph Gaines
  • Peter Onorati - Det. Vincent LaRusso

Recurring cast

  • Teri Austin - Trish Vaughn
  • Dennis Lipscomb - Sidney Weitz
  • William Thomas, Jr. - Det. William Donald Potts
  • Kathleen Wilhoite - Patricia Spence

Episode list

Ep. # Prod. Code Episode Title Airdate
1 2101 Pilot September 26, 1990
2 0X02 "Ill-Gotten Gaines" October 3, 1990
3 0X03 "Happy Mudder's Day" October 10, 1990
4 0X04 "A Three-Corpse Meal" October 17, 1990
5 0X05 "The Cocaine Mutiny" October 24, 1990
6 0X06 "Oil of Ol' Lay" October 31, 1990
7 0X07 "Cop-a-Feeliac" November 7, 1990
8 2108 "Potts Don't Fail Me Now" November 21, 1990
9 2109 "Marital Blitz" December 5, 1990
10 0X10 "No Noose Is Good Noose" December 12, 1990
11 0X11 "Bang the Potts Slowly" December 26, 1990

Awards and nominations

Year Award Result Category Recipient Episode
1991 Emmy Award Nominated Outstanding Sound Mixing for a Drama Series Robert Appere, Gary D. Rogers, Ron Estes, and Mark Server "Oil Of Ol'Lay"
Nominated Outstanding Directing in a Drama Series Gregory Hoblit Pilot
Nominated Outstanding Achievement in Music and Lyrics Ron Boustead and Greg Edmonson "Oil Of Ol'Lay"
Won Outstanding Editing for a Series - Single Camera Production Joe Ann Fogle Pilot
Won Outstanding Achievement in Music and Lyrics Randy Newman Pilot

See also

  • Hull High - Another television series with musical segments that debuted (and was canceled) in 1990.
  • Viva Laughlin - A 2007 television drama with musical segments. The show was canceled after just two airings due to poor ratings.

This webpage uses material from the Wikipedia article "Cop_Rock" and is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. Reality TV World is not responsible for any errors or omissions the Wikipedia article may contain.



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