Saturday, June 28, 2014

1 ADAM 12 two episodes in Review

Last week, I watched an old series on Me-TV, the show was Adam 12, one of the many shows that Jack Webb produced back in the day.

I found two episodes very interesting because of what they were about.

The first Episode Extreme Force

Martin Milner as Officer Malloy is involved in a door to door search for a missing six year old girl.  He finds her unconscious in a house and gives pursuit to the man who had abducted her.  The man has the opportunity to run, because Malloy did not react fast enough upon seeing the unconscious child.

There is a long foot chase during which Malloy finally tackles the suspect, because Malloy had no cell phone or blue tooth he had no way to advise officers he was in pursuit.

Because of the tackle and the forceful manner that Malloy used when handcuffing the suspect, the suspect is able to file charges of extreme force leading to Malloys suspension and being put under review.

The suspect is a sex offender and has been arrested several times but was never convicted.

This Episode aired in 1974, long before Child perverts were in the news daily, and it brings to light the human aspect of Police work, how many of us get outraged when a child comes to harm because of an adult?

In this episode again it was the criminal who had rights and the victim and  Police Officer who were left out in the cold.  What is sad, is how little things change.

Pressure Point 1975, final season.

A new rookie not yet a graduate from the  Police academy freezes in the field, he is unable to speak because he is a stutter and freezes under pressure.  The rookie had undergone speach therapy to learn to control the problem, and in controlled environments is able to control his stuttering.

However he is sent out on an assignment and when the time comes he freezes, he is unable to speak at all.  When he reveals his disability it ends his career as a Police Officer, before it can begin.

Again an episode that shows the human condition.  How many of us hide our limitations so we can pursue a job, relationship or simply be accepted by our friends?  The young rookie resigned realizing that he could not carry out the job, because of his handicap.

Adam 12 was a show that looked at the human aspect in Police work and did complex stories in half an hour.

Was it perfect ?  No,no television series ever is.   Was it overly simplistic?  Perhaps at times, but this was in an era where we did not have realistic shows like Hill Street Blues and Law and Order.

But it was and is a show that was well written and asks the viewer to put themselves in the position of the character. 

What would you have done?  How would you have reacted instead of telling us how we should respond, it left it up to us to decide.  

This is why Adam 12 is still one of those shows I watch 40 years later.

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