A few weeks ago, my husband bought the first season of one of my all-time favorite shows, Homicide: Life on the Street. I'd been carrying on about how much I missed it. Isn't he a sweet guy?

Anyway, after he saw the first two episodes, he turned to me and said, "You ever see Crime Story?" And I had to say I'd never even heard of it. But was intrigued to hear that it had inspired not only Homicide, The Sopranos, The Shield, and The Wire (to name but a few), but also (probably) Quentin Tarantino. Then I figured that was the end of that discussion, because the end of the school year was upon us and he'd forget about it.

However, his celebration present for said end of school year was the first season of Crime Story. And, holy crap. I was hooked after the second episode. It's definitely different from the shows named above, but not at all inferior. Anyone else remember it/own it/watch it?

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Never seen Crime Story, but just a few weeks ago we were watching Homicide season 1 again. Evil Kev's planning to buy the whole series. Love that show.
We want to get the whole series, too. Just from those first two episodes, I'd forgotten how much humor was in that show - and how seamless it was with the darker aspects.

By the way, Jon Polito (Steve Crosetti) plays a mobster in Crime Story. Quite a few "names" had early roles in that series, including Tarantino favorites Ving Rhames and Michael Madsen. And Dennis Farina's L&O role is basically a reprisal of his CS role.
I loved that show, and for a long time after it went off the air, I looked for reruns. Haven't thought about it for years. But your mention of it prompted me to add the first two seasons to my Blockbuster queue today. Can't wait to watch Lt. Torello track down Ray Luca and Paulie again.
Homicide is still my favorite cop show. Rarely miss a rerun. Maybe I should buy the DVD, huh?
Had never heard of Crime Story, but I'll be on the lookout for it. I always thought HILL STREET BLUES was the one to start it all. I suppose it depends on what "it" is. Haven't seen Homicide either. Got a lot of watching to do.
I never saw "Hill Street Blues." My impression was that, like "NYPD Blues," it focused on some of the more salacious aspects of working in a PD. True to life, in some ways, but less about the cases? Like I said, I never saw it.

By "it" I just meant the spate of police procedurals in existence today, the way they are written and filmed. But maybe that can be traced to both shows!
Boomtown. Wow, my wife and I both loved that show.
We watched some of Boomtown. Actually, another show I thought was going to be great was Robbery Homicide - Tom Sizemore I think it was in the lead. And that disappeared in a blink. And Boomtown was within a year or so of that. And Deadline. It got to the point where I wouldn't watch a show until it was in it's second season, in case I really got hooked and it got yanked. I started to think I was jinxing the programs.

For me, the best cop show on TV is The Wire. I love it. David Simon, and doing more what I think he wanted to do with Homicide. I understand he isn't a fan of network television because of the restrictions they put on it. The Wire is pure genius. Of course, with Pelecanos, Lehane and Richard Price all contributing to the writing team, how can it not be?
I heard excellent things about Boomtown, but never got a chance to see it. My mother loved Barney Miller when it was on - she too said it was the most authentic (had uncles and cousins in the NYPD).

Has anyone seen the one-season Denis Leary cop show, "The Job"?
BTW, for those of you who are fans of Homicide, you really owe it to yourself to read the book by David Simon on which the series was based. It's a terrific read.
1) Crime Story was a GREAT show.

2) Homicide is one of my favorites. Even when the cast got prettified it was still good. To this day I still hold a grudge against NYPD Blue because it was a watered down soap opera that beat the snot out of Homicide in the ratings.

You want to know the chief difference between the two. The way that they handled death.

When Det. Bobby Simone died it was in a hospital and filmed with a soft focus and ambient light and there was sappy music playing in the background and it was like a soap opera. Make me want to puke.

Now Homicide handled death differently. Crocetti kills himself, his partner renegades an investigation, the brass refuses him a full honor guard because like most bureaucrats they are petty. The detective investigating the death is under considerable pressure to call it a suicide but he just cant do it because he's "Big Man" and Big Man always plays by the rules. Pembelton, as an extension of earlier episodes, wont attend the funeral because he's lost his faith in God (let alone the simple fact they let a major character lose his faith in God -- brilliant) and causes further tension in the squad.

Then the emotional roller coaster starts. The scene where the ME report comes back positive. Steve's name gets changed from Red to Black on The Board. Lewis loses it and collapses and Big Man is the one to support him while he loses it. The funeral. And that closing, haunting image of Pempleton saying F--- You to the brass and saluting the hearse as it rolls past the station house while he is wearing his uniform.

Brilliant -- the best hour of television EVER.

3) I recommend the trade paperback of Homicide that came out last year. It has pictures in the middle and new afterwords. There are pictures of The Board and of all the cast members with their real life counter parts.
And here I thought it all started with The Sweeney.

I second the nomination of Simon's book (to read) and The Wire (to watch).


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