I LOVE LUCY
DICK VAN DYKE
MARY TYLER MOORE
ALL IN THE FAMILY
1976-77: THE THIRD SEASON
Year-End Rating: 22.2 (17th place)
The precinct undergoes its only major personnel shake-down in season
three, when Gregory Sierra's Chano and Linda Lavin's Wentworth leave
the series and are replaced by new recruits Dietrich, Levitt, and briefly,
Detective Maria Battista, played by Steve Landesberg, Ron Carey and
June Gable. Producer Chris Hayward also departs at the close of season
two, bound for greener pastures-- or at least shorter hours--elsewhere.
Danny Arnold serves as producer in the show's third year. Story editor
Tony Sheehan is credited on most of the season's scripts; and there
are multiple submissions from Reinhold Weege, Tom Reeder, and Danny
Arnold. Jerry Ross is the executive script consultant.
Wojo decides to beef up evacuation procedures for New York's eleven
million citizens; and a young thief finds a friend in Fish.
The station house is filled to capacity when authorities place it under
quarantine because an ailing burglar may have smallpox.
The continued threat of smallpox forces an unlikely gathering of characters
to spend the night in the Twelfth Precinct.
The underlying tension of a medical quarantine provides the ideal
setting for a classic Barney Miller episode. The precinct emerges
as a downtrodden Grand Hotel, with crackling dialogue flying nonstop
among the disparate personalities suddenly forced together for a long
night in very close quarters. Despite his initial resistance, Wojo comes
to accept Marty and his gay lover; Inspector Luger learns to lighten
up; and the writers even grant Fish a few privileged moments as the
weary detective forms a tender platonic bond with an imperturbable prostitute--and
for at least one night in his life, someone calls him Phil.
A holdup man robs a busload of commuters and then faces their fury
as they storm the precinct house.
On Election Day, a jailed shoplifter demands his right to cast a ballot;
and the officers confront a husband who refuses to let his wife vote.
The usual loonies arrive during the full moon, including a man who
swears he's turning into a werewolf.
A doomsayer shares the cell with a recluse who hid in his apartment
for three decades to avoid jury duty.
Wojo arrests a man for refusing to interfere when he witnessed a mugging
June Gable appears as Detective Maria Battista, a short-lived addition
to the precinct's ranks. "Every once in a while we'd bring in someone
new, to shake things up. But it never seemed to work out," explained
writer Tony Sheehan. "We had such a tight group that the newcomer always
seemed like an outsider. It was very hard to get them past that point."
During a blackout, the station plays host to a suspect with a split
Fish goes undercover as Santa Claus; Barney reluctantly invites Luger
to spend Christmas with his family; and Nick falls under the spell of
an Oriental call girl.
It's a giddy evening at the Twelfth when the detectives sample Wojo's
girlfriend's brownies before anyone realizes that her recipe included
an ample portion of hashish.
Fish bears up during a first-stage smog alert; and a suicidal woman
strikes up a relationship with an obscene-graffiti artist.
A homeless old man confronts his former landlord with a musket; and
a lawyer accuses Barney of harassment after he books a blind shoplifter.
Wojo resigns the force in protest after the department releases a critical
study that recommends that the detectives return to uniformed patrol.
A suicidal couple is delighted when flames threaten to engulf the squad
room after an arsonist sets fire to the station house.
Nick's bookie is brought in; and a suburban couple turns to Barney
for help after they kidnap their daughter back from a religious cult.
A middle-aged woman shoots her husband for seeing a sexual surrogate;
and Harris suffers the ultimate indignity when he's attacked by a gang
of delinquents who ruin his suit.
Barney discovers that Harris has been moonlighting; Dietrich arrests
a priest for fencing stolen goods; and a numbers racketeer uses a retarded
boy as a runner.
Wojo runs afoul of diplomatic protocol when he offers political asylum
to a Russian defector; and the squad room's old friend Marty violates
his probation with a half ounce of marijuana.
The squad tracks a mad bomber who's threatened to blow up an Army recruiting
office; and Fish has to dress as a woman when it's his turn for mugging
The running joke of the mugging detail afforded the audience at least
one good belly laugh every season, as each member of the squad took
his turn in drag.
A woman is robbed by her computer date; and the detectives must decide
whether to honor an unauthorized policeman's strike.
Inspector Luger fills in for the striking detectives; and the woman who was robbed by her computer date refuses to press charges.