I LOVE LUCY
DICK VAN DYKE
MARY TYLER MOORE
ALL IN THE FAMILY
1981-82: THE EIGHTH SEASON
Year-End Rating: 15.7 (54th place)
After seven and a half seasons, Danny Arnold decides to retire the
Twelfth Precinct at the conclusion of the eighth season, marking the
end of one of the longest unbroken streaks of top-flight writing, acting,
and direction in the history of the situation comedy.
Producers Frank Dungan and Jeff Stein continue as story editors in
the eighth season, and their considerable story contributions are augmented
by memorable scripts from Nat Mauldin, Jordan Moffet, and Tony Sheehan,
among others. Gary Shaw continues as co-producer; Gennaro Montanino,
Danny Arnold, Lee Lochhead, and Bruce Bilson direct most of the year's
episodes; and Roland Kibbee joins Danny Arnold as executive producer
for the final year.
A beauty queen has her purse snatched; an angry moviegoer vandalizes
a theater for showing snuff films; and Wojo is slapped with a paternity
Luger asks for Barney's help in composing a letter to his prospective
wife; Harris signs another book deal; and a lottery winner threatens
the couple who lost his winning ticket.
An overzealous sanitation officer pulls a gun on a litterbug; Levitt
performs an act of heroism; and a car thief confesses--twenty-five years
after the fact.
A police chaplain performs an impromptu exorcism; and a full-figured
wife assaults her husband for forcing her into a pair of designer jeans.
A Peace Corps recruiter goes berserk at a job fair; and Barney is distraught
when an electronic stress analyzer indicates that Dietrich has been
shot in action.
A WAC supplements her meager Army salary by soliciting in Greenwich
Village; and a video-game chip manufacturer is accused of spying for
The homeless flock to the Twelfth Precinct at Christmas; a livid greeting-card
writer loses his job; and a local merchant rousts a vagrant with a cattle
One of the last two survivors of an old-world tontine decides to do
himself in so that his cousin can enjoy the benefits of the pact.
The detectives are forced back into uniform while the rest of the force
takes the sergeant's exam.
A mugger singles out street clowns; and a bureaucrat alleviates jail
overcrowding by quietly releasing a hundred inmates on Madison Avenue
in the dead of night.
A pair of storylines that could have come straight from the screaming
headlines of the New York tabloids--and probably did. "We got a lot
of ideas from The New York Post and The Daily News,"
writer Jeff Stein confessed. "We'd look at the other papers, but we
never found much we could use in The New York Times."
Lieutenant Scanlon falls for a wealthy mugging victim; a restaurateur
breaks into his own restaurant; and a Chinese waiter is an uncooperative
witness to murder.
Dietrich and Harris spend a week in a hotel room with a murder suspect.
A prisoner stages a hunger strike to end nuclear arms; Dietrich aids
a psychiatric patient; and Barney refuses his latest nomination
for promotion to deputy inspector.
Luger finally meets the Manilan he's been courting by mail; a genius
turns to petty crime; and a man is mugged by an elderly woman.
An angry citizen complains when the newspaper prints his premature
obituary; and a modern-day Robin Hood steals surplus chickens from a
An angry parent assaults the admissions director of a private kindergarten;
and Wojo faces a police inquiry for using excessive force in a recent
A former child star assaults his agent with a telephone; a good Samaritan
is charged with assault; and Dietrich spends the afternoon with a college
Harris punches Arnold Ripner when the lawyer threatens another libel
suit; and a mugging victim reveals that she's carried the torch for
Barney since 1966.
The precinct's plumbing goes out again; a scoutmaster apprehends a
mugger; and a militant Indian retrieves his tribe's ancestral bones
from a museum exhibit.
The Twelfth is declared a national landmark; a former political hostage
decides to emigrate back to South America; and an unemployed man is
robbed at an automatic teller machine.
Dietrich arrests the head of a professional crime school, along with
a pair of his unlikely graduates; Luger tries to squirm out of his marriage
commitment; and the Twelfth Precinct is sold to a real estate developer.
The squad room fills with familiar faces who arrive to pay last respects
to the departing detectives; and Barney bids a fond farewell to the
men and women--past and present--who made up the illustrious roster
of the Twelfth Precinct.
Producer Danny Arnold once singled out the station house itself as
the most important personality in the drama of Barney Miller.
And indeed, of all the sad farewells in that final episode, no single
image evoked the sense of passing as eloquently as the sight of those
dingy old walls, now stripped bare and waiting for the first inevitable
blow of the rehabber's hammer.
During their time together, the detectives of the Twelfth Precinct
endured the ravages of fire, death, depression, and maddening bureaucracy.
They were laid off, arrested, seduced, shanghaied, and even haunted;
they survived bomb threats, snipers, rabid dogs, and corrupt politicians.
But in the show's final--and fitting--irony, after eight years, the
ol' one-two was done in by a real estate speculator.
It was a fate that could happen only in New York.