DVD Review: ADAM-12 – Season Three

Shout Factory
Release date: Aug 11th, 2009
MSRP: $34.99

Season three of this police drama premiered in September of 1970, and continued to show the exploits of two regular cops patrolling the streets of Los Angles. Created by Jack Webb, like his other show Dragnet, Adam-12 was also based on real cases. It was one of the shows that set standards for this type of programming and has actually been used by police academies in training. Among the first to show police using Miranda it also followed other procedures which a lot of shows ignore. The show also came at a time when people were becoming wary of police and it went a long way towards showing the realities of their work.

Pete Malloy portrayed by Martin Milner and Jim Reed (Kent McCord) were the perfect characters to show what it was like to be a cop in the late sixties and seventies. Malloy, a veteran cop who was thinking about quitting after losing a partner stays on and shows the ropes to the new kid in uniform Officer Reed. Unlike so many later shows about police the show was never bogged down by unnecessary drama, no relationships between fellow officers, no AA meetings, basically no bullshit. Just two cops doing their jobs the best they can.

Season three like the seasons before it follow the officers as they take calls and pursue the criminals. One of the stand out episodes was a bit of a flashback done more like a documentary showing officer Malloy’s memories of a fellow officer he knew from the academy after the officer was killed in the line of duty. The rest of the episodes deal with purse snatchers, bank robberies and any other number of typical crimes being committed in a city the size of Los Angles.

At times it is a little dry and there aren’t a lot of frills like car chases and shootouts, but the show’s strength is its realism. It’s also a very nice snap shot of the way things really were in 1970, cool cars and funny clothes and all. I remember watching as a kid, I was seven when this season aired, I enjoyed it then and I still enjoy it now.

There are 26 episodes on the set.


Buy Adam 12: Season Three