Cop Rock

The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents




Cop Rock is an American musical police drama series that aired on ABC in 1990. The show, a police drama presented as a musical, was created by Steven Bochco, who also served as executive producer. TV Guide ranked it #8 on TV Guide's List of the 50 Worst TV Shows of All Time list in 2002.


Cop Rock attempted to combine musical theater with the police drama, the latter a genre in which Bochco had already been very successful with Hill Street Blues. The series featured an ensemble cast that mixed musical numbers and choreography throughout storylines. For example, one scene in a courtroom had the jury break into song, proclaiming "He's Guilty" in Gospel style. Another episode had a lineup of Hispanic suspects proclaim in song "We're the local color with the coppertone skin / And you treat us like we're guilty of some terrible sin." Its theme, "Under the Gun", was sung by Randy Newman, who opened each episode performing it in a music video-style credit sequence. The show also featured crossover appearances from other Bochco series. In one episode, James B. Sikking reprises the role of Lt. Howard Hunter from Hill Street Blues, while another episode featured cameos by L.A. Law stars Jimmy Smits and Michele Greene. Sheryl Crow appears as a back-up singer in the final episode.

The show was a critical and commercial failure and was canceled by ABC after 11 episodes. Owing to the combination of its bizarre nature and its high-powered production talent, it became infamous as one of the biggest television failures of the 1990s. The final episode concludes with the cast breaking character and joining crew members in performing a closing song.

Despite its overwhelmingly negative reception and short run, the series still has been rebroadcast three times, in the 1990s on VH1, on A&E Network, and in the 2000s on Trio.

Mike Post was the music supervisor on Cop Rock. Post appeared in the Cop Rock opening sequence as the musician in the dark glasses sitting next to Randy Newman and playing the keyboard.


* Teri Austin - Trish Vaughn

* Anne Bobby - Off. Vicki Quinn

* Barbara Bosson - Mayor Louise Plank

* Ronny Cox - Chief Roger Kendrick

* Vondie Curtis-Hall - Cmdr. Warren Osborne

* David Gianopoulos - Off. Andy Campo

* Larry Joshua - Capt. John Hollander

* Dennis Lipscomb - Sidney Weitz

* Paul McCrane - Det. Bob McIntire

* James McDaniel - Off. Franklin Rose

* Ron McLarty - Ralph Ruskin

* Mick Murray - Det. Joseph Gaines

* Peter Onorati - Det. Vincent LaRusso

* William Thomas, Jr. - Det. William Donald Potts

* Kathleen Wilhoite - Patricia Spence



Genre Police drama/Musical

Created by Steven Bochco

William M. Finkelstein

Written by Steven Bochco

William M. Finkelstein

Michael A. Graham

Toni Graphia

John Romano

Directed by Charles Haid

Gregory Hoblit

Michael M. Robin

Brad Silberling

Theme music composer Randy Newman

Opening theme "Under the Gun" performed by Randy Newman

Composer(s) Greg Edmonson

Alan Elliott

Randy Newman

Mike Post

Country of origin United States

Language(s) English

No. of seasons 1

No. of episodes 11


Executive producer(s) Steven Bochco

Producer(s) Charles Haid

Michael M. Robin

John Romano

Craig Zisk

Running time 45– 48 minutes

Production company(s) 20th Century Fox Television

Steven Bochco Productions


Original channel ABC

Original run September 26, 1990 (1990-09-26) – December 26, 1990


More from Wikipedia....


Steven Bochco on Cop Rock
Mike Post on composing for Cop Rock
Jeffrey Tambor on guest-starring on L.A. Law and auditioning for Cop Rock
Who talked about this show

Steven Bochco

View Interview
Steven Bochco on Cop Rock
Steven Bochco on creating and producing the short-lived musical drama series Cop Rock

Mike Post

View Interview
Mike Post on composing for Cop Rock

Jeffrey Tambor

View Interview
Jeffrey Tambor on guest-starring on L.A. Law and auditioning for Cop Rock

All Shows