I can’t say that CHiPs was a particular favourite show of mine when I was growing up.
It ran for six seasons (139 episodes) between 1977 and 1983. Like many imported American shows shown on the ITV network in those days – when the UK only had three channels – it got shunted about the schedules something rotten. Plus the fact that as I was only eight or nine when it started, I didn’t get to control the TV in the house, so I couldn’t choose what to watch.
Even allowing for that difficulty in keeping track of the show, young as I was, the lightweight mix of simplistic cop cases and humour seemed to lack any real substance and just didn’t really grab me the way other US cop shows of the day did. And the main characters – Frank “Ponch” Poncherello (Erik Estrada) and Jon Baker (Larry Wilcox) seemed so bland in comparison to the likes of Dave Starsky and Ken Hutchison or Jim Rockford.
The one thing CHiPs did have going for it was a rather splendid theme tune. It was, in fact, the show’s second theme tune, replacing the lesser original music that was used, I believe, only in season one. Here it is:
And, for the sake of completeness, here’s the naff season-one theme: