"Police Story"...with some blacksploitation sensibilities.
Through the 1970s, one of the popular movie genres were the so-called 'blacksploitation films'. In most of the films, the heroes are the black crooks...though sometimes they were the black cops. Regardless, the heroes were sick of playing by the rules and using brains, brawn, firepower and sometimes martial arts, they managed to entertain black Americans sick of seeing the same old heroes and villains.
Because of the popularity of the films, it's not terribly surprising that the sensibilities of the movies sometimes impacted TV shows. In the case of "The Cut Man Caper", "Police Story" manages to infuse a liberal dose of blacksploitation....with a mostly black cast. Of the actors, the most entertaining to watch, clearly, is the pimp-like 'Freddie' (Lou Gossett)....who plays the part with as much subtlety as a stripper at a Mormon picnic!
The story begins with a strongarm robbery at a pawn shop. Soon detectices Tillis and Groves (Robert Hooks and Scoey Mitchell) arrive and investigate. Their leads direct them to a well known snitch and man about town, Freddie. However, it soon is obvious that Freddie is just gaming the system....and the other cops are too naive to realize it. This is not the case with Tillis and Groves...but what are two black detectives to do when everyone else thinks Freddie is to be trusted?
So is this any good? Well, it IS "Police Story" and this show is among the very best of the era....consistently well written and well acted. But be forewarned...it's jam-packed with a few extreme racial stereotypes and will possibly offend folks today...or make them laugh! Overall, a slightly below average episode...but still worth seeing.
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