CHiPs (1977–1983)
2 user

Breaking Point 

After an accident, Ponch has doubts about riding a motorcycle.


Vander Cecil, Rick Rosner (creator)


Episode cast overview:
Erik Estrada ... Officer Frank Poncherello
Larry Wilcox ... Officer Jon Baker
Robert Pine ... Sgt. Joseph Getraer
Maria O'Brien ... Patti Poncherello
Paul Linke ... Officer Arthur Grossman
Lou Wagner ... Harlan Arliss
Brodie Greer Brodie Greer ... Officer Barry Baricza
Michael Dorn ... Officer Jebediah Turner
Mary Angela Young Mary Angela Young ... Christy
Lou Felder Lou Felder ... Tennis Player
Mary Ann Seltzer Mary Ann Seltzer ... Tennis Player
Randi Oakes ... Officer Bonnie Clark




After an accident, Ponch has doubts about riding a motorcycle.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Mystery


Did You Know?


After Ponch crashes the motorcycle he returns to the station in the CHP pickup with the motorcycle in the rear, Sgt. Getraer is informed of the arrival and goes outside to see Ponch. As the supervisor on duty, Getraer would have responded to the crash and written the crash report. See more »

User Reviews

CHiPs Goes Philosophical!
23 April 2016 | by elvimark01See all my reviews

At this point of CHiPs, here's what you can expect from your average episode...multi-car accidents (mainly of which look implausible and avoidable), some sort of crime (usually of the theft variety), romantic entanglements, maybe a wayward kid or two, solving all the problems/issues, smiles at the end. AHA! But would you ever expect an episode where one of the main characters has an existential crisis, especially when that character is the normally vapid hunk Ponch?

Jon and Ponch are going about their duties and having one of their normal discussions as they ride, talking about the upcoming visit from Ponch's sister Patti (played by Maria O'Brien, daughter of the great Edmond O'Brien), when they become involved in one of the requisite car chases that the show is known for. This time, not only does the driver get away, Ponch winds up losing control of his cycle and crashes through the door of an antique shop...right into a curio cabinet, which lands on him, leaving him showered in broken glass.

Now our normally macho hero is experiencing that crisis...why does he do this job? Is it worth possibly giving his life? He gets on his bike very gingerly, very reluctantly, as he contemplates whether or not it's all worth it, and his sister offers encouragement. BUT WAIT! Sister Patti is going through a similar crisis...she's the top student in her nursing class, but now she wants to be a model! Ponch is of course shocked by this revelation, and he tries to walk her through it while going through his own situation. How do they manage to resolve things? By doing what they do best...being a cop and being a nursing student, teaming up to save a man who collapses. Everyone on the scene thinks it's a heart attack, but Patti knows it's heat stroke and takes charge. She and Ponch save the man, and Ponch finally gets what it's all about and is able to straighten out his sister.

Hey, no one expects CHiPs to handle Sartre or Kafka, but for a series on life support to do such a weighty episode, they deserve all the props they can get. The family dynamic in this one is also a huge plus.

And let's not forget the last few minutes when Ponch retakes his cycle. Most of the last scene consists of Estrada riding around on his bike all by himself...I'm sure that Mr. Pearly Whites got a huge ego boost out of having some camera time all to himself!

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Release Date:

3 January 1982 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

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