B is for “Barney Miller”

Continuing in the theme of TV shows, I’m highlighting another classic TV sitcom, “Barney Miller.”

“Barney Miller” was an American sitcom television series set in a New York City Police Department police station on East 6th St in Greenwich Village. Created by Danny Arnold and Theodore J. Flicker, the show  focused on the detectives’ interactions with each other and with the suspects and witnesses they detained, processed, and interviewed. The series was broadcast on the ABC Network from January 23, 1975, to May 20, 1982.

Unlike other cop shows of the time, there were no car chases, no dramatic arrests, and no shootouts. Virtually all of the action revolved inside the rundown offices of the 12th Precinct. Each episode usually involving two or three cases in each episode. It took place almost entirely within the confines of the detectives’ squad room and Captain Barney Miller’s adjoining office of New York City’s fictional 12th Precinct. A typical episode featured the detectives of the 12th bringing in several complainants and/or suspects to the squad room. Usually, two or three separate subplots were in a given episode, with different officers dealing with different crimes. Rarely an episode would feature one or more of the detectives outside of the walls of the precinct, either on a stakeout or at their homes.

Hal Linden played the title character, Barney Miller, the only stable person in an police precinct filled with off-the-wall characters. Also in the ensemble cast were Abe Vigoda as the crotchety Sgt. Fish, Max Gail, playing Detective Wohciehowicz, Ron Glass as Detective Harris, Jack Soo as Sgt. Yemana, Steve Landesberg as Sgt. Dietrich, Gregory Sierra as Sgt. “Chano” Amengal, Ron Carey as Officer Carl Levitt, and Barbara Barrie as Barney Miller’s wife, Liz.

I thought the show was a hoot and I rarely missed an episode.The only thing comparable to “Barney Miller” today might be a similar show, “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” which also starts with a B (coincidence?). It’s an American police procedural created by Dan Goor and Michael Schur. Like “Barney Miller,” it’s set in the fictional 99th Precinct in Brooklyn, NY. Also like “Barney Miller,” the ensemble sitcom follows a team of quirky detectives.

“Brooklyn Nine-Nine” premiered on September 17, 2013 and the eighth and final season is set to to run in the 2021–22 television season.


Previous BATZAP 2021 posts: A

33 thoughts on “B is for “Barney Miller”

  1. Ruth April 2, 2021 / 7:03 am

    Oh, I think maybe Barney Miller ran here in the UK too, because it sounds familiar… 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango April 2, 2021 / 9:23 am

      Yeah, I decided to throw in the “official” badge at the bottom before my links to previous posts, but I like the bat one better, too.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. msjadeli April 2, 2021 / 9:36 am

    I enjoyed Barney Miller because of the humor of course and because of the diverse cast. Each of the characters was likeable which is unusual as there is often one that they purposely make irritating. What’s “Batzap” stand for??

    Liked by 1 person

  3. My April 2, 2021 / 9:43 am

    I enjoyed the Barney Miller sitcom. I think I’ll watch “Brooklyn 911” sometime.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. eschudel April 2, 2021 / 10:59 am

    Oh Jack Soo!! Fabulous. I think my favourite episode was when they ate “special” brownies…

    Liked by 1 person

  5. J.E.M. Wildfire April 2, 2021 / 7:31 pm

    Barney Miller was another must-watch for me. Fantastic cast! Somehow, I’ve never gotten around to watching Brooklyn Nine Nine, but if it’s born from Barney Miller, I’ll have to consider binge-watching before the new season. Another great choice!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango April 2, 2021 / 10:43 pm

      Brooklyn Nine Nine reminds me of Barney Miller, but even though I enjoy it, Barney Miller was better.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Taswegian1957 April 2, 2021 / 11:36 pm

    Oh I loved Barney Miller. So did David. Sometimes I can find episodes available on YouTube but there are quite a few that I haven’t seen I think. I really enjoyed the stories and the cast was wonderful. I especially enjoyed the character of Dietrich, the Lie Detector episode in particular. It also had a really good jazzy theme tune.
    I’ve never watched Brooklyn 99 but maybe I would like it.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Melanie B Cee April 3, 2021 / 10:26 am

    I’ll have to look for Brooklyn Nine Nine. I hope they have it on my Prime streaming thing. I LOVED Barney Miller, I never missed an episode. I had a crush on Steve Landsberg too, because I have always had a soft spot for nerdy guys like that character…but Wojahowicz (you spelled it better) wasn’t hard on the eyes either. I saw Max Gail in something else recently and it took me quite a while to place him because now he’s completely bald. I guess we all age… *sigh*

    Liked by 1 person

  8. leigha66 April 6, 2021 / 12:10 am

    I haven’t thought of that show for quite some time. It was pretty funny!

    Liked by 1 person

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