I hadn't seen this show for a long time when I renewed our acquaintance with the dvd of the first series. Hill Street Blues set the standard for so many shows that followed. (It may even be responsible for some irritating television trends. The shaky camera movements, for instance, that give the show a documentary style, are these days being used without reason, to many viewers' irritation.)
Its strenghth is the ensemble acting and the surprising plot lines. This episode has two surprise endings. I don't understand why NBC had to think twice before ordering a full series.
The acting is superb. Its realism makes some of the stranger plot lines believable. The only thing that may have dated the show is the character of Howard Hunter. His comic relief rather spoils the realism.