L.A. Dragnet

ABC (ended 2004)


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L.A. Dragnet Fan Reviews (8)

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out of 10
90 votes
  • Even Ed O'Neill could not save the program from Dick Wolf's fatal error...

    ...the fatal error I saw in the show was this: it violated the concept Jack Webb had in both the original 1950's production, and the 1960's revival. The concept was simple - an ordinary case, with nothing really extraordinary about the detectives working the case, nor anything really extraordinary in the resolution of the case.

    But the first episode, "The Silver Slayer", deviated so much from this time-tested formula, that I didn't watch another episode. The fact that the episodes were an hour long didn't help, either - the originals, at thirty minutes, had no chance to lag, as the Wolf rendition did.

    The only reason I rated the show 5 at all was Ed O'Neill's performance. If Dick Wolf had followed the original "Dragnet" format, O'Neill would have been a perfect Joe Friday - and even in this fatally flawed format, he still was quite good. He was a much better Friday than Dan Aykroyd was in the motion picture - in fact, O'Neill's performance was much better than any he turned in for "Married With Children".

    Too bad it was wasted - but he saved L.A. Dragnet from a certainly deserved zero rating.