A direct line can be drawn from Dixon of Dock Green through Softly, Softly, Z Cars and The Bill to the most recent incarnation of the Thin Blue Line - Cuffs.
From the black and white days of 'Evenin' all' to the highly coloured world of black and blue 'Yer nicked, Chummy' the formula is roughly the same - the highly varied world of crime and lawlessness serves as the backdrop of those who have chosen to uphold the law, often foolish, but always dangerous, law.
The changes between 1956 and 2016 are interesting - the challenges are the same but the crimes are different, both in scope and degree. One just can't imagine anyone spitting on PC Dixon or him finding a dead drug user in a beach hut some weeks after her death.
Cuffs is an excellent show and is none the worse for taking a varied handful of fallible, strong, brave, cowardly, manipulative, honest, and throw them together against a realistic web of petty theft, harassment, major crime and drugs.
The show is written by Julie Geary (seven episodes) and Nancy Harris (one episode) and stars Jacob If an as PC Jake Vickers, the son of Chief Superintendent Robert Vickers (Peter Sullivan). Jake is gay and is struggling as a new recruit.
Gradually the private lives of the police unfold, and as we all do, they have their secrets, their hidden motivators and impulses.
Beautifully written, filmed and acted Cuffs is outstanding. I enjoyed every episode and only wished there were more. Dixon of Dock Green ran for twenty-one years. The Bill lasted twenty-six years and Cuffs had only eight episodes before being cancelled. Pity.
Very highly recommended, but, as in the case of Game of Thrones, don't get attached to anyone.
*To go into the draw, all you have to do is send an email titled 'Cuffs' to email@example.com and let us know in 25 words or less why you want to see Cuffs. Please make sure to include your full name and mailing address so we can send you your prize!
3 lucky winners will be drawn on 6th April 2016.