In the pilot episode we are first introduced to Officer Cleaver (Ernest Borgnine) who only responds to calls he believes are worthy of his time, but when he does get on case there is no stopping him. In the opening scene, when his cruiser is blocked in during a high speed pursuit, he decides to proceed to chase after a stolen Porsche…on foot. Overly dedicated or stupid is the toss up there. When his partner Officer Bundy (John Amos) is asked to describe Cleaver he responds, “You can’t get him to jump for a drunk and disorderly or a husband and wife squabble, but he’s got three beyond the call of duty commendations and a Medal of Valor. Bottom line he’s the best cop I’ve ever known, and I wouldn’t work with anyone else, but where is it written I have to like him?”
Officer Joe Cleaver would totally spade or neuter McGruff the Crime Dog.Over at the labs of the Synthetronics Corporation Doctor Avery (Ronnie Claire Edwards) are trying to sell the city on the idea of trying out their prototype bio-synthetic android as a police officer. The Commissioner is against the idea of a “Crazy robot out there, shooting up the streets,” but he is assured that Haven (Michael Shannon) is incapable of violence, “He has a failsafe system programmed against it.” This mollifies the Commissioner enough for him to allow an eight hour test run in the field, and he decides to stick Officer Cleaver with the duty of riding with this new type of cop. What is terrible here is that he doesn’t inform Cleaver that his new partner is a machine. Worse is the fact that to ensure Haven can’t accidentally shoot anyone his gun will be loaded with blanks. So an oblivious Cleaver is teamed-up with a partner who is unable to commit a violent act, and is carrying a gun full of blanks. I’m guessing the Commissioner wants Cleaver dead because he’s giving him a partner that can provide no back-up whatsoever.
“We’ve also turned off your ability to issue harsh language.”Cleaver discovers his partner is a robot when Haven is shot full of holes while trying to take down a car theft ring, but once patched up Haven becomes Cleaver’s partner while Bundy takes a well-deserved promotion to Tactical. Unfortunately for Bundy this promotion only lasts for the pilot episode as in the six following episodes he see him riding shotgun with Cleaver and Haven. Question: Are there any police forces that have three patrolmen per car?
Note: When they tried a second pilot called “Cops and Robin” we find Bundy has been promoted to Duty Sergeant.