Barney Miller, one of my guides to American life

February 1, 2010

The ink on my application for a green card was still tacky when the first episode of Barney Miller was aired. I can say that it was a very effective and important part of my American education.  I had spent days and nights in the less savory parts of New York City in the months before I legitimized my continental presence.  And in the following years as I became part of the American middle class I found Barney Miller to be a sort of reminder of those less secure but interesting days. After each episode I would take my observations to the office and ask my new techno-geek work-mates how close they thought it was to real NYC life. Responses varied and were as entertaining as the show itself.

Tonight I watched an episode and remarked to myself how well written it was. How well the jokes were crafted, and the dialogues were actual conversations, not lame one liners.  Only Frazier; also terminated; of recent sit-comes can compete.

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