CHiPs: The Complete First Season (DVD)

61c+L9om49LIf I told you that I thought “CHiPs” was a pretty good show, and that I sort of re-considered my whole notion that it was rather sucky, would you hold it against me? Just checking. Because lord help me, “CHiPs” wasn’t the worst series I’ve ever seen. This is probably because a few weeks ago I had to review the utterly painful “War at Home,” but hell, for what it’s worth, this series isn’t too bad.

This is also of course coming from a person who’d watch “CHiPs” whenever I was sick at home. And as someone who found the series a worthy pairing with “A Team” at the time. Hell, it’s not a completely horrible show. And deny it as you may, you may have watched it when you were a child. It’s funny, a relative noted how ridiculous it was that these shows were hits, and to this day, many people still deny ever watching these series. Then how the hell did they become hits in the first place? At the end of the day, I’d still rather watch something like “SWAT” or “Wanted: Dead or Alive,” but “CHiPs” is such a trashy but fun series about two highway police officers fighting crimes, and looking good doing it. Seriously, these cops are never stressed out.

They’re hardly ever in danger, they barely ever get into scuffles, and they never look like they need a vacation or something. Hell, in the pilot, they have to settle a crash of a Glue truck on the side of the road, and hilarity ensues, and they have to put a stop to a car theft ring, and hilarity ensues. If you divorce yourself from reality, and take it as it is, “CHiPs” inevitably wins you over, especially with the two charismatic leads taking the reins. Sure, Erik Estrada as Ponch had a surefire presence that enabled him a permanent place in pop culture history, but Larry Wilcox and his character Jon Baker wasn’t too shabby, either. The chemistry between Wilcox and Estrada makes “CHiPs” a series worthy of the time, even if it won’t click with everyone.

On a guilty level, I enjoyed the series, and season one was light action entertainment that surprisingly struck a chord. Sadly, just because the series wasn’t bad, doesn’t mean the DVD doesn’t leave much to desired. If there was ever an award for cheesy DVD extra, it’d be the inclusion of “Ponch’s police tips” that play during episodes. I mean, I doubt even hardcore fans of the series will find this particularly entertaining. I’m open to many new and odd DVD features, and this one was just idiotic. And along with that, there are trivia, and reminiscences from Erik Estrada as well as Behind the Scenes specials that fans will dig; and of course the episodes look and sound damn good, too! It’s a treatment for fans that they will love, for sure. You can bet your motorcycle on it. Corny, no?