1 9 9 0 (USA/Canada)
7 x 60 minute episodes
Beau Jack Bowman (Miguel Ferrer) is a former sergeant with the Louisiana Police Department who now heads up a special division of the Bay City, California, Police Department dubbed “the rubber gun squad” and formed of officers who are on psychiatric leave and deemed “broken and unstable”.
They are officially called T.A.R.P. (Temporary Assignment of Restricted Personnel) cops and perform limited, non-specific assignments.
The other members of the unit – who Jack calls “the Cobra Squad” – are Judy Tingreedes (Eileen Davidson), Stanley Jones (Jay Johnson) and Toby Baker (Ernie Hudson). Police Chief Sterling (Don S Davis) is their superior.
Jack is 31, proud of his Cajun heritage, and has the least troubling of the squad’s disorders – he can’t stand authority and is exceedingly claustrophobic. He uses violent and unorthodox methods to achieve his goals and makes up the rules as he goes along. He loves Cajun cuisine and says, “a Cajun will eat anything that won’t eat him first.” There is a sign next to his house that reads “Cajun Jack’s Hospitality House.”
Amazonian Judy (nicknamed “Bullet”), a self-declared “street bitch with an attitude”, is a pretty motorcycle cop with an addiction to danger who was relieved from duty due to extreme psychosis. Judy loves her Harley and wears leather and tops that accentuate her ample bosom, though she says, “I don’t like guys staring at my chest – it makes me angry.”
And as Jack says, “You don’t want to get Judy angry.”
Stanley, now a sergeant, was a street-smart beat cop for three years. Due to the pressures of his job, he retreated to a world in which he is now a ventriloquist and will only communicate through his dummy, Officer Danny (who Stanley believes is a real person).
Stanley has a hair-trigger temper and uses the steel plate in his head like a battering ram. Officer Danny has a severe attitude problem and is an escort with the All Male Mahogany Escort Service.
Toby (also a sergeant) is a forensics expert who suffers from fits of depression and self-hatred. He is also a kleptomaniac and suffers from schizophrenia. When assignments become stressful, he becoms a fearless old west Texas Ranger named Cactus Cole Watson.
Dr Priscilla Mather (Charlotte Lewis) is the psychologist assigned by Sterling to watch over Jack’s team.
The CBS series was created by Stephen Cannell (who also created The A-Team) and filmed in Vancouver, Canada.
Despite initially doing well in its Saturday night time slot against The Golden Girls and China Beach, CBS began bouncing it around the schedule and exerting pressure on Cannell to change the show. He finally had enough and walked away from the show in frustration.
Beau Jack Bowman
JJ (Judy) ‘Bullet’ Tingreedes
Dr Priscilla Mather
Don S Davis