For its first 25 seasons, COPS was broadcast on the FOX Network. Subsequently, COPS aired on The Paramount Network for seven years (2013-2020). Episodes from earlier seasons are syndicated on numerous other networks.
COPS has followed officers in 140 different cities in the United States and in Hong Kong, London, and the former Soviet Union. Each episode is approximately 22 minutes in length and typically consists of three segments, with each segment being one or two self-contained police incidents.
COPS follows police officers, constables, and sheriff’s deputies during patrols and various police activities by embedding camera crews with their units. The show’s formula adheres to a classic Cinéma vérité ethos. With no narration or scripted dialog, it depends entirely on the commentary of the officers and on the actions of the people with whom they come into contact.
March 11, 1989
COPS Premieres on FOX
COPS is an American documentary television series that follows police officers, constables, and sheriff’s deputies during patrols and other police activities. It is one of the longest-running television programs in the United States and the second longest-running show on FOX. Created by John Langley and Malcolm Barbour, it premiered on Saturday, March 11, 1989.