RoboCop: The Series

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RoboCop
RoboCop The Series.jpg
Genre Action
Cyberpunk
Created by Michael Miner & Edward Neumeier
Starring Richard Eden
Yvette Nipar
Ending theme "Future to This Life" by Joe Walsh and Lita Ford
Country of origin Canada
No. of seasons 1
No. of episodes 21 episodes and 1 Pilot
Production
Executive producer(s) Kevin Gillis
Brian K. Ross
Stephen Downing
Producer(s) Jay Firestone
J. Miles Dale
Running time 44 minutes
Production company(s) Rysher Entertainment
Skyvision Entertainment
Rigel Entertainment
Release
Original network CTV (Canada)
Syndication (United States)
Original release March 18 – November 26, 1994

RoboCop aka RoboCop: The Series is a 1994 Canadian television series based on the RoboCop film series. It stars Richard Eden as the title character. Made to appeal primarily to children and young teenagers, it lacks the graphic violence that was the hallmark of RoboCop (1987) and its sequel RoboCop 2 (1990).

The television series takes place after the film trilogy. The RoboCop character has several non-lethal alternatives to killing criminals, which ensures that certain villains can be recurring. The OCP Chairman and his corporation are treated as simply naïve and ignorant, in contrast to their malicious and immoral behavior from the second film onward.

Background[edit]

While RoboCop was initially an American property, Orion Pictures received a $500,000 cash infusion for TV licensing rights to Canada's Skyvision Entertainment. This allowed access to co-production treaties and possible partnerships with other countries. The series was filmed in Toronto and Mississauga, Ontario and originally planned for a January 1994 debut, several months after the unsuccessful release of RoboCop 3. Skyvision was also in negotiation with Peter Weller, the original RoboCop, but this did not come to fruition. Twenty-two episodes were made, but the series was not renewed for a second season. Expense played a significant part in this; according to Skyvision VP Kevin Gillis, episodes would be produced at $1.2 million to $1.5 million each.[1]

The pilot episode runs two hours. It was adapted from a discarded RoboCop 2 script, Corporate Wars, by the writers of the original RoboCop, Edward Neumeier and Michael Miner.

Villains on the series include Dr. Cray Z. Mallardo, OCP executive Chip Chayken, William Ray Morgan aka Pudface, Vlad Molotov.

The series gave writers more of an opportunity to develop the central characters and to extend the human interest aspect through the introduction of Gadget; the station mascot and the adopted, insightful daughter of station Sergeant Parks. Gadget, along with the presence of Jimmy Murphy did much to shift the focus from the adult to the youth target audience. The writers also introduced an element of virtual romance in the character Diana, formerly a secretary to crooked Vice-President Chip Chayken, who is unwillingly turned in to the 'mind' of Metronet and OCP's city-running super-computer, NeuroBrain.[2]

Many of the characters' names were altered from their movie counterparts due to rights issues.

Cast[edit]

Main[edit]

  • Richard Eden as Officer Alex Murphy/RoboCop.
  • Yvette Nipar as Officer/Detective Lisa Madigan, of the Metro South Police Station.
  • Blu Mankuma as Sgt. Stanley Parks, Watch Commander of the Metro South Police Station.
  • Andrea Roth as Diana Powers; the clumsy secretary of Chip Chayken at OCP, who used her brain for the NeuroBrain project. RoboCop stopped him and Dr. Cray Mallardo from erasing Diana's personality.
  • David Gardner as OCP Chairman; He cares about Old Detroit and learns a lesson in almost every appearance, bettering his character, but is ignorant of certain things.
  • Sarah Campbell as Gadget, a 9-year-old girl, who was adopted by Sgt. Stanley Parks following the events of "The Future of Law Enforcement". In episode 17, "Mothers Day", her birth name is revealed as "Gertrude Modesto", ("Gadget" was just the name assigned to her by Family Services), and that at the age of 3-weeks-old she was given up for adoption by her mother, Sally Modesto, who, as a numbers runner for Russian Mafia Crimeboss, Vlad "Stitch" Molotov, could not give her daughter the life she wanted to give her. She first became friends with Jimmy Murphy in episode no. 7, "Provision 22".

Recurring cast[edit]

  • Ed Sahely as Charlie Lippencott, RoboCop's technician.
  • Dan Duran as Bo Harlan, newscaster.
  • Erica Ehm as Rocky Crenshaw, newscaster.
  • Patrick McKenna as Umberto Ortega, talk show host.
  • Jennifer Griffin as Nancy Murphy, wife of the "late" Alex Murphy.
  • Peter Costigan as James Daniel "Jimmy" Murphy, the 13-year-old son of the "late" Alex Murphy. He first became friends with Gadget in episode no. 7, "Provision 22".
    • Jordan Hughes as young Jimmy Murphy.
  • Martin Milner as Russell Murphy, father of the "late" Alex Murphy, and a retired police captain.
  • Nonnie Griffin as Dorothy Murphy, mother of the "late" Alex Murphy, and a retired teacher.

Villains[edit]

  • James Kidnie as William Ray "Pudface" Morgan; a criminal who blames RoboCop for his disfigurement caused by a toxic accident of Pudface's own making.
  • Cliff De Young as Dr. Cray Z. Mollardo; a cyberneticist, and a paranoid, psychopathic prima donna.
  • John Rubinstein as Chip Chayken, an executive of OCP who hires Mollardo to harvest the brains of homeless people for use in the supercomputer NeuroBrain.
  • Wayne Robson as "Shorty", one of "Pudface" Morgan's two "trigger men".
  • Donald Burda as Leo, one of "Pudface" Morgan's two "trigger men".
  • Hrant Alianak as Vlad "Stitch" Molotov, so-called because of the scar on his face which is why he doesn't like to be called "Stitch". He is the head of the Detroit branch of the Russian Mafia.
  • Daniel Kash as Reggie Braga, Brazilian crime boss.
  • Roddy Piper as Faked Commander Cash, Nutjob villain.
  • Barry Flatman as Simon Atwater

Episodes[edit]

No. Title Directed by Written by Original air date
1
2
"The Future of Law Enforcement" Paul Lynch Michael Miner & Edward Neumeier 14 March 1994 (1994-03-14)
RoboCop and Madigan uncover a conspiracy by an insane genius and an OCP executive to develop a computer linked to a human brain designed to run the entire city.
3 "Prime Suspect"
"First Suspect"
Paul Shapiro Lincoln Kibbee 21 March 1994 (1994-03-21)
When televangelist Reverend Bob Taker is killed and the murder weapon is RoboCop's gun, he is arrested and placed on trial. He has an alibi which he refuses to divulge, so he's about to be deactivated.
4 "Trouble in Delta City"
"Delta City"
Paul Lynch William Gray 28 March 1994 (1994-03-28)
A new miracle drug gets rushed to the market by OCP, but more thorough testing reveals that it has powerful mind-altering properties. This causes many people in Delta City to have violent and psychotic outbursts, including none other than officer Madigan. RoboCop investigates to discover what the truth is behind the dangerous drug and to get it off the streets, as well as clear Madigan of any wrongdoing.
5 "Officer Missing"
"Absence of Police"
Paul Lynch Robert Hopkins 4 April 1994 (1994-04-04)
Feeling like the Chairman has been enjoying the spoils of OCP for too long, RoboCop decides to take him on a tour of the rundown part of Old Detroit. There he witnesses first hand the chaos and destruction left in the wake of big business. To make matters worse, a bizarre band of pirates has been terrorizing the streets, and RoboCop gets attacked by them and starts malfunctioning. In order to escape this nightmare, the two must team up with the parents of a sick child who needs a heart transplant.
6 "What Money Can't Buy" Michael Vejar Aubrey Solomon 11 April 1994 (1994-04-11)
A sickly boy who was rescued from the slums of Old Detroit desperately needs a lung transplant to stay alive. At the eleventh hour, his donor lungs are stolen by thieves who harvest organs and sell them on the black market for top dollar. It's up to RoboCop to shut down this illegal organ trafficking operation and recover the boy's donor organs in time to save his life.
7 "Ghosts of War" Alan J. Levi John Sheppard 18 April 1994 (1994-04-18)
A band of mercenaries begins terrorizing Delta City, and RoboCop must put a stop to them before they carry out a terrorist attack. However, this is no ordinary band of thugs, as the members of this particular group fancy their own identities after their own childhood superheroes. This is done to cover the shame of the physical and psychological scars of war left upon the group, after being disemboweled by the military in the aftermath of a rather shady covert operation. RoboCop takes particular interest in this group, as he identifies one of the members as a close childhood friend of his.
8 "Zone Five" Timothy Bond Blazes Boylan & Ted Harris 25 April 1994 (1994-04-25)
OCP appoints a vigilante group as new neighborhood watch team in order to solve an ongoing drug problem. They are too hasty in their decision, as it becomes clear that they are actually the drug pushers, and using the watch group as a cover for their operation. RoboCop feels he must step in and expose the operation, especially when he finds his son has been recruited by the group.
9 "Provision 22" Alan J. Levi Robert Gilmer 6 May 1994 (1994-05-06)
RoboCop is shocked when he learns his estranged wife and son are living on welfare. The two are also involved in a heated ongoing protest campaign against "Provision 22" which is a law that prevents welfare recipients from working. RoboCop steps in once his wife is arrested, as protesters of the law are subject to brainwashing once detained. After some investigation, RoboCop discovers that behind the legislation is a scandal to keep the middle class oppressed and make the fat cats at OCP more money. Not only must he expose this operation, but he also must prevent a terrorist bombing at a protest rally.
10 "Faces of Eve" Paul Lynch John Considine 9 May 1994 (1994-05-09)
A new miracle product from OCP offers consumers new identities via gene transplant therapy. Things go wrong quickly when Pudface Morgan and his gang become aware of this product, and use it to spring out of prison and commit a murder. Things get even worse when Pudface plans to plunge Delta City into chaos by using the Chairman's identity to sabotage OCP and the police department. RoboCop must put a stop to their evil plans, and becomes especially concerned when it becomes public knowledge that his son eyewitnessed the murder.
11 "When Justice Fails" Michael Vejar Simon Muntner 16 May 1994 (1994-05-16)
RoboCop and Officer Madigan race to save the lives of four astronauts as they go head-to-head against a flamboyant corporate raider who values profits more than safety.
12 "The Human Factor" Mario Azzopardi John Considine 27 May 1994 (1994-05-27)
RoboCop teams-up with his unsuspecting father, a retired police captain, to stop an insane bomber from unleashing a campaign of terror against OCP that could end in nuclear Armageddon.
13 "Inside Crime" Michael Vejar William Gray 1 June 1994 (1994-06-01)
The hideous face of Pudface Morgan pulls in boffo ratings for OCP's new hit "reality" tv show which follows the exploits of criminals, but the disfigured maniac has plans to take on RoboCop live on prime time television.
14 "RoboCop vs Commander Cash" Allan Eastman Pamela Hickey & Dennys McCoy 15 June 1994 (1994-06-15)
Children are rioting and stealing all over the city as RoboCop faces his most formidable opponent, a nut case who believes he's a real live version of OCP's super hero, Commander Cash.
15 "Illusions" Timothy Bond Robert Hopkins 15 June 1994 (1994-06-15)
RoboCop guards The Chairman of OCP against a mysterious assassin, while Madigan falls under the romantic spell of a handsome young magician who may be the killer.
16 "The Tin Man" Allan Eastman Pamela Hickey & Dennys McCoy 22 June 1994 (1994-06-22)
As armed Ice Cream trucks and Lunch Catering vans wage a gang war for control of illegal gambling and Gadget falls victim to Lotto-fever, the past haunts RoboCop when an ex-partner returns as a gang-busting vigilante.
17 "Sisters in Crime" Mario Azzopardi Diane K. Shah 29 June 1994 (1994-06-29)
When his sexist views anger feminists, The OCP Chairman is kidnapped by a band of shapely rebels and forced to do housework, while Chip Chayken and his sexy partner plan to rip-off OCP.
18 "Heartbreakers" Michael Vejar Alison Lea Bingeman 5 July 1994 (1994-07-05)
It's love at first "byte" when Lippencott enters Virtual Reality and falls for Diana Powers, while RoboCop is blackmailed into stealing a top secret weapon that can literally break hearts.
19 "Mother's Day" Allan Eastman John Sheppard 12 September 1994 (1994-09-12)
Gadget's caught in a custody fight and leaves Sergeant Parks to be reunited with her real mother. RoboCop suspects the woman is part of a plot by Russian crime boss Vlad "Stitch" Molotov and his sexy moll, Nadia.
20 "Nano" William Gereghty Mary Crawford & Alan Templeton 19 September 1994 (1994-09-19)
While arresting a thief, who is suddenly run down by a runaway bus, Detective Madigan is seriously injured and paralyzed. RoboCop investigates and uncovers a criminal using nanobots to override machinery and electronics.
21 "Corporate Raiders" T.J. Scott Pamela Hickey & Dennys McCoy 7 November 1994 (1994-11-07)
The city is being rocked by anti-corporate violence as RoboCop and Officer Madigan are assigned to bring in a charming ex-terrorist, but a corrupt union leader and his sultry secretary have other plans.
22 "Midnight Minus One" J. Miles Dale Mary Crawford & Alan Templeton 14 November 1994 (1994-11-14)
RoboCop and Officer Madigan race the clock to prove a killer is innocent before he's executed in front of millions of viewers on a hit television show.
23 "Public Enemies" Michael Vejar William Gray 21 November 1994 (1994-11-21)
RoboCop must save the President and First Gentleman from an assassiantion plot hatched by Dr. Mallardo, Chip Chayken, and Pudface Morgan.

Distribution[edit]

Home videos and merchandise[edit]

The first five episodes were released on VHS in 1995. Episodes of the series were also released in a Japanese laserdisc set. They include "First Suspect," "Delta City," and "Absence of Police." In Germany and Italy, "The Future Of Law Enforcement" was released as a standalone film on VHS and DVD, under the name "RoboCop 4: Law & Order".[3][4][5][6]

An action figure collection for the series was produced by little-known Toy Island, a company that would continue making RoboCop figures in the future. The basic series includes RoboCop, Madigan, Stan Parks, Commander Cash (also released as "Commandant Cash"), and Pudface. It also features the OCP Interceptor, Tactical Field Vehicle, Tactical Field Ambulance, Mobile Armored Detention Vehicle, and Cyrochamber playset. In 1995, the Power Glow figure series was released. This includes RoboCop variations with illuminating armor such as a basic RoboCop (blue), Thermo Shield RoboCop (red), and Xicor Shield RoboCop (lime green). Each figure in the collection includes various accessories and several points of articulation.

Soundtrack[edit]

RoboCop - The Series Soundtrack
Soundtrack album by various artists
Released 24 January 1995
Genre Punk rock
Label Rhino Entertainment / Wea

A soundtrack entitled A Future to This Life: Robocop - The Series Soundtrack was released 24 January 1995, on both CD and cassette by Pyramid Records. Aside from the show's theme writers, Joe Walsh & Lita Ford, it features classic rock songs from groups like The Band, The Flamingos, Iron Butterfly, and KC & the Sunshine Band.

  1. "A Future to This Life (feat. Lita Ford) - Joe Walsh" (3:34)
  2. "Guilty of the Crime - Joe Walsh, Miller Hopkins" (3:24)
  3. "Fire & Brimstone - Joe Walsh" (4:47)
  4. "Chutes and Ladders - Dave Edmunds" (4:06)
  5. "Flannel Jacket - EJ Waters" (3:53)
  6. "We Gotta Get You A Woman - Todd Rundgren" (3:09)
  7. " I Only Have Eyes for You - The Flamingo" (3:23)
  8. "Stuff Ya Gotta Watch - The Band (2:50)
  9. "In A Gadda Da Vida - Iron Butterfly" (2:55)
  10. "Shake Your Booty - KC and The Sunshine Band" (3:04)
  11. "Overture RoboCop - Delta City Orchestra" (1:49)

DVD[edit]

Release name No. of discs Region 1
(Alliance Home Entertainment)
Region 2
(Stax Entertainment)
Region 4
(Madman Entertainment)
Notes
RoboCop the Complete Series 6 27 July 2010[7]
(Canada only)
20 March 2006[8]

Re-release
22 January 2007[9]
14 October 2013[10]
25 July 2006[11] Episode synopsis, actor profiles, from cinema to the small screen,
The history of RoboCop, fun facts and info, weapons, the car, the suit.

Digital[edit]

The complete series including the pilot episode is available on Amazon Instant Video (UK only).[12]

References[edit]

External links[edit]