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Blue is back, and better than ever!,
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This review is from: NYPD Blue - The Complete Third Season (DVD)
Fans of NYPD Blue have had to wait a long time between the release of Season Two, a number of years ago, and the recent release of season three. But, if the quality of the episodes in season three is taken in to account, it was well worth the wait.
Season two was the season of change on NYPD Blue, with Bobby Simone (Jimmy Smits) taking over as partner to Andy Sipowicz (Dennis Franz). Season three saw the two actors gel and their characters formed the friendship and the partnership that would last throughout the years.
Season three also saw Franz win his second Emmy award for his portrayal of Sipowicz, the former alchoholic cop, who had been dealt a tough hand in life and often took it out on thugs and perps. In season three, however, things appeared to be turning around for Andy. He got married to DA Sylvia Costas (Sharon Lawrence) at the end of season two, and had struck up a new relationship with his son Andy Jr. (guest star Michael DeLuise), one that continued to blossom in season three. Andy finally appeared happy, with the drinking days behind him and a partner he worked well with. Sylvia became pregnant and gave birth to Theo, making Sipowicz the happiest that any viewer of the show had seen him. It seemed his life was on track.
Then came the brutal murder of Andy Jr. The younger Sipowicz was killed while trying to stop a robbery and assault, just days before he started his job as a police officer, a job that he had been learning from his father. The death of Andy Jr. sent his father over the edge, as he reverted to drinking again and got in fights and was kicked out of his home and the precinct. As the season came to an end, he had found his way back into both after being beaten badly while in a drunk stupor.
Without a question, Sipowicz was one of the best television characters ever created and nobody could've played him better than Franz. He deserved all the acclaim and honors that he received for bringing this character, flaws and all, to life.
For Simone, the year was a better one, at least in many regards. He began a relationship with fellow detective Diane Russell (new series regular Kim Delaney), one that would last until Simone's death a number of years later. Simone made it his personal mission to track down the killers of his partner's son and eventually ended up shooting the suspects in a street shoot out. Delaney's Diane also began the year coming out of the bottle, but was tempted back in when her mother killed her father after a domestic dispute. She stayed away, for the most part, and kept her relationship with Simone intact.
Greg Medavoy (Gordon Clapp) and James Martinez (Nicholas Turturro) began to work a lot more together in the third season, eventually leading up to the pair being partners. Medavoy's clumsy, stuttering ways and Martinez's cool, hip style were complete opposites, but the pair clicked and their partnership was settled. Medavoy saved Martinez's life when he was shot in the season opener and the two helped to provide some small comic relief in many of the episodes throughout the season.
Lieutenant Arthur Fancy (James McDaniel) is in charge of the 15th precinct and has his hands full with his unique group of detectives. A big moment for him is his argument with Sipowicz over a racial matter. While the two characters basically have made up by the end of the season, there is always tension between the two.
Donna Abondondo (Gail O'Grady) the precinct's PAA, left the series with two episodes to go in the year. O'Grady was becoming a star and creator Steven Bocho knew they were going to lose her, so he created a job at Apple Computer in California, where the lovely Ms. Abondono headed. Her character was eventually replaced by John Irving (Bill Brotchrup), who makes a number of guest appearances in this season.
The final main character was Detective Adrienne Lesniak (Justine Miceli). This was her only credited season on the show, though she had appeared in many episodes as a guest star in season two. She battles thoughts of homosexuality early in the season, but eventually enters a relationship with Martinez, but her jealousy rears its ugly head, breaking up the relationship as the season draws to a close.
This set has two solid commentary tracks, as well as three featurettes, one on the season in general, one on the relationship between Andy and Andy Jr. and one on the women of NYPD Blue.
The only drawback to this set is the packaging. The first two seasons had great packaging, with six discs and a great case to hold them. This season has four double-sided discs with slim cases. I imagine this was a cost issue and quite possibly, if this change hadn't been made, we may never have seen Season Three at all, so really, I can't complain too much about that.
All told, this is a fantastic set and I blazed through the whole thing in a weekend. The stories are riveting, the characters are engaging and the show is addictive, just as it was when it was on network television every Tuesday at 10 p.m.
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: May 7, 2008 5:49:09 AM PDT
Excellent review! You presented the season as a complete story and I remembered it well. After being on for so many years, the intial seasons were a bit fuzzy in memory, but you gave an excellent journey down a very good road of television history. This show reminded me of Hill Street Blues and it superb writing, and which we all know, Dennis Franz was a part of as well. Looking forward to your reviews of the other seasons of NYPD Blue as well. Thank you and peace!
Posted on Aug 19, 2015 11:37:05 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 19, 2015 11:45:08 PM PDT
Your review of Season 3 was fine up until you gave away what happens to Simone several years later. (Believe it or not, not everyone in the world saw NYPD Blue the first time around.) A good reviewer can talk about the characters without giving away crucial plot lines yet to develop. Please keep that in mind, all reviewers! And try not to ruin it for the rest of us...
Posted on Apr 14, 2016 10:54:35 AM PDT
I truly enjoyed reading your engaging comment of NYPD Blue Season Three. It's a fact you're a great fan of the series and I appreciate your detailed descriptions of each of the show's characters and episodes especially the racist fueled Andy Sipowicz. I can hardly wait to purchase this exciting set as soon as I'm done watching Season Two. This is an exploding season where each episode showcases the show's players involve in personal tragedies and high leveled turmoils. Great job Joshua on your NYPD Blue review.
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