Comparison and contrast of two telivision shows
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There are two television shows that I particularly enjoy. Their plots are intriguing and the characters and action of both shows are lifelike. I quickly become absorbed in these dramas. These shows are Law and Order and NYPD Blue. The two shows are very similar in some aspects. At the same time, they differ significantly. Each show is one-hour in length. Both are police-based dramas. Each shows location is New York City. The action and events in the screenplays of both productions take place during the mid 1980’s. Each show is very effective in drawing you into the plot. Sometimes this is due to the telling of lifelike stories, or to the trials and tribulations of the characters.
Each Law and Order presentation deals with one particular crime. It begins with the committing of the crime, follows the subsequent investigation to the arrest of the perpetrator, and then continues to the resulting trial. On NYPD Blue, the drama is constructed around a specific police precinct and its officers, who work on multiple crimes during an episode. The crime investigations, to which the officers investigate, are solved during the particular television presentation. However, the show never includes the prosecution of cases in court. The first half of a Law and Order production usually portrays the investigation of the crime and the arrest of its perpetrator. The second half of the show features the district attorneys and court trial. In contrast, the NYPD Blue show consistently presents only the various stages of the criminal investigations and the resulting arrests. Rarely does the drama include a court scene.
If one follows Law and Order attentively, it is easy to relate what one sees in the show to aspects of real life. However, it is not often that one can associate what appears in the NYPD Blue shows with anything that one reads in the newspaper or watches on the television news. On the Law and Order show, the distract attorney’s office is portrayed as being willing to give certain criminals special consideration a deal. On the other hand, the NYPD Blue productions show the displeasure and frustration of officers when courts, and particularly distract attorneys, let criminals off more lightly than they should.
On the Law and Order show, there are two characters around which most of the conflict occurs. On NYPD Blue, most of the conflict involves one character. He is a detective, who has lost his wife to cancer and his oldest son to a murder, and is a recovering alcoholic. The detective also faces numerous work-related issues. His supervisors do not always agree with the way he handles his work. This is not helped by his “I don’t give a damn” attitude that he does not bother to conceal most of the time. In Law and Order, two characters, a detective and a district attorney, deal with conflict. The detective faces his demons of alcoholism and prejudicial behavior. The sources of conflict for the district attorney are a need to maintain his impartiality in dealing with his assistants and the necessity to occasionally agree to lesser charges against known criminals, as distasteful as this may be.
These shows share some similarities in genre and settings. The characters of the show each convey something different. The dramas portray a significant aspect of life in our society, according to the story lines of the shows and the headlines of our daily news. Many of these productions resemble life more than we realize. However, at the same time if you watch the shows, you can obtain a sense of what the police and district attorneys go through in real life.