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The 80's were a unique time in history, mainly because of the ground breaking events that took place. One aspect of the changes that could be seen were the television programs that were now being seen. Television programming underwent a transformation from its development some 40 years previous. The transformation went from shows that were pretty much whitewashed of reality or only showed the positive elements of life in the 40's and 50's and into the 60's and even early 70's. The face started changing in the 70's when you either saw some of the despair, but in a humorous way, or you saw the grit and grime of life and of course some shows simply showed how life once was. However, when the 80's came along television programming began showing all the potential aspects of life in realistic viewing. One such program that did that very well was the ground breaking police drama; Cagney and Lacey.

Cagney and Lacey focused on the lives of two female New York City detectives; Christine Cagney and Mary Beth Lacey, roles played so convincingly by Sharon Gless and Tyne Daly. What made the show so unique is that it gave a realistic glimpse into the pressures and problems that female police detectives face, whether married or single. Cagney is the free spirited single woman who focuses on her job and career with dedicated vigor, while Lacey is the more down to earth wife and mother who does her job with just as much dedication, however, must between that and her family.

This show goes a long way to showing the pressures that women in, what were once considered, men's jobs face the obstacles and rise to meet the challenges thrown at them, no matter what.

Cagney & Lacey is a Drama series that is currently running and has 7 seasons (135 episodes). The series first aired on March 26, 1982. It has moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.7.

Cagney & Lacey is available for streaming on the CBS website, both individual episodes and full seasons. You can also watch Cagney & Lacey on demand at Amazon Prime, Amazon, Sling, iTunes online.

7 Seasons, 135 Episodes
March 26, 1982
Cast: Tyne Daly, Sharon Gless, Meg Foster
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Cagney & Lacey Full Episode Guide

  • Chris and Mary Beth wrap up the investigation into the stolen $100 million dollars, and get a great surprise at its conclusion.

  • Lacey's plans to accompany Harvey to Florida for a contractors' convention are sidetracked.

  • A Wall Street success with friends high on the police command chain is robbed, creating additional pressure to solve the case quickly. Meanwhile, Harvey Jr. visits home.

  • Christine's date-rape case against Brad Potter goes to trial. Meanwhile, Harvey Lacey, Jr. disappears from his Marine training.

  • In a case of friendly fire, an officer is accidentally shot by Thornton.

  • The girlfriend of a murdered federal witness asks for help finding his killer. Meanwhile, one of Alice Lacey's classmates has AIDS.

  • The theft of a valuable painting sends the detectives to upscale galleries, hoping to find out where it went. Christine realizes Nick is the opposite of David.

  • When a refugee from El Salvador is slain, different people give wildly different opinions of the life he led to Chris and Mary Beth during their investigation. Meanwhile, Chris meets a friendly, handsome plumber at AA.

  • Chris and Mary Beth have very different attitudes at a mandatory refresher for their precinct at the police academy.

  • David Keeler proposes marriage to Christine.

  • An undercover operation at a computer manufacturer is jeopardized when Chris fails the company's random drug test.

  • Chris is disappointed when she's passed over to fill in during Lt. Samuels' vacation. Harvey assists in a case involving kickbacks at a construction site.

  • Harvey, Jr. stuns his parents on his 18th birthday by announcing he's enlisting with the Marines.

  • It's a case of 'he said/she said' when Christine claims to have been date-raped--while her date claims the sex was consensual--and she finds her story doubted because she didn't attempt to use her gun to defend herself.

  • Chris finally gets to work on the Major Task Force, and immediately is faced with finding out who the turncoat is in their midst.

  • Chris and Mary Beth go uncercover as game show contestants to investigate a rigging accusation.

  • A missing music video may be linked to drugs. Chris' niece visits, with aspirations of becoming an actress in New York.

  • Cagney and Lacey go undercover on streetcorners to investigate a rash of middle-aged prostitute murders. Isbecki is thrilled to discover his new partner is a woman.

  • An eccentric, older woman who claims she's a witch is getting in the way of a lucrative real estate deal.

  • David Keeler defends Mary Beth after the community demands a Civilian Review Board investigate her role in a neighborhood dispute. Det. Petrie is promoted to Sergeant.

  • When Det. Corassa's gun is linked to the slaying of a black youth in a white section of town, the negro community suspects a cover-up.

  • Cagney and Lacey's guarding of a mentally ill witness is complicated by his refusal to take his medication.

  • As Chris turns to the bottle herself to deal with her father's death, Mary Beth tries to save her by getting her back to AA.

  • While Mary Beth Lacey rides high on a wave of awards and promotions, Christine Cagney slips into the abyss.

  • As Chris turns to the bottle herself to deal with her father's death, Mary Beth tries to save her by getting her back to AA.

  • After years of drinking finally cost Charlie Cagney his life, Christine and her brother, Brian, must deal with the aftermath.

  • After Lacey is shot, but saved by a bulletproof vest, her and Cagney deal with the stress by seeing the police psychiatrist.

  • Mary Beth is arrested at a nuclear weapons protest, finding herself in the custody of Queens' Det. Dupnick.

  • The detectives question if a deaf girl could have committed the murder of which she's accused. David Keeler wants Christine to forgive him for representing Mansfield.

  • Cagney and Lacey try to bring down a scam artist who promises to get messages to the departed by giving them to the terminally ill, but face difficulty in that nobody seems to feel victimized.

  • Cagney and Lacey get placed in charge of planning a banquet to award Lt. Samuels with the Distinguished Service Award.

  • A rash of AA meeting robberies sends the detectives to pose as alcoholics. At a co-dependents' meeting, Chris is surprised to see Donna, her father's girlfriend.

  • Mary Beth has egg on her face when the Laceys' home is robbed, and it's revealed she doesn't follow the same home safeguarding tips she gives to civilians. Meanwhile, a high school athlete's death is investigated.

  • Chris and Mary Beth investigate a judge who's friends with Chris' father. Mary Beth is surprised at the results of her performance review from Chris.

  • An environmental champion begs Chris and Mary Beth to investigate a toy company for the dumping of toxic waste. Meanwhile, Chris dates a younger man.

  • When drug dealer Mansfield goes on trial, he surprises everyone by hiring David Keeler to represent him, especially upsetting Chris.

  • When Sara Jones, one of Mary Beth's maternity replacements, goes to trial for her act of vigilante justice against a rapist, Chris refuses to lie to save her.

  • Petrie falls under suspicion when someone he was squabbling with is murdered. Chris finds out a reporter she's dating isn't just interested in her romantically.

  • When hazing is suspected to have caused a girl to fall off a roof while rushing a sorority, the sisters close ranks, impeding the investigation.

  • Cagney and Lacey are charged with protecting a white South African runner in town for the New York City Marathon.

  • Pornographers come under suspicion when an A.D.A. who championed against child exploitation is murdered.

  • The 14th Precinct is abuzz over a visit from the star of a female TV detective show who wants to tag along with Chris and Mary Beth to see real female cops in action.

  • After a girl accuses her father of molesting her younger sister, Cagney and Lacey are forced to take action to keep the girls safe.

  • A sweltering day leads to an elevator failure, with Chris and a claustrophobic Victor trapped inside.

  • When an girl who wants to break away from her traditionally Islamic upbringing is murdered, Chris and Mary Beth must confront her family. Chris lusts for a possible assignment to a potentially career-making task force.

  • A suspect has an intriguing deal for leniency: he'll reveal who in the precinct is involved with heroin. Meanwhile, the Laceys move into a new home.

Most Popular Cagney & Lacey Episodes