Canceling 'Cops:' Why Hollywood Loves Portraying The Police : 1A "There is this huge emphasis on police as the guardians of society," says culture critic Soraya McDonald. The problem with that is "we can't tell the difference between sheepdogs and wolves."

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Canceling 'Cops:' Why Hollywood Loves Portraying The Police

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Canceling 'Cops:' Why Hollywood Loves Portraying The Police

1A

Canceling 'Cops:' Why Hollywood Loves Portraying The Police

Canceling 'Cops:' Why Hollywood Loves Portraying The Police

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/882105603/882427674" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

A police car drives past the US Capitol and the Capitol Visitor Center after the building was evacuated due to reports of a fire in Washington, DC. SAUL LOEB/SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

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SAUL LOEB/SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images

A police car drives past the US Capitol and the Capitol Visitor Center after the building was evacuated due to reports of a fire in Washington, DC.

SAUL LOEB/SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images

Cops are everywhere — in podcasts, films, and on TV.

And by now, you might have heard that one of the longest-running cop shows of all time — aptly called Cops — and its cousin, Live PD, have been canceled.

Critics say these police shows distort how we view police brutality. They say they amplify and dramatize arrests and crimes committed by Black and Brown people and often take advantage of and disrespect people who are being arrested.

But what about fictional shows? Law And Order, The Wire, Brooklyn Nine-Nine — even Paw Patrol?

What do these shows tell us about police work and crime prevention? Are any of them accurate?

We focus policing in the media with Henry Molofsky, producer of the podcast Running From Cops, Soraya Nadia McDonald, culture critic at The Undefeated, Dr. Steven Thrasher, writer and professor at Northwestern University and Glen Mazzara, a former executive producer of The Shield and former showrunner of The Walking Dead.

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