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Bill Clark

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Bill Clark was a Police Officer on the New York Police Department for 25 years, including 17 years in homicide. He retired as a 1st Grade Detective.  During his career he worked on a number of high-profile cases including the Son of Sam and mafia related cases. After retiring from NYPD he became an executive producer of the popular television crime drama, NYPD Blue.  His book, “True Blue” is a behind the scenes look at NYPD Blue.


Booklist said of True Blue, “The real stories are twofold: the sicko/crackhead crimes on which the popular cop drama is based and backstage politics. The latter featured the departure of prima donna actor David Caruso, to the regret of no one, apparently, but to the profit of the tabs that blared the snit-fit at the checkout line. That publicity is the rough analog for the interest that libraries can expect for this testimonial from the show's chief scriptwriter, David Milch, and "creative consultant," real NYPD detective Bill Clark, who raw-jaws the cases behind the televised episodes. Viewers and readers will quickly connect Clark's war stories with particular programs and Clark himself with the character of Andy Sipowicz, whose profanity, creative I'll-bust-your-face interrogation methods, and crypto-racism often tighten and spring the drama's tensions. Fans also hear Milch's reaction to attacks on his show by family-values groups, and his defense of an ill-received lecture he gave on why there are so few black screenwriters in Hollywood. Discursively organized, yet fans will still zoom through this inside dope.”

One reader of True Blue said, “While many names pop up in the writing and production credits of every episode of "NYPD Blue," the show is essentially the work of two men: screenwriter Milch and ex-cop Clark. To truly understand the way they think and how that translates into Emmy-winning drama, this book is a must. It alternates between behind-the-scenes information from Milch -- with a heavy emphasis on Milch's feud with former star David Caruso during the first season -- and anecdotes from Clark's 25-year career as an NYPD cop and homicide detective. If you've never watched Blue and are only interested in the true-crime aspects, this probably isn't the book for you. And devout fans of Caruso should probably stay far away, as the book paints a very unflattering (and some would say unfair) portrait of the red-haired actor.”

Another reader of True Blue said, “Bill Clark, former NYPD detective of numerous years, gives personal insight and beyond to how his real-life occurrences on the job inspired the creation of the series. David Milch explains how the storylines were developed upon Bill Clark's career experiences. You learn about Bill Clark's NYPD job experiences and how he and David Milch collaborated together to submit the fine drama we are pleasured to witness every week. Learn why a "skell" is called a "skell". Find out which favorite episodes are based on certain cases Bill Clark broke during his NYPD tenure. Thank you gentlemen for the great six seasons so far, here's to many more!! If you are a Blue fan.”

True Blue
David Milch  More Info

From the History of the New York City Police Department 

The Night City Watchmen, in 1831, became dissatisfied with their pay, and two hundred and fifty of their number, organizing as a body, petitioned the Boards of aldermen for an increase of wages. The question was referred to the Committee on Finance, Police, Watch and Prisons, who, after examining several of the officers and a large number of the men, advised adversely to granting the petition. Their report states that the members of the Watch were paid eighty-seven and a half cents per night, the men alternating in performing the duties, and the majority of them were engaged in other pursuits with which their official responsibilities seldom interfered. In the summer season, the Watch was stationed at nine o'clock, and was discharged at daylight, the men having half the time to rest, the force being divided into two squads, each serving every alternate two hours. In regard to the complaint that they obliged to attend the Police courts in the mornings with their prisoners, the committee held that this was not very arduous, as two men in succession were assigned to that duty, and that the turn of each did not come more then once in every three months.

The same grievance was complained of in 1825, and this led to an advance from seventy-five to eighty-seven and a half cents per night, that continuing up to the date of the present petition for more pay.

Reporting on the complaint of the Watchmen that they obliged to attend court as witnesses, without receiving sufficient remuneration for the time lost, the committee held that the two dollars allowed them for every case in which they were summoned was a reasonable average compensation, and should not be increased. "It may also be added," they report, "as evidence of the equity of the present wages, that there are many m ore applications of good, suitable men for the office then are wanted." In conclusion they state: "Duly estimating the value of the services of the nightly guardians of the city, on whose vigilance and fidelity the safety and comfort of our citizens so much depend, and without taking into consideration the fact that the expenses of the city would be increased upwards of fourteen thousand dollars by assenting to the present petition, the committee are constrained to come to the conclusion that they cannot justly recommend an advance in wages to the Watchmen."


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