T.J. Hooker (1982–1986)
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The Night Ripper 

A recent murder makes Hooker suspect "The Night Ripper" has resurfaced.


Michael Caffey


Rick Husky (creator), Don Ingalls | 2 more credits »




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
William Shatner ... Sgt. T.J. Hooker
Heather Locklear ... Officer Stacy Sheridan
James Darren ... Officer Jim Corrigan
Robert Thaler Robert Thaler ... Doug Richards
Hugh Farrington ... Lt. Pete O'Brien
Todd Hunter Todd Hunter ... Sonny
Leslie Ryan ... Mary Stockman
John Petlock John Petlock ... Mr. Beaman
Anthony Darren Anthony Darren ... Tom Williams (as Tony Darren)
John Christy Ewing John Christy Ewing ... Mr. Williams
Karrie Emerson ... Heidi Davis
Judy Jean Berns Judy Jean Berns ... Louise Banning
Jaime Alba Jaime Alba ... Larry Dunn
Heidi Helmer ... Tina
Jane A. Rogers ... Girl


A recent murder makes Hooker suspect "The Night Ripper" has resurfaced.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Action | Crime | Drama





Release Date:

29 January 1986 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


It is mentioned Hooker has totaled 3 police cars in the past 10 months. See more »


In the studio, the suspect has Stacy in a classic hold- behind her with his arm around her neck and threatening her via a knife. When the suspect points the knife at Hooker and Corrigan, Hooker despite being only a couple of feet away does not take the head shot to save Stacy. See more »

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User Reviews

A Cheap & Sleazy Episode
9 April 2014 | by JasonDanielBakerSee all my reviews

Veteran cop Sgt. T.J.Hooker (William Shatner) is summoned by dispatch to investigate a domestic disturbance and heads to the scene. It turns out to be a sorority house and a young woman was brutally murdered and mutilated in her room there by a guy in cowboy boots who escaped into the night. Hooker gives chase but loses him in the shadows.

It is similar to a case Hooker worked on six years earlier but could never solve back when he was still a homicide detective. The serial murderer of attractive young women was dubbed 'The Night Ripper' by the press. The new killing is the seventh victim. Hooker has long harboured guilt over the first six. It isn't long before the body count rises.

By the fifth and final season of T.J.Hooker the show had diminished. It never again cracked the ratings top thirty after its truncated first season. ABC cancelled it in spring 1985 and Adrian Zmed, who had portrayed Hooker's young partner Vince Romano the first four seasons moved on. Whether much production budget money was saved without him is open to conjecture.

CBS picked up the series but moved it to very late at night. The budget was lower as evidenced by the relative lack of profile of guest-stars many of whom were soap opera actors. The lower cost to produce and the fact that it could accommodate double the commercials in its late night time-slot by filling 70 minutes instead of 60 kept it on the air for 18 more episodes in the 1985-86 season.

The performances in this episode of some of the young actors they brought in are beyond terrible. The scene in the police interrogation room and the sensationalistic/sleazy finale are cringe-inducing. The network should have done more to get its roster of talent to guest-star but evidently everyone was more concerned about doing it on the cheap.

Few episodes of the show ever really delved in to the psyche of the criminal balancing out the narrative and this one is far from an exception. It was almost exclusively an unsubtle indefatigable good vs murky evil dialectic and villains carried with them an 'otherness' for lack of a better word. This one in particular really exaggerated that 'otherness' in a primitively kinky kind of way.

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