The Chief: The Complete Series [DVD]

The Chief: The Complete Series [DVD]

The Chief: The Complete Series [DVD]

A critically acclaimed drama series from the early ’90s, The Chief shows a police force under change and the friction generated as attempts are made to reform outmoded policies and challenge the often unacceptable conduct of front-line officers.


The Chief is a gripping drama series that follows the journey of John Stafford, a newly promoted Chief Constable at Eastland, East Anglia. As he takes on the role, he faces resistance from within the police force and must navigate through the complexities of modern policing.

Tim Pigott-Smith as John Stafford

Tim Pigott-Smith delivers a powerful performance as John Stafford, an outspoken and deeply committed officer. His dedication to reform and his willingness to make difficult decisions sets the tone for the series.

The Unpopular Appointment

One of Stafford’s first decisions is to appoint Anne Stewart as his deputy. This choice proves deeply unpopular and exposes the institutional attitudes that hinder progress within the police force.

The Challenges of Modern Policing

The Chief does not shy away from tackling the ever-mounting challenges of modern policing. From militant student action to vigilante gangs, bombings, extreme activism, witness intimidation, the exploitation of migrant workers, and dealing with death in the line of duty, the series explores the complexities and dangers faced by frontline officers.

Alan Cade Takes Over

In later series, John Stafford moves on and is replaced by Alan Cade, played by Martin Shaw. Cade faces similar challenges as his predecessor, with pressure from Home Office superiors and local government agencies complicating his role as a Chief Constable.

The Pressure of Frontline Policing

Despite their capabilities, both Stafford and Cade find that the demands of frontline policing often overshadow their efforts to bring about meaningful change. The series highlights the constant struggle faced by police officers in balancing their duties and responsibilities.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Is The Chief based on a true story?
  2. No, The Chief is a fictional drama series.

  3. How many seasons are there?
  4. The Chief ran for five seasons.

  5. Is the series available on DVD?
  6. Yes, The Chief: The Complete Series is available on DVD.


The Chief is a compelling drama series that delves into the challenges faced by police forces as they strive to reform outdated policies and address misconduct within their ranks. With powerful performances and thought-provoking storylines, this series is a must-watch for fans of crime dramas.