By David Bauder Associated Press
The “bad boys” are on the move. The Saturday night television fixture “Cops” is leaving Fox after 25 years and will be shown on the Spike network.
The cable network aimed at young male viewers said it will begin airing the action documentary series with the indelible theme song (“Bad boys, bad boys, whatcha gonna do when they come for you?”) in September.
The move isn’t really a surprise. Fox had cut down on the number of episodes ordered this season and frequently pre-empted the show for football games or ultimate fighting matches, which drew higher ratings.
Fox will announce its fall season schedule next week.
“All good things must come to an end,” said John Langley, the show’s creator. “I’m fortunate I have the opportunity to take it to Spike.”
“Cops” cameras follow officers on nighttime patrol with all the crooks, drunks and violent offenders they meet up with. It was a novelty for television when it began airing in March 1989, during Fox’s third year of operation, back when “reality TV” wasn’t even a genre.
For many years, it was paired on Fox’s Saturday night lineup with “America’s Most Wanted,” which left the network in 2011 and shifted to Lifetime.
Spike said it will air “Cops” in its customary 8 p.m. time slot, with two half-hour programs running back to back. The network hopes to make Saturday nights original programming.