[[quoteright:345:[[Series/StarskyAndHutch http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/964E3B437244578A355F845D8CE2.jpg]]]]

-> ''Every police force in the US always contains two officers who are direct polar opposites, but are forced to work together, before eventually getting on quite well.''
--> -- [[http://www.avforums.com/threads/the-hollywood-rule-book.32262 "Hollywood Rule Book"]], Vanity Fair

A CopShow which focuses on a partnership, usually (but not exclusively) of two males, as opposed to a CopShow which focuses on a single officer/detective or an entire squad, or LovelyAngels, the DistaffCounterpart. If the primary officers are a man and a woman, it's nearly always StrictlyProfessionalRelationship.

A Buddy Cop Show that tightly focuses on the emotional lives of the two protagonists frequently HoYay among its fans, c.f. ''MiamiVice''. If the characters spend leisure time together off the job, they're HeterosexualLifePartners. The buddies are often an OddCouple, occasionally [[SaltAndPepper one black and one white]]. In terms of personality, they tend to follow a distinct formula-one is a straight-laced stickler for protocol, the other is an unpredictable loose cannon. One ByTheBookCop, one CowboyCop. You get it. The primary thing keeping them together -- before CharacterDevelopment -- is that together, TheyFightCrime. And they do it very, very well.

Movie versions abound, or at least they used to: ''Film/BadBoys'', ''Film/LethalWeapon'', ''Film/DieHardWithAVengeance'', etc. It was so common at one point that even making jokes at the expense of the genre [[DeadHorseTrope became cliche]].

An increasingly common variant is partnerships between [[CopAndScientist a cop and a scientist]], a cop and a BoxedCrook, or AndroidsAndDetectives.

See also: CriminalProcedural, ForensicDrama, CopShow, PoliceProcedural, WunzaPlot.

[[AC:{{Anime}} and {{Manga}}]]
* ''Manga/{{FAKE}}'' takes the trope one further; its OddCouple, [[CowboyCop Dee]] and [[TeamMom Ryo]], are a couple in [[BoysLove more than one sense]].
* ''Manga/YoureUnderArrest''
* ''Anime/KiddyGrade'' starts as one.
* ''Anime/TigerAndBunny'' is essentially a buddy cop show with superheroes instead of police officers.
* The relationship between Batou and Togusa in ''Anime/GhostInTheShell 2: Innocence'' takes on elements of this.
* MadBull34, which can almost be considered a parody of this genre, has [[NewMeat Daizaburo]] [[TheLancer "Eddie"]] [[ByTheBookCop Ban]] and [[AntiHero John]] [[CowboyCop "Sleepy"]] [[DirtyCop Estes]] (A.K.A. [[InSeriesNickname Mad Bull]]).

* ''ComicBook/GorskyAndButch''
* ''ComicBook/CableAndDeadpool''
* ''TalesDesignedToThrizzle'' features Creator/MarkTwain and UsefulNotes/AlbertEinstein as cops in a recurring segment.
* ''ComicBook/BirdsOfPrey''
* ''ComicBook/QuantumAndWoody''

* Parodied in ''Film/LastActionHero'' where the police station in Jack Slater's movie world assigns humorously mismatched partners to every cop except Jack Slater himself, who doesn't work with a partner because he's the bad-ass loner cowboy cop archetype instead.
* The ''Film/RushHour'' movies. JackieChan plays a serious cop, skilled martial artist and very competent detective, who wants to follow procedure. Chris Tucker is the complete opposite.
* ''Film/TangoAndCash''
* ''TheOtherGuys''
* ''Film/HotFuzz'', Creator/SimonPegg's attempt at creating a British version, as he believes that Britain is lacking in the genre.
** As a bonus point, his character (a no-nonsense ByTheBookCop) has never watched an American buddy cop show or film. His easy-going partner Danny is the one who has always dreamed of living one and convinces Pegg's character to watch those films.
*** In an interesting subversion of the norm for the by-the-book/loose-cannon story, Sergeant Nicholas Angel is both a stickler for the letter of the law ''and'' the UnitedKingdom's greatest police action hero. His partner, Sergeant Danny Butterman, meanwhile, is neither of those things, but is a much more useful officer in the community most of the time, because he has the social skills that Sergeant Angel lacks.
* ''Film/LethalWeapon''
* ''Franchise/{{Dragnet}}'' (1987)
* ''Film/AlienNation''
* ''Film/ThePresidio'' - Although neither Inspector Austin nor Lt. Colonel Caldwell particularly like each other, they are forced to work together because neither has the [[JurisdictionFriction jurisdiction]] to pursue the full case alone.
* ''FilM/BadBoys''
* ''Film/DieHardWithAVengeance''... to an extent.
* ''Film/CopAndAHalf''
* A subplot in the first ''DirtyHarry''. Subverted, as [[spoiler: Harry's partner quits in the second half of the film, just as it seems like they're becoming a team.]] The third film did this as well with [[spoiler: Moore getting herself killed at the end.]]
* ''Film/MenInBlack'' staring Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones.
* ''Film/{{Showtime}}'' has RobertDeNiro, a serious by-the-book detective, and EddieMurphy, a patrol cop wishing to play a detective on TV, put together as part of a reality show. Understandably, the former hates the idea, while the latter loves it. At the end of the film, they reconcile their differences and become real partners, while the show continues with two new (female) cops, who start arguing even before they're on camera.
** For bonus points, the studio tries to coach the "buddy cops" using [[/index]]Creator/WilliamShatner, [[index]]who keeps referring to himself as [[Series/TJHooker TJ]]. Robert De Niro's character likes to point out how stupid some on-screen actions are, such as FingertipDrugAnalysis ("What if it's cyanide?") and car hood slide ("The holster scratches the paintjob").
** At the same time, the reason De Niro's character is even on the ShowWithinAShow is because of an extremely reckless action atypical of the character (he shot a news camera that was filming his wounded then-partner instead of trying to help).
** When the producer and her assistant visit De Niro's character's home and see its total lack of character, they complain that it doesn't fit into their perception of where "buddy cops" typically live. The assistant explains that their "research" indicates that buddy cops typically live at a house on the beach or in a loft downtown. The next day, the producer takes the liberty of completely redecorating his place, much to his chagrin ("It looks like a gay porn star lives here!").
* ''Film/TheodoreRex'' has WhoopiGoldberg play a cyborg cop who teams up with a man-sized T-rex to stop a WellIntentionedExtremist.
* ''Film/EndOfWatch''
* ''Film/LoadedWeapon1''
* ''Film/NationalSecurity'' has a slight twist. Neither SteveZahn's (Hank) nor Creator/MartinLawrence's (Earl) character is a cop. Hank used to be a cop until his partner was killed, and he was filmed supposedly assaulting Earl (he was swatting a bumblebee), causing him to be fired and jailed for 6 months. After getting out, the only job he can get is in security, working for the same company as Earl, who keeps trying to get into the police academy. Hank is trying to find out who killed his partner and track down the warehouse robbers, while Earl is tagging along for the action, which infuriates Hank to no end. Naturally, as the film continues, they resolve their differences and, by the end, both are cops. While neither is really a ByTheBookCop, Hank uses typical police investigative techniques, while Earl goes for the more "street" approach (e.g. Hank is content to sit on the roof for a night-long stakeout, while Earl gets bored and breaks into the bad guys' apartment).
* ''Film/TwentyOneJumpStreet'' is both this and a high-school film.
* ''Film/TheHidden'' features one such couple, with officer Tom Beck being the emotional and down-to-earth one and FBI agent Lloyd Gallagher (really a PuppeteerParasite inhabiting a human body) being the stoic, [[TheSpock logic-minded]] but [[AlienAmongUs awkward]] one. Interestingly, because Gallagher has a [[ItsPersonal very personal]] reason to go after the bad guy, he's both TheStoic and the CowboyCop of the duo.

* ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' partnered Cuddy, a dwarf, and Detritus, a troll. Of course, Literature/{{Discworld}} being a [[TheoryOfNarrativeCausality narrative universe]], they eventually became best friends. [[spoiler:Then subverted when Cuddy is killed suddenly. Detritus has gone on to become arguably the fourth most powerful cop in the city, behind Angua, Carrot, and Vimes]].
* Creator/IsaacAsimov's ''Robot Novels'' are an early novel example version of the trope. Gregory Powell and Mike Donovan are field specialists for U.S. Robots and Mechanical Men, and are employed mainly on testing new or experimental robots in practical situations either on planets or space stations. They regularly get into complex and potentially dangerous situations when trying to solve robot issues in the field. The issues typically involve the [[ThreeLawsCompliant Three Laws of Robotics]].
* A subplot of TadWilliams' ''Literature/{{Otherland}}'' features Australian detectives Calliope Skouros and her partner Stan as they investigate a long-unsolved murder believed to be the work of a SerialKiller named John Wulgaru, who ends up being the series' BigBad. The subplot uses all the standard Buddy Cop tropes and spends a fair bit of time [[LampshadeHanging lampshading]] them.
* In the anthology Zombies vs Unicorns edited by HollyBlack and JustineLarbalestier, there's a story called Prom Night. In Prom Night, the kids are running the (now barricaded) town they live in because of a ZombieApocalypse that was OnlyFatalToAdults. Tahmina and Jeff play the role of cops, keeping down crime and shooting any zombies that pop up. The story mostly focuses on their interactions with each other and their (mis)adventures as teenaged cops, and there's a bit of a RunningGag where Jeff constantly jokes about how stuff would be good material for when they get their own TV show. [[spoiler: although it's implied that whatever they're doing to the zombies at the burning ground isn't really working or is generating something else, so it's unlikely ''at best'' that things will ever be back to normal]]

* ''Series/AdamTwelve''
* ''AlarmFurCobra11''
* ''Series/AlienNation''
* ''AlmostHuman''
* ''TheAndyGriffithShow'' although not a cop show per se, included since two of the show's leads Andy and Barney were law enforcement officers, their work figured into many of the plots and they often worked together.
* ''Series/AshesToAshes''
* ''[[Series/BlackAndWhiteTW Black and White]]'', an award-winning TaiwaneseSeries from 2009.
* ''Series/CagneyAndLacey''
* ''Series/Car54WhereAreYou?'' was one of the first Buddy Cop shows, and the first TV police comedy.
* ''Series/CHiPs''
* ''Series/CommonLaw''
* ''Literature/DalzielAndPascoe''
* ''Series/DempseyAndMakepeace''
* ''Franchise/{{Dragnet}}''
* ''Series/DueSouth''
* "Series/TheStreetsOfSanFrancisco" - where Karl Malden played the old, experienced cop vs the young loose-canon Michael Douglas 15 years before Mel Gibson made Danny Glover feel too old for this shit.
* ''Series/GoldenBoy''
* ''Series/TheGoodGuys''
* ''Series/{{Graceland}}''
* ''Series/{{Elementary}}''
* ''Series/HawaiiFive0''
* ''Houston Knights''
* ''Series/{{Hunter}}''
* ''Series/ISpy''
* ''KeenEddie''
* ''Series/{{Life}}''
* ''Series/LifeOnMars2006''
* ''Series/LifeOnMars2008''
* ''TheMeetingPlaceCannotBeChanged''
* ''Series/TheManFromUNCLE''
* ''Series/MiamiVice''
* Subverted '''''big time''''' in ''Series/{{Moonlighting}}'', where the two leads absolutely cannot stand each other. At all. They argue with each other in [[PunctuatedForEmphasis Every. Single. Episode]] (that they appear in; the episodes where they either don't appear or appear for a little while, are the '''only''' exceptions). The worst part? In later episodes, they possibly start having feelings for each other ([[WillTheyOrWontThey or possibly not]])...
* ''Series/NewYorkUndercover'', notable for being the first police drama on American television to feature two people of color in the starring roles.
* ''Series/TheProfessionals''
* ''Series/RandallAndHopkirkDeceased''
* ''Series/RizzoliAndIsles''
* ''Series/TheSentinel''
** Slightly averted in that only Jim is a cop. Blair is an anthropology student who's studying Jim's superhuman senses as part of his thesis, although he ends up helping to solve a lot of crimes as well (mostly by coaching Jim on how to best use his senses).
* ''Series/SimonAndSimon'', although it's more of a "buddy detective'' show.
* ''Series/SledgeHammer''
* ''Series/StarskyAndHutch''
* ''Series/TJHooker''
* ''Series/WhiteCollar''
** Peter is a top FBI agent in the White Collar division. Neal is a former con man and forger who was caught by Peter several times and now helps the FBI track down people like him.
* Spoofed in a Creator/ConanOBrien sketch, which paired the extremely tall Conan with the extremely short Former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich as buddy cops. Reich informing a perp "You have the right... to be my [[ThisIsForEmphasisBitch bitch]]!" was possibly the CrowningMomentOfFunny.
* Spoofed in the Les Nuls sketch "Magnum Choucroute." Talk about [[OddCouple mismatched]]: one of the cops is actually a jar of sauerkraut.
* ''Series/{{Community}}'' parodies this in "The Science of Illusion" when Annie and Shirley become temporary campus security guards. They end up getting into an argument about which one of them should be the ByTheBookCop and which one should be the CowboyCop despite the fact that both of them are equally suited to both roles, and GenreSavvy Abed, who is following them around, ends up invoking a whole load of tropes based on this.
* In ''NoahsArc'', the movie Wade had written appears to be one of these (based on the lines we overhear and what Wade and Noah discuss).
* Also parodied on ''TheLateLateShow with Craig Ferguson''--Geoff often refers to his idea for a cop show called ''Bone Patrol with G.P. and the Fergs''.
* Parodied on ''Series/{{MADtv}}'' with the "Seven Buddy Cops" sketch, which is a massive crossover starring Nick Nolte, Creator/EddieMurphy, Chris Tucker, Creator/JackieChan, Owen Wilson, Tommy Lee Jones, and Creator/WillSmith giving shout outs to all the buddy cop movies they starred in while trying to solve the case of the dead prostitutes on the orders of DaChief. Even Creator/MelGibson and Danny Glover (aka ''Film/LethalWeapon'''s Murtaugh and Riggs) make a cameo.

* It's not uncommon for players of ''TabletopGame/FengShui'' to design Karate and Maverick Cop characters to fit this mold, with the Karate Cop being the ByTheBookCop type, and the Maverick Cop being the rule-breaker.
** The 2056 juncture has its own little twist on this particular genre, the "buddy cop romance". These movies basically take the homoerotic elements that Buddy Cop movies often have and carry them to their logical conclusion.

* ''Franchise/AceAttorney'':
** Prosecutors are the direct partners of their detective counterparts in the series, which makes Gumshoe and Edgeworth fill this trope during their cases in ''Investigations''.
** There's also an unnamed ShowWithinAShow that Gumshoe likes featuring a strong prosecutor/detective bond that's almost as good as the one Gumshoe (thinks that he) shares with Edgeworth.
* ''VisualNovel/{{Policenauts}}'', essentially a Sci-Fi version of ''Film/LethalWeapon''.
* ''VideoGame/TheHouseOfTheDeadOverkill'' is all about this sort of relationship between Isaac Washington (foul-mouthed CowboyCop) and Agent G (enigmatic professional secret agent).
* The arcade game ''Chase H.Q.'', while not a straight example, has a ShoutOut to the Buddy Cop genre.
** It's [[{{VideoGame/RollingThunder}} Rolling Thunder]]-like spinoff game ''Crime City'' is a straighter example.
* {{Namco}}'s arcade game ''Lucky and Wild'', a combination of a driving game and light gun game where player one drives and shoots while player 2 just shoots.

* Parodied on ''{{Im A Marvel And Im ADC}}'' with [[Comicbook/{{Watchmen}} Rorschach]] and {{Deadpool}}.
-->'''Rorschach''': How the hell did I end up being the *GOOD COP*?
* ''CivilProtection'', which stars two Civil Protection agents, Mike and Dave, from ''VideoGame/HalfLife2''.
* Parodied in ''TheOnion'', in which a [[http://www.theonion.com/articles/veteran-cop-gets-along-great-with-rookie-partner,1818/ tough veteran cop gets along great with his mismatched rookie partner]].
* ''Website/{{Cracked}}'''s #1 [[http://www.cracked.com/blog/the-4-weirdest-lessons-80s-movies-really-wanted-to-teach-us_p2/ Weirdest Lesson '80s Movies Really Wanted to Teach Us]] calls the buddy cop film an easy way to involve a TokenMinority.
* AudioPlay/Below Board is about two detectives with somewhat mismatched personalities in 1930s New Orleans.
* During a LetsPlay of ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaMajorasMask'', [[LetsPlay/FreelanceAstronauts Maxwell]] randomly brings up that there'd be a lot of comedy potential between Canada and Australia, which the others develop into an idea for a buddy cop movie with Australia as the wacky, wisecracking cop and Canada as the serious cop who's getting too old for this.

* ''Webcomic/DoubleK'', an ''AU'' ''TengenToppaGurrenLagann'' webcomic based off of what the show would be like if Kamina and Kittan were two cops partnered up ''Starsky & Hutch''-style.
* ''Webcomic/{{Matchu}}'' has its Space Cops subplot, starring two aliens coming to Earth looking for an escaped fugitive from their homeworld and running afowl of one of the main characters. Complete with title sequence, episode card and ''commercial break''.

* ''WesternAnimation/OzzyAndDrix'', which takes place inside a boy's body, and is [[RecycledTheSeries based on the much-maligned movie]] ''Film/OsmosisJones''.
* ''Funky Cops''
* ''WesternAnimation/TheCritic'', in the episode "Sherman of Arabia," heavily mocked this genre with ''[[ShowWithinAShow Beverly Hills Robo K9 Cop and a Half 2]]'', wherein CowboyCop ''Film/DirtyHarry'' is partnered with, to quote the Website/IMDb...
--> '''DaChief''': ...a woman, a cute little kid, an ugly old dog, a dinosaur, and a leprechaun.\\
'''Leprechaun''': I'll be your lucky charm!\\
[Leprechaun explodes]\\
'''[[NoCelebritiesWereHarmed Not Schwarzenegger]]''': You think you've got problems? I'm partnered with a pig, an alien, Siamese twins, a sofa, and a second rate mime.\\
(The mime also exploded.)
* ''{{Fillmore}}'': A [[BuddyCopShow Buddy]] [[YellowSashOfPower Hall Monitor Show]].
* Adult Swim's ''WesternAnimation/StrokerAndHoop''
* ''{{Bonkers}}'' has the titular character (a washed-up cartoon star in the form of a FunnyAnimal bobcat who operates on Toon physics/logic) and Lucky, who is an ordinary human.[[note]]Previous episodes before that however, had Bonkers partnered with Miranda, a female police officer who is also an ordinary human. The "Miranda" era episodes were later [[{{Retcon}} retconned]] as taking place after the "Lucky" era episodes.[[/note]]
* [[TheFlintstones Fred Flintstone and Barney Rubble]] in the ''Bedrock Cops'' segments on ''The Flintstone Comedy Show''.[[note]]Not to be confused with the syndicated version of "The Flintstone Comedy Hour", which is essentially the second season of ThePebblesAndBammBammShow.[[/note]]
* ''AmericanDad'' has done this a few times with Steve and Roger. The two of them enjoy watching buddy cop shows, and decide to form their own duo, and they eventually settle on Wheels and the Legman, the gimmick being that one of them is in a wheelchair and the other isn't. The two of them argue over which of them gets to be Wheels, which leads to them splitting up, both in wheelchairs, and getting their own partners. Steve gets Bill Elliot (Who's catchphrase is "You're on a roll, Wheels) and Roger gets a fat black girl dressed as an angel (Who's catchphrase is "You gonna finish that?"). After Steve deduces that Roger's partner isn't a real angel because she eats devil's food cake, Roger concedes and the two get back together with Steve as Wheels and Roger as the Legman.