CHiPs was one of the fight TV reflects of the late ’70s and early ’80s. It complied with two California Highway Patrol motorcycle police officers on the job. It came to be one the the plenty of popular cop dramas many thanks to the two key characters. Fans took pleasure in watching officers Frank “Ponch” Poncherello and Jon Baker, whose opposite characters and great looks do for an excellent TV.

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Leading actors Erik Estrada and also Larry Wilcox depicted the 2 protagonists. But even though their characters become close, the stars had a complicated relationship off-screen.

What was ‘CHiPs’ about?


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Erik Estrada together Officer candid ‘Ponch’ Poncherello and also Larry Wilcox as Officer Jon Baker ~ above the TV show ‘CHiPs’ | NBCU photograph Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images

In 1977, CHiPs debuted top top NBC. The show aired for six seasons and also ended in 1983. There was also a reunion TV movie released in 1998. Over the years, the series became a popular crime drama.

The activity follows two motorcycle cops — Jonathan Baker and Francis “Ponch” Poncherello — as they patrol LA streets for the California Highway Patrol. Those familiar with the CHP (hence the show’s title, CHiPs) are mindful that its troopers greatly work alone. However, the series explains why the two main personalities work together a team.


#throwbackthursday : Then and also now. One of my an initial ‘guest appearances’ after coming to be famous for Elvira’s Movie Macabre to be on the hit TV display ‘CHiPs’ v #ericestrada here’s me and Eric Estrada recreating our promo picture for the present in 2018! pic.twitter.com/Kxw5mJUfd8

— Elvira (
TheRealElvira) October 25, 2018

Many of the episodes illustrated criminal investigations such as hijackings. Jon and also Ponch likewise dealt through traffic accidents like pile-ups. Yet there were also comedic instances involving troubles like stranded motorists.CHiPsmade usage of the classic good-guy, bad-guy dichotomy.

Though the show portrayed the two main characters’ workdays, viewers additionally got a glimpse right into their an individual lives. Fans conveniently grew attached come the 2 attractive actors that played Ponch and Jon.

Erik Estrada and also Larry Wilcox starred in ‘CHiPs’


Erik Estrada, star that 1970s/1980s TV cop present "CHiPs," becomes a real-life police officer https://t.co/NSTTe2oyiQ pic.twitter.com/kbjE0qItMy

— HuffPost (
HuffPost) July 7, 2016

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Estrada is one actor and also real-life police officer who prospered up in brand-new York. The made his movie debut in 1970’s The Cross and also the Switchblade. A pair of years later, that starred in The new Centurions. However his most notable duty was Ponch ~ above CHiPs. In 2016, he in reality joined regulation enforcement.

According come IMDb, Larry Wilcox served in the naval Corps until the ’70s. Afterward, that made his an initial guest figure in the TV show Room 222. The actor continued to make TV guest appearances. He’s best known because that his function on CHiPs.

On the cop show, Estrada play the rambunctious and hotheaded Ponch. The character was much more trouble-prone and also on probation many of the time. In fact, his probation status is the factor why the CHP officers operated as a pair.

Wilcox played Ponch’s partner, Jon Baker. His personality was staid and also laidback contrasted to Ponch’s. He to be level-headed and also tried to keep his partner out that trouble.

But your clashing personalities produced a strained off-screen partnership that persisted for years.

Wilcox and Estrada weren’t fond that each other off-screen


Some actors members acquire along well, while others are not on friendly state off-screen. In fact, the 2 CHiPs stars regularly had tension between them on- set.

According to People, Wilcox made the clear that Estrada was no his friend. The stress began roughly the time the collection started. Wilcox was actors first, and he feel Estrada was preferred purely for his good looks: “I thought it was asinine to choose someone simply for gift photogenic,” Wilcox said. He had actually wanted someone rather to play his partner.

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“It was an ego problem,” Wilcox added. “That very first year we talked our problems over, sober and also drunk. We’d gain things squared away because that a week or two, climate the whole thing would start over.”

Over time, their strained partnership became more apparent. At one point, Wilcox was blunt when stating why he didn’t invite Estrada to his nuptials.“Erik didn’t invite me to his wedding four months back nor to his recent birthday party,” the actor told People. “I wanted to show much more class and invite him anyhow, but it went versus my grain.”

At times, Wilcox feared their friction would be noticeable in former of the camera. Yet the tension reduced a bit after Estrada was connected in a near-fatal motorcycle accident ~ above location. Wilcox rushed to Estrada’s side, “holding his hand to minimization the shock and telling him, ‘I really love you,"” civilization reported. “Still, as soon as Larry tried to visit Erik in the hospital, the wasn’t amongst the near friends and family allowed in.”

Later, the two stars came to be “chums” as soon as they went back for the TV movie, the Sun-Sentinel reported.

But in the end, Wilcox admitted, “Erik and also I space just completely different human beings.”