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"Dead or alive, you're coming with me."
RoboCop (1987) is a Sci Fi / Cyberpunk film set Twenty Minutes Into the Future in a Crapsack World version of Detroit, where the police force has been privatized and handed over to Omni Consumer Products (OCP). Officer Alex Murphy (Peter Weller) is trailing a vicious criminal gang led by Clarence Boddicker when he is separated from his partner, Anne Lewis. Boddicker (Kurtwood Smith) and his cronies overwhelm Murphy, then take delight in unloading their shotguns into him.
After Murphy is pronounced dead, OCP takes his remains and effectively resurrects him as the Nigh Invulnerable cyborg police officer RoboCop. His mind is supposedly wiped, but signs indicate that the wipe job wasn't perfect. When Murphy does start looking for revenge against his killers, he discovers that top OCP executive Dick Jones is connected to Boddicker—and that Jones has meddled with Murphy's programming to ensure his own survival.
Directed by Paul Verhoeven, RoboCop is a gritty, ultra-violent, darkly humorous film which features a great deal of social commentary and political satire on such subjects as capitalism, privatization, the environment and public apathy. The film works as pure summer entertainment as well, with taut action sequences, impressive production design, and memorable characters. Its smash success spawned a whole series of sequels and spin-offs while providing a huge shot in the arm for the Superhero film genre that the embaressing failure of Superman IV almost sunk in the same year.
The first sequel, RoboCop 2 (1990), was even more violent and edgier than the first, going so far as to include a child as one of the primary villains. The plot involves the spread of a new drug called NUKE, considered the most addictive narcotic in history, as the police department is on strike. RoboCop struggles to stem the flow by going after Cain, a drug kingpin with a messiah complex.
Meanwhile, OCP has failed to replicate their success creating the first RoboCop. After several failed attempts, an unscrupulous executive in OCP hypothesizes that the mind of a criminal with a strong desire for power and immortality could survive the procedure. When RoboCop finally takes Cain down, OCP immediately sticks Cain's brain in "RoboCop 2" and counts on his addiction to NUKE as a Restraining Bolt. (You get no points on guessing how long he stays loyal.) Now RoboCop must face his Evil Counterpart—who is far more heavily armed than himself.
Relying too heavily on raw violence and shock value while having less of the satirical humor that defined its predecessor, the sequel was not as popular as the original film. Frank Miller wrote the original screenplay; although the script was heavily altered to fit a movie format, his influence in the themes of the film can be identified, including scenes in which a focus group attempts to make RoboCop more family-friendly (rendering him unable to do his job). Miller later turned his original vision of the film into a comic book series (Frank Miller's RoboCop).
RoboCop 3 substituted the adult violence for something more tame, since the film was rated PG-13. The third film has OCP working to finish what they've been trying to do in the first two movies—tear down Detroit, a city they deem as "beyond saving", and rebuild it as Delta City. As usual, it comes down to Murphy vs. OCP. RoboCop (now played by Robert John Burke) finds himself working to keep OCP from forcibly removing citizens to make way for "a better Detroit", and along the way, he gets a jetpack and fights robot ninjas. Too mild in the action and edging into kiddie-film territory, this film bombed both financially and critically.
Despite the very adult material, the character of RoboCop has the general makings of a classic Super-Hero Origin story, and as such, the character has appeared in at least four different incarnations on TV. In all of them, to one degree or another, the ultraviolence and corporate/political satire is stripped away in favor of superheroics and corny humor:
- Robocop: The Animated Series: Animated Adaptation, 1988. Like the above. Also introduced a toyetic group of sidekicks called the Ultra Police. At least some of the stories were good.
- Robocop: The Series: Live action, 1994. Gave Robo a holographic woman partner, a kid sidekick, and a variety of gadgets. On the other hand, it was occasionally hysterical. "I can't believe it! He's a Milken Scholar!"
- Robocop: Alpha Commando: Animated, 1998. Which was less than well received. Filled the world with smartass A Is.
- Robocop Prime Directives: Live-Action, Miniseries, 2000. Received an ambivalent response.
The title character's design was loosely based on the Toku Metal Heroes series, particularly Space Sheriff Gavan, which Paul Verhoven apparently enjoyed watching on his hotel room TV set while visiting Japan.
One more thing: there was also a series of videogames produced for home consoles and the arcade, mostly adhering to what is now referred to as the "run and gun" format. In addition to the RoboCop-only games, there was also a crossover game with another famous film franchise: RoboCop versus The Terminator.
The film series provides examples of
- Abandoned Warehouse: The site of the first confrontation between Murphy and Boddicker's gang and the last one.
- Action Girl: Lewis, although she's a Faux Action Girl for the first part of the movie.
- Actor Allusion: Inverted in the second movie - Belinda Bauer stars as psychologist Dr. Faxx, and later went on to become a qualified psychologist herself.
- AI Is a Crapshoot: ED-209; not because they're evil, but because they're very, very dumb. Subverted with RoboCop himself; he doesn't rebel against OCP because he's a cyborg, but because he regains his human memories.
- All Crimes Are Equal: ED-209 advanced dangerously on RoboCop for being illegally parked on private property at the end of the first film. (Not that it worked out that well for him on this occasion.)
- ...And Show It to You: RoboCop 2—Robo does this to Cain. Instead of the heart, Robo uses the brain. Presumably, we're talking wi-fi here.
- Antagonist Title: RoboCop 2 is technically one, as Cain is turned into a cyborg called RoboCop 2 by the OCP.
- An Arm and a Leg: All over the place, especially Murphy's gruesome death.
- Artificial Gravity: Played for laughs. The gravity on the space station (which is an orbital defense platform instead of the peaceful use of the ISS today) malfunctions when the President visits.
- Armor Is Useless: Averted and also played straight throughout all three films.
- In the first movie the standard issue body armor of the police is useless against shotgun ammunition. Robocop's titanium/kevlar armor seems more than adequate for protection against small arms fire and gas explosions, but proves little use after trying to arrest Dick Jones.
- To be fair, Murphy's police standard body armor did indeed work as advertised: a barrage of shotgun blasts to the torso failed to kill him. Too bad for Murphy that the party started with his helmet being stolen, then an aimed shot to an unprotected arm and finished with an aimed shot to the forehead.
- In the second movie Robocop is fired at with varying degrees of man portable weaponry including a rocket launcher or two and he still keeps on going. However a .50 caliber M2 is enough to take his hand off and a jackhammer is sufficient to disassemble him (eventually).
- In the first movie the standard issue body armor of the police is useless against shotgun ammunition. Robocop's titanium/kevlar armor seems more than adequate for protection against small arms fire and gas explosions, but proves little use after trying to arrest Dick Jones.
- Asshole Victim: Bob Morton in the first movie.
- A-Team Firing
- All those assault cannons in the first movie's climax, and RoboCop doesn't take a single hit. In general, Robo takes a heck of a lot of hits to the chest and none to that few inches of face, though there's at least one scene where he shields his face with an arm.
- Averted throughout the movie by other enemies, though. The confrontation with ED-209 and the subsequent arrival of the SWAT teams and police see RoboCop barely survive after being targeted mercilessly with assault cannons, machine guns, shotguns and a couple of rockets.
- Attack Drone: ED-209.
- Attempted Rape: One of the first crime victims rescued by Murphy after his transformation into RoboCop is a Distressed Damsel being threatened by two men. He disables the first with a Groin Attack.
- Aluminum Christmas Trees: The Nukem Board Game is essentially just a more high-tech version of the real card game Nuclear War
- Back From the Dead: Murphy; Cain.
- Barrier-Busting Blow: RoboCop punches through a wall to grab Boddicker.
- In RoboCop 2, Robo politely knocks on the (armoured) drug kitchen door. When the guard comes to check the viewport, Robo's fist comes through to wallop him in the solar plexus.
- Bathroom Stall of Overheard Insults: Jones insults his boss in the bathroom only to discover he's been listening in the cubicle all along.
- Better Than New: After Murphy is pronounced dead, OCP takes his remains and resurrects him using cybernetic/robotic technology into the Nigh Invulnerable RoboCop, though he'll never be human again.
- BFG: Boddicker and crew eventually are supplied with the Cobra Assault Cannon. The props were built from Barrett Model 82 .50 caliber rifles, and they're quite explosive. They use the Cobra against RoboCop in the first movie, and Robo uses one himself in RoboCop 2. In the third movie, RoboCop got arm mounted weapon attachments which combined a machine gun, a flamethrower and even a grenade launcher.
- Big Bad: Clarence Boddicker and Dick Jones in RoboCop, Cain in RoboCop 2, McDagget in RoboCop 3.
- Big Bad Duumvirate: Clarence Boddicker and Dick Jones.
- Big Damn Heroes: The climax of RoboCop 3, when the citizens resistance is about to be overwhelmed against the mercenaries until RoboCop comes screaming out the sky with his jetpack on to provide air support.
- Black Comedy: The newscasts.
- Black Dude Dies First: Played straight in the first film's climax. (Technically, Bobby was the first member of Boddicker's gang to die in the entire film, but he was killed very early. The first of the core group to die was the black dude).
- Bobby wasn't necessarily killed. We see him get shot in the legs and thrown onto the windshield of a Ford Taurus, but people have survived worse injuries in Real Life.
- Bloody Hilarious
- Blunt Metaphors Trauma: Robo in the second film when he stops some kids from playing with an open fire hydrant. He attempts to dispatch some old adages of homespun wisdom, but botches several of the sayings.
- Body Horror
- A plot point in RoboCop 2 involves the failed attempts to build a New and Improved cyborg. The minds used would be so horrified by what they had become that they would commit suicide in hilarious ways.
- The first time Robo takes his helmet off, he says to his partner: "You may not like what you are about to see." Murphy's face is the only visible organic part of him, and from the looks of his head, has been grafted onto a completely synthetic skull.
- RoboCop ends up in a pile of pieces after his first, failed attempt to get Cain.
- Boddicker's goon Emil drives through an industrial-strength tank of acidic toxic waste. Unfortunately for Emil, he survives long enough to get splattered.
- And, of course, Murphy getting shredded apart by shells and bullets in the first part of the first film.
- Boom! Headshot!: Murphy dies after getting shot in the head (which, after getting several of his limbs blown off and shot multiple times, is almost a Mercy Kill).
- Bowdlerized: The TV edit used for a ABC Sunday Night Movie in the early 90s cut half the movie and overdubbed the rest: "Ladies, leave!" and "You finked on the wrong guy."
- Bottomless Magazines: Nobody in this movie ever seems to reload their guns, even RoboCop and his machine pistol.
- Brain In a Jar: Cain, at least temporarily, while they're preparing his robot body. He, though, still has his Eyes attached to his brain. As a result, he sees his own face that's been cut off of his body, with the surgeon casually holding it like a coffee cup. All of these are just trope filled giving examples of Body Horror.
- Broken Faceplate: RoboCop's visor gets smashed open by ED-209, allowing the audience to see the fear and surprise on his face during a close-up.
- Buddy Cop Show: Not a show, precisely, but the Murphy & Lewis dynamic held through all three movies. And unlike most Buddy Cop Show situations, they were good buddies from the start, rather than rubbing each other the wrong way.
- Call Back: McDagget's death at the end of the third movie is actually quite similar to Bob Morton's in the first—they're both wounded in the legs, left desperately crawling towards an active explosive device and trying to disarm, and ultimately failing.
- California Doubling
- The Cameo: In Robocop 2, Frank Miller plays a chemist named...Frank
- Captain Obvious: Lampshaded in the 3rd movie.
Random Officer: "Hey, that's a battered yellow van!"
Lewis: "No shit, Sherlock!"
- Car Chase: Robo chasing Daggett in a borrowed pimpmobile in 3.
- Car Fu
- Character Tics: Murphy had several that carried over into his cyborg persona. For example, he learned how to spin his pistol to impersonate T.J. Lazer, the hero of his son's favourite show. Upon remembering his human life his deadpan sense of humor returns.
- Character Title
- Chekhov's Gun
- The unknown 4th Directive in the first movie, along with RoboCop's computer jack that takes on the form of a spike emerging from his fist which he uses to dispatch Boddicker.
- The third film had RoboCop's jetpack, stolen by the resistance from a warehouse group simply because it looked expensive. Later explained exactly what it was by Dr. Lazarus. As well as the little kid with a portable hacking computer. Directive 4 rears its head again, too... until the rebels delete it.
- Chicken Walker: The ED-209, which proves to be its Achilles Heel.
- Cloudcuckoolander: RoboCop in the second movie, after he's saddled with a couple hundred politically-correct directives.
- Cluster F-Bomb: The convenience store robber, upon RoboCop's entrance: "Fuck me! Fuck me! Fuck me! Fuck me! Fuck me! Fuck me! Fuck me! Fuck me! Fuck me!"
- The Commandments: RoboCop's four directives.
- Continuity Nod
- The "I'd Buy That for a Dollar!" guy makes a cameo in the third film.
- In the second film, Murphy brings one of the Cobra Rifles used on him from the first to his confrontation with RoboCain, though it does not cause much damage.
- Cool Gun: RoboCop's heavily modified Beretta 93R, referred to as the "Auto-9".
- Corporate-Sponsored Superhero: Commander Cash, from the TV show.
- Robo himself has a few OCP logos on him, along with an OCP-001 serial number. Plus, whenever he gets smashed up it's OCP's money that pays for the rebuild (or not).
- Corrupt Corporate Executive: Practically every member of OCP, but notably Johnson (who appears in all three films). In the first film, he's an ambiguous (but generally moral) employee who advises Bob Morton and gives Murphy a "thumbs-up" sign at the end. In the second he's head of the Robocop project and still a generally decent guy, but is willing to throw the far more amoral Dr. Faxx under the bus and participate in forging evidence to do just that. By the third, he's transformed into an unlikable douchebag who threatens to cut Sergeant Reed's pension if he doesn't comply with OCP's order to gentrify the Cadillac Heights district. He also survives the film and doesn't lose his job (unlike the CEO, who's fired at the end).
Johnson: Of course, there won't be any trouble from the dead ones.
The Old Man: They'll have relatives. They always do.
- Possibly subverted in the third movie. It's implied that Kanemitsu is being lied to about what's really going on in Detroit by both the remnants of OCP and The head of Rehabs. He bows his head to RoboCop at the end of the film.
- Crapsack World
- Detroit. Full of crime and Corrupt Corporate Executives. It Got Worse when the cops went on strike in the first film, and by the time of the third film it's even worse, with people in danger of having wrecking balls tear through their house while they're still living there.
- And it's not just limited to Detroit, either. In the first film, an orbiting defense satellite misfires and causes thousands of acres of forest to burn in California, killing several when it also sweeps through some homes, as well as two former US Presidents. In the second film, ED-209s are deployed in five major cities despite its continuing malfunctions; and a nuclear power plant in the Amazon goes critical, irradiating the entire rainforest.
- Also from the second film, it seems that skin cancer due the lack of ozone layer is a pretty common problem. And, of course, the chemicals you can buy to protect you from that, are also highly carcinogenic!
- Crucified Hero Shot: Murphy's death. The RoboCop = cyborg!Jesus metaphor is extended throughout the film (see: getting pierced by a spear, walking on water).
- Curb Stomp Battle: RoboCop versus the ED-209 near the end of the first film. Especially satisfying because their earlier fight wasn't concluded.
- Cursed with Awesome: Being mostly immortal and mostly invulnerable comes with a heavy price.
- Cybernetics Eat Your Soul: Averted. At first OCP believes Murphy no longer retains any traces of his humanity, but it turns out he does as he regains his memories of his old self.
- Da Chief: Sergeant Reed.
- Deadpan Snarker: The hostage negotiator in the first film.
Miller: "How about cruise control? Does it come with cruise control?"
Negotiatior: "Hey, no problem, Miller. You let the Mayor go, we'll even throw in a Blaupunkt."
- There's also RoboCop to some extent, notably when he is usually damaged in someway or has done some damage.
- Defictionalization: There is a real life company called Omni Consumer Products. They specialize in... making Defictionalized products. In an nicely full circle manner, the company's owner gave 25,000 dollars to a project seeking to build a statue of RoboCop in Detroit.
- Destination Defenestration: Jones' death. After holding the president of OCP hostage, he's blown out the window by RoboCop and plummets to the ground.
- Determinator: After numerous Epic Fails at attempting to build a second law enforcement cyborg, Faxx speculates that it was Murphy's intense devotion to duty that's keeping him from eating a bullet.
- Dirt Forcefield: Robo's always squeaky clean until the third act, wherein he gets heavily damaged.
- Dirty Cop: "You sold us out, Officer Duffy! You're a rotten cop!"
- Donut Mess with a Cop: In the third movie, a man tries to hold up a donut shop, only to have several cops aim their guns at him. The man then drops his gun and the clerk behind the counter quips, "So what's it like being a rocket scientist?"
- Dramatic Unmask
- Robo removing his helmet in the first movie. "You may not like what you're going to see."
- In the second movie, a prototype of RoboCop 2 removes his face-plate and helmet... and reveals to be nothing more than a bloody, screaming skull, which then collapses.
- RoboCain's screen-for-a-face also pulls this on his former girlfriend.
- Dystopia: Detroit's crumbling hellscapes and glittering skyscrapers represented everything that is wrong with America in The Eighties.
- Emergency Transformation: Murphy.
- Enfant Terrible: While there are plenty of cruel kids in RoboCop 2, Hob, the youngest member of Cain's cult, makes them look innocent in comparison. He's not above killing cops and uses his age to avoid getting gunned down by RoboCop. Later in the film, he almost manages to buy Detroit by making a deal with the mayor. Then RoboCain shows up...
- Engineered Public Confession: "I had to kill Bob Morton because he made a mistake. Now it's time to erase that mistake." This ends up biting Dick Jones in the ass. What makes this particularly stupid on his part is that he knows damn well RoboCop is capable of recording everything he says (he even bitches out Boddicker for telling RoboCop about his involvement in the first place), but he didn't expect him to survive his ensuing fight with ED-209, the SWAT team and Boddicker's gang.
- However, the whole Jones/Boddicker/Morton subplot serves a storytelling purpose, specifically the Grey and Gray Morality question of responsibility for Murphy's death, in a very neat way. Boddicker carries the ultimate blame as the man who did the deed, Dick Jones as Boddicker's paymaster is the Big Bad behind the crimewave Murphy was responding to at the beginning of the story - but it is heavily implied if not outright stated - that Bob Morton himself carries a significant share of the responsibility by placing Murphy in the firing line in the first place (having identified him as a possible candidate for the RoboCop program and transferring him to the most dangerous precinct in the city). By having Jones order Boddicker to kill Morton, the writers essentially ensure that everyone directly responsible for Murphy's death is dead themselves by the end of the movie, without having to answer the morality question outright.
- Epic Fail: The ED-209 attempts to descend a set of stairs in the OCP building, despite the fact that its feet are too big to go down the steps.
- Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep": The Old Man, Chairman of OCP. He does have a real name, it's just that people insist on calling him that behind his back.
- Evil Gloating: Boddicker's gang loves this.
- Evilly Affable: Clarence Boddicker.
- Exact Words: In the sequel, when the criminals are cutting the corrupt cop open.
- Executive Meddling: In-universe examples.
- Directive 4 in RoboCop 1, which Dick Jones describes as his "own little contribution."
- RoboCop 2 has some in-world meddling with Murphy's brain. OCP in the second movie saddles him with many dozens of politically correct software directives. These directives may work fine for creating corporate executives or cubicle mice, but for "rules of engagement for the one-cyborg high threat response unit in the most corrupt and brutal city we know", they were maddening. Of course, the politically correct directives in RoboCop 2 were a Take That against Moral Guardians.
- Executive Suite Fight: In the climax of the film, RoboCop storms OCP's headquarters in an attempt to arrest Jones.
- Extreme Melee Revenge: After tracking down Boddicker, RoboCop gets his revenge by casually throwing him through several panes of glass.
- Face Palm: The Old Man's response to the failed RoboCop prototypes in the 2nd movie.
- Fanservice Extra: Twice in the first movie. Apparently cops in the future have co-ed locker rooms. Later on, when RoboCop goes into a club to collect Leon, a woman is seen dancing topless.
- Used deliberately in a cut sequence from the second film, to show how Robo has come to terms with the fact that his is just a machine. While walking through the OCP police station, Robo comes across the co-ed locker room, where an unnamed female officer is showering naked. Robo stops and stares for a few moments, then continues on his way.
- Fantastic Drug: NUKE in the second movie. Although in this case, the viewer is supposed to treat the made-up NUKE as being every bit as egregious as real-life heroin or PCP.
- Fatal Family Photo: Played with in first film, as a Murphy family photo is shown long after Murphy had become RoboCop. In RoboCop 2, Murphy asks if Anne has a family, with her reminding him she has a brother but survives. However, she dies in RoboCop 3.
- Finger-Twitching Revival: When RoboCop wakes up and leaves the police station.
- Fingore: Among the many mutilations inflicted on him before his death, Boddicker's crew starts out by blowing off Murphy's right hand with a shotgun.
- Firing One-Handed: All over the place, although it's partially justified for RoboCop since he's much stronger than a normal human and has an auto-targeting system.
- Flaw Exploitation: Hob uses Angie's addiction to Nuke to keep her in line after Cain's absence. Dr. Faxx uses Cain's addiction to Nuke to control him once he's revived...but not for long.
- Flipping the Bird: RoboCop does this to a computer tech with his data probe before accessing the files on his death and Boddicker's gang.
- Gangsta Style: One of Boddicker's mooks holds up a gas station by holding a SMG this way.
- Gatling Good: RoboCain.
- Gone Horribly Wrong: The ED-209's first demonstration.
- Good Is Not Soft: Alex Murphy is portrayed as a Nice Guy. Since that murderous robot blowing away criminals is still him...
- Goodnight, Sweet Prince: Painfully parodied by one of Boddicker's goons.
- Gorn: A notorious example.
- Gory Discretion Shot: More often than not the violence was shown, but several times in the second movie, we simply got strong hints as to how awful the violence being done was, such as a doctor showing us Cain's agonized face after the skull holding it was sliced away. Used to great effect when Murphy is stripped down by Cain and his goons; we don't see what it looks like until they're done, but we see the process involving jackhammers, sledgehammers, and their own casual view of the process all from Murphy's perspective. It is a dark inversion of his "rebirth" in the first movie, and references the visuals of that scene.
- The Great Politics Mess-Up: The news broadcasts imply the Cold War is still ongoing and South Africa is still an apartheid state.
- Groin Attack
- You're trying to take down a would-be rapist who's holding his victim hostage. He's using her as a human shield. What do you do? Shoot between the hostage's legs and neuter the guy.
- In the first movie a psychopath tries to kick RoboCop between the legs, with predictably self-defeating results.
- Guns Akimbo: Subverted, as human Murphy tries to shoot up the Boddicker gang's panel truck this way and fails spectacularly.
- The Gunslinger: Subverted in that the human Murphy was a notably crappy shot in the first movie. About the only remotely gunslinger-like move he could pull off was the trigger-guard gun spin, and that only because he forced himself to learn it to impress his son. Robo's Improbable Aiming Skills are strictly programming (well, all except the spin).
- Hand Cannon: Robo, natch, as well as many of the bad guys. Murphy's gun is a Beretta 93R fully automatic pistol, modified to look even bigger and spit foot-long flames with every three-round burst. Note that the real Beretta 93R cannot fire in full-automatic; only single and three-round burst.
- Heroic BSOD: In the second movie, when Robo encounters the kid villain, he has a full BSOD with flashbacks to his son.
- High-Speed Missile Dodge: RoboCop dodges several of ED-209's rockets in their first encounter.
- Hollywood Acid: The toxic waste Emil takes a bath in.
- Hollywood Silencer: When Boddicker shoots Morton, he fits a silencer first so his pistol is barely audible.
- Hoist by His Own Petard:
- Dick Jones and his Directive 4.
- Dr. Faxx used a deadly criminal as a test subject for Robocain (he ended up acting like the criminal he used to be); then she tried to keep him in check with Nuke (may have worked if he was fully human and his body, not just his mind, actually craved it); then tried to use feminine wiles to avoid responsibility (she was the most likely OCP scapegoat anyway, as she authorized the use of Cain's brain).
- Honor Before Reason: Oddly enough, Otomo the android seems to adhere to this. He could have killed Robocop effortlessly several times, but the first time waits until Robo turns to face him, and the second time waits until he's on his feet again.
- Hookers and Blow: Plenty of both.
- Idiot Ball: We don't see the actual decision on screen, only its consequences. Still, whoever it was who decided to load a prototype law enforcement robot that the design team had to know was flaky and unreliable with live ammo for a demonstration in front of OCP's board of directors can not be the brightest bulb on the Christmas tree.
- Unless it was Donald Johnson, in which case he qualifies as a Magnificent Bastard instead.
- I'm a Doctor, Not a Placeholder: In the first movie, the chief of police declares:
"And there will be no strike! We are not plumbers! We are police officers!"
- I'm Melting: Emil. And very messily at that.
- Immune to Bullets: Not the villains, but the hero.
- Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: In the climax of the first film, none of the criminals can hit RoboCop with their BFGs, even when they cause massive explosions.
- That kind of makes sense in context, though—as a rule, street hoods haven't generally practiced a lot with heavy anti-materiel rifles, and thus won't be sterling marksmen with them.
- Improbable Aiming Skills: Justified in that Robo's are all software. The human Murphy empties four magazines at a speeding panel truck and only manages to hit with one round. When the software craps out after Robo's run-in with Directive 4, he's right back to being unable to hit the broad side of a barn, and Lewis has to help him reprogram himself.
- Murphy was firing with two small calibre handguns at an armored car that held half a dozen criminals with much bigger weapons while being in a police car that had to keep constantly moving to dodge their fire. It's amazing he managed to hit one of them at all.
- Improvised Weapon: Most notably the data jack.
- Infant Immortality: Averted with Hob, the youngest member of Cain's cult, who gets gunned down behind a truck door while trying to hide from RoboCain.
- Infernal Retaliation: Two Splatterpunks freak out in 3 when they set RoboCop on fire and he just keeps coming after them.
- Inferred Holocaust: At the end of the third film, a thermo-failsafe explosive is set off, which destroys the OCP building in an explosion that also consumes much of the downtown Detroit area. None of the characters remark on this (as it's the end of the film), and the viewer is supposed to be happy that Robo and his friends stopped the corporation from bulldozing Old Detroit, while ignoring that dozens (if not hundreds) of people were just murdered in a massive explosion that took out the biggest and tallest building in the city.
- Possibly mitigated by the earlier parts of the movie. The scenes of walking through the OCP building show it as half-deserted from layoffs, departures, and suicides. It's implied by the end that the building may have cleared out completely, and if the neighborhood was one that was also going to be rehabbed, it may have been emptied as well.
- Infrared X Ray Camera: Robo has one of these in the first movie.
- Instant Death Bullet: Typically about as thoroughly averted as humanly possible. Murphy gets shot dozens of times by Boddicker in the first film. At the end, he puts a couple dozen bullets in Dick Jones, but Jones is killed when he gets knocked back through a window and falls around 100 stories to his death.
- It Is Dehumanizing: Murphy is referred to by OCP as "it" after his transformation.
- It's Personal: RoboCop's fight with Boddicker.
- Japan Takes Over the World: In the third film OCP is in the process of being bought out by Japanese investors who are just as ruthless as their American counterparts.
- Just a Machine: What OCP believes until Murphy proves them wrong.
- Katanas Are Just Better: Otomo's Weapon of Choice in the third film, complete with Clean Cut.
- Kent Brockman News: The news anchors in the first film. Especially in the first segment, when talking about the police officer shot by Boddicker's gang.
- Kids Are Cruel: In the second movie, almost all kids shown on screen are little monsters who enjoy violence and law-breaking. Yet it's implied that Robo's programming won't allow him to target a child.
- It may very well be Murphy's conscience, not the programing (at least before he's filled with stupid directives).
- Kill Sat
- Knight in Shining Armor: Kevlar/Titanium laminated armour, to be precise. With nifty purple-on-blue highlights.
- Law Enforcement, Inc.: The Detroit police force has been privatized, which is why OCP wields such an incredible degree of control over them.
- Licensed Game: Many, including a Crossover: Robocop vs. Terminator. The original DataEast arcade game is considered to be an exception to The Problem with Licensed Games.
- Lock and Load Montage: Murphy does this a few times, including before the climactic fight with Boddicker's gang.
- Ludicrous Gibs: ED-209 vs Kenny in the Boardroom. Emil vs. HollywoodAcid. Murphy vs. giggling thugs with shotguns. Warning: the videos are graphic.
- Lull Destruction: According to Word of God the creative team wanted a full 10 seconds of silence and blank screen between the moment of Murphy's death and the first flash of static marking the start of his resurrection. The executive team had other ideas.
- Made of Plasticine: Emil splats reeeaaal good.
- Meaningful Name: Otomo means "attendant" or "companion". This makes sense, since one of the reasons Japan wants to develop robots is to care for their growing population of elderly. On the other hand, it could also be a Stealth Pun, "Otomo-tan"... automaton.
- Mega Corp: Omni Consumer Products—OCP.
- Messianic Archetype: Robo's the American Jesus.
- Mexican Standoff
- Mighty Glacier: Robocop.
- More Dakka: The ED-209 series in general. Autocannon and anti-tank rockets on a police robot: seemingly excessive, until we get to know this future Detroit. In RoboCop 2, Robo's Auto-9 relative to the standard-issue DPD service pistols.
- Motor City
- Motorcycle Jousting: Alex Murphy has a joust with Cain in [RoboCop 2: Murphy on a motorcycle, Cain in an armored car.
- Named After Somebody Famous: The scientific staff are all named after politicians, the cops are all named after serial killers.
- Nerd Glasses: Many of OCP's staff, as well as the gas station attendant RoboCop saves from a criminal.
- No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: RoboCop is always on the receiving end of these, putting him out of commission for awhile in every movie.
- No OSHA Compliance. In general the many factories where fights occur are perilous places. In particular: the big tank of acid placed right alongside a narrow service road, no barriers, nothing.
- Also, why the hell would ED-209 be fully armed for a demo in a company board room?
- Not Himself: In the second movie, when Robo starts showing off his new Politically Correct programming:
Lewis: "Hit the gas, Murphy."
Robo: "The posted limit is 35. We should set an example, Ann. Your hair looks lovely that way."
Lewis: (frowns) "It's OCP, they did something to you."
Robo: "I'm fine. Isn't the moon wonderful tonight?"
Lewis: "It's still daytime."
Robo: "It's the thought that counts."
Lewis: (rolls her eyes) "Oh, Jesus, we're heading back to the station, that's all there is to it."
- Numbered Sequels
- Obstructive Code of Conduct: The first three play it straight, the others are more of a Restraining Bolt. The first film's initially unknown fourth directive is a plot point.
- Oh Crap
- Involving ED-209, which is a heavily armed Mini-Mecha. An OCP executive, Kenny, is asked to simulate a "typical arrest and disarming procedure" during a board meeting.
ED-209: "Put down your weapon. You have twenty seconds to comply."
Dick Jones: "I think you'd better do what he says, Mr. Kenny."
(Kenny drops the Desert Eagle.)"
ED-209: "You now have fifteen seconds to comply."
(Kenny, understandably, freaks out.)
- The final fight between Boddicker and RoboCop:
Boddicker: "Okay, I give up."
(drops his gun)
RoboCop: "I'm not arresting you anymore."
- Dick Jones' face when he's fired. Then fired upon.
- The man who attempted to hold up the donut shop in the third movie had such reaction when the cops in the donut shop pointed their guns at him.
- Ominous Multiple Screens: In OCP's board room.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: Daniel O'Herlihy's character in the first two movies is only known as "the Old Man". Likewise, Rip Torn's character in the third movie is only referred to as "the CEO". This also extended to the various TV series—David Gardner's character in The Series and Tedde Moore's character in Prime Driectives are, respectively, referred to only as "The OCP Chairman" and "The Old Woman".
- Only Sane Man: OCP Executive Johnson in the second movie. He's the only one who realizes that loading Robocop down with a senselessly complex command program will cripple him and he's one of two men who does see the problem with giving a mass-murdering drug lord an indestructible robot body.
- Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: Dr. Faxx. She manages to sound broadly American only a handful of times. The rest she swings between vaguely English, Irish, even German and French on a few occasions. What nationality is the actress? Australian.
- Orphaned Punchline: "I'd buy that for a dollar!" We only hear it in isolation, but the characters are familiar with the show: to them it's hilarious.
- The Other Darrin: Because of the costume and general similarity between Peter Weller and Robert John Burke, it isn't too noticeable, aside from the voice.
- Out of the Inferno: RoboCop walking out of the exploded gas station in the first movie.
- Our Graphics Will Suck in the Future
- Phony Newscast: The film has a series of newscasts where horrible events are described during the news in an upbeat fashion. For example, when a police officer is brutally gunned down, the reporter cheers on the cop, saying how he's rooting for the officer to live.
- Quirky Miniboss Squad: Clarence's henchmen.
- Parody Commercial: Piles of them, throughout all of the movies.
- Pieta Plagiarism: Shortly before Lewis's death scene in RoboCop 3.
- Pin Pulling Teeth: Clarence starts a futuristic timer grenade like this, while playing Dick's recorded message to Bob.
- Playing Against Type: Prior to playing Dick Jones, Ronny Cox played nice guys. However, Dick Jones also set up a new type for him, as proven by Senator Robert Kinsey and Vilos Cohaagen.
- Political Correctness Gone Mad: The multitudinous additional directives they added to RoboCop in the second movie.
- Pre-Ass-Kicking One-Liner:
- "Your move, creep!" 
- "Dead or alive, you're coming with me!"
- "Cain, let's step outside!"
- Privately-Owned Society: Everything from the police and hospitals to space exploration has been privatized, most of it being run by a Mega Corp.
- Putting on the Reich: The OCP banners are red with a white circle, black company logo inside it. Clarence Boddicker wears glasses resembling those worn by Heinrich Himmler—a deliberate move according to Word of God. The company's private army wear totalitarian longcoats and caps.
- The whole thing is taken further with the Rehab troops in the third film.
- Railing Kill: Several when RoboCop shoots up Boddicker's drug lab.
- Reading Your Rights
- First film. RoboCop catches Boddicker, and reads him his rights while repeatedly tossing him through windows. In the commentary, the crew confess that they were terrified that real-world cops would react badly to that scene. They did a test screening and it was a roaring success. Boddicker being an Asshole Victim probably helped.
- In the second film, RoboCop reads the Miranda warning to a dead body, and is astonished when Lewis points it out. He was reading him his last rights.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: The Old Man in the first movie, just about the only OCP bigwig with any sort of moral standard, especially if compared to young upstarts. In the sequels, he inexplicably becomes a typical corporate douchebag.
- Reckless Gun Usage: All over the place. It's not surprising that the ED-209 malfunctioned and killed an unarmed civilian if it's built by a corporation that's stupid enough to a) do a demonstration with its cannons fully loaded and b) give a loaded handgun to a guy who doesn't know how to use it, who then c) throws it on the floor, which could easily make it misfire and kill someone.
- Refuge in Audacity: The extreme violence and political satire in the film.
- Restraining Bolt
- First movie: RoboCop's classified 4th directive.
- Second movie: RoboCop's politically-correct directives. Cain's addiction to NUKE.
- Ridiculously-Human Robots: Otomo in the third film. In the first, people are lead to believe Robocop is completely robotic.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Main plot of the first movie.
- Robo Cam: Numerous scenes are shown from RoboCop's POV, complete with scanlines, subtle pixelation, HUD messages and when Robo is hurt, interference. The HUD is justified, since RoboCop is technically still human and would need some information displayed to help him make decisions. Mecha-Cain appears to run on an early version of MacOS, complete with skull logo in the upper left.
- Rule of Cool: Quite a lot.
- Save the Day Turn Away: The second film features a corporately enforced example.
- Scale-Model Destruction: The second movie combines a massive model of New Detroit and a drug kingpin Robocop For Massive Damage.
- The Scapegoat: After the battle royale at the end of the second movie, the Old Man is well-aware that OCP is going to be on the hook for all the carnage. To save the company, Johnson suggests scapegoating Faxx and making it appear they had been kept completely out of the loop on the project.
- Shooting Superman: RoboCop gets this a lot. The bad guys eventually wise up in the first film and take him on with anti-tank rifles, but that doesn't stop every other dumb crook in the franchise from unloading their tiny pistols at him.
- Show Within a Show
- Shown Their Work
- Many setting details are correct despite the films being shot elsewhere. The first was filmed in Dallas, the second was filmed in Houston, and the third was filmed in Atlanta.
- The DPD precinct system—it is organised by geography not the usual precinct numbers.
- The local hospitals. There really is a Henry Ford Hospital that's a Level 1 trauma center.
- The neighborhoods: "Cadillac Heights" from the third movie is apparently somewhere in the old Black Bottom, across Woodward from the university district and just south of Hamtramck.
- The trauma team that works on Murphy as he dies is a real trauma team, and their dialog was mostly ad-libbed. In the commentary, the writers say they wished they could have come up with a line like "Let's shock a flat line and quit."
- Many setting details are correct despite the films being shot elsewhere. The first was filmed in Dallas, the second was filmed in Houston, and the third was filmed in Atlanta.
- Soft Glass: The first movie has plenty of things being thrown through glass, including Robo himself.
- Something Only They Would Say: Lewis realizes that RoboCop is Alex Murphy when she sees him performing the gun-spin move he learned from the T.J. Lazer television show during a demonstration at the precinct's shooting range.
- Something They Would Never Say: How Lewis and Robocop's primary technician promptly realize something is very wrong after Robocop is rebuilt in the second film; Robocop says he's "touched" remarks on it being "a beautiful day" and he calls the captain by his first name; all things Murphy would never do.
- Sudden Sequel Death Syndrome: Anne Lewis in RoboCop 3.
- Superhero: RoboCop is a superhero in all but name. He can get up moments after a fifteen-storey fall when his organics should be shmooshed.
- Supercop: Chances are, if you mention the phrase to anyone, and they know of RoboCop, he's the first thing that they'll think of.
- In fact, RoboCop is called exactly that in the first film, when he first shows off his computer-enhanced aiming skills at the firing range.
- Super Prototype: As a cyborg police officer, Murphy is the first attempt and the only success.
- Super Toughness: RoboCop
- Take That: The SDI Defense Satellite misfiring in the first movie. The incident killed two former presidents. One is understandable but two seems like carelessness. At the time the movie was filmed, there were two former american presidents living in California where the fictional laser struck. Ronald Reagan and Richard Nixon.
- That Man Is Dead: In a more complex way, RoboCop tells Murphy's wife that Murphy is dead and they gave RoboCop Murphy's face as a way of honoring the fallen officer. Sadly, we know he's still in there somewhere because he lies to his wife to order to let her go. He may not be dead, but he is no longer her husband.
- There Are No Good Executives: The president is the Only Sane Man at OCP.
- There Is No Kill Like Overkill
- Kenney's death at the opening of RoboCop. Poor guy was more lead than flesh by the time they shut ED-209 down.
- Especially in the Director's cut, where ED continually blasts Kenney's lifeless corpse as it lies on the table.
- Murphy's death.
- Kenney's death at the opening of RoboCop. Poor guy was more lead than flesh by the time they shut ED-209 down.
- They Call Me Mister Tibbs: The first film ends with RoboCop telling "The Old Man" his name is Murphy. By the end of the third film, he gets this way with what's left of OCP.
RoboCop: My friends call me Murphy. You call me RoboCop.
- This Is What the Building Will Look Like: Delta City.
- Tin Man: In the second movie, there's a scene where Robo has to convince Mrs. Murphy that he is just a machine, and has none of her husband's memories. However, saying this to her is too much for him: he can't even make eye contact upon telling her, "I don't know you".
- Too Dumb to Live: Faxx with idea of taking death row inmates and giving them a cyborg body. At least the chief cyborg engineer called her out on that one. Alas she managed to convince the Old Man to allow her access to Cain.
- Trashcan Bonfire: In the street of Detroit as RoboCop approaches Cain's drug factory.
- Trench Coat Warfare: One of the criminals in the first film pulls an assault rifle out of his coat before holding up a convenience store. When RoboCop shows up, he bends the barrel in half.
- Twenty Minutes Into the Future: A good chunk of which they got right at least as far as the setting was concerned:
- Bankrupt industries.
- The criminally corrupt city government and the flat broke police department.
- The rampant Detroit crime rate, though thankfully not the street scenes out of Hieronymus Bosch.
- The gas-guzzling cars.
- The rise of CD's as the norm of visual media, as shown in Bob Morton's chilling death scene.
- The PDA/GPS that Jones and Boddicker use to track Robo's movements through the city. It even looks like a Palm V-series.
- Rampagingly sensationalistic "news entertainment".
- Increasing privatization in "hospitals, prisons, space exploration".
- Tech Marches On: Played straight and averted. The DPD Records Department apparently still stores everything on reel-to-reel tape, and the one human-usable computer not sitting in a rack features a painfully slow and kludgy GUI. Over at OCP, we have the giant wall o' monitors in the board room, all of which are CRTs; the media center sports a VHS player. On the other hand, as shown by the playing of Dick's final taunts to Rob as he died, CDs (or similarly designed DVDs) do seem to have become the norm of visual media.
- TV Head Robot: Cain
- Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny: One of the greatest of debates, Robocop vs. Terminator—who will win? An excellent graphic novel and a video game. RoboCop wins, but only because of a bizarre, but logical, time travel plot involving no less than three timeline alterations.
- Unorthodox Reload: Murphy's cool spinning trick, which he later refines as RoboCop (he can store his pistol in his leg armor).
- Unusual User Interface: RoboCop's computer input jack that's built into his glove. Also see Robo Cam.
- Used Future: Future!Detroit is (even more) crime-ridden, dirty, polluted and desolate.
- Was Once a Man
- What You Are in the Dark: Murphy beats up Boddicker almost to the point of death, but when Boddicker thinks he's going to kill him, he remembers his directives and arrests him instead.
- We Can Rebuild Him: Murphy's return from There Is No Kill Like Overkill. Also in RoboCop 2 after Cain's gang is done with him.
- Wham! Line: At least for poor Mr. Kinney.
- What Measure Is a Non-Human?: OCP regards RoboCop as a piece of equipment that they own. Typical is Holzgang's utter disregard for RoboCop's agony after he's been torn apart by Cain's gang. "Nah, it's just the back-up generator making him twitch."
- Weaksauce Weakness: ED-209's is stairs. For a law-enforcement robot? Really???
- Possibly a case of in world They Just Didn't Care. The thing was made to be maintained by OCP throughout its product life. As Dick Jones said:
Dick Jones: I had a guaranteed military sale with ED-209. Renovation program. Spare parts for 25 years. Who cares if it worked or not?
- Welcome to Hell: Murphy gets this as a welcome to the precinct.
- Window Pain: See Extreme Melee Revenge.
- You Are Too Late: When Lewis arrives just after Murphy has been killed.
- You Can't Go Home Again: As RoboCop, Murphy visits his old home and discovers his family no longer lives there, and it's planned to be turned into a model housing development.
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: "Can you fly, Bobby boy?"
The television shows
- Alternate Continuity: The series splits into two (or three, depending on your view) continuities after the second film. The 1994 series and Prime Directives both ignore the events of the third film in favor of keeping OCP and the threat of bulldozing Old Detroit, although it's still unclear if the two series are meant to be tied into the same continuity (considering that one was a syndicated children's show and the other a violent homage to the original).
- Animated Adaptation: What else does one do with R-rated movies?
- Board to Death: Damian Lowe in Prime Directives spearheads the project for developing a fully-functional A.I., called SAINT. After sending a team after RoboCop after the Old Woman had forbidden it, Damian gets fired and uses SAINT to kill the Old Woman and the Board.
- California Doubling: Similar to its predecessors, the 1994 TV series (and Prime Directives) use Canadian locations as a stand-in for Detroit.
- Clear My Name: One epsiode of The Series and most of Prime Driectives find Robo having to do this.
- Consummate Liar: The mayor turns out to be so experienced in politics that anything he says, no matter how blatantly true or false it is, cannot be confirmed to be true or false under lie detector analysis. Even claiming to be Abraham Lincoln registers as having a 50% chance of being true, when he's subjected to a lie detector functionally identical to RoboCop's.
- In the '94 series episode "Robo Vs. Commander Cash", Robo has trouble arresting Rex Jones (an OCP researcher who's disguised as the titular cartoon character) because he claims that Robo "doesn't fight other superheroes" due to "cartoon law". Due to his overriding directives, Robo identifies Jones' statements as factual (and he turns out to be right).
- Continuity Nod: In the first movie, RoboCop ends up bodily throwing people out of his way when trying to access the department archive computers for information. In the show, whenever he turns up in that part of the station, everyone hurriedly gets out of his way.
- Crapsack World: What Detroit has turned into in the Prime Directives series. Robo is practically out of date, crime and poverty is worse than ever, anarchists are storming the OCP building and everyone is a Corrupt Corporate Executive.
- Deadpan Snarker: Alpha Commando turned Murphy into one.
- Earn Your Happy Ending: The end of the Prime Directives series. Detroit is now stuck in the dark age, and several people have died to stop the corrupted S.A.I.N.T. computer program from activating and destroying the city (including Robo's former partner), but everyone's favorite cyborg policeman does get to make up for lost time with his son and continue in his role as a protector, free of his overriding directives.
- Everythings Funkier With Disco: In one episode of the '94 series, Diana is corrupted by a virus that causes her to transform herself and her workstation into a full Disco club.
- Exact Words: In one episode, an escaping villain has his car computer guide him out of the city, avoiding all traffic jams and tollbooths. Diana has the computer guide him to a police roadblock.
Diana: "This service has been brought to you by... RoboCop! Sucker!"
- Family-Friendly Firearms
- Frame-Up: See "Clear My Name".
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: At least with RoboCop: Alpha Commando. It had a few Body Horror moments, such as the scene in "Doppleganger" where the clones melt. Also, in "H-2-Uh-Oh", two of the characters had a literal moment of scenery nudity (namely because of a chemical that turned them into living puddles, and obviously their clothes can't be worn by living puddles). And this was all in what was supposed to be a kids program!
- Hologram/VirtualGhost: OCP secretary Diana, whose memory was uploaded to the OCP supercomputer after her death in the pilot episode.
- Hyperspace Arsenal: Alpha Commando makes RoboCop look a lot like Inspector Gadget.
- The '94 series does this as well: aside from extra ammunition (as referred to in the episode "Provision 22"), Robo carries several types of both non-lethal and lethal ordinance (mines, airbags), coolant and other devices/gadgets that would be used in any given episode, all stored in his left leg.
- I Have Your Wife: A villain kidnaps Robo's wife from his old life. The item he is to steal is a ray gun that causes heart attacks, called the Heartbreaker. Initially, his built-in Restraining Bolt stops him, using Obstructive Code of Conduct three, "uphold the law". Of course, as soon as Robo pictures his wife in danger, directive two -- "protect the innocent"—overrides this.
- Law Enforcement, Inc.: Inverted; in the 1994 series, Robo often works against his employers to protect average citizens (including his wife and son).
- Lighter and Softer: Following up on RoboCop 3, the '94 series was dulled down to appear to family audiences (and, indeed, it was shown in syndication in Canada on weekends at pre-watershed timeslots). RoboCop didn't kill (he used gadgets to incapacitate them), the humor was dulled down and the plots became cartoonish.
- Living Lie Detector: Robo gains the ability to discern whether a person is lying or not through their vocal inflections. Unfortunately it is not infallable—see Consummate Liar.
- Magic Countdown: The Sci Fi Channel once ran a marathon of the series with a humorous voiceover. One episode had a bomb set for five minutes. The running commentary points out that it takes 7:04 for the bomb to eventually be shut off.
- Meaningful Name: Recurring villain Dr. Cray Z. Mallardo. Or, as he appears in personnel files: Mallardo, Cray Z., Dr. He's a Mad Scientist.
- Mind Control Device: One episode of the live-action series has a formula that renders people vulnerable to mind control if the formula is mixed with a simple calcium base (i.e. milk). It's added to a breakfast cereal.
- Nine Out of Ten Doctors Agree: In RoboCop The Series, nine out of ten doctors employed by a Mega Corp recommend a drug produced by the very same company.
- No Plans, No Prototype, No Backup: Averted, when Robo is on the run after being accused of murder, since the bullet in question could only have come from his one-of-a-kind gun, coded to his grip, and the targeting system used to aim the shot would be the one from his helmet. Later when Robo is critically damaged, and the kid sidekick shows him his prototype circuit board, letting him use it to make repairs. Then the scientist who designs the board realizes the prototypes of Murphy's gun and helmet are out there...
- Projected Man: Diana, also a brain-in-a-box connected to a Magical Computer.
- Rule Number One: Happens to Murphy's former partner in the '94 series.
- Show Within a Show: Commander Cash from the series.
- Sudden Sequel Heel Syndrome: In the first movie, the CEO of Omni Consumer Products is merely an amoral old man who really doesn't do anything outright villainous, but shows little empathy for others. In the sequel, he's a flat-out Corrupt Corporate Executive.
- There Was a Door: Used in the opening credits of the 1994 television series.
- They Call Me Mister Tibbs: Inverted in Alpha Commando - Diana almost always calls Robocop "Murphy", and only once refers to him as "Robocop."
- Time Bomb: An episode of RoboCop: The Series involved Robo having to dispose a nuclear bomb in the OCP building. To defuse it, he had to align two triangle-shaped switches into an hourglass. This is accomplished with (you guessed it) one second to spare.
- Title: the Adaptation
- The Walls Are Closing In: RoboCop once ended up in a trash compactor in one episode of the '94 TV series. When the air pressure reached 2000 PSI, a flashback gave him inspiration, allowing him to push back the walls.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: None of the characters from the films (besides Murphy/Robo himself) make the jump to the live-action shows, and their absence is never commented upon.
- X Meets Y: RoboCop: Alpha Commando is RoboCop meets Inspector Gadget in both premise (RoboCop going around the world, fighting an international criminal organization) and literally (Robo having a lot more gadgets built into him than normal, including some nonsensical ones for a cyborg designed to enforce the law to have).
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Inverted. When RoboCop is critically damaged in the pilot episode of the '94 series, OCP refuses to pay his massive repair bill—until his partner mentions that he has evidence against Cray Mallardo (who the CEO has serious issues with) in his memory banks. Upon realizing that RoboCop is still useful, the CEO authorizes RoboCop's repairs.
- ↑ The ZX Spectrum version is recognised as one of the most successful -- and hardest -- games on that system.
- ↑ The ED-209 was going to be marketed to the millitary after the police trial.
- ↑ DIRECTIVE 233: Restrain hostile feelings. - DIRECTIVE 234: Promote positive attitude. - DIRECTIVE 235: Suppress aggressiveness. - DIRECTIVE 236: Promote pro-social values. - DIRECTIVE 238: Avoid destructive behavior. - DIRECTIVE 239: Be accessible. - DIRECTIVE 240: Participate in group activities. - DIRECTIVE 241: Avoid interpersonal conflicts. - DIRECTIVE 242: Avoid premature value judgments. - DIRECTIVE 243: Pool opinions before expressing yourself. - DIRECTIVE 244: Discourage feelings of negativity and hostility. - DIRECTIVE 245: If you haven't got anything nice to say, don't talk. - DIRECTIVE 246: Don't rush traffic lights. - DIRECTIVE 247: Don't run through puddles and splash pedestrians or other cars. - DIRECTIVE 248: Don't say that you are always prompt when you are not. - DIRECTIVE 249: Don't be oversensitive to the hostility and negativity of others. - DIRECTIVE 250: Don't walk across a ballroom floor swinging your arms. - DIRECTIVE 254: Encourage awareness. - DIRECTIVE 256: Discourage harsh language. - DIRECTIVE 258: Commend sincere efforts. - DIRECTIVE 261: Talk things out. - DIRECTIVE 262: Avoid Orion meetings. - DIRECTIVE 266: Smile. - DIRECTIVE 267: Keep an open mind. - DIRECTIVE 268: Encourage participation. - DIRECTIVE 273: Avoid stereotyping. - DIRECTIVE 278: Seek non-violent solutions.
- ↑ Actually a post-ass kicking one liner
- ↑ The show is actually named 'It's not My Problem', the line is merely the show's catchphrase
- ↑ It sure has.