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Everything Action Theater: Top Dog

There was a strange trend from the late 80s into the mid-90s where multiple “buddy cop” action/comedy movies were made that featured a cop having to team up with a dog to solve crimes and get into wacky hijinks.  Jim Belushi starred in K-9 (and its two sequels?!) while Tom Hanks starred in Turner & Hooch.  Both of those movies came out in 1989 and Chuck Norris got into the game fairly late with 1995’s Top Dog  Norris stars as Jake Wilder, a maverick cop who is forced to team up with Reno, a police dog whose partner is killed investigating white nationalist terrorists.  The latter plot point is probably the craziest aspect of Top Dog, as it’s actually more like a gritty, Cannon style Chuck Norris movie than a wacky dog movie and it’s full of shoot-outs and Chuck karate fighting Nazis.  The movie was directed by Chuck’s brother Aaron Norris and was released while the second season of Walker, Texas Ranger was airing.  Due to its unfortunate timing of being released nine days after the Oklahoma City Bombing, it was a critical and commercial failure.  You can check out the entire movie below thanks to YouTube.

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