In the Seventies, when television cops were hard-bitten cynics, the only fashionably dressed characters were their pimp informers.
But that all changed in 1984 when Sonny Crockett and Ricardo Tubbs burst onto the scene, bathed in pastels and designer labels.
From the first strains of Jan Hammer's theme tune, Miami Vice instantly transported viewers to the Florida resort, a million miles from The Bill's beat in Sun Hill.
The show became an international phenomenon, so much so that fans wore black T-shirts when the series ended in 1989.
Miami Vice and its director Michael Mann, is credited with reinventing the genre.
In fact, Don Johnson was responsible for a lot of cultural changes while the show - initially nicknamed "MTV cops" - was on air. He did for unsightly five o'clock shadow what Joan Collins had done for shoulder pads on Dynasty.
Unfortunately the crimes against fashion both he and co-star Phillip Michael Thomas committed didn't stop there.
Crockett was the smooth dresser, who preferred pastel (often pink) T-shirts, mis-matched linen suits with jacket sleeves pushed up, worn with espadrilles or loafers but no socks.
And Tubbs really should have done time for his appalling attire.
He was the original medallion man, wearing snappy (often shiny) suits with shirts unbuttoned half way down his chest, revealing some of Elizabeth Duke's finest gold jewellery.
Is it any wonder the women swooned both on and off screen for the stars?
But it was the Eighties and the fashion police, unlike these guys, were nowhere to be seen.
Within weeks the look was de rigeur in bars and clubs from Newcastle to Nuneaton - but rarely pulled off with the same devastating effect.
Fashion faux pas aside, Miami Vice quickly became required viewing and launched the career of director Mann (Last of the Mohicans, The Insider, Collateral).
Similarly songs by acts including Billy Idol, Tina Turner, Don Henley, Peter Gabriel and U2 punctuated each episode.
Even when Sonny is driving his Ferrari Daytona with Phil Collins' In The Air Tonight playing, he still seems cool despite his musical taste.
In later series, Sheena Easton briefly became Mrs Crockett, while Mr Collins played a small time crook.
The plots revolved around Miami crime - drugs, gambling, gun running, prostitution and money laundering. But does it stand the test of time? Not really, because much like another Eighties cult classic, The A Team, it was pretty much the same plot every week.
Crockett and Tubbs would pose as criminals or dealers, getting double-crossed by their informants and shooting at everyone in sight.
Of course, they still both found time for the ladies before the end credits.
The first season DVD includes all 22 episodes plus 28 minutes of documentaries on Miami Vice 's television legacy, its style and the music.
But this was a seminal show and therefore worth revisiting, even if only to ensure we don't repeat such heinous crimes of fashion again.