As I sit here, waiting patiently for another good RoboCop movie to arrive, I’m thinking back over what has come before.

Not going to lie, it’s not been great.

While RoboCop (1987) is a FANTASTIC movie and one of the best action films of the 1980s, everything that followed has been pretty terrible.

But what are those past RoboCop movies and what order should they be watched in?

Hmm… let’s take a look.

Viewing Order One – The original timeline

Image: ©Orion/MGM

This first viewing order is simple and follows the release order of the original RoboCop trilogy. This series introduces Officer Alex Murphy/RoboCop and follows his adventures through three feature films (of varying quality).

The viewing order is as follows:

  • RoboCop (1987)
  • RoboCop 2 (1990)
  • RoboCop 3 (1993)

Viewing Order Two – The alternate timeline

Image: ©MGM

In addition to the original RoboCop trilogy, the property spawned various comics, computer games, cartoons and a live-action TV series. There was also a mini-series… which is the focus of this viewing order.

Hang on – what does a mini-series have to do with RoboCop films?

Let me explain.

In 2001, a RoboCop mini-series aired on television under the banner heading, RoboCop: Prime Directives. Comprising four instalments, each episode of Prime Directives ran 95 minutes in length, making them as long as a feature film.

And therein lies the rub.

Sometimes Prime Directives is referred to as a mini-series. Sometimes Prime Directives is referred to as a collection of movies.

For this post, I am regarding the Prime Directives as four individual movies. I accept that not everyone will agree on this, but this is the stance I am taking.

As for where they sit in the series – the Prime Directives take place ten years after the events of the original RoboCop and ignore the events of RoboCop 2 and RoboCop 3.

This viewing order is as follows:

  • RoboCop (1987)
  • RoboCop: Prime Directives: Dark Justice (2001)
  • RoboCop: Prime Directives: Meltdown (2001)
  • RoboCop: Prime Directives: Resurrection (2001)
  • RoboCop: Prime Directives: Crash and Burn (2001)

Viewing Order Three – The remake

Image: ©MGM/Sony Pictures

With so much RoboCop in existence (if you consider the movies, TV shows and comics) things were starting to get confusing, which is why in 2014 the reset button was pushed to usher in a new era of RoboCop. This new entry – also called RoboCop – wiped the slate clean with the intention of launching a new series of movies.

However, RoboCop 2014 was not a success and did not kick-start a new franchise. As such, the Robo-remake remains a solitary affair.

This viewing order is as follows:

  • RoboCop (2014)

Viewing Order Four – Production order

Image: ©Orion/MGM

And finally, should you simply want to watch all of the RoboCop movies in order, regardless of continuity, you should stick with the production order.

This viewing order is as follows:

  • RoboCop (1987)
  • RoboCop 2 (1990)
  • RoboCop 3 (1993)
  • RoboCop: Prime Directives: Dark Justice (2001)
  • RoboCop: Prime Directives: Meltdown (2001)
  • RoboCop: Prime Directives: Resurrection (2001)
  • RoboCop: Prime Directives: Crash and Burn (2001)
  • RoboCop (2014)

And now you know!