Now, I know that there are a lot more significant dated concepts in Miami Vice, but the one that always stood out to me - and made me laugh, probably harder than I should, since it's actually more sad than anything else - is the sheer lack of airport security. Like, people just walk in and out of areas where you would be shot on sight - or at least stopped by thirty people with stern looks on their faces - if you accidentally placed your pinkie toe while sidestepping some guy driving around stacks of luggage. In "No Exit," Tubbs manages to stop, incapacitate, and steal the clothing of an illegal weapons buyer in a damn bathroom, and in "Milk Run," these two kids just walk up and buy, without showing ID or anything, a ticket to Bogota, Colombia, with cash, because apparently that negates the need for identification ... or something.
The thing is, I remember airports being like that. When my parents took me and my sister to Europe for my uncle's wedding in the late 90s, dealing with customs and everything wasn't really that difficult; sure it was time consuming, but the rules were not nearly as stringent. Even on Friends, in a Season Three episode - and that was in 1996 or 1997, a good ten years after Miami Vice - Ross was imparting relationship wisdom to Chandler, telling him that, if Janice were to hypothetically ask him to meet her at home or at baggage claim, he would actually need to show up at the gate to prove he loved her (it was secret option number three).
Then 9/11 happened, and the United States went security nuts. Believe me, I understand the response, but it makes me yearn for a simpler time, when a guy could carry a bunch of guns into an airport, just to murder some kids that had something to do with his brother's death earlier in the episode. Jesus, humans are violent, aren't they??