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My Friend Flicka My Friend Flicka

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My Friend Flicka (CBS 1956-1957, Johnny Washbrook, Gene Evans)

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Among the tried and true TV formulas, located on the same list that discloses the value of characters like the wisecracking neighbor and the lisping little sister, lies the following directive: stories about children and their preciously-named, loyal animals are a very, very good thing.

The television show My Friend Flicka was based, originally, on Mary O’ Hara’s children’s book of the same name, which was published in 1941 and made into a 1943 movie starring Roddy McDowall. The TV version was a half-hour Western—a children’s Western, we should say—and the first TV series to ever come out of the 20th Century Fox gates. Thirty-nine episodes were filmed in color, but were initially shown in black and white on CBS before the show moved to ABC, where it was finally broadcast in all its multi-hued glory.

My Friend Flicka (Flicka means little girl in Swedish) was set at the Goose Bar Ranch in Montana, and many of young lead character Ken’s adventures were based on those of book author O’Hara, who also grew up on a ranch among equine friends. The dynamic pitted the imaginative Ken, played by child star Johnny Washbrook, against his sternly practical father, played by popular Western actor Gene Evans. Though Ken’s mother tried to make peace between the two, the thing that finally did it was horse Flicka. This chestnut wonder taught Ken the lessons about responsibility and growing up that his father had trouble conveying, and everything—as they say in the animal husbandry trade—was just ducky after that.

There were other horse shows to come—chatty horses and plenty of heroic horse sidekicks—but none of these equine wonders were as wholesome as good old Flicka. She was a horse to call friend.

production details
USA / CBS – TCF / 39×25 minute episodes / Broadcast 10 February 1956 – 1 February 1957

cast
Johnny Washbrook as Ken McLaughlin
Gene Evans as Rob McLaughlin
Anita Louise as Nell McLaughlin
Frank Ferguson as Gus

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TV

Clochmerle (BBC-2 1972, Cyril Cusack, Roy Dotrice)

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Clochmerle BBC 1972

Period sitcom, based on a novel by Gabriel Chevallier that was adapted by Ray Galton and Alan Simpson, that saw the French villagers of Clochmerle kick up a fuss over plans to install a new toilet.

cast
CYRIL CUSACK as Major Piechut
ROY DOTRICE as Ponosse
KENNETH GRIFFITH as Ernest Tafardel
WENDY HILLER as Justine Putet
HUGH GRIFFITH as Alexandre Bourdillat
BERNARD BRESSLAW as Nicholas the Beadle
MADELINE SMITH as Hortase Girodet
GEORGINA MOON as Rose Biraque
PETER USTINOV as Narrator

crew details
Writers: Ray Galton, Alan Simpson
Novel: Gabriel Chevallier
Producer: Michael Mills

production details
Country: UK
Network and Production Companies: BBC Two – Bavaria
Duration: 9×30 minute episodes
Aired From: 18 February – 14 April 1972 Fridays at 10.05pm

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TV

Clairvoyant, The (BBC-2 1986, Roy Kinnear, Sandra Dickinson)

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In Roy Clarke penned sitcom The Clairvoyant used car salesman Arnold Bristow is knocked down in a car accident and suddenly finds himself with psychic powers – or so he believes. There was a pilot broadcast 27 Nov 1984.

cast
ROY KINNEAR as Arnold Bristow
SANDRA DICKINSON as Lily
HUGH LLOYD as Burma
SHAUN CURRY as Newton
GLYNIS BROOKS as Dawn
CARMEL CRYAN as Carmen

crew details
Writer: Roy Clarke
Producer and Director: Alan J.W. Bell

production details
Country: UK
Network and Production Companies: BBC-2
Duration: 6×30 minute episodes
Aired From: Pilot – 27 November 1984 and Series – 15 May – 19 June 1986

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TV

Christmas Princess (UP 2017, Nicole Munoz, Zak Santiago)

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Christmas Princess Nicole Munoz

Christmas Princess is the true story of Donaly Marquez who, through a childhood of neglect and abuse, achieved her dream of becoming a rose bowl princess. An inspirational story of resilience, strength and finding a family to call your own.

cast
Nicole Muñoz as Donaly Marquez
Rosa Blasi as Sara
Zak Santiago as Ignacio Marquez
Olivia Steele Falconer as Emily Marquez
Jaedon Siewert as Abraham Marquez
Lina Renna as Young Donaly
Paloma Kwiatkowski as Chloe
Ty Wood as Trent
Pendo Muema as Monique
Kalyn Miles as Maria
Kaaren de Zilva as Roberta
Garfield Wilson as Dr. Miller
Clay St. Thomas as Judge #1
Patti Allan as Judge #2
Natalie von Rotsburg as Judge #3

crew details
Director: Allan Harmon
Writer: Tracy Andreen

production details
Country: Canada
Network and Production Companies: UP
Duration: 1×120 minute episode
Aired From: Sunday 10 December 2017

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