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Saint Elsewhere (NBC 1982-1988, Mark Harmon, Denzel Washington)

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St. Elsewhere, an offbeat, critically acclaimed hospital drama of unprecedented quality, debuted on NBC on October 26, 1982. Produced by the company responsible for “Hill St. Blues,” it was considered a medical version of that program, showcasing unflinching realism and excellent writing and acting, as well as a unique blend of black humor, drama and tragedy. Despite amassing eight Emmy Awards and a fiercely loyal following during its five-year run, it received poor ratings. On May 25, 1988, “St. Elsewhere” closed its doors to network TV.

Set in a rundown Boston neighborhood, “St. Elsewhere” (the derisive name given to St. Eligius teaching hospital) serves patients not wanted by the more prestigious institutions. The sensitive Dr. Donald Westphall leads the administration, struggling with the daily triumphs and failures of hospital life. He is busy with the dedicated and caring staff who have their own difficulties, such as egotistical heart surgeon Dr. Mark Craig, inexperienced graduate Dr. Victor Ehrlich, and the young resident Dr. Phillip Chandler, who is afraid of not measuring up to the high standards of medicine.

St Elsewhere

It is a place where little joys like the birth of a baby are offset by muggings in the emergency room, ministering aid to the indigent and homeless, a nurse stealing medication from patients, and so on. And unlike most previous medical shows, patients on “St. Elsewhere” do not always pull through.

Created by Joshua Brand and John Falsey, the team who went on to create “Northern Exposure,” “St. Elsewhere” was in part based on the experiences of a friend of Brand’s in a Cleveland teaching hospital. The series humanized the never-ending ordeals of a fast-paced hospital, made real with hand-held cameras, multiple intersecting episodes and overlapping dialogue. The show’s fresh urban edge revitalized a programming genre that had grown stale, and paved the way to current medical drama successes such as “ER” and “Chicago Hope.”

production details
USA / NBC – MTM / 137×60 minute episode / Broadcast 26 October 1982 – 25 May 1988

Creators: Joshua Brand, John Falsey / Music: Dave Grusin / Executive Producer: Bruce Paltrow

cast
ED FLANDERS as Dr Donald Westphall
WILLIAM DANIELS as Dr Mark Craig
MARK HARMON as Dr Bob Caldwell
DENZEL WASHINGTON as Dr Philip Chandler
NORMAN LLOYD as Dr Daniel Aushchlander
ED BEGLEY JR as Dr Victor Ehrlich
HOWIE MANDEL as Dr Wayne Fiscus
DAVID BIRNEY as Dr Ben Samuels
CHRISTINA PICKLES as Nurse Helen Rosenthal
DAVID MORSE as Dr Jack Morrison
ERIC LANEUVILLE as Luther Hawkins
CYNTHIA SYKES as Dr Annie Cavanero
TERENCE KNOX as Dr Peter White
G.W. BAILEY as Dr Hugh Beale
ELLEN BRY as Nurse Daniels

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TV

Ape And Essence (The Wednesday Play BBC-1 1966, Alec McCowen)

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In Scifi drama Ape and Essence, based on the novel by Aldous Huxley, a group of New Zealand scientists conduct a survey on a Britain ravaged by atomic war 80 years previously.

Series: The Wednesday Play Season 2 Episode 29

cast
Alec McCowen as Alfred Poole
Robert Eddison as Arch Vicar
Derek Sydney as Chief
Jenny Lee as Flossie
Yvonne Antrobus as Young Girl
Sydney Bromley as Craigie
Martin Carroll as Director of Food
Hazel Douglas as Mies Hook
John Falconer as Patriarch
Petra Markham as Loola
Ken Parry as Science Praet
Amanda Reiss as Polly
Jonathan Scott as Int. Priest
Fiona Fraser as Part of Crowd
Ann Mitchell as Shaven-Head
Jacki Salt as Mulatto Girl
Carol Blake as Shaven-Head
Gordon Craig as Part of Crowd
Robert Cude as First Man

crew details
Writer: John Finch
Book: Aldous Huxley
Music: BBC Radiophonic Workshop
Producer: Peter Luke
Director: David Benedictus.

production details
Country: UK
Network and Production Companies: BBC One
Duration: 1×75 minute episode
Aired From: 18 May 1966

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Plane Makers, The (ITV 1963-1965, Patrick Wymark, Barbara Murray)

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Plane Makers Patrick Wymark

Drama series The Plane Makers took us behind the scenes in the boardroom and shop floor of the Scott Furlong Aircraft Factory. After two seasons the lead character John Wilder took a place on the board of a merchant bank and the series was then renamed The Power Game.

cast
Patrick Wymark as John Wilder
Jack Watling as Don Henderson
Barbara Murray as Pamela Wilder (Seasons 1-2)
Ann Firbank as Pamela Wilder (Season 3)
Reginald Marsh as Arthur Sugden
Alan Dobie as David Corbett

crew details
Creator: Wilfred Greatorex
Producers: Rex Firkin (seasons 1-2), David Reid (season 3)

production details
Country: UK
Network: ITV – ATV
Duration: 57×50 minute episodes
Aired From: 4 February 1963 – 12 January 1965 black and white

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TV

Running Wild (ITV 1987, Ray Brooks, Janet Key)

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Sitcom Running Wild was about the ups and downs of separated couple, Max and Babs, trying to get on with their lives. In season two Max wants to return to his wife but Babs is not so keen.

cast
Ray Brooks as Max Wild
Janet Key as Babs Wild
Sharon Duce as Wanda
Michelle Collins as Stephanie Wild
Peter Amory as Rob
Berwick Kaler as Tom Coleman (Season 1)
Brigit Forsyth as Jenny (Season 2)

crew details
Writer: Philip Trewinnard
Producers: Marcus Plantin (Season 1), Derrick Goodwin (Season 2)
Directors: Vic Finch (Season 1), Derrick Goodwin (Season 2)

production details
Country: UK
Network and Production Companies: ITV – London Weekend Television
Duration: 13×25 minute episodes
Aired From: 6 March 1987 – 4 June 1989

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