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 Posted:   Jun 16, 2009 - 5:09 AM   
 By:   Lee S   (Member)

I can understand your critique of the ep itself and the fact that it was giving us some character-oriented stuff, but I do think it's far-fetched that Quincy isn't even suspended for his antics.

No argument about that, although how many TV characters, from Jack Bauer to Perry Mason would get away with their behavior in the real world?

 
 
 Posted:   Jun 16, 2009 - 4:05 PM   
 By:   suburbanite   (Member)

I can understand your critique of the ep itself and the fact that it was giving us some character-oriented stuff, but I do think it's far-fetched that Quincy isn't even suspended for his antics.

No argument about that, although how many TV characters, from Jack Bauer to Perry Mason would get away with their behavior in the real world?


True, but I would say shows such as those make no pretense of what they are. They are escapist entertainment.
Quincy, in its later, preachy years, was trying to do [adopts stentorian announcer voice] IMPORTANT SOCIAL COMMENTARY. And a writer/producer/actor weakens the social commentary by making the stuff around it less believable, IMO. It becomes harder to convince us that Quincy's moralizing is sensible and correct when the character is acting like a deranged nutball, and not like any professional M.E. would.

 
 Posted:   Jun 17, 2009 - 12:26 AM   
 By:   Eric Paddon   (Member)

I remember reading a thread someplace else that there were more dropouts from forensic pathology programs in medical schools *because* too many students entered thinking the work would be like Quincy and it isn't. That revealed just how little "Quincy" had to do with its initial premise as time went on.

 
 
 Posted:   Jun 17, 2009 - 5:09 AM   
 By:   Lee S   (Member)

I remember reading a thread someplace else that there were more dropouts from forensic pathology programs in medical schools *because* too many students entered thinking the work would be like Quincy and it isn't. That revealed just how little "Quincy" had to do with its initial premise as time went on.

I do think the later shows, particularly the last year, are very vulnerable to criticism. Even for some of those shows I think were dramatically effective, I can understand how others might find the agenda overshadowing the drama. At the same time, a lack of reality in portraying the professional life of a lead character does not seem like a criticism that can be leveled at Quincy alone. Whether "escapist" fare like Perry Mason and Columbo, socially relevant realism like The Defenders or Lou Grant, or some strange hybrid, like 24, almost no television show (or book or movie, for that matter) claims or achieves that kind of realism. And who would want it? Quincy wasn't anymore realistic when he was out solving murders than when he was testifying before Congress.

 
 
 Posted:   Jun 17, 2009 - 1:44 PM   
 By:   Bach-Choi   (Member)

I remember "Unhappy Hour", where Dr. Astin gives his "dangers of drunk driving" speech near episode's end. Speaking of Astin, John S. Ragin's role in the show seemed, for the most part, to devolve over the seasons, this season of shows being a notable exception.

 
 
 Posted:   Jun 17, 2009 - 7:14 PM   
 By:   suburbanite   (Member)

I remember "Unhappy Hour", where Dr. Astin gives his "dangers of drunk driving" speech near episode's end. Speaking of Astin, John S. Ragin's role in the show seemed, for the most part, to devolve over the seasons, this season of shows being a notable exception.

Agree on Ragin's role being marginalized as time went on, which wasn't a good thing, IMO. Quincy needed someone to ride herd on him, basically.

 
 Posted:   Jun 17, 2009 - 7:22 PM   
 By:   Eric Paddon   (Member)

It would have been nice if we'd seen Mrs. Astin more than the one time in S1 since any time Barbara Babcock guested anywhere was a bonus! smile

 
 
 Posted:   Jun 17, 2009 - 7:44 PM   
 By:   Lee S   (Member)

It would have been nice if we'd seen Mrs. Astin more than the one time in S1 since any time Barbara Babcock guested anywhere was a bonus! smile

Dr. Asten is a favorite of mine, too, but not sure that he has less to do over time...He seems to be the only supporting cast member with more to do over the years. Garry Walberg, for example, threatened to leave the show after the third year because his role had been so reduced. John S. Ragin was featured in a couple of shows, like Unhappy Hour, but really got to shine in those scenes where he got to "straighten" Quincy out when he lost touch a bit. (e.g. Scream to the Skies, The Unquiet Grave, etc.) Robert Ito was given a couple of episodes focused on him, too, but unlike Ragin, he had almost nothing substantive to do the rest of the time.

Mrs. Asten appears three more times, I think, played by two other actresses, though now named Louise, not Melissa. On the minus side, I miss Barbara Babcock, too. On the plus side, one time she has a heart attack, giving Dr. Asten another good showcase.

 
 
 Posted:   Jun 17, 2009 - 8:06 PM   
 By:   suburbanite   (Member)


Garry Walberg, for example, threatened to leave the show after the third year because his role had been so reduced.

I didn't know that. Wow.
Did he threaten to move to NYC and become a poker shark? big grin

 
 
 Posted:   Jun 17, 2009 - 8:31 PM   
 By:   Bach-Choi   (Member)

Yeah, Ragin really shines in the episodes you mentioned. He just seemed to be more integral to the storytelling in S3 than in latter seasons. In a lot of later episodes he seems to be peripheral, not really connected to the central story, almost there to provide comic relief (almost any show where the secondary story involves Quincy trying to get around some nonsensical department regulation, like Astin's insistence that Quincy and his staff carry around beepers.

 
 
 Posted:   Jun 17, 2009 - 9:14 PM   
 By:   CindyLover   (Member)

Be that as it may, Joseph Roman must surely be the winner of the Least Used Regular Cast Member Award; even Val Bisoglio had at least one episode heavily featuring him - the one where his chef went for a minor operation and wound up dead - but what did Brill ever do? You'd think he was the token female or something. smile

 
 Posted:   Jun 17, 2009 - 9:33 PM   
 By:   Eric Paddon   (Member)

I read somewhere once that Roman was actually just an old buddy of Klugman's and was just happy for the steady work. The only stuff he's listed in post-Quincy is a few appearances on Klugman's forgettable "You Again?" sitcom.

 
 
 Posted:   Jun 18, 2009 - 5:19 AM   
 By:   Lee S   (Member)

"Let's play cards!" in Garry Walberg's Buffalo accent is always a prominent feature in any card game in which I play! He was an old friend of Klugman's from their days in live television in New York. Apparently both Tony Randall and Klugman had a friend they were recommending to play Speed on The Odd Couple, but Walberg was so good that even Randall agreed he should get the part. Walberg is also a major race horse enthusiast, so he and Klugman always had plenty to talk about between scenes.

Joe Roman grew up with Klugman in South Philadelphia, and they went to New York to break into acting at about the same time. I think they were both in the touring company of Mister Roberts together. And yes, Roman is almost comically ignored on the show. 50 bucks and a free autopsy to anyone who can tell me Sgt. Brill's first name...

The supporting cast in general started to be used less, in favor of guest stars in the latter half of the series, and you're right about Asten being included. He hung on longest and always had the most to do, but yes, I agree that it became less than in the second and third years.

I think Val Bisoglio probably was a big part of the original Glen Larson concept for the show, but once Larson was ousted and the show became more serious, he didn't have too much to do. Speaking of Asten, though, I loved their little moment in "For the Benefit of My Patients." Asten takes some of his rich friends to Danny's to sell them on the idea of investing in a non-profit community hospital. When they are initially reluctant, he gets outraged and lectures them angrily, convincing them to change their minds. Happy and proud, he says to Danny, "Did you hear?" Danny smiles and says, "The whole joint heard! You were Quincy before Quincy was Quincy."

And if you're looking for a supporting cast showcase, Even Odds gives everyone something to do. Even Sgt. Brill gets a big dramatic scene!!

 
 Posted:   May 2, 2010 - 10:59 AM   
 By:   Jim Phelps   (Member)

I guess we wait another four years for season four?

 
 Posted:   May 2, 2010 - 11:46 AM   
 By:   Eric Paddon   (Member)

S4 is really the only remaining one I would love to see make it to DVD since it has Jessica Walter's great villainess, dual-role where she kills her identical twin sister newscaster and assumes her identity and Quincy has to prove she's the phony.

 
 Posted:   May 2, 2010 - 12:29 PM   
 By:   Jim Phelps   (Member)

I'm interested up to and including season five, as "Deadly Arena" with guest Diana Muldaur. She and Quince try and discover the souce of fatal food poisoning at a football stadium. Something to do with chili and sewage...

Season four's "A Night to Raise the Dead" is another favorite, with Greg Morris.

 
 Posted:   May 2, 2010 - 9:44 PM   
 By:   Sigerson Holmes   (Member)

By contrast, "T.J. Hooker" had one early episode where his first name (Thomas) was revealed.


Shatner's new memoir says it's "Thomas Jefferson Hooker."

Is the "Jefferson" part ever mentioned oncreen?

 
 Posted:   May 2, 2010 - 9:59 PM   
 By:   Eric Paddon   (Member)

Not in the episode I saw where guest star Vic Tayback, seeing the character for the first time in years asks, "Hooker, Thomas J?

Tayback was a cop gone bad in that episode that Hooker had to nail, or put another way, Kirk had to put the bag on Kraco again! big grin

 
 Posted:   May 3, 2010 - 2:25 AM   
 By:   Jim Phelps   (Member)

This thread is proof enough that all roads lead to Shatner. big grin

And another thing, how come no one ever called the character "T.J."?

When I was a kid, I watched T.J. Hooker with a straight face. If I watched an episode now, I doubt I could stop grinning! big grin

 
 Posted:   May 3, 2010 - 5:39 AM   
 By:   Scott M (Oldsmith)   (Member)

I still remember the ending (Quincy and chums living it up at Danny's followed by the little boy finding a gun and shooting his sister with it) - a little sledgehammery, but at least it (and others) didn't pretend everything was all right again.).

I saw this episode only once, during it's original airing. I was only a kid, but to this day, I remember the ending. Not much of the rest of it, but those last seconds really bugged me.

 
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