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Monday, October 13, 2014

Thoughts on The Doctors - December 1967

The two weeks (or rather 20 episodes) of "The Doctors" have aired on Retro TV from 1967. Below are my thoughts on what has aired.

The main story involves the triangle of Nick Bellini, Althea Davis and Liz Wilson (Gerald Gordon, Elizabeth Hubbard and Pamela Toll) Nick and Althea are both doctors, while the much younger Liz is a lab assistant, who he nicknamed kid. Nick got Althea pregnant, but is engaged to Liz. Of course, Liz and Althea live together making the situation even more awkward. Liz has no idea about Althea being pregnant or that Nick was the father. Once Liz found out the truth, she attacked both Nick and Althea verbally and decided to move on with her life. Nick has proposed to Althea in the most unromantic ways possible and she is not having any of it.

Drs. Matt and Maggie Powers (James Pritchett and Bethel Leslie) are a happily married couple with a daughter named Greta. They provide support to the others, but due to Matt's position at the hospital he has to sometimes make difficult decisions. Matt smokes on his pipe quite often at work, which of course now is seen as illegal and dangerous. Maggie and Matt are torn between supporting Althea during her pregnancy even if it breaks the morals clause at the hospital and being angry with her for not marrying Nick.

Dr. Bill Winters is a psychologist who Althea has appointments with to talk out her problems. He's played by James Noble, who is familiar if one has watched Benson as he played Governor Gatling on that program. Dr. Winters' wife Ruth is played Ann Whiteside. She has begun to bond with an orphaned boy named Danny, who is a patient at the hospital. Ann is an alcoholic, though that really hasn't played too much into their story.

The interns are Karen Werner (Laryssa Lauret), John Rice (Terry Kiser) and Steve Aldrich (David O'Brien). Karen is from Germany and was a full-fledged doctor in her home country, but has to go through another internship in the US. Karen seems to not get along with anyone, but Matt, who she has had a crush on since he was mentored by Karen's father many years ago. John has gotten very close to an elderly patient named Polly (Betty Walker). She has dubbed him "Little Boy Doctor" and she gives him acting lessons. Steve and John are second cousins and that's how Steve got into Hope Memorial. Steve has been flirting with Nurse Carolee Simpson (Carolee Campbell) who is extremely competent. She has appreciated his kind words, but we later find out his feelings aren't genuine and is only being nice to her to get better work assignments. Carolee offered Liz a place to stay now that she has moved out of Althea's apartment.

So far "The Doctors" has been extremely engaging and a pathway to the past. It is very different than today's soaps and reminds me of theatre in some ways due to the length of scenes based on genuine emotion among the characters.


Soap Opera Saga said...

Honestly, its the best soap on TV now.

sheesh said...

I am loving this SO much. The NBC intros and outros are just the cherry on the sundae.