The large headgear on 90-pound novice Sister Bertrille, of the convent San Tanco in Puerto Rico, enables her to fly in any stiff breeze. Her gift enables her to aid others, whether they wish it or not. Written by
Ed Stephan <email@example.com>
Fanciful, fun, and 'uplifting' adventures of an airborne sister
I grew up with this really cute series from the late 1960's, starring one of my favourite actresses, Sally Field. Back when I was a teenager, every girl's actress heroines were Sally Field, Patty Duke (The Patty Duke Show), and Hayley Mills (The Parent Trap and many other movies).
The series portrays the adventures of an airborne nun, Sister Bertrille, at the hilltop Convent San Tanco in Porto Rico. The fresh faced young sister is able to fly due to the combination of her light 90 pound weight, the elaborate, stiffly starched bird wing-like cornette of her habit, and catching whatever breeze chances to be blowing. She's a bubbly, free spirited young novice, whose unusual methods often bring her into conflict with the convent's more traditional & stern Reverend Mother. Other convent sisters also appear in the show, including her sidekick, Sister Jacqueline. The well intended Sister Bertrille endeavours to use her aviation skills to help people in trouble, but more often than not, instead gets HERSELF into trouble. She frequently runs into the charming casino playboy, Carlos Ramirez, disrupting his romantic activities with beautiful women. In fact, quite often Sister Bertrille requires Ramirez, who is the owner of a local disco and also a patron of the convent, to come to her rescue.
Sister Bertrille's adventures are many and varied. She has been mistaken for an enemy aircraft, had a pelican fall in love with her, inadvertently landed in the middle of a mobster's meeting, and ascended to the clouds to bring snow for a Norwegian nun's white Christmas. Occasionally she crash lands into a tree or whatever, but simply picks herself up and carries on.
True, nuns can't really fly so some complain that this program involves too unbelievable a premise. To them I would respond that the ideas behind other popular comedies of the 1960's aren't exactly realistic either, for example...Bewitched, I Dream of Jeannie, The Beverly Hillbillies, Gilligan's Island, and Hogan's Heroes, to name but a few.
Sally Field is cast in the whimsical role of Sister Bertrille and makes this series fly in more ways than one. This versatile and talented star of Gidget later went on to a brilliant movie career with Oscar winning dramatic roles in Norma Rae & Places of the Heart, also starring in countless others including one of my favourite romantic comedies, Murphy's Romance. Yes, we do indeed really like her, and any success achieved by this series is undoubtedly due to Sally Field's legendary charm and appeal.
This show is simply pure whimsical and heartwarming fun. Pity there aren't more mindless but wholesome TV programs like it these days.
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