McGoohan was superb as cantankerous, grouchy Dr. Sid Rafferty. Rafferty has just retired as a colonel, after 20 years in the army. He is now entering private practice. Rafferty is a brilliant diagnostician, and most of the episodes are more like detective stories than medical soap operas, as he tries to figure out what is wrong with his patient. Michael C. Gwynne played Rafferty's young associate for several episodes and Millie Slavin was touching as Rafferty's nurse.
Patrick McGoohan was 49 and no longer the dashing John Drake or Number 6. He even sometimes wore his thick glasses. But he was an extremely attractive middle-aged man, and nobody was a better series lead.
Jerry Thorpe ("Kung Fu", "Harry O") was the talented executive producer. Rafferty reminded me somewhat of Harry Orwell in his looseness and quirkiness, and indeed McGoohan somewhat resembled David Janssen at this point. David Janssen might even have been interesting as Rafferty.
McGoohan hated this show, and indeed it is not as good as his two previous efforts. McGoohan was understandably frustrated at not being a producer after the brilliant job he did as executive producer of "The Prisoner". But by the abysmal standards of 70's TV drama, this show was magnificent. I was disappointed when "Rafferty" was canceled. The struggling but wonderful "Lou Grant" took over its time period on Monday night, and lasted there for five years.
Dr. Sidney Rafferty is clearly a spiritual father of Dr. Gregory House.
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