Episodes: The Bell in the Schoolhouse Tolls for Thee, Kildare Life in the Dance Hall Some Doors Are Slamming Enough La Boheme for Everybody Now the Mummy A Pyrotechnic Display
This might be the one that killed the show. It's a 6 part mess, (which therefore went on for three weeks), about Kildare becoming a mentor for three medical students with various issues that might prevent their professional progress but which have to be overcome before they can "make it". It's hard to tell which is worse: the writing, the directing or the acting. There are long, clichéd monologues, jump cuts to flashbacks, (which make it hard to tell if they are flashbacks), illogical plot developments, details that seem erroneous, (even to a non-doctor like me), all covered over with a great deal of over- acting.
Dean Stockwell, even more brittle than usual, is living with a bunch of pre-hippies, (one of which is Sam Waterson in his on-camera debut, sitting nude in a washtub) and gets in politically-charged debates with everyone, including the patients. When Andrew Prine as a cynical doctor, gets fired for stealing morphine to feed his habit, Stockwell organizes a demonstration to get him reinstated- and retains his own positon as student and apprentice doctor. This being 1965, his part of the episode seems a reaction to the free- speech moment at Berkeley. But he comes off as an arrogant fool.
Sheila Wells, another actress whose career mostly petered out after this, plays an overly 'cute' klutz, (named "Frankie") with a lengthy backstory of woes who wants to overcome them by being the best doctor she can be but can't get out of her own way. None of the students are doctors yet and they aren't supposed to be left alone with the students but all of them are referred to as "Doctor" at some point and she is left with an obnoxious, (he has an endless line of tasteless patter), teenager with phlebitis who gets a headache and a sharp pain. She pays no attention to the symptoms and is amazed that he had a blood clot break loose and produce a coronary thrombosis which kills him. She never heard of a coronary thrombosis and has to have it explained to her by Kildare, who then assures her that there was nothing she could have done. Again, I'm not a doctor but I have heard of phlebitis and that it can produce potentially fatal blood clots and I've heard the term "coronary thrombosis". She's a medical student and this is a mystery to her?
Tony Bill, a good-looking but stiff actor who later became a successful producer, is being held back by his beautiful but avaricious and shrewish wife, played by Judy Lang, another actress who never did much after this and whose performance is on the level of a high school play.
I wonder who many people were still watching after they wasted three weeks on this.
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