Active Topics | Member List | Search | Help | Register | Login
TV
Byrne Robotics > TV
Topic: Shows that continued without title characters Post ReplyPost New Topic
Author
Message
Brandon Frye
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 17 November 2004
Posts: 1119
Posted: 04 February 2018 at 8:16pm | IP Logged | 1 post reply

Networks are sometimes reluctant to give up on a popular show even when they lose their title characters.

Laverne and Shirley continued without Shirley when Cindy Williams left the show.

Chico and the Man continued sans Chico following the death of Freddy Prinze.

Valerie continued (renamed Valerie's Family and later The Hogan Family) after Valerie Harper left the show and her character was killed off)

Any others come to mind?
Back to Top profile | search
 
Steven Myers
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 10 June 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 5167
Posted: 04 February 2018 at 10:01pm | IP Logged | 2 post reply

Of those 3, Valerie/Hogan was the only show to last and be successful after the change.  Though Laverne and Shirley held its ratings, the show was cancelled after the season when Shirley left anyway.
Back to Top profile | search | www
 
Brian O'Neill
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 13 November 2013
Location: United States
Posts: 1964
Posted: 05 February 2018 at 2:05am | IP Logged | 3 post reply

LAVERNE AND SHIRLEY'S ratings were declining steadily, and both it and 'Happy Days' really went south after NBC scheduled 'The A-Team' in the same time slot. Penny Marshall ultimately felt her heart wasn't in doing one more season (in which the title would have been amended to 'Laverne').
SANFORD AND SON was to have continued with Demond Wilson, but without Redd Fox. in 1977. Wilson ended up quitting due to a salary dispute before the  show began filming.
The planned new format (converting the junk yard into a hotel) went forward, as THE SANFORD ARMS...and it died in six weeks. A few years later, there was SANFORD without the son, as Fred was nack at the junkyard without Lamont, and no mention of a hotel.

STARSKY AND HUTCH brought in actress Roz Kelly(aka 'Pinky Tuscadero' from HAPPY DAYS) for an episode in season 3, where Hutch teamed up with her police-detective character while Starsky was 'on assignment' elsewhere(Paul Michael Glaser was considering leaving the series). Both Kellys character, and Starsky's younger brother, were considered as replacements in case Glaser departed...and in the series finale, Starsky was shot. Since the show had been cancelled anyway, he was not killed off.

The most famous example might be the long-running (1985-2010) Scottish cop drama TAGGART, in which the title character was quickly written out as being 'called in for a meeting' off-camera, when the lead actor died unexpectedly before filming the end of an episode, in 1994. 
At the start of the next series, his colleague's attended the detective's funeral...and the show ran for another 15 years with a new lead, while never changing its title!
WELCOME BACK, KOTTER: Gabe Kaplan appeared in only a handful of episodes in the show's final season. He was frustrated by losing creative control of the show, and was feuding somewhat openly with co-star Marcia Strassman(it got a write-up in 'People' magazine).
Kotter was promoted to vice-principal, and was conveniently 'away at conferences' or otherwise occupied offscreen, while the show dropped the classroom scenes almost entirely(save for an episode where Julie is a substitute teacher). The majority of the school scenes were in the hallway, schoolyard or  principal's office.
 Julie, meanwhile, became the school secretary, as Woodman became principal(no more jokes about the former, never-shown Principal Lazarus). In all, Kaplan missed more than two-thirds of the last season, and even those few appearances were limited to the pre-credit opening scene(traditionally the home of the infamous 'Uncle jokes') 
With John Travolta also making only a handful of appearances(as a 'special guest star' in the opening credits when he did so), the remaining viewers 'dropped out'.




Edited by Brian O'Neill on 05 February 2018 at 2:22am
Back to Top profile | search
 
Petter Myhr Ness
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 02 July 2009
Location: Norway
Posts: 2913
Posted: 05 February 2018 at 5:37am | IP Logged | 4 post reply

Crime show TAGGART ran for many years after the actor who played Taggart (Mark McManus) died. 
Back to Top profile | search
 
Robbie Parry
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 17 June 2007
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 11954
Posted: 05 February 2018 at 6:30am | IP Logged | 5 post reply

In BEAUTY AND THE BEAST's third season, Catherine (Linda Hamilton) died. The show continued on with "beauty" being replaced by a private investigator called Diana Bennett (Jo Anderson). Bennett had no romantic attachment to Beast (Ron Perlman) so the show would have ran out of steam, anyway.
Back to Top profile | search
 
James Woodcock
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 21 September 2007
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 4659
Posted: 05 February 2018 at 7:45am | IP Logged | 6 post reply

BLAKE'S 7 lost Blake for most of season 4
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Matthew Wilkie
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 09 March 2011
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 1056
Posted: 05 February 2018 at 3:24pm | IP Logged | 7 post reply

Crime show TAGGART ran for many years after the actor who played Taggart (Mark McManus) died. 

***

My thought exactly when I saw the thread title. Indeed, TAGGART must surely be the daddy of them all: Mark MacManus played the lead role from 1985* until his death in 1994 with the series continuing for a further 16 years until 2010 with no change to the title and no character featured with that name.

*He actually played the role in 1983 in a mini series called Killer before getting his series.
Back to Top profile | search
 
Andy Mokler
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 20 January 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 2539
Posted: 05 February 2018 at 3:27pm | IP Logged | 8 post reply

Would the Dukes of Hazzard count?  Maybe not since they got the original guys back in later years.
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Matthew Wilkie
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 09 March 2011
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 1056
Posted: 05 February 2018 at 3:28pm | IP Logged | 9 post reply

I'm not sure if it counts, but MORSE returned as LEWIS after the title character was killed off following his side kick in stories that were in the Oxford locale and followed exactly the same formula. Arguable more of a spin-off, I guess.  
Back to Top profile | search
 
Brian O'Neill
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 13 November 2013
Location: United States
Posts: 1964
Posted: 05 February 2018 at 4:37pm | IP Logged | 10 post reply

LEWIS was a spinoff.
And DUKES OF HAZZARD technically doesn't qualify, since they replaced the 'Dukes' with 'other Dukes'. Replacing them with two guys from Brooklyn named Howard and Melvin Kowznofski, while still calling the show 'The Dukes of Hazzard' would be more in line with the idea here.;-)
Back to Top profile | search
 
Doug Centers
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 17 February 2014
Location: United States
Posts: 3320
Posted: 05 February 2018 at 6:24pm | IP Logged | 11 post reply

Susan Saint James left McMILLAN & WIFE before the sixth season.
Renamed for the sixth and final season simply McMILLAN.

And really without Susan what's the point.  :-)
Back to Top profile | search
 
Steven Myers
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 10 June 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 5167
Posted: 05 February 2018 at 9:13pm | IP Logged | 12 post reply

Due South replaced co-star  Ray Vecchio when it was revived by CTV after being on CBS for 2 seasons. The series was successful for 2 more seasons in Britain and Canada but not the USA, where it was never very popular.
Back to Top profile | search | www
 
Brian Hague
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 14 November 2006
Posts: 7743
Posted: 05 February 2018 at 9:15pm | IP Logged | 13 post reply

James Garner's NICHOLS ended its first season with the non-violent, opportunistic sheriff being shot dead and avenged by his more rough-hewn, mustached twin brother, also played by Garner. Had the show gotten a second season, the brother would have been the main character going forward. It was not renewed however. 

While both brothers had equal claim to the name "Nichols," the original character the show was named for was killed and replaced, however briefly.


Edited by Brian Hague on 05 February 2018 at 9:16pm
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Brian Hague
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 14 November 2006
Posts: 7743
Posted: 05 February 2018 at 9:44pm | IP Logged | 14 post reply

To the extent that COLUMBO was referenced in the show title MRS. COLUMBO that show altered its premise and the names of the characters to divorce itself from its original concept. The show went on as KATE COLUMBO, then KATE THE DETECTIVE, and finally KATE LOVES A MYSTERY, the character now named Kate Callahan with an ex-husband named Phillip*.

Mrs. Columbo herself did not vanish from the series, but her relationship to Falk's character and her history were rewritten so that she was not, and never had been, Falk's Mrs. Columbo. In that sense, the title character of the show was replaced by an exact duplicate, played by the same actor, with a different past.

* The writer of a TV trivia book included the "fact" that Lt. Columbo's supposedly unrevealed first name was "Phillip," but later testified that it's inclusion was a "copyright trap," so he could sue someone if it were ever referenced. The makers of the Trivial Pursuit board game included it and the author pounced, only to have his case bounced out of court. What is the point of putting out a book of facts if a.) you're going to lie about them and b.) you're going to sue the first person who references one of them?

Meanwhile, Columbo flashed his badge in an early episode and his I.D. pretty clearly read "Frank Columbo." I'm not certain why people think this is a mystery, except that the show did play coy with it afterwards.



Edited by Brian Hague on 05 February 2018 at 9:50pm
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Brian O'Neill
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 13 November 2013
Location: United States
Posts: 1964
Posted: 05 February 2018 at 10:14pm | IP Logged | 15 post reply

The 1958-59 crime drama NAKED CITY killed off one of its co-stars, played by John McIntire, late in the season. The show was subsequently cancelled by ABC, and revived in 1960, having also dropped co-star James Franciscus, retaining McIntire's replacement, Horace McMahon, and bringing in a new supporting cast, as the show ran for 3 years with the new lineup.
Back to Top profile | search
 
Brian Floyd
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 07 July 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 6044
Posted: 06 February 2018 at 12:09am | IP Logged | 16 post reply

Some of these don't fit the title of the thread, and would be more appropriate to one called "Shows that replaced or lost original characters".

And I'll argue that the reason The Hogan Family was successful is because the show was better without Valerie Harper.

(Did the show Taggart even explain how the character died? The only thing I can find online is that the first episode without the actor featured the character's funeral.)





Edited by Brian Floyd on 06 February 2018 at 12:19am
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Robbie Moubert
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar
Evertonian

Joined: 16 April 2004
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 1201
Posted: 06 February 2018 at 7:30am | IP Logged | 17 post reply

In Blake's 7, Blake was missing for the majority of the third series as well as the fourth. He only appeared in the final episode of each. 

Does Maverick count?!


Edited by Robbie Moubert on 06 February 2018 at 7:31am
Back to Top profile | search | www
 
Vinny Valenti
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 17 April 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 6384
Posted: 06 February 2018 at 11:42am | IP Logged | 18 post reply

"What is the point of putting out a book of facts if a.) you're going to lie about them and b.) you're going to sue the first person who references one of them?"

---

Map makers slip in intentional mistakes to catch copycat companies, which I always thought was a TERRIBLE idea.
Back to Top profile | search
 
Matthew Wilkie
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 09 March 2011
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 1056
Posted: 06 February 2018 at 1:09pm | IP Logged | 19 post reply

(Did the show Taggart even explain how the character died? The only thing I can find online is that the first episode without the actor featured the character's funeral.)

***

My recollection, and we are going back some years, was that it was alcohol-related. Of course, Mark McManus and the character he portrayed were so similar personality-wise that I may be conflating fact with fiction.

I do remember that his wife, Jean, remained in the series for a little wife after. 
Back to Top profile | search
 
Matthew Wilkie
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 09 March 2011
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 1056
Posted: 06 February 2018 at 1:13pm | IP Logged | 20 post reply

I can't get this topic out of my head and came up with another whilst driving: UK comedy Tripper's Day, about a fascist supermarket manager, continued after the lead Leonard Rossiter died during the broadcast of the first series, with Bruce Forsyth joining the series as his replacement Slinger, with the series retitled Slinger's Day. I believe it was remade in Canada and called Check It Out!  
Back to Top profile | search
 
Brian O'Neill
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 13 November 2013
Location: United States
Posts: 1964
Posted: 06 February 2018 at 6:23pm | IP Logged | 21 post reply

When Raymond Burr died in 1993, after several years of highly-rated PERRY MASON TV-movies, the network fulfilled a contractual obligation by airing a few more, title them as A PERRY MASON MYSTERY: THE CASE OF THE _________.
Mason was alive 'offscreen', as other lawyers(all, coincidentally, 'old friends) visited while Perry happened to be 'away at a law conference' or 'on vacation'), and took on cases with the assistance of Della Street, and investigator Ken Malansky(Wiliam R. Moses, who had replaced William Katt several years earlier)..
The 'guest star' attorneys were played by Paul Sorvino(in the first episode after Burr's death) and Hal Holbrook (in the final 3 shows).

Back to Top profile | search
 

If you wish to post a reply to this topic you must first login
If you are not already registered you must first register

  Post ReplyPost New Topic
Printable version Printable version

Forum Jump
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot create polls in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum

 Active Topics | Member List | Search | Help | Register | Login