MeTV boosting already packed lineup of classic series
MeTV is quickly getting the destination for classic TV lovers — including”The Waltons,””Adam-12″ and the’60s-era”Dragnet” to its stacked-with-oldies lineup.
That’s quite a bonanza for fans of television from a specific era — and, yes,”Bonanza” is also on MeTV’s schedule, together with oldies-but-goodies”Have Gun, Will Travel,””The Big Valley,” the original”Star Trek,””The Twilight Zone,””Highway Patrol,””Barnaby Jones,””The Dick Van Dyke Show,””Mannix,””Alfred Hitchcock Presents” and”Perry Mason” (among many others).
“The Waltons,””Adam-12″ and”Dragnet” are interesting additions, capturing different eras in American history and, in the case of”Dragnet,” unintentional campiness when seen through the prism of 2020. The series was a reboot of his 1950s series that introduced no-nonsense, monosyllabic LAPD Detective Joe Friday to TV viewers. (Webb was playing him on the radio) In 1967, Webb attracted Friday back to NBC, this time in color, where, still stiff and monosyllabic, he was paired with Officer Bill Gannon (Harry Morgan, later to star on”M*A*S*H”). Friday and Gannon (who supplied the occasional comedy ) frequently dealt with Webb’s cartoonish interpretation of America’s hippy/drug civilization — see the series and you will see what I mean — while at the same time portraying the detectives’ often mundane work, among the show’s”Just the facts, ma’am” trademarks.
Webb was also responsible for creating”Adam-12″ (1968-75), starring Martin Milner and Kent McCord as LAPD cop spouses Pete Malloy and Jim Reed — whose connection, during the show’s seven-season run, morphed into a real friendship (representing Milner and McCord’s off-screen friendship).
The headlines were all about Olivia Colman and Tobias Menzies when they exchanged Claire Foy and Matt Smith as Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip on Season 3 of”The Crown” — but it is virtual newcomer Erin Doherty, who plays the heretofore ignored Princess Anne, who, in my opinion, is the new season’s biggest revelation.
“The Crown” marks Doherty’s largest TV function to date and she’s wasted no time portraying Anne as spunky, feisty, sassy and quick-witted and as a sensitive confidante to her older brother, Charles (Josh O’Connor, who’s also quite good). Who knew? We certainly did not — Princess Anne continues to keep a low profile, even now — but as”The Crown” heads into the mid-to-late 1960s, both Princess Anne and Charles are evolving as rebellious, flesh-and-blood characters entering their 20s and undergoing the monotony and emotional void of royal life. If only this Charles knew what was to come…
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