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Doctor Simon Locke
 
Characters, Cast and Crew
About the Series
Episode Guide
Fanfiction
Memorabilia
sources
About the Series

If this series was out on videotape or DVD, I would be really surprised! (But I'd buy it.) RetroTV started showing this series on March 30, 2016, under the blanket title Police Surgeon. So go thank the nice folks at RetroTV. Followup: apparently the package was sold to them with three episodes missing: "The Wanderer," "Marooned," and the elusive "Gun Point." They located "The Wanderer," but they're still hunting up the others, so this is why those two episodes have stock TV Guide-type descriptions.)

 

Characters Cast & Crew
starring Jack Albertson Albertson is Dr. Andrew Sellers, the crusty but familiar family doctor who has practiced medicine in the small farming community of Dixon Mills for as long as some of the younger residents can remember. Sellers is so fond of his work and patients that he lost his great love to his devotion for practicing medicine. The clinic is located in a large home that is Sellers' for the duration of his medical practice, with a makeshift laboratory in the basement and beds for sick patients in the spare bedrooms. Andrew's only other interest is his garden and his greenhouse where he raises roses. He loves poetry and quotes poems several times in the series.
starring Sam Groom Groom is the 30-ish Dr. Simon Locke, who has abandoned a lucrative, but unrewarding, practice in the big city. He tells Sellers he is sick of catering to hypocondriacs and whiners, and has come to the country to practice "real" medicine. He's a bit taken aback at how little equipment the Dixon Mills clinic has, and is famous for cobbling up odds and ends to suit needs: saved a premature baby using a cardboard box, an oxygen tent, a plastic tarp, and a heat lamp borrowed from a stable; made a difibrillator from a car battery, jumper cables, a voltage panel, and capacitors out of Dr. Sellers' television; and did an emergency caesarian in a cabin using kitchen knives with a potato masher as a retractor. He's earnest to the point of being blunt, but sincere. The townspeople are slow to warm to him, but he perserveres.
starring Len Birman Birman plays Chief Dan Palmer, the head of the Dixon Mills police force. Like Locke, he is dedicated, driven, and often so blunt that he's borderline rude. He's continually suspicious of Simon Locke's motives in moving to a small town after having practiced in the city and continually needles him, and the two are always locking horns (and sniping) over one thing or the other. Dan is a helicopter pilot (he flies the Dixon Mills police "chopper"), lives in a rustic cabin, and in his free time plays piano, so, yeah, he's got his sensitive side despite his classic "Dan scowl."
starring Nuala Fitzgerald Nuala FitzGerald is Nurse Louise Wynn, who assists the doctors at the clinic. Nurse Wynn is a widow and a supremely competent nurse; Dr. Sellers admits that most times she can handle medical situations in the clinic on her own. She's delivered twins by herself and will treat minor injuries. She's either called "Wynn" (by Dr. Sellers and Chief Palmer), or "Mrs. Wynn" by Dr. Locke. When work at the clinic gets busy, Mrs. Wynn's sister is usually called in to help.

The producers were Chester Krumholz and Wilton Schiller. The series was filmed in Kleinburg, Ontario. The house exteriors and interiors were filmed at the Valley Halla Estate near the Toronto Zoo. According to Wikiwand, some other scenes were shot at Highland Creek in Scarborough, Ontario (possibly the water scene in "Walden Lost," the concluding scene of "Two Points of a Pitchfork," the opening shot of "The Healer," and Simon dunking Dan's head in "The Man Who Hunted Hunters"). (Perhaps also the creek in "The Meddler.")

 

About the Series

Dr. Simon Locke has entered the annals of television history as a series where what went on offscreen was often more interesting than its onscreen presence. One of the first original series produced after the FCC's Prime Time Access Rule, it ran from 1971 through 1972. I initially began putting this web page together in 2008 and finally brought it to fruition in 2014. And by posting it I'm probably tempting being haunted by the ghost of Jack Albertson, who...ah, but read on.

The original premise of the series was simple: a young, hotshot doctor reads an advertisement in a medical journal and accepts a position in the small country town of Dixon Mills, which consists mostly of farm families, as associate to an elderly doctor who's realizes that the vast territory he must cover to keep up with his practice—remember, these were the days of house calls—is getting a bit difficult to cope with. (I have seen references to Dixon Mills as being in Canada, but it was intended to be a typical small American town, perhaps in the northern New England states or upstate New York). The nearest hospital, Hargrove (or Hearkness; it changes from script to script), is so many miles away that emergency patients are usually airlifted there in the police helicopter. The younger physician has big ideas about bringing modern medicine to "the sticks" and immediately clashes with the older doctor, who knows that the patients in the surrounding countryside are used to an old family practitioner type, not a young hotshot with radical ideas. The idea would be to explore both Dr. Locke's new methods and Dr. Sellers' old ones and see whether the new, the old, or a combination of the two would be the best.

At least that was the concept when Jack Albertson accepted the part of Dr. Sellers, his first starring television role, although he had already achieved success on stage and on the screen (a Tony Award and an Academy Award for his role in The Subject Was Roses) and had co-starred on such television series as The Thin Man and Ensign O'Toole. Done properly with a seasoned actor such as Albertson and the talents of Sam Groom, who played the original adult Russ Matthews on the daytime serial Another World, Locke could have been an interesting, if still minor, bit of drama. Its producers had good bloodlines: they had both worked on Ben Casey, did the pilot film to McMillan and Wife, and both worked on Mannix.

Simon concerned.By the time the series went into production after the pilot sold, the producers had changed the concept slightly. It's possible to see the original concept in the pilot episode, where Dr. Sellers testily confronts Dr. Locke by asking him why he showed up when Sellers couldn't even coerce a medical student to join his practice, and later berates Locke for not having unpacked; he figures the younger man is bailing out after his first case. (It turns out Simon's been so busy with his first case that he hasn't had time to unpack.) Pilot-version Sellers is gruffer, pushes liquor on Locke almost as soon as he arrives, and frequently badgers him throughout the episode. Locke's original attitude toward patients is also in evidence when Sellers asks him to consult on the case of the woman who complains of a "lump on her neck." Locke does an examination, feels only her collarbone, and figures she's malingering, just like some of the city patients he so hated. It takes Sellers to show him that the woman works hard seven days a week serving three meals a day and cleaning up after a husband, three sons, and a half-dozen farmhands. Every once in a while she just can't face any more work and "calls in sick" so her menfolk can do for her instead. This patient psychology Locke has never considered. He tells Sellers he is in Dixon Mills to "practice medicine, and leave the rest to the social workers, the church, and City Hall."

It's very possible the pilot's actors tested well but the sponsors felt that the conflict between the doctors and Locke's single-minded dedication to his profession made Locke unlikable and Sellers look grumpy and perhaps a bit senile. (If this is so, I must reluctantly agree with them. Sellers and Locke sniping at each other over the treatment of each case would have become too wearying.) So for the remainder of the series Drs. Sellers and Locke chiefly cooperated with each other with occasional flareups; Locke's antagonist became the cynical local sheriff, Dan Palmer, who pooh-poohed Locke's giving up a good city salary and thought his nice-guy attitude was too good to be true. Locke's character is also significantly softened by the end of the series, particularly illustrated by his attitude to Jake in the episode "Quiet Sunday."

If the character rewrite wasn't bad enough, the producers' parsimony was just that proverbial "straw that broke the camel's back" for Jack Albertson. Both he and Groom were aware this wasn't a big-budget series, but they at least expected some sort of dressing room arrangement for them. Instead they found themselves changing clothes behind trees, bushes, barns, and other outdoor venues and behind studio flats because the producers wouldn't spring for any type of changing area. The series filmed in Canada mostly during the winter (when you see snow in this series, it's real snow, not soap flakes) and Albertson, Groom, and the other actors frankly froze their behinds off. John Meredyth Lucas, who wrote and/or directed about half the episodes, recalls in his book Eighty Odd Years in Hollywood that duing the pilot one of the crew wailed "Who do I have to [sleep with] to get off this picture?" (Interestingly enough, the pilot episode interiors were filmed in the Massey Mansion, the home of Vincent Massey, the first Governor General of Canada. Vincent Massey's more well-known younger brother, actor Raymond Massey, was famous for many things, including being the "old doctor" character in NBC's classic "old doctor/young doctor" pairing on Dr. Kildare.)

Other things bothered Albertson as well; the actors were forbidden to watch the "dailies" of each day's production. When they finally did see the episodes, Albertson, the consummate professional, saw bad takes, visible boom mikes, erratic sound, dropped cues, and was appalled that reshoots had not been called for.

Albertson was finally angry enough to demand out of his contract. When the producers of the series told him they'd take him to court, he countered that he would tell any court exactly what he'd been through on the set and declared "No jury would convict me." So Albertson was released and the producers, noticing the series wasn't performing well in the ratings anyway, scrapped the entire "city doctor goes country" concept, decided they wanted something "edgier" and more "relevant," and joined the cop series bandwagon. The series was renamed Police Surgeon, Locke was transformed into a crime-fighting...well, you get the idea...and bizarrely Chief Dan Palmer was also transferred, now becoming Locke's boss, Lieutenant Dan Palmer. (Len Birman later left the series and was replaced by Larry D. Mann as Lieutentant Jack Gordon.)

Soon after, Jack Albertson had a guest starring role in the McMillan and Wife pilot, which his Locke producers worked on. I often wonder if he said anything to them.

For my own part, as cheap as the production was (to further hold down production costs, the series was filmed on videotape like a soap opera, a practice that only acerbated bad scenes and indifferent performers), I liked the "country doctor" theme the best and quit watching Police Surgeon sometime in its first year (after Len Birman left the cast). A cop show was a cop show was a cop show, just more dull stories about fighting drug pushers, addicts, muggers, con men, grifters, and various other low-lifes. Ho-hum. Besides that, I was a Jack Albertson fan, and Albertson in a mediocre show was better than no Albertson in a somewhat better one. Even today, upon second viewing in which creaky dialog and stilted characters stand out, the series has a uniqueness all its own. Medical shows, cop shows, and lawyer shows dominated the 1970s, and all the previous medical television dramas—Medical Center, Ben Casey, Dr. Kildare, Medic, the doctors segment of The Bold Ones—had big-city settings; even Marcus Welby was stuck in the suburbs close to big city help. Locke was the first show to tackle a country practice, and in hindsight it resembles a James Herriot saga with people instead of animals: a country practice with far outlying patients, house calls, inclement weather, traditional beliefs clashing with new ideas, lack of modern equipment, a hospital miles away. The pilot episode reflects this in the scene where Simon drives to the Morgan farm, over 30 miles from town, gets his car stuck in a snowdrift, and must walk over snow the rest of the way—there is a sequence in the book All Creatures Great and Small where James finds himself in the same predicament, and earlier in the episode Sellers tells Locke that the patients don't pay him per service, they give him a dollar a month, which is the type of payment system Seigfried Farnon persuaded the Yorkshire farmers to give up. I almost wouldn't be surprised to see earnest Locke shaking his head over a local version of Tristan Farnon knocking off a pint at one of the Dixon Mills watering holes.

In addition, the location work made Dixon Mills seem more authentic. Small-town America in this series doesn't have "the Little House effect," in which you can tell everything was filmed in southern California, or the later nondescript city landscapes that all looked alike because it was all filmed in Vancouver (i.e. The X-Files).

Jack Albertson's role as Manny Rosen in the box-office smash disaster flick The Poseidon Adventure in 1972 was much kinder to him, and he was then to achieve television immortality as Ed Brown, "the Man," in Freddie Prinze's star vehicle, Chico and the Man. Sam Groom soldiered on as Locke in Police Surgeon for a couple of more years, then went on to do an interesting science fiction pilot called The Time Travellers and a short-lived SF series called Otherworld, TV guest appearances, and another stint on TV soaps. He now teachs acting. Len Birman continued in character roles and Nuala Fitzgerald had some small success in horror film appearances.

 

Episode Guide

I have included original airdates as I have found them. Since the series was syndicated and the stories stand-alone, episodes were often swapped around and many early episodes aired later in the series depending on the city. This was originally cobbled up from the Canadian TV Archive, TV Guide and IMDb episode guides, and my own diaries. I was able to update all entries via the RetroTV reruns except for three episodes which apparently are missing from the run. (I was happy to watch them all over because I missed several due to Boston Celtics basketball games.)

"The Day Simon Locke Came to Dixon Mills" (09/13/1971)
Written by Chester Krumholz and Wilton Schiller
Directed by John Meredyth Lucas
Simon Locke starts off his first day in Dixon Mills on a bad note when he's stranded out in the cold and the sheriff must come looking for him via helicopter. He's picked up and taken to meet his new boss, who's examining a woman complaining of a lump in her neck. Dr. Andrew Sellers sends him immediately off to his own first case, Jake Morgan, a man who has collapsed, which turns out to be ill from lead poisoning from homemade moonshine, some of which Locke himself drank when offered by Sellers. Locke must improvise a defibrillator from parts of a television and a car battery to revive him when he goes into cardiac arrest. He also befriends the man's daughter Carrie, who's about to leave home for the first time to teach in Detroit, something her father wants, but at the same time finds hard to accept. Carrie Morgan: Linda Gorenson. Jake Morgan: Alan Mills. Sam Johnson: Frank Aldous. Molly Johnson: Kay Hawtrey. Graves: Don Burton.
 » Notes: Filmed at the Massey Mansion for the pilot episode only. In this pilot episode Dan's helicopter is a Hughes; in the series it's a Bell. Sellers' car is an battered old Jeep with a snowplow on the front, and no heater (shades of James Herriot again). • The opening scene, with Dan picking up Simon in the helicopter, a porton of which is used for at least a half-dozen of what were intended as introductory episodes, has been re-recorded for those episodes' opening titles, since Dan calls out simply "Simon Locke?" in the pilot, but shouts "Dr. Simon Locke?" in the extended title sequence. • The scenes at the Morgan farm appear to be filmed at a real farm. • The Dan/Simon feud, incidentally, takes off here: Dan hands Simon a bill for $14.40 when he drives him home; $9.40 for the things he bought to make the home-made defibrillator, and $5 for double-parking outside the general store.
 » Canadian Actor Watch: Kay Hawtrey played "Aunt Nora" in the Addie Mills story The Thanksgiving Treasure.

"Gun Point" (09/20/1971)
Drs. Locke and Sellers become involved with two desperate men, Marty and Al Downer, who are fleeing arrest after robbing a bank. Marty demands not only treatment for his injured brother, but also a blood transfusion, which, if administered, could endanger the life of a patient on which the two doctors were just beginning emergency surgery. Marty Downer: Frank Moore. Al Downer: Harvey Fisher.
 » Notes: This episode has a mysterious history. Every other single episode guide I have found to the series say that this episode was aired directly after the pilot episode. However, the syndicated order on WTEV, Channel 6 in New Bedford, Massachusetts, went directly from the pilot episode to "Max." For my part, I can't even recall seeing it and the title doesn't turn up in my journal. If anyone remembers "Gun Point," please let me know. The description above comes from a British program guide.

"Max" (09/27/1971)
Story by Jeff Kantor. Teleplay by Barry Oringer.
Directed by George Gorman.
Dr. Sellers' mechanic notices that the older man is having trouble remembering recent events and has problems with coordination. Dr. Locke also notices that his gait has become stilted. He immediately calls an old medical school friend who is a neurosurgeon, since he suspects Andrew has an aneurysm. He doesn't know that Max has lost his nerve after losing one too many patients and is now traveling aimlessly around the country via motorcycle between neurosurgery lectures, hasn't operated in three years, and is drinking heavily. He arrives at the clinic only to have Andrew tell him he won't be examined; later the doctor capitulates, but refuses further treatment. When Andrew collapses and becomes comatose, Simon insists his friend operate—but instead Max flees, only to have Chief Palmer bring him back to perform the surgery. Max Rabin: Bob Howay. Pete Denham: Eric Clavering. Mr. Johnson: Frank Aldous. Cafe Owner: Albert Bernardo.
 » Notes: The clinic phone number is 555-5740. Sellers is now driving a newer Chevy Blazer rather than the old rattletrap Jeep he had in the pilot episode. Simon has a smaller yellow Opel Kadett station wagon. The medical helicopter is a Bell 206 "Jet Ranger," which I'm told was cutting-edge helicopter technology at the time. Dan's copter is a Bell 47. • This is an early episode which is shown at the beginning of the series, identified by the extended opening, but many of the earlier episodes were shown out of order and later in the series. This one appears to come after the stories "Perfect Specimen," "Death Holds the Scales," and "Royal Treatment," since Simon appears to be accepted by the patients and has been there long enough to be familiar with Mr. Middleton's dog, Seymour.
 » Canadian Actor Watch: Eric Clavering turns up again in "The Healer" as Jim Manyhorses.

NOTE: Most of the RetroTV broadcasts cut about one minute from each episode.
Here's the audio for the missing piece from "Max," which fits between Nurse Wynn telling Dr. Locke that Max is gone and Max zooming down the road guzzling booze.
There is a short shot of Dan patrolling the road to Briarton and then a short sequence with Max begging some liquor off a cafe owner (not a bartender).
♫ ♫ (not good quality) ♫ ♫

Locke and Sellers at the stable

"Walden Lost" (10/04/1971)
Written by Harry Kronman.
Directed by Richard Gilbert.
Wally and Carol Arden, a young couple looking for a Waldenesque new life in a "garden of Eden," have been living hand-to-mouth in an old shed they've rented for the last year. When Dr. Locke goes to check on pregnant Carol and sees blood on Wally's shirt, he wonders what is going on. When Simon returns to the shed with Dan Palmer, the couple has fled into the surrounding countryside; Locke is positive she's going into premature labor. Simon must find them and convince them to accept his help. However, once the baby is born, it needs an incubator and Locke must jerry-rig one in a stable. Wally: Ralph Endersby. Carol: Barbara Key. Art Asbury: Jim Barron. Mr. Marco: Edward McNamara.
 » Notes: Wally's real name is Wallace Armstrong and Carol's maiden name was Barber. They ran away from Detroit to get married because Carol was underage. • You'll notice Simon telling Wally why he moved to Dixon Mills, and, despite his strident reasons in the pilot, it seems he's not quite sure why he was doing it himself. • The broodmare farm appears to be a real, working farm.

Dr. Sellers: "See, I told you Dan Palmer had a heart."
Dr. Locke: "How come it didn't show up on the EKG?"

"Death Is a Wanderer" (10/11/1971)
Written by Chester Krumholz and Wilton Schiller.
Directed by Richard Gilbert.
Bill Masters, Nurse Wynn's old flame, returns to Dixon Mills after years of adventures in foreign climes saying he is "home for good," but is stopped by Chief Palmer for driving under the influence. His erratic driving was actually due to morphine for pain for terminal Hodgekins Disease, and he demands that the doctors not let anyone know. He rekindles his romance with Wynn, but she guesses immediately that he is ill and confronts Locke and Sellers about it. In the meantime, Josh, an elderly man Bill defended at the local gas station, has thwacked his abusive, belittling business partner over the head and then fled, thinking he's killed him. Dan goes in pursuit and is accidentally shot for his pains; it's Bill who must fly the helicoper to rescue Dan and talk Josh out of running away. Bill Masters: Ken James. Josh Michaelson: Murray Westgate. Fred: Steve Pernie. Joe Barnett: John Kerr.
 » Notes:: The place Dan is shot is called "Cranston Gully."
 » Canadian Actor Watch: Murray Westgate played Mr. Brady the druggist in the Addie Mills story The House Without a Christmas Tree. Ken James appeared in, among other series, Kevin Sullivan's Wind at My Back.

"The Cage" (11/01/1971)
Written and Directed by John Meredyth Lucas.
Dr. Sellers think his chronically ill patient, former miner Ty Watson, who has silicosis, is holding his own, but Dr. Locke arrives at the house hours later to find him dead. Guilty because he changed Ty's prescription only that morning, Andrew asks Simon to do an autopsy. His spinster sister Edie, also chronically ill with Addison's disease, initially resists but is talked into it by her fiance. Dan accuses Simon of trying to make Andrew look bad, and neighbors' remarks about her finally being free of her invalid brother make Edie upset. Then Dan discovers Ty's oxygen tank was freshly painted green. What was in the tank Ty was breathing from, and who altered it? Herbie: Frank Perry. Edie Watson: Aileen Taylor Smith. Ty Watson: Ed McNamara. Mrs. Carpenter: Ellie Fuller.
 » Notes: Ellie Fuller appears in the remainder of the series as Mrs. Rhodie, a humorous recurring character who habitually turns up at the clinic with a medical complaint but who pleads poverty when it comes time to pay, but she's credited as "Mrs. Carpenter" here. She's pretty much the Dixon Mills busybody. • The exterior of the house in this episode appears to be a real home. • Simon notes that prednisone, a standard steroid used today for everything from arthritis to allergic reactions, is a new drug.

"Bad Blood" (11/08/1971)
Grim medical staffWritten by Chester Krumholz and Wilton Schiller.
Directed by John Meredyth Lucas.
Dr. Locke is confined to bed after an explosive detonates in the clinic front yard, but he's still confronted by a frustrated Ed Leonard, who is angered because Dr. Sellers' treatment for his daughter Elaine's diabetes isn't working and wants a second opinion. In the meantime Andrew tries a new drug on her, and the young woman goes berserk, attacks him, and then escapes in her father's car. Andrew must talk her off a cliff, and her father takes her away in a rage. She later turns up at the clinic, acting oddly even after she is given something to counteract the drug, where Chief Palmer confronts Ed about his freshly-purchased dynamite causing the explosion in front of the clinic. It turns out mental illness runs in the family. Ed Leonard: Walter Massey. Elaine Leonard: Bonnie Carol Case.
 » Notes: Another early episode pushed back after others filmed later, as Locke is still considered "the new guy" and everyone in the waiting room wants to see Dr. Sellers.
 » Canadian Actor Watch: Bonnie Carol Case turns up as a different character in "Quiet Sunday." Walter Massey later played elderly Dr. Stewart in the 1997 Cinar Lassie series.

"Where are the Lucky Stars?" (11/15/1971)
Written by Fred Freiberger.
Directed by Gerald Mayer.
After being badly beaten in the woods, Josie Michaels, a wealthy girl known in Dixon Mills for being a habitual liar, accuses Henny Thompson, a quiet young man studying for a scholarship, of the crime. Her father Sam, who likes studious Henny, would rather her assailant be Ned Gaines, the "bad boy" Josie is dating. Ned accuses Josie's father of hitting her, but he says he has only slapped her occasionally to stop her lying. When Henny shows up at the clinic, Josie has hysterics. The doctors examine Henny and believe the blood circulation to his brain may be impaired, causing blackouts, severe headaches, and violence; when Henny realizes he actually did attack Josie, he flees to the hills. An angry Ned and Dr. Locke race each other to find him first. Ned Gaines: Art Hindle. Henny Thompson: John Kastner. Josie Michaels: Jeannie Beker. Sam Michaels: Robert Goodier. Sarah Thompson: Jan Campbell. Miss Williams: Mary Barton.

"The Hero" (11/22/1971)
Written by Jim Carlson.
Directed by Gerald Mayer.
Dixon Mills lumberyard owner Charlie Cardwell is hurt after he saves a little boy from a burning school bus. When the doctors treat him they discover he has serious heart damage and has had previous heart surgery. Charlie refuses to give the doctors information about his past and Chief Palmer can't turn up any information about him until he checks military records. Charlie tells Dr. Sellers a sob story about an ex-wife and a disabled child, but Andrew senses he's hiding something else. When a man shows up at the lumberyard looking for a Carl Winters, he demands money for keeping quiet about the fact that "Carl" never divorced his wife; his resulting fight with Charlie ends up with Charlie suffering an aneurysm and needing immediate surgery. Charlie Cardwell: Gerald Parker. Kate Cardwell: Gwen Thomas. Dr. Wendland: Mo Margolese. Stranger (Jack): Jack Van Evera.
 • Notes: I found a Cardwell Lumber still existent in the Kleinburg area, so evendently it was a real establishment.  •  The Dixon Mills newspaper that Jack shows Kate appears to be an Ontario newspaper with Charlie's photo and a headline pasted over another story.

"Two Points of a Pitchfork" Part 1 (11/29/1971)
Dan Palmer and his girlfriend Ruth WarnerWritten by Mort Forer and Marian Waldman, and Chester Krumholz and Wilton Schiller.
Directed by Gerald Mayer.
Dr. Locke and Dan Palmer are at the local carnival with their dates when a man collapses on a ride. Simon suspects typhoid fever. Dan worries about his new girlfriend Ruth, who is terrified of illness, while the doctors search for the vector. Locke's prepared to quarantine the town, but Dr. Sellers warns him that a quarantine might destroy the local economy. Soon more people are ill with typhoid, and from such disparate areas that Andrew suspects a carrier. Dan has no choice but to put roadblocks around the town, raising the ire of the farmers who are due to take their crops to market. The local health officer finally decides declare an epidemic despite Sellers' and Wynn's protests; as if in answer, a brick is thrown through the clinic window. Jake Dawes: Sean Sullivan. Ruth Warner: Diana LeBlanc. Williston: Larry Reynolds. Bryce: Franz Russell. Ernie: Doug McGrath. Kid: Dominic Hogan.
 • Notes: Again, an actual carnival is the opening setting, and the scene of Ruth's home appears to be someone's house.
 » Canadian Actor Watch: Diana LeBlanc was everywhere in the 1970s on Canadian television. One of her well-known series roles was as Elizabeth, the mother in the half-hour Swiss Family Robinson series playing against actor Chris Wiggins.

"Two Points of a Pitchfork" Part 2 (12/06/1971)
Written by Mort Forer and Marian Waldman, and Chester Krumholz and Wilton Schiller.
Directed by Gerald Mayer.
The townspeople react angrily when Dixon Mills is officially quarantined, and Chief Palmer grows more concerned when he thinks Ruth hasn't had her inoculations. Another carnival performer tips off Dan that the hot dog vendor from the fair is a fugitive due to a violent crime and is not fleeing because he's a carrier, just before Dan collapses from typhoid as well. Dr. Locke tries to persuade Ruth to visit him, but she demurs. Later the doctors find out that Ruth lied to Dan about having her inoculation. In looking for the hot dog vendor, Dan discovers Ruth is fleeing town, and she confesses she's the carrier. Ruth goes to a hospital with the health officer on the provisio that Dan thinks she just left without saying goodbye. Jake Dawes: Sean Sullivan. Ruth Warner: Diana LeBlanc. Williston: Larry Reynolds. Bryce: Franz Russell. Ernie: Doug McGrath. Kid: Dominic Hogan.
 » Notes: There's a noticable blooper in this story—at the end of part 1, Williston the health inspector, says the quarantine is "two prongs of a pitchfork," but when the recap of the scene is shown before this episode begins, he says "two points of a pitchfork," as in the title. • In the tag at the end of this episode Andrew confesses to Dan he lost his own love in his devotion to his profession; see "The Cortessa Rose.")

"The Healer" (12/13/1971)
Story by Brad Radnitz. Teleplay by Chester Krumholz and Wilton Schiller.
Directed by John Meredyth Lucas.
Tom Bluefoot wants Dr. Sellers to deliver their child using modern methods, but his wife Mary wishes to have her grandfather, Jim Manyhorses, a Native American healer, do so in a traditional manner. Some of Andrew's other patients are consulting Jim as well, including Lucy Becker, who has stopped taking her arthritis medication. Tom fetches Dr. Locke when Mary begins her labor; he doesn't believe in Jim's herbal remedies and is rude and abusive to him. Mary, however, won't go into the clinic without Jim's permission, so when he runs off to die, Simon and Tom must find him. While searching Simon is bitten by a rattlesnake; it is one of Jim's remedies that saves his life. Now Simon must do a caesarian at the Bluefoot cabin to save the baby's life. Jim Manyhorses: Eric Clavering. Tom Bluefoot: Daniel Grigg. Mary Bluefoot: Susan Friedman. Lucy Becker: Mona O'Hearn.
 » Notes: Dan does not appear in this episode. A flashback to the pilot episode is shown.

"Cuckoo in the Nest" (01/03/1972)
Story by Helen French. Teleplay by Helen French, Chester Krumholz and Wilton Schiller.
Directed by Gerald Mayer.
ResearchAnnie Kinmond is evasive when the doctors ask what happened to her unconscious brother, especially when they discover bruises all over little Ralphy's body. Dr. Sellers takes Annie home and confronts her mother Marge about the abuse; later the girl tells an astonished Andrew that her father abuses Ralphy because he's blond, unlike the other children, a "cuckoo in the nest." The source of the abuse is proven when the boy panics the moment he sees his father. Dr. Locke tries to persuade Henry Kinmond that Ralphy can be genetically his child by explaining the concept of recessive genes, but Henry tells him that Marge already told him Ralphy isn't his child; he's convinced everyone laughs at him for being cuckolded. When Ralphy disappears from the clinic, Henry and Simon go search for him—and find him at the edge of a cliff. Marge Kinmond: Dawn Greenhalgh. Henry Kinmond: Frank Perry. Ralphy Kinmond: Ken Morris. Annie Kinmond: Kirsten Campbell.
 » Notes: Dan does not appear in this episode.  •  It's very evident Dawn Greenhalgh is wearing a wig!
 » Canadian Actor Watch: Dawn Greenhalgh was a regular on the 1970s horror soap Strange Paradise and is the mother of actress Megan Follows (Anne of Green Gables).

"The Man Who Hunted Hunters" (01/10/1972)
Story by S. Rodge Olenicoff. Teleplay by Mort Forer and Marian Waldman.
Directed by George Gorman.
A man, dubbed "The Dixon Mills Dartman" by the local newspaper, is shooting hunters with tranquilizer darts and leaving them unconscious with "antlers" stuck on their heads to protest the killing of innocent wild animals. Dr. Sellers fears that a dart will kill someone because the dosage is set for animals, not humans, and tells Ryan, the newspaper editor, to stop publicizing the man. Ryan goes out into the woods only to discover "Dartman" is Ben the local druggist, and promises to help him make his statement about needless slaughter. The next hunter is brought in nearly overdosed and is barely revived in time. Chief Palmer takes some of the antidote that Dr. Locke has created and sets himself up to be shot by the Dartman; the ploy works until he is shot with a second dart. While Dr. Locke goes out to rescue him, Ben asks Ryan to help him with one last scheme to get attention: he's going walking in the forest with antlers on. Ben Parsell: Sydney Brown. Ryan: Robin Ward.
 » Notes: Ben and Andrew were old friends who as boys used to feed the deer who came to the edge of town.  •  This episode had probably the biggest "fail" in the history of humorous tags: after what happened to Ben, the joke at the end is really in bad taste.

"Too Many Candles" (01/17/1972)
Written by Chester Krumholz and Wilton Schiller.
Directed by Gerald Mayer.
Collie Warren, furious when his friends throw him a surprise party when he turns 40, punches out one of the guests and breaks his jaw. When Chief Palmer requests he pay Ed Moffat's medical bills, Collie attacks him as well. His wife Karen says he is afraid of growing old and asks Dr. Locke to speak to him. He refuses to listen to either doctor and leaves in anger; Simon then attempts to ferret out his symptoms by his actions, including questioning the woman he thinks is Collie's mistress, Mary Brown. It turns out he is paying off her mortgage, not sleeping with her. His bitter partner says Collie was becoming careless with his work and skiving off. The next thing both men know, they meet Collie giving away gifts in a horse-drawn sleigh even though it's only February 9. Everyone assumes his personality shifts are because he's turned forty, but Simon finally discovers he's been using pesticides without taking precautions—he has heavy metal poisoning. Collie: Anthony Palmer. Karen Warren: Gwen Thomas. Jake Dawes: Sean Sullivan. Mary Brown: Vivian Reiss.
 • Notes: Both Collie's and Jake's properties appear to be actual farms.  •  If you knew a friend was very reluctant to be turning a certain age, would you really throw him a surprise party and then chaff him about how old he was? Strange.

"Child of Silence" (01/24/1972)
ProblemsWritten by Oliver Crawford.
Directed by Gerald Mayer.
Bert Grant plans one last snowmobile ride with his mute son Jeff before leaving Dixon Mills for good; the boy, disappointed because his father gained custody of him that morning in divorce court, climbs a water tower and refuses to come down. Dr. Locke climbs up in hopes he can talk the child down, then, unsuccessful, accompanies Dan to fetch the child's mother, only to find she's tried to commit suicide by taking barbituates with liquor. Despite Dr. Sellers' efforts on the tower, Jeff stays put, and a strong, freezing snowstorm is due in hours. Once revived, a fearful Stella Grant allows herself to be taken to the tower, where she tensely watches Andrew and her son descend after the boy sees her arrive. She explains to Jeff that no matter where he lives, she will always love him. Jeff Grant: Christopher Pellett. Bert Grant: George Sperdakos. Stella Grant: Catherine Begin.
 » Notes: According to Wikiwand, this episode was filmed at an old water tower in Markham, Ontario.  •  Mrs. Wynn does not appear in this episode.  •  Christopher Pellett appeared in an episode of The Forest Rangers as a deaf boy. Is it possible he really was mute as well as deaf? I could not find any information about him.  •  The beginning of the poem Andrew quotes for Jeff is "Dream-Pedlary".

If there were dreams to sell,
       What would you buy?
Some cost a passing bell;
       Some a light sigh,
That shakes from Life's fresh crown
Only a rose-leaf down.
If there were dreams to sell,
Merry and sad to tell,
       And the crier rang the bell,
       What would you buy?

A cottage lone and still,
       With bowers nigh,
Shadowy, my woes to still,
       Until I die.
Such pearl from Life's fresh crown
Fain would I shake me down.
Were dreams to have at will,
This best would heal my ill,
       This would I buy.
Full poem here.

"Dark Future" (01/31/1972)
Written by Jim Carlson.
Directed by John Meredyth Lucas.
Dave McMillan has returned to Dixon Mills—and his fiancee May—after serving eighteen months in prison and is welcomed home warmly by Chief Palmer, and Drs. Locke and Sellers. Andrew is eager to set Dave back on track in his interrupted medical studies, but the young man appears angry, telling them he still feels guilty about having accidentally killed May's father while driving drunk. They don't know that Dave is having difficulty with his vision. When he does see May again, he rebuffs her advances, and also later dismisses Andrew's plans for him. But while skiing with May he runs directly into a tractor. The diagnosis: incurable degenerative retinitis. Dave tells May he doesn't want her anymore—but Andrew throws a chair in his plan (literally). Dave: Edward Resmini. May: Michéle Chicoine. Mrs. Rhodie: Emmie Fuller. Charlie Bitterman: Al Bernardo.
 » Notes: Evelyn, one of Simon's patients, is plainly flirting with him during her examination!  •  According to Wikiwand, this was filmed at "the old ski hill" on Twyn Rivers Road in Pickering, Ontario.

"The Cortessa Rose" (02/07/1972)
Andrew Sellers and Ellen HewittWritten by John Meredyth Lucas
Directed by Gerald Mayer
Dr. Sellers is following up on a patient at Harkness Hospital when he runs into his old flame Ellen Hewitt. After a disastrous marriage she became apprenticed to a fashion designer, then inherited his business and his line of clothes, shoes, and accessories, the Cortessa. He brings Ellen back to Dixon Mills, and Nurse Wynn and Dr. Locke are charmed by their sweet renewed romance. Upon coming into the house, Ellen slipped on the ice, and while checking out the x-ray of her ankle, Simon discovers she has osteosarcoma. Wynn insists he tell her immediately, but Simon doesn't think he knows her well enough to do so. During a snowy walk, Andrew expresses his regrets that they did not pursue their romance, and Ellen says she's there for good. When Simon "breaks the news" to Ellen he finds she already knows, and she doesn't want Andrew told; nor does she want to try any further treatment. While Andrew confronts Simon about meddling in his love life, Ellen has decided that Simon is right; survival is important to her and she will try treatment in Switzerland after all. She leaves, promising to return to Andrew. Ellen: Stevie Wise. Dr. Lusk: Tom Harvey. Doctor: Hugh Fenton. Mrs. Rhodie: Emmy Fuller.
 » Notes: Dan does not appear in this episode. Andrew's home actually belongs to the town of Dixon Mills. He can stay there as long as he practices medicine in the town. • This is obviously the romance Andrew mentioned to Dan in "Two Points of a Pitchfork." • The episode title comes from Andrew's roses; he is breeding a new one he intends to call "The Cortessa rose.")

"The Meddler" (02/14/1972)
Written by Chester Krumholz and Wilton Schiller
Directed by John Meredyth Lucas
Young Amy, a pre-med student, meets Paul, a ski bum traveling in a motor home with four other young people, in the Dixon Mills park. She normally has long therapy sessions each day and walks with crutches, but she overcomes her constant pain due to Paul's interst and abandons them to stroll with him. Dr. Sellers is worried when she brings Paul to the clinic, but she assures Andrew that he will be gone in a few days and during that short time she wants to feel as if she is a whole person and not handicapped. Dr. Locke is angered that Amy is throwing away years of therapy and threatens to tell Paul. Amy, chafing at her restrictions, has just agreed to go with Paul and his friends, when Paul falls and sprains his ankle. Simon tries to talk Amy out of leaving, and Paul out of taking her away, and the latter realizes he must leave Amy behind for her own good. But all ends well: surgery has finally been arranged for her! Amy: Tedde Moore. Paul: Dominique Briand. Lou: Alan Jordan. Bill: Jim Henshaw. Mrs. Rhodie: Emmy Fuller.
 » Notes: Dan does not appear in this episode.
 » Canadian Actor Watch: Tedde Moore played Ralphie's schoolteacher in the now classic film A Christmas Story.

"Marooned" (02/28/1972)
Dr. Locke and Dan Palmer search for a 19-year-old girl who has wandered off into desolate snow country in an apparent suicide attempt. They get caught in an avalanche and must struggle to survive and cooperate until help arrives. Doreen: Mary Pirie. Gail: Diana LeBlanc. First Searcher: Andrew Arnold. Pilot: Jack C. Corden.
 » Canadian Actor Watch: Jack Corden played Jean Paul Desmond's sinister cousin Lazlo in the Canadian 1970s horror-soap Strange Paradise, which featured zombies before zombies were "cool."

As Simon and Dan shiver under blankets and drink hot coffee after being rescued, Dr. Sellers keeps ragging on them:
Sellers: "My two friends!" (to Simon) "How are you, sir?"
Locke: "How's an ice cube?"
Sellers (to Dan): "And you?"
Palmer: "Ask me again when the spring thaw comes."

Sellers: "I think I'd better turn down the heat."
Locke: "Over my frozen body."

Palmer: "What are you drinking?"
Sellers (offers glass): "Iced tea. Want some?" (when met with malevolent looks) "I think I hear the doorbell ringing."

"The Wanderer" (03/05/1972)
Written by Chester Krumholz and Wilton Schiller.
Directed by John Meredyth Lucas.
Dr. Locke examines a teenage boy, Dale, brought into the clinic by a man called Scott who claims to be his father, but who tried to kill him minutes earlier. The boy tricks his pursuer, who flees in a wild goose chase in Locke's car after holding off the doctor and Dan Palmer with a gun. Following a clue from the doctors' housekeeper, Dale visits elderly, blind George Ossman who worked with Lydia Morgan, supposedly killed by Dale's now-imprisoned father. Dale knows she's still alive and is tracking her to clear his father; she has refused to make herself known because she knows members of a crime syndicate will kill her. Ossman asks Dale to fetch the notebook he is carrying, notes for an expose made by a reporter named Edward Zane of "ordinary people" who work with organized crime, but it is only to lure him to his death at Scott's hands. With Simon and Dan's help, Scott is captured; understanding he is on some type of "mission," Simon lets Dale escape. Dale Somerfield: Jim Henshaw. Scott: Arch McDonell. Arthur Somerfield: John Gardiner. George Ossman: T.G. Fenwick. Lydia Morgan: Jean Templeton.
 » Notes: Dr. Sellers and Mrs. Wynn do not appear in this episode. However, there's who-I-guess-is-Flora from "Death is a Wanderer." Flora sgain is not credited, as is the young woman who takes care of the dog (this actress is only shot from the side, so it's hard to tell, but it sounds like Michéle Chicoine, who played May in "Dar Future"). This is a odd episode that looks as if it is either a pilot for an unproduced series or a dry run for Police Surgeon. Dale is not only searching for Lydia Morgan, but he is a fugitive from justice because it is suspected that he killed Edward Zane. He is traveling with Zane's dog, a Briard, who was injured in the attack upon Zane. The reporter's notebook which he took from Zane's office is titled "Casebook of Lydia," which would have made an interesting series title. However, Simon and Dan seem tossed into the plot.

"Royal Treatment" (03/12/1972)
Decisions must be madeWritten by Chester Krumholz and Wilton Schiller.
Directed by George Gorman.
Dr. Sellers gets an urgent call from Dr. Locke's old stomping ground, Carstairs General Hospital; Joseph Carter, a former patient in serious condition, is asking for him. Chief Palmer warns Andrew and Nurse Wynn that once Simon goes back to the city he won't want to return; they both fear the same thing. The moment Simon leaves, the Hart family arrives at the clinic, the children feverish, vomiting, and hallucinating, their parents soon sicken as well. Andrew is urged to call Simon, but he stubbornly refuses to admit he can't cope. At Carstairs, surgery must be performed when they can't identify the mass near Joe Carter's pancreas, and the doctors try to persuade Simon to stay. Andrew finally realizes that the Harts have toadstool poisoning (little Della picked them in the woods and tossed them in the stew), and Simon returns to Dixon Mills after he gently breaks the news to Joe that he is dying. Dr. Fred Bonner: Tom Harvey. Joe Carter: Ed McGibbon. May Carter: Barbara Franklin. Mel Hart: Jay Reynolds. Connie Hart: Pixie Bigelow. Della Hart: Carole Woodward.
 » Notes: While this is listed as being aired later in the series; it's an early episode, with the staff still afraid Simon will not come back. Bonner even offers him Locke own wing in the hospital, with handpicked doctors to serve under him! Bonner says they expected Locke back within a month, which means he's been in Dixon Mills at least that long.

"Crash" (03/19/1972)
Written by Arthur Dales
Directed by John Meredyth Lucas
A minister not paying attention to his driving while dictating a sermon collides with Larry Frost, a worried and distracted truck driver, and his sullen daughter on a remote woodland road. The minister's back is broken and he sees the accident as a test of his faith when Chief Palmer airlifts him to Hearkness Medical Center. The truck, which holds liquid oxygen, has rolled over, trapping Frost underneath; the tank, cracked, begins to leak. Nate, who called in the accident, fears that if the truck explodes he will lose his cash crop, the surrounding trees. He flees, leaving Drs. Sellers and Locke to try get the driver from under the truck. Complication: the pressure of the truck is keeping the driver from bleeding to death. Nate returns, helping them free Larry Frost with a carefully timed operation with a bulldozer. Nate: Jon Granik. Reverend Menzies: Dan McDonald. Lucy Frost: Barbara Kyle. Larry Frost: Ron Hartman.
 » Notes: Mrs. Wynn does not appear in this episode.  •  According to John Meredyth Lucas, this was the last episode filmed. The rain apparently made the shoot a nightmare of mud.
 » Canadian Actor Watch: Jon Granik and Dan McDonald were both regulars on the 1970s horror-soap Strange Paradise.

"Death Holds the Scales" (03/26/1972)
Written by Chester Krumholz and Wilton Schiller.
Directed by Richard Gilbert.
Chief Palmer flies Dr. Locke to the remote Adams home, where David Adams is suffering chest pain. Adams passes out after ranting angrily at his wife for calling help. Simon removes fluid pressing on his heart, but soon he is on the telephone asking Dr. Sellers for more treatment ideas while they wait for Dan to return; the chief's hunting down a murderer who escaped maximum security. Simon tells the man's wife that he thinks Adams has had problems for some time, which is why he quit his job, a bone of contention between them. Dan finally returns, but he has been shot by the convict he was trailing, and must receive a transfusion from Helen Adams. Bullet removed, Dan is finally conscious enough to fly them back. But once Adams is safe, Simon must chase after Dan, who's still pursuing his quarry. Helen Adams: Terry Tweed. David Adams: Richard Alden. Killer (Peter O'Rourke): Jerry Huckstep.
 » Notes: Another early episode shown later in the series; Helen remarks that Simon doesn't have Andrew's bedside manner and Dan jibes Simon that he's just collecting another story "about the natives" for his friends back in the city. • The Kingsbridge dispatcher's call sign is 8729R and his name is Charlie Fisher. The Dixon Mills call sign is 2457B.  •  The exterior shots, at least, are of an actual home.

"The Perfect Specimen" (04/02/1972)
Andrea Howard and Simon LockeWritten by Chester Krumholz and Wilton Schiller.
Directed by Richard Gilbert.
Jean Jordan, in terrible pain, calls from far out of town just as Dr. Locke's old girlfriend Andrea arrives in the clinic; they find Jean unconscious at the side of the road. At the clinic Jean denies that the pain and fainting is anything to worry about; when Lou Jordan comes home he swears she's never been sick in her life and is furious that she was given a sedative. Simon knows that Jean's undiagnosed ulcer will kill her if not treated while Lou rants to Chief Palmer, wondering why Simon came out to "the sticks" to practice, and starts to badmouth him to others; soon patients are refusing to see Simon. Dr. Sellers says this reflects badly upon his ability to make decisions and plans to tell Lou that if something happens to Jean, it's his fault. He no sooner attempts this than Jean is brought to the clinic hemorrhaging. A rampaging Lou, fearful she will die, must be restrained while Simon, Andrew, Andrea, and Wynn do emergency surgery. Jean must be the one to tell him she really was in terrible pain; that she was afraid to tell him because she always wanted to be perfect for him, and that she knows she will need further surgery and treatment. Andrea, unsuccessful at persuading Simon to return with her, leaves. Lou Jordan: Mike Kirby. Jean Jordan: Marrie Mumford. Andrea Howard: Toby Tarnow. Sarah: Bess Amos. Joe Barnett: John Kerr.
 » Notes: Yet another early episode, with an elderly patient wary of a procedure Simon is to perform on her; it's obvious Simon's intensity has not yet endeared him to many of the patients. This may be the second or third episode of the series as intended.

"Quiet Sunday" (04/09/1972)
Written by Chester Krumholz and Wilton Schiller
Directed by Gerald Mayer
Dr. Locke is awakened early Sunday morning after being on call all night to find a waiting room so crammed with patients that Nurse Wynn's sister has been called in: the crowd include Jake Shackleton, who's feeling so bad Mrs. Wynn put him to bed; Lea, a woman Chief Palmer arrested on suspicion of murder; Mr. Lomax, a self-important man with an injured hand; a youth with a broken arm; and a bride-to-be whose father wants Simon to tell her about the facts of life. Jake's heart is giving out and nothing can be done about it. While Simon and Nurse Wynn examine the young prisoner, who apparently murdered her boyfriend, a little boy is brought in, choking on a piece of cork. Unseen during his treatment, the girl snatches a scalpel, and later holds Wynn hostage; luckily Dan shows up in time to tell her the boyfriend isn't dead. Outside in a car, the bride-to-be watches on as Simon delivers a baby; she assures him she "knows what's going on." As one life begins, Jake's is coming to an end, and he asks Simon if he can call him by his first name. He dies as Simon is telling him what a good friend he's been. Mr. Lomax, who's complained the entire afternoon, is left for last. Jake: Sean Sullivan. Carol Barber: Charlotte Blunt. Dorothy Loomis: Julie Rekai. Joe Loomis: Steve Weston. Lea: Bonnie-Carol Case. Mr. Lomax: Don McGill.
 » Credit Curiosities: For some reason Sean Sullivan, who has played this whole season as the character "Jake" (identified as "Jake Dawes" in "Too Many Candles") is called "Jake Shackleton" in this episode, and then credited as "Ben." I think the continuity editor was napping that day. I'm assuming "Joe" is Mr. Loomis, husband of Dorothy, who gives birth, and not "Jason" (the grandfather with the choking child) misidentified.
 » Notes: The actress who-I-guess-is-Flora (who's helping Mrs. Wynn and tries to feed Simon a sandwich, and who is the same actress as in "The Wanderer" talking with Dale and changing beds and in "Death is a Wanderer" helping with the coffee and referred to as "Flora") has no credit. This character is not Mrs. Wynn's sister, who we saw in "Royal Treatment" and who has red hair like her sister. Flora appears to be the housekeeper, which would figure in a house that large. • This episode has my favorite Locke tag: Simon is heading back to bed when a man rushes into the clinic. His mare is having trouble foaling and the vet is out of town. Simon wearily shrugs and says "Why not?")

 

Memorbilia

Links

The TV Guide article that started this web page madness.
(copyright 1972 TV Guide)

♫ ♫ Full Version of the Opening Theme (with helicopter) ♫ ♫

♫ ♫ Credit Sequence ♫ ♫

TV Rage Episode Guide
This shows 27 episodes, including one called "September" which is also listed as an alternate title for "Cortessa Rose,"
so there is confusion here as well.)

Original Airdates List, which, again, lists "September" as a separate episode.

CTV Episode Guide

TV Obscurities Q & A Page

Complete Directory to Prime-Time and Cable TV Shows Entry (Google Books preview)

Five out of the seven pages devoted to Doctor Simon Locke
in John Meredyth Lucas' Eighty Odd Years in Hollywood, including photo (Google Books preview)

Sam Groom's HB Studio profile

Washington Post TV magazine
(sorry about quality; scan from photocopy)

Article about Len Birman and his wife, from May 12, 1958!

 

Vintage Newspaper Ads and one magazine.

I particularly love this ad because I used to watch Locke
on WTEV (now WLNE) Channel 6 from New Bedford, MA

This is a Japanese magazine previewing 1970s American television.
Of all the series profiled in the magazine, they chose Doctor Simon Locke for the cover.
Locke on the cover of Japanese magazine

 

Star Photographs


Sam Groom (probably from Another World)


Sam Groom (publicity still)


Sam Groom (publicity still)


Jack Albertson (McMillan and Wife pilot from 1972)


Len Birman (on left; from the series Young Dan'l Boone)
The man on the right (Birman's left) is Jeremy Brett!

 

Four Lone Publicity Articles

1971 Article


1971 Article


1971 Article


Dr. Simon Locke Chicago Tribune November 26, 1971

 

Screen Captures

Dr. Andrew Sellers
Dr. Sellers concerned.

Dr. Simon Locke
Dr. Locke looking rather appealing.

Chief Dan Palmer
Chief Palmer learns some bad news.

Nurse Louise Wynn
Nurse Wynn, a good person to at your side during a crisis.

Simon and Andrew
Simon and Andrew see a patient off.

Finally one came out right
Thanksfully, some cases end well.

Dr. Sellers tells a whopper
Wynn reacts to the whopping fib just told by Andrew.

The Dan Scowl
Ah, yes, the Dan Scowl. How could we forget?

Dan at the stick
Dan flying his trusty "steed."

Dixon Mills chopper
The Dixon Mills chopper has saved many a life.

 

The Location Today
I found these images on Flickr.

Valley Halla house today. The front has changed since the filming.
The home was built by the man who founded the Roman Meal bread company.
Valley Halla home

This stairway should look familiar.
Not sure what happened to the double doors on the right side of the hall.
Valley Halla hallway

I'm sure this was one of the rooms shown on the series.
Those glass doors (kept curtained) are very familiar.
Valley Halla room

This is where we saw Andrew's roses in "Cortessa Rose."
This was attached to the house as shown in the episode.
We saw very little of the estate grounds; much larger than what was shown.
Valley Halla greenhouse

 

Video Lagniappe

Jack Albertson guests on Donny and Marie, 1976:


Len Birman guest stars on the classic Canadian children's adventure The Forest Rangers episode "A Christmas Story":


Len Birman guest stars on the classic Canadian children's adventure The Forest Rangers episode "Death Dance":


Part 1 of Lies My Father Told Me with Len Birman as the father (rest of parts are linked here):


Nuala Fitzgerald reads Chief Seattle's speech about living in harmony with nature:


 

Sources

 

Locke credits final screen

Four Star logo

 

Doctor Simon Locke is now the property of SFM Entertainment. It was formerly owned by Colgate-Palmolive. This is a fan page. No copyright infringment is intended. Any opinions stated are my own and do not reflect the thoughts of the actors, creators or producers.

 

What the Heck Was [Is?] the Prime Time Access Rule and
What Did It Have to Do with Dr. Simon Locke?

Back in the heyday of the "big three" American networks (NBC, CBS, ABC), "prime-time" network programming ran from 7:30 to 11:00 p.m. (with a 7 p.m. start on Sundays) Eastern time (earlier in the Central and Mountain states; delayed in the Pacific). The Federal Communications Commission then decided networks had too much of a hold on the local stations that carried them (and on the advertising revenue) and declared the networks could only broadcast three hours of network programming per night with Sunday as an exception. Before the local stations could shove in yet another rebroadcast of I Love Lucy, the FCC dropped the real bomb: what replaced the network programming must be original, not a syndicated rerun.

Ideally, the FCC hoped to re-establish those bastions of early television, the locally-produced shows, especially programs focussing on local problems in those Socially-conscious Vietnam-era days. The local stations, of course, still did them: news and weather in the evening, morning and noon newscasts, the odd breakfast show and occasional public service broadcast—and knew the latter were usually the Kiss of Death in ratings. Their way out?—the FCC didn't require locally-produced shows in the slots, just new ones.

Granted, some of the local stations in larger markets did adopt some original local programming, but for most of them the closest they got was in purchasing group W Broadcasting's Evening Magazine (on a non-Group W owned station, the show was PM Magazine). Half the short, friendly little news items about people, places and things were produced by Group W and the local station added their own blurbs about area business, celebrities, restaurants, travel, etc. NBC's Today regulars Matt Lauer and Meredith Vieria both began as PM Magazine hosts in Providence, RI.

Most of the other programming was purchased from independent producers and were of these categories: game shows (Match Game PM, the evening version of daytime's 10,000 Pyramid, etc.); Hollywood-gossip/interview type shows (Rona Barrett, Army Archerd, etc.); British imports (Doctor in the House, The Adventures of Black Beauty, The Persuaders, and Family Classics, etc.); some musical/variety shows (Hee-Haw and The Lawrence Welk Show primarily); and an entire slew of cheaply produced (chiefly in Canada, where labor was less expensive) half-hour series like Young Doctor Kildare, Dusty's Trail, The Adventurer, Primus, and a nifty supernatural-and-horror-themed serial called Strange Paradise, which featured zombies way before zombies were "cool." It was this latter group of which Locke was a part.

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