Tuesday, June 16, 2020

New Personal Website: DanielButterf.com

This site is on hiatus. Check out my personal website to stay updated.

Mrs. Hufnagel may have left us, but her spirit lives on.
Remember the Gluck family motto:
"It is better to be despised than forgotten."
There will be more St. Elsewhere Experience content in the future, but the site is on hiatus for now, while I work on launching myself as a writer and a musician. (One thing I might do is re-make the Mrs. Hufnagel video series. I also like to do updates if I hear anything about the show in the news.)

So in the meantime, check out my writing and music at https://danielbutterf.com. The sooner I can make a living full-time as a writer and a musician, the sooner I'll have spare time to work on this site again. (So there's some motivation to subscribe to me on Patreon and/or SubscribeStar; see links below.) I may write the occasional essay about St. Elsewhere and classic television, especially the MTM shows.

If you like the music from the St. Elsewhere era--well, so do I, and that's what my music sounds like. So if you're looking for new pop music that's good like the music from back in the 60s, 70s, and 80s, check me out at my HearNow page.

It's a great treat to spot all the musical references in St. Elsewhere, and I even enjoy the old practice of using sound-alikes of popular songs. Whoever did that guitar solo in the original version of "Sweet Dreams" did a great job doing Jimmy Page's guitar solo from "Heartbreaker".

Keep coming back to the site and check out--and comment on--the episode pages. I've been in touch with a few fans who are re-watching the entire series, and making comments on episodes. Your contributions through comments are highly encouraged. Also, if there are any people out there who could write material that would be a valuable addition to the site (and fit in well with the rest of the content), I am happy to accept submissions from guest authors.

Here's where you can find my work around the web:
Website - HearNowFacebook - YouTube - Instagram - Twitter - SoundCloud - Patreon - SubscribeStar

Friday, November 8, 2019

Happy 105th birthday, Norman Lloyd!

Norman Lloyd in 2007.
The St. Elsewhere Experience extends birthday greetings to legendary actor, producer, and director Norman Lloyd, who turns 105 on November 8, 2019. Lloyd played Dr. Daniel Auschlander on St. Elsewhere for six seasons.

Here are some fun Norman Lloyd-related links to enjoy:

Here's a 2016 article from Vanity Fair written by Trainwreck director, Judd Apatow. Trainwreck featured Lloyd's last film appearance, at age 101.

Here's Norman Lloyd's appearance on Maltin on Movies, with film critic Leonard Maltin and his daughter Jessie. This was recorded in September of 2018, when he was "only" 103.

Here's a profile from March 2019, on the Vintage News website.

Here's Norman's full three-hour interview with the Television Academy Foundation, from September 2000.

Here's a Forbes.com article, published this morning, celebrating Norman Lloyd's 105th birthday.

Norman Lloyd in 1937.

Update, November 30:
Here are two videos from KTLA 5 News, commemorating the event, from November 11 and 12.



Thursday, November 7, 2019

Cast Page: New Images

Just a quick site update, in case anyone is paying attention... The Cast page, linked from the main menu, has finally been completed. Added images for all the supporting characters, and updated the main cast photos with original publicity stills from Getty Images.

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

"Family History"

Description: Armstrong investigates a man's medical and family history to diagnose his chronic nosebleeds. Chandler's amnesiac patient doesn't recognize his visiting parents. Craig struggles to accept his old roommate's impending sex change. White tries to reconcile with his wife.

"Family History" is the 13th episode of season 1 of St. Elsewhere.
Originally aired February 8, 1983.
Teleplay by Andrew Laskos
Story by Joshua Brand, John Falsey
Directed by Kevin Hooks

Saturday, November 2, 2019

"Release"

Description: Craig is shocked to learn that his college roommate has checked in for a sex-change opearation. White takes an emotional beating when he must convince a grieving family to sign an autopsy consent form. Samuels and Paxton, having renewed their romantic relationship, clash over how to treat an alcoholic patient. Chandler treats a gunshot victim with amnesia.

"Release" is the 12th episode of season 1 of St. Elsewhere.
Originally aired February 1, 1983.
Teleplay by Tom Fontana, David Assael
Story by Joshua Brand, John Falsey
Directed by Victor Lobl

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

"Graveyard"

Description: Unable to save a dying boy, a frustrated Morrison lets the boy's parents perform a Chinese folk ritual. Samuels leaves a late-night poker game to perform emergency surgery on a gunshot victim. Paxton rejects Samuels's advances. Ralph's manic stage reaches a crescendo.

"Graveyard" is the 11th episode of season 1 of St. Elsewhere.
Originally aired January 18, 1983.
Teleplay by Joshua Brand, John Falsey, John Masius, Tom Fontana
Story by Joshua Brand, John Falsey
Directed by Victor Lobl

Monday, October 28, 2019

"Hearts"

Description: A 'Dr. Bullfinch' impersonates a doctor and makes the rounds. A woman who didn't know she was pregnant finds herself in surprise labor, and is ambivalent about the prospect of motherhood. Ehrlich passes out during surgery. White moves in with the Morrisons when he and his wife separate. Dr. Paxton, Samuels' ex, begins work at St. Eligius.

"Hearts" is the 10th episode of season 1 of St. Elsewhere.
Originally aired January 11, 1983.
Teleplay by John Masius
Story by Joshua Brand & John Falsey and John Masius
Directed by Mark Tinker

Saturday, October 26, 2019

Website update, October 26, 2019

I don't know if there are any people left who check back in on this website who aren't just here to leave fake SEO blog comments (or robots, as the analytics indicates), but if anyone is wondering...

I've re-started doing episode recaps. I did the first two episode recaps back in 2012, the year I created this website. Now, I'm giving the series a good, thorough re-watch, and my intention is to finally document all the good stuff that St. Elsewhere's writers/producers did to make this series something special in the first place. You should be able to access these posts from the links in the Episode Guide page.

It's going to take a while. If I'm on my game, I can do one recap per day. There are 137 episodes. This should keep me busy for a while, but I'd like to get all of this down as a matter of personal aspiration. This is what I intended, back in 2012, and I'd like to finish what I started. I'll also be looking to complete capturing photos for the cast page.

In addition to recounting what happens in each episode, I'll be including screen shots, trivia and commentary, cast lists, and video clips. In particular, I'd like to tease out the inside jokes, cultural references (particularly the references to other TV shows), character development, and the recurring elements that rewarded sharp-eyed viewers.

As far as recurring elements go, I'm looking at (so far):
  • "You're a pig, Ehrlich" -- Someone out there did a YouTube video of this, but they just included the punchlines. I want to do clips of the full scenes, so you can appreciate this side of Victor Ehrlich's personality.
  • Ehrlich & Caldwell -- There was a running gag of Victor saying insensitive things that offended Bobby Caldwell in particular.
  • B.J. Hunnicutt -- Several times, Mark Craig makes comments about his Korean War buddy, B.J. Hunnicutt, presumably the same character from M*A*S*H.
  • The Gerbode Mitral Valvulatone -- Craig's first surgical instrument, which he claims was a gift from his mentor, Dr. David Domedion.
  • Dr. David Domedion -- I'll be compiling all the mentions of Craig's mentor, including the episodes where we actually see him. They did a bit of retconning with the character, and then they referenced the retconning.
  • The Cushing Left Anterior Descending Artery Award -- There's a running joke where this award statue is mentioned and also multiple instances where it is broken and replaced.
  • "I have the valve. You got the murmur?" Jack tells this story in "Legionnaires (Part 1)", and it gets repeated at least three more times during the series.
  • Dr. Oliver Lunden -- This character, a surgeon at the hospital, is mostly unseen, but frequently referenced.
If anything else comes up, I'll be sure to mention it.

Thursday, October 24, 2019

"Rain"

Description: Morrison regrets making an unheard-of house call when the caller guilts him into repeat visits. White's relationship with his wife is strained when their daughter is admitted to ER after swallowing mothballs. Fiscus has an encounter with another gang member in the ER. Ralph starts eating garbage. Aspiring surgeon Ehrlich lands in trouble with Craig after injuring a finger playing handball.

"Rain" is the 9th episode of season 1 of St. Elsewhere.
Originally aired January 4, 1983.
Teleplay by Tom Fontana
Story by Joshua Brand & John Falsey and Tom Fontana
Directed by Victor Hsu

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

"Tweety and Ralph"

Description: Beale must decide if Ralph, the "Birdman of St. Eligius", is fit to be released along with his mate Tweety. The search for the source of Legionnaires' continues. Fiscus, traumatized by his recent assault, starts carrying a handgun in the ER. Cavanero befriends a young woman facing a hysterectomy. Ellen Craig deals with the elusive Dr. Barnum.

"Tweety and Ralph" is the 8th episode of season 1 of St. Elsewhere.
Originally aired December 21, 1982.
Teleplay by Elizabeth Diggs
Story by Joshua Brand & John Falsey and Elizabeth Diggs
Directed by Mark Tinker

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

"Legionnaires (Part 2)"

Description: Westphall orders the closure of a ward due to a Legionnaires outbreak, leaving the hospital vulnerable to a loss of funding. Beale discovers that a psychiatric patient was impregnated during her hospital stay. Fiscus gets mugged in the ER. Cavanero dates the fisherman who helped her deliver the baby by phone. Samuels pretends to be a buyer interested in Mark's classic car.

"Legionnaires (Part 2)" is the 7th episode of season 1 of St. Elsewhere.
Originally aired December 14, 1982.
Teleplay by Charles Rosin
Story by Joshua Brand & John Falsey and Charles Rosin
Directed by Mark Tinker

Monday, October 21, 2019

"Legionnaires (Part 1)"

Description: After a series of deaths, Westphall and administrator Cummings clash over the decision to close a ward that could be home to an outbreak of Legionnaires' Disease. White finds himself in dire financial straits when he loses his beeper. Martin breaks up with Fiscus when he starts to get too serious. Cavanero clashes with a hostile nurse.

"Legionnaires (Part 1)" is the 6th episode of season 1 of St. Elsewhere.
Originally aired December 7, 1982.
Teleplay by Joel Surnow
Story by Joshua Brand & John Falsey and Joel Surnow
Directed by Thomas Carter