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Brian O'Neill
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Joined: 13 November 2013
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Posted: 19 January 2018 at 6:30pm | IP Logged | 1 post reply

Bill Collins:
Robbie,regarding T.J. Hooker,i have vague memories of 
Adrian Zmed leaving to start a (failed)career as a rock 
star,maybe his leaving was a sore point and they acted 
as if he`d never been there?

That may have been intentional; TJ HOOKER switched networks for its final season(it aired on CBS, with a lower budget, and in a late-night time slot formerly used for repeats of various dramas, and made-for-TV movies). 
Perhaps CBS wanted to act as if its 'first season' was the program's first(and, potentially not confuse viewers who might not have seen the older episodes-'loyalty to one channel' was actually somewhat common in those days). Ultimately, it really didn't matter.
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Robert Bradley
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Posted: 19 January 2018 at 6:37pm | IP Logged | 2 post reply

Brian - I've heard that story too, and their giving Griffith a truckload of money probably didn't hurt either.

Jim Nabors leaving for his own show and Howard McNear's health issues were probably just as big a sign of the show's decline in quality.  All three proved to be irreplaceable.

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Brian O'Neill
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Posted: 20 January 2018 at 12:55am | IP Logged | 3 post reply

Interestingly, there were some GOMER PYLE episodes on Youtube a little while back, and I caught a couple that tied in to TAGS. One (aired in 1966, I believe) was the episode where Opie runs away from home(well, I think he took a bus) to be a Marine, 'like Gomer'. Eventually, Andy comes to take him home...and he's acting exactly the crabby SOB he was in his own series. Gomer and Sergeant Carter(!) show more genuine concern for the kid than his father did...until they manage to convince Andy to dial back the attitude a bit. It's almost astounding Griffith agreed to do such an episode that makes his character look that bad.

Another one, about a year later, has Gomer visiting Mayberry, but just missing the Taylors on both his arrival and departure(they're off camping or something...whatever it was, even Goober went with them, so Gomer just helps out at the gas station). Meanwhile, Gomer notices Mayberry's changed, Floyd 'retired' and moved away(acknowledging something that TAGS never addressed), and that the few people he knew didn't miss him as much as he missed them. He ends up helping the state police on a case in town, and realizes as his bus leaves that Andy's just getting home. Gawl-lee...


Edited by Brian O'Neill on 20 January 2018 at 12:56am
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Matthew Wilkie
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Posted: 20 January 2018 at 5:34am | IP Logged | 4 post reply

Grange Hill used to have pupils that would feature heavily in one series and simply disappear without trace the next - some would get a passing mention that had gone to a new school others had simply gone.
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Brian O'Neill
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Posted: 20 January 2018 at 12:24pm | IP Logged | 5 post reply

FAMILY MATTERS: Youngest daugher Judy Winslow(Jaimee Foxworth) vanished from the show, supposedly because her mother was very demanding, and producers had had enough. Judy was referred to a few times, as an 'offstage' character, until even that was dropped.

ALL IN THE FAMILY: The Bunkers' neighbors, the Lorenzos (Vincent Gardenia and Betty Garrett), introduced in season 4 (1973-74) drove Archie nuts just by being so nice...although they could give as good as they got in an argument with Arch.  Gardenia felt he wanted to move on from the show after one season, so he was given the 'offstage' treatment while Garrett got a bit more to do. However, after a final appearance in the fall of 1975, Garrett moved on to LAVERNE AND SHIRLEY, as Irene vanished into 'unseen neighbor' status before they stopped talking about her, as well.(Garrett was on 'L & S' for six years, as Edna Babish, until a stage commitment forced her to bow out of the sitcom. In that instance, her character was written out with an explanation, albeit a stupid one).

ARE YOU BEING SERVED? The legendary BBC sitcom either didn't explain writing out characters, or did so as expeditiously as possible.
Arthur Brough, who played Mr. Granger, died in the break between series in 1977. The first episode without him acknowledged only that a new employee was arriving to fill 'the vacancy in the department'. That new actor, James Hayter, stayed for one year, and was likewise replaced(the first episode without him showed the cast waving to him (unseen) down the hallway, as his 'going away party' had concluded.
Subsequent additions in that 'senior salesman' position were ignored after leaving, until the writers finally just promoted Mr. Humphries, and made do with one 'senior' and one 'junior'.  
There as no official explanation for the departure of Trevor Bannister as Mr. Lucas, as he was replaced by Mike Berry as Mr. Spooner.
In one episode, as Captain Peacock admonishes Spooner for having 'the second worst day's sales' in store history, Spooner asks, 'What was the worst?' and Peacock quips, 'When we didn't sell anuthing all day, and FIRED the JUNIOR!'...but we have no way of knowing if it was Lucas, or some 'unrevealed' character.

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Brian Floyd
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Posted: 20 January 2018 at 10:29pm | IP Logged | 6 post reply

Regarding TAGS, did they ever explain what happened to Warren? I'm pretty sure that him being Floyd's nephew was forgotten, just like Andy and Barney being cousins in the first episode was.

(Warren is easily my least favorite recurring character from the show.)





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Brian O'Neill
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Posted: 20 January 2018 at 11:15pm | IP Logged | 7 post reply

I don't believe they did; Griffith didn't care for Jack Burns, either. 
Huh? Yeah. Huh? Yeah. Huh?...
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Bill Mimbu
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Posted: 21 January 2018 at 12:50am | IP Logged | 8 post reply

The only one that comes to mind is Boxey from the reimagined BATTLESTAR GALACTICA.

Appeared in the miniseries, but disappeared during Season 1.
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Glenn Brenner
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Posted: 21 January 2018 at 7:39am | IP Logged | 9 post reply

"The little boy "7" in MARRIED WITH CHILDREN seemed to have vanished as well. "

---

He pretty much literally did...to the point that he was shown on a milk carton on a later episode.

*********************************

If this is accurate, 7 was only around for 5 episodes before getting dropped.

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Brian O'Neill
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Posted: 21 January 2018 at 11:03am | IP Logged | 10 post reply

They could have called him 'Five'...if not for that Peanuts character, who probably appeared in as many of those strips as 'Seven' did episodes if the sitcom.
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Eric Sofer
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Posted: 21 January 2018 at 1:46pm | IP Logged | 11 post reply

So instead of Seven, he was more like 1.4? :)
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Brian O'Neill
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Posted: 21 January 2018 at 1:54pm | IP Logged | 12 post reply

I hear Blossom's best friend Six was afraid of him...especially after he was assimilated by the Borg...
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Brian Floyd
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Posted: 21 January 2018 at 2:08pm | IP Logged | 13 post reply

I'd be surprised if anyone actually cared what happened to Seven on Married With Children back then. The kid was a bad idea to begin with, and was downright annoying. 

Sometimes a character is written out with no explanation either because the writers are lazy or don't care....and sometimes because they know the viewers won't care if the character is bad or brings nothing to the show.


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Matthew Wilkie
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Posted: 21 January 2018 at 3:34pm | IP Logged | 14 post reply

His disappearance was briefly mentioned via a postcard saying he's moved abroad, but Harry Enfield's Dermot, on the main characters, saw a swift departure from Men Behaving Badly that I think we never mentioned again and led to the show's huge success that followed with Neil Morrissey's Gary filling the void.  
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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 21 January 2018 at 4:20pm | IP Logged | 15 post reply

 Brian Floyd wrote:
Sometimes a character is written out with no explanation either because the writers are lazy or don't care....and sometimes because they know the viewers won't care if the character is bad or brings nothing to the show.

I suppose that does match how real life is.

I asked where a colleague had gone once. We know he'd left, and was remaining within the same organisation, but we didn't know where or why.
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Steven Myers
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Posted: 21 January 2018 at 7:19pm | IP Logged | 16 post reply

Here's one only I may remember: I loved Cynthia on Malcolm in the Middle. She was a great love interest for Malcolm who was interesting and was as smart as him also.  
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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 21 January 2018 at 7:24pm | IP Logged | 17 post reply

Quite a few soap characters have disappeared over time without explanation.

I am not referring to heavy hitters like J.R. Ewing, but very minor characters, so minor in fact that they were more "background noise" than anything.

Quite a few EASTENDERS characters simply vanished, especially some working in the market.
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Brian O'Neill
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Posted: 21 January 2018 at 8:28pm | IP Logged | 18 post reply

Brian Floyd:
I'd be surprised if anyone actually cared what happened to Seven on Married With Children back then. The kid was a bad idea to begin with, and was downright annoying. 

Sometimes a character is written out with no explanation either because the writers are lazy or don't care....and sometimes because they know the viewers won't care if the character is bad or brings nothing to the show.

******
That reminds me a 'non-Chuck' example from HAPPY DAYS: Fonzie's cousin, Spike, who showed up 3 or 4 times before Chachi came along.
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Ray Brady
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Posted: 21 January 2018 at 8:47pm | IP Logged | 19 post reply

In the first season of Mad About You, Paul Reiser's character had a best friend named Selby. In the second season, his character was replaced by a new best friend named Ira, placed by John Pankow.

The only reason I remember this is because, late in the series, there was a scene where Paul Reiser and Helen Hunt are sitting in silence together. After a while, Paul turns to Helen and, out of nowhere, asks, "Whatever happened to Selby?" I believe they cut to commercial at that point.
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Brian Miller
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Posted: 21 January 2018 at 9:06pm | IP Logged | 20 post reply

Ira was Paulís cousin too, IIRC. 
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Brian Floyd
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Posted: 22 January 2018 at 12:06am | IP Logged | 21 post reply

Robbie, soap operas are an entirely different animal. They'll not only have characters disappear with no explanation, but they'll change actors playing the same character with either a voice over or a crawl at the bottom of the screen announcing it. I believe they even switched actors playing a character during an episode once. (And without it being a disguise, instant plastic surgery or an imposter scenario)

I used to watch DAYS OF OUR LIVES when I younger (the ONLY soap I ever watched as an adult; stuff I was `forced' to watch as a kid doesn't count), and they actually aged characters with no explanation once. Jensen Ackles and Allison Sweeney popped up on the show when they were either in their late teens or early 20s playing teens....and their characters had been eight year olds (they were supposed to be twins) a few episodes before! And it was all played as a retcon, not them suddenly being older from out of nowhere or time passing. 






Edited by Brian Floyd on 22 January 2018 at 12:06am
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Eric Sofer
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Posted: 22 January 2018 at 9:00am | IP Logged | 22 post reply

Brian O'Neill: "I hear Blossom's best friend Six was afraid of him...especially after he was assimilated by the Borg..."

I GOT THAT! I got that reference. You are a very bad boy, Mr. O. :) :) :)
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Jason Czeskleba
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Joined: 30 April 2004
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Posted: 22 January 2018 at 1:05pm | IP Logged | 23 post reply

Regarding the Spearchucker Jones character on M*A*S*H:  It is true that in later years, Larry Gelbart claimed that the character was eliminated because they had discovered there were no black doctors serving in the army during the Korean War.  However, if that really was the reason for the change, it was based on misinformation.  There actually were a handful of black doctors serving at M*A*S*H units in Korea, including one named Dr. Miles who served at the 8056th, the very unit at which Richard "Hooker" Hornberger was stationed.  I suspect the elimination of the character had more to do with a desire to pare down the cast for creative and financial reasons, since as Brian noted several other cast members were eliminated around the same time.
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Brian O'Neill
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Posted: 22 January 2018 at 2:41pm | IP Logged | 24 post reply

Brian Floyd:. 

Robbie, soap operas are an entirely different animal. They'll not only have characters disappear with no explanation, but they'll change actors playing the same character with either a voice over or a crawl at the bottom of the screen announcing it. I believe they even switched actors playing a character during an episode once. (And without it being a disguise, instant plastic surgery or an imposter scenario)

***********
I read that one soap had a Friday cliffhanger where the final 'freeze frame' was of a guy falling to the floor after being shot. On Monday, the 'new guy' hit the floor in the first shot of the episode, accompanied by the traditional soap opea voice over that 'The part of Roger Kaputnik is now being played by Melvin Cowznofski'(paraphrasing;-) )
It's amazing how calling a show 'Doctor Who' makes changes of actor much easier to accept!
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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 22 January 2018 at 6:10pm | IP Logged | 25 post reply

I also think police and firefighting shows can be the worst for characters simply vanishing without explanation.

There was a good character in UK cop show THE BILL. His name was Detective Inspector Galloway. He was a popular character. And when one season started (fourth, I think), he was gone. No explanation.
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