Saturday, October 11, 2014

What Might've Been: Broadside (1964)

It started with a backdoor pilot on McHale's Navy. Unfortunately, Broadside, the end result of that pilot, was cancelled for a very unusual reason.

Broadside was built around a group of Navy WAVES who were stationed on an island in the South Pacific. Basically, this was a distaff version of McHale, although the commanding officers on this show were male as well, filling the role of the exasperated CO looking to break up the gang. In this case, that gig went to Edward Andrews and Dick Sargent, but they lacked the chemistry of Joe Flynn & Bob Hastings over on McHale. The WAVES included Kathleen Nolan, Lois Roberts, and, by some quirk of fate, boy singer Jimmy Boyd, whose character, Marion, was assigned to the WAVES because of his feminine name. Go figure. Arnold Stang (ex-Top Cat) was also a frequent player.

Why was the show cancelled? Money, and backlot space, to boot. Universal suits saw how the South Pacific sets used for both Broadside & McHale took up too much backlot space, so McHale ended up going on location in Italy the next year, its final season, and Broadside got deep-sixed.

Dick Sargent, as we all know, would join the cast of Bewitched, but before that, he flopped in William Dozier's Tammy Grimes Show. Edward Andrews made the original pilot for Mr. Terrific before being replaced by John McGiver, and didn't land another series.

Here's the intro:

Rating: B-.

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