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Marcus Welby, M.D.

By worldofhud

Marcus Welby, M. D. , which aired on ABC from late September, 1969 through mid-May 1976, was one of the most popular doctor shows in U. S. television history. During the 1970 television year, it even ranked number one among all TV series according to the Nielsen Index. As such, it was the first ABC program to take the top program slot for an entire season. The Nielsen data suggested Marcus Welby, M. D. was viewed regularly in about one of every four American homes that year.

Airing on Tuesdays, from 10-11:00 P. M. the program was created by David Victor, and dealt with the concept of an older physician mentoring a young doctor.

Dr Welby was portrayed by Robert Young, who portrayed the archetypical father figure on Father Knows Best from 1954 to 1960. People who worked with him on the set said it was often hard to tell where Young stopped and Welby began, so closely did the actor identify with his role. Viewers seemed to have that difficulty, too. Young received thousands of letters asking for advice on life's problems.

His co-stars were James Brolin, who portrayed Dr Steven Kiley, and Elena Verdugo, who portrayed housekeeper Consuelo Lopez. I absolutely loved Robert Young and James Brolin as the main protagonists, and had a very huge crush on Elena Verdugo.

 

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I watched Marcus Welby, M.D. diligently as a child. My favorite episode was "A Portrait of Debbie", starring Pamelyn Ferdin. I thought she did an incredible job! Although.....I never did exactly find out what she had wrong with her! :) I also remember an episode with Lindsay Wagner, who had some sort of kidney ailment, and an episode with Leif Garrett's younger sister (I can't recall her name) who played a deaf girl. The show always had good storylines and managed to find good medical topics to cover. All in all, a great 60/70's series, entertaining and educational -- I credit most of my early medical knowledge to this show. I wouldn't mind seeing some old episodes, if they ever came out on video.

--SD

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TV TIDBITS

Aired: September 23, 1969 - May 11, 1976

Cast: Robert Young, James Brolin, Elena Verdugo, Shareon Gless, Gavin Brendan, Pamela Hensley

Network: ABC

Genre: Medical Drama

Theme song

Image courtesy of ABC


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