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Nurses aired from September 1991 until June 1994 on NBC.
Miami's Community Medical Center, right around the corner from Empty
Nest and The Golden Girls ( both on NBC, on the same night), was the
setting for this rather standard medical sitcom. The center of the
action-which was mostly talk-was the third floor nurses station,
manned by 5 harried , underpaid R.N.'s: working mom Annie ( Arnetia
Walker), the nurse in charge; dedicated, cynical Sandy (Stephanie
Hodge); neurotic newcomer Julie ( Mary Jo Keenan), who was deathly
afraid of germs; worldly wise immigrant Gina ( Ada Maris) and flaky
Greg ( Jeff Altman), an anti-authority type with a penchant for
physically attacking the doctors. Most of the incompetent M.D.'s
deserved it , with the exception of financially strapped good-guy Dr.
Hank ( Kip Gilman). Paco ( Carlos LaCamara) was the
Among those joining the cast in later years were Luke ( Markus
Flanagan), a wacky loner; Jack (David Rasche), a crooked financier ,
sentenced to perform community service at the hospital; and Casey
(Loni Anderson), the new, ambitious administrator who arrived when the
hospital was sold to a large HMO. In the final year, Gina became
pregnant with Dr. Hank's child.
The show maintained modest ratings its freshman year thanks to the
still-solid Saturday lineup that included both The Golden Girls and
Empty Nest. As the NBC lineup changed and Saturday became less of a
prime ratings destination, Nurses struggled to maintain its audience
base. Changes in the cast, as well as the show's soundtrack, for both
the second and third seasons led to some inconsistency that likely
furthered the diminishing ratings. Despite considerable media
attention in 1993 when Loni Anderson joined the cast, Nurses was
canceled at the end of its third year.
An Article from Tulsa World
Stephanie Hodge Leaves Stand-Up for Sitcom // `Nurses' Star Terrified of Hospitals
Sep 29, 1991
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Stephanie Hodge had to overcome her terror
of hospitals to get ready for her role in the new NBC comedy "Nurses."
"I was a candy striper in my hometown, but I fainted a
lot," she says. "Put me in the emergency room, and I'd
pass out again and again. I had to get over my fear of hospitals."
As a stand-up, the twice-married, twice-divorced Hodge is
noted for her smoky voice, blue material and shoot-from-the-hip
zingers on the battle of the sexes.
Hodge, an actress and stand-up comedian, stars in the hospital
comedy created by writer Susan Harris. Like two of Harris'
other creations, "The Golden Girls" and "Empty Nest,"
it's set in Miami and characters from the three shows will
visit each other. She plays Sandy, who apparently has no
"Nurses" also stars Arnetia Walker, Mary Jo Keenen, Ada
Maris, Kenneth David Gilman, Carlos LaCamara and Jeff Altman.
"The show was created for me in a way," says Hodge, who
previously starred in six episodes of "Sugar and Spice."
"I had a deal with the producers, and when this came in
they put me together with the concept. Susan gets to the
truth with her characters.
"Sandy's dealing with a lot of hurt and pain and bitterness,
but she has a will to survive. Listen, without pain and
bitterness I wouldn't have a stand-up act. Bitterness and
hostility are the key to my success. It makes me so happy
to be bitter. It's so much fun."
Hodge says in the beginning her stand-up act relied on props.
"Louie Anderson was very blunt and sweet," she says. "He
said I was too cute. That I should get out and relate to
people. Jay Leno saw me in Minneapolis and said I had to
talk more about myself and to get rid of the props.
"There's a difference between me and other comics who are
bold. I think the most shocking thing about me is that people
say I hit it right on the money. Joan Blondell, Bette Midler
and Carole Lombard all had an influence on me."
She compares her character on "Nurses" with the persona
she projects in her comedy act. Sandy is partly based on
her own experiences, yet humorously exaggerated. She spent
time with nurses at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center to get some insight.
"Sandy's been dumped by her husband," she says. "I know
all about that, but I did the dumping. She's a nurse because
she wants to help people and care for people. But nurses
are the most dumped-on people in a hospital. Nurses are
always expected to be there with the bedpan."
Hodge was in the movies "Big Top Pee Wee" and "Almost
An Angel," the series "Sugar and Spice" and the pilot
"Morton's By the Bay." She's also starred in several television
comedy specials and a syndicated series called "My Talk
Show." She received an ACE nomination for her appearance
last year on the Showtime special "Just For Laughs: Montreal
International Comedy Festival."
Hodge was raised a Quaker in Ohio, the daughter of a college
professor and schoolteacher. Although they encouraged her
acting, she was also persuaded to get a teaching degree.
After college she and her first husband moved to Minneapolis,
where she stayed for the next nine years.
"I studied acting, did stand-up comedy, worked in a regional
theater with experienced actors, did industrial films and
commercials," she says. "It was a phenomenal experience.
I got a lot of encouragement in Minneapolis and I learned
a lot from people like Paul Reubens, Morey Amsterdam and
Jay Leno. I never thought those people would talk to me,
but they really leveled with me.
"Finally, I felt I had done everything I could there. There's
really a point when you have to challenge yourself. The
only thing I didn't do was act at the Guthrie Theater. I
moved to Los Angeles 4 1/2 years ago. I spent the first year
on the road to pay for an apartment I couldn't afford."
Her stand-up appearances are on temporary hold while she
works on the sitcom.
For the first time, she says, no one asked her to change
her hair color, which is light brown, for her role in "Nurses."
"For `My Talk Show' I had to bleach my hair blonde," she
says. "I was a blonde for eight years. By the time I stopped
bleaching it I had a bald spot. My hair stylist said if
I bleached it again it wouldn't grow back. For `Sugar and
Spice' I had to wear a fake rear end. I played the Southern neighbor.
"I found it funny. I'd sit down and then realize. The other
cast members pinched me a lot and I never knew it."
A Review from Variety
September 24, 1993 12:00AM PT
Nurses the Eagle Has Landed
By Todd Everett
Nurses” begins its third season with two former regulars missing in action and a new topliner who’s been getting an inordinate amount of publicity unrelated to the show. Still, fans shouldn’t have any problem recognizing the program.
When the episode opens, original cast member Stephanie Hodge and last year’s Marcus Flanagan have hit the road without explanation, and the Community Medical Center has been purchased by a conglomerate. Otherwise, things seem to be proceeding as normal when patient Casey McAfee (Loni Anderson) appears. Cranky and picky, she accuses most of the staff of malingering, and arouses the lust of Jack Trenton (David Rasche), whom she immediately spots as an inside-trader fulfilling a community service sentence.
In the meantime, nurse Gina Cuevas (Ada Maris) is extremely pregnant, courtesy of Dr. Hank Kaplan (Kip Gilman), who’s less than enthusiastic about owning up to the situation.
McAfee turns out to be an inspector for the hospital’s new owner, which throws the nurses — many of whom are malingering, from all appearances — into a tizzy. And then — will the hilarity ever stop? — McAfee, who was planning to leave in two days, is named hospital administrator by corporate topper Cooley Waits (Leslie Jordan). Show is played broadly under Gilbert Junger’s direction, and Anderson fits in nicely as the prim McAfee, who (like Jennifer Marlowe in “WKRP in Cincinnati”) can spot a prospective sugar daddy from a mile away.
Into that category falls Dr. Harry Weston (Richard Mulligan, stepping over from “Empty Nest”), whose first reaction to the stupefying Anderson is, “Wow! That’s some nose!”
Jordan’s portrayal of Ross Perot-like Waits may be the episode’s high spot, and vet comic actor Sid Melton contributes a funny two-line bit as an aging patient who stumbles into McAfee.
Nurses the Eagle Has Landed
(Sat. (25), 9:30-10 p.m., NBC-TV)
Production: Videotaped in Los Angeles by Witt/Thomas/Harris Prods. in association with Touchstone Television. Exec producers, Paul Junger Witt, Tony Thomas, Susan Harris, Tom Straw; supervising producer, Boyd Hale; producers, Danny Smith, Gilbert Junger; director, Junger; script, Straw.
Crew: Lighting, Andy Kassan; editor, Art Kellner; production designer, Michael Hynes, Edward Stephenson; sound, Ed Epstein; music, Mike Post.
Cast: Cast: Loni Anderson, Arnetia Walker, Mary Jo Keenen, Ada Maris, Kip Gilman, Carlos LaCamara, David Rasche, Richard Mulligan, Leslie Jordan, Sid Melton.
To watch clips of Nurses go to https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=nurses+tv+show+full+episodes
For the Nurses Tribute Page go to https://web.archive.org/web/20000307121729/http://www.geocities.com/TelevisionCity/Stage/4318/Nurses.html
For Tim's TV Showcase go to https://timstelevisionshowcase.neocities.org/nurses.html
For a page dedicated to Nurses go to http://emptynesttv.com/home/show-info/nurses-the-spinoff/
To watch the opening credits go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2khCQRDjhkI and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I2oejeA0124 and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ce8ctzdQT4
� Date: Sun April 2, 2017 � Filesize: 56.6kb, 102.9kb � Dimensions: 1000 x 807 �
Keywords: The Cast of Nurses (Links Updated 8/1/18)