Abridged Quincy: Unhappy Hour

Bloggified by Jake on Sunday, July 14, 2013

Those who follow me on Twitter are all keenly aware that I have spent a significant portion of this summer plowing through Netflix's catalog of "Quincy, M.E." There's no good reason except that I must not like myself very much.

Some episodes are more cringeworthy and cliche-laden than others. It's hard to make a case that you should take 52 minutes to sit down and watch a truly terrible episode. That's why I will periodically be presenting the highlights of especially bad episodes condensed down to 5-10 minutes for the budding Quincy-phile on the go.

I will begin with 1980's "Unhappy Hour," a very special episode about teen alcoholism. While in the first four seasons, "very special" episodes were rare, in the fifth season, the producers dedicated approximately two out of every three episodes to some public service announcement-worthy cause of the day. This might have been to garner more Emmy buzz or it may have been because writing those episodes was so simple since 60% of the dialog sounds like it came straight from pamphlets a showrunner grabbed from some non-profit's office.

"Unhappy Hour" shifts the focus from Quincy to Quincy's boss, Dr. Astin, and his alcoholic teenage niece. It features cutting edge computers, a story of redemption and failure, a mystery, and almost every line you've ever heard from every other after school special, made for TV movie, and junior high health class filmstrip about alcoholism.

Also, one can assume that most of the scenery used in this episode had to be replaced after shooting because of all the teethmarks the actors left.

BONUS CONTENT: Full "It felt like someone was hugging me" monologue:

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