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Becker

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Becker

Category: Sitcom

Created By: Dave Hackel

Stars: Ted Danson, Terry Farrell (1998-2002), Hattie Winston, Shawnee Smith, Alex Dιsert, Saverio Guerra (1998–2003), Nancy Travis (2002–2004), Jorge Garcia (2003–2004)

Country of Origin: United States

Number of Seasons: 6

Number of Episodes: 129

Original Channel: CBS

Original Run: November 2, 1998 to January 28, 2004

Becker is an American situation comedy that ran from 1998 to 2004 on CBS. Set in the New York City borough of The Bronx, the show starred Ted Danson as the title character, Dr. John Becker, a doctor who operates a small practice and is constantly annoyed by his patients, co-workers, friends, and practically everything and everybody else in his world. As a result of his outspoken nature, Becker is inaccessible to most people that do not know him. His patients and friends are nonetheless loyal, because Becker portrays a kind-hearted side that shows that, despite his cantankerous personality, he really does care about them.

The series was produced by Paramount Television, which produced another successful sitcom starring Danson, Cheers. In fact, some of the writers and crew from Cheers (like creator Dave Hackel) also worked on Becker.

Characters

Actor/Role/Character run

Ted Danson/Dr. John Becker/(1998–2004)

Terry Farrell/Regina 'Reggie' Kostas/(1998–2002)

Hattie Winston/ Margaret Wyborn/(1998–2004)

Shawnee Smith/Linda/(1998–2004)/

Alex Dιsert/Jake Malinak/(1998–2004)/

Saverio Guerra/Bob/(1998–2003)

Nancy Travis/Chris Connor/(2002–2004)

Jorge Garcia/Hector Lopez/(2003–2004)



For the first four seasons, the main characters were:

John Becker – Ted Danson

 

Ted Danson plays a Harvard Medical School graduate who runs a neighborhood medical clinic.  He is bugged by almost everything.  He is annoyed by flickering street lights, noisy neighbors, and probably blue skies.  He keeps failing to quit smoking.  He has a weird superstiion about midgets.  "All midgets are bad luck, whenever I see one, something bad happens to me", he would say.  Look at me talking like an old person.......hack, cough, sputter.

He likes free Chinese food.  He is open minded but is also politically incorrect about everything.  As for politics he blames Nixon for messing up his relationship with a girl named Megan.  Her father split Becker and Megan up over a rude comment Becker made about Nixon.

From what we see of Becker we might think he's an atheist.  Becker says he believes in science.  He has been heard saying "sometimes God just hands you one."  His nurse, who is a Christian, bugs him when he says things like that.


Characters

Margaret Wyborn – Hattie Winston

Margaraet is the clinic's office manager.  She is one of the few people who tolerates Becker.  She is like a mother to Becker and Linda because she keeps them, I mean tries, to keep them out of trouble.  

Linda – Shawnee Smith

Linda is a bubble-headed office assistant.  She is working at the clinic to earn her own money and thumb her nose at her rich parents.  She isn't very helpful most of the time but she does surprise everyone on certain occasions.  Her mother is an alcoholic.  Her parents have bought her an apartment with a doorman.  She has an ex-boyfriend who she is on-again/off-again with often.  She does date a lot of other guys too.  Linda is a sexual thrill for many of the patients.  Other patients like her for her positive attitude.  Linda has great respect for John Becker......yeah Becker's first name is John.  No joke there.  She has great respect for Margaret too.  Margaret has saved her butt often.  

Regina "Reggie" Kostas – Terry Farrell

Reggie owns and operates the diner in the neighborhood.  She inherited it from her father.  She was a model and so feels out of place running a diner.  Becker is at the diner when he's not at the clinic or his apartment.  Reggie has a crush on Becker but also hates his personality.  Reggie's cooking is bad.  She is does like interacting with her customers and lets them linger comfortably and feel at home.  Becker has access to the cash register to get at his cigarettes.  Reggie earned a degree in psychology but was mocked about how useless a psych degree can be.  Hey, I have a psych degree.  I have hypnotized many of my friends.....or did I just bore them into a trance?  In the 5th season's premiere Reggie sleeps with John (Becker).  Reggie did this because she was jealous that Chris liked John.  The next day she left town, leaving a message behind.  She wrote that she regretted sleeping with John and couldn't take the humiliation.  She also wrote that she was trying to get a better career going.  In the next episode Jake announces that he got a phone call from Reggie saying that she was in Miami where she met up with some modeling friends.  They were going to go to Europe for a while.

Jake Malinak – Alex Dιsert

Jake is Becker's best friend.  He has a newspaper and candy stand inside the diner.  Jake has been blind since he was in a car accident years ago.  He lived with his grandmother when he was younger and was very close to her before she died.  Jake married a woman named Amanda after the two of them fell in love.  They were married 24 hours after they met.  They decided to annul the marriage and live together instead.  After two and a half years Amanda left, taking all Jakes things with her.  When the show ended Jake went to college in Chicago.  He stayed with a relative who taught at the college.

Bob – Saverio Guerra

Bob is an Italian guy who hangs out at the diner.  He went to high school with Reggie.  He almost always refers to himself in the third person.  He is always horny and wants to have sex with Reggie.....get in line.  Bob becomes the super at Becker's building in the third season.  He tries his best to avoid doing any work.  Did I mention he's lazy?  We never learn his last name like with Linda.  His middle name is Benito.  Bob became a permanent character for seasons 3 to 5.  He turns out to be an excellent cook.  He is able to turn what Reggie has in her diner into a really good meal.  Bob disappeared after the fifth season.  Jake said he was on vacation.  We never see him on the show after he disappears.  Saverio Guerra didn't renew his contract for season 6 so that's that.

New characters in Season 5 and 6

Chris Connor — Nancy Travis

She is John's new neighbor.  She joined the show at the end of season 4.  She became a permanent character  in Season 5.  Chris took over the diner and had a love/hate relationship with Becker, similar to the relationship Reggie had with Becker.  Chris is the opposite of Becker; She is nice and cheerful and he is nasty and mad.

Hector Lopez — Jorge Garcia

He is Jake's friend.  Jake knew Hector as a little brother of one of his childhood friends.  Jake said that Hector would do anything for money as a kid.  Hector was only in season six.  He was a replacement for Saverio Guerra (Bob).  In the last episode, Hector takes over the newstand when Jake says he's moving to Chicago the next day.

Plot (Yeah that's what we'll call it.  The butler did in the kitchen with a knife.  I don't know about murder though.)

Becker was the center of attention.  Are you surprised?  The show is called "Becker".  We see what annoys Becker and we also see what he does about it or can't do about it.  What happens between Becker and Reggie and then later Becker and Chris is what the show is mostly about.  The show handled issues like race, homosexuality, AIDS, Cerebral AVM, the 9/11 terrorist attacks, and political correctness.

Reception

The show did well for its first four seasons.  It followed and benefited from Everybody Loves Raymond.  CBC moved the show to Sunday in 2002  and the ratings went down.  The network made the show take a break.  The show was going to be cancelled after the fifth season but the show was saved when the network saw that there was a lot of good story ideas to be used.  The show was paired up with The King of Queens in the sixth season but didn't do well.  The show ended in January of 2004 finishing up with 129 episodes.

Terry Farrell's dismissal -- Shame on them.  How dare they take my Dax.  ....you know from Star Trek?  Anyway she is hot.

Terry Farrell was fired between the fourth and fifth seasons.  There isn't a proper answer for why she was fired.  I wish I could have been there to comfort her.  She said it came as a shock to her.  Nancy Travis replaced Farrell.  Travis played Becker's neighbor.  She was supposed to be a temporary character until Farrell was fired.  Chris (Travis) took over the diner and began her love/hate relationship with Becker.

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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