In another "day in the life" episode, the court staff has to finish 207 cases by midnight. If they do, the 207th defendant, a Texas millionaire with a gambling compulsion, will pay the money to save ...
Judge Harold T. Stone presides over "Night Court", a court which deals with petty crimes which can be dealt with in a dime-a-dozen manner. Invariably, the cases appearing before the court are bizarre, but that's ok because Judge Stone is not your regular judge. He's assisted by a motley crew of clerks and District Attorneys who often create as much chaos as the criminals they bring in for trial.Written by
Murray Chapman <email@example.com>
Bull had his own puppet. It was introduced in the fourth season premiere "The Next Voice You Hear...". It went on the market and was sold through retail catalogues. See more »
Harry Anderson's romantic affairs with subordinates, while central to the show, were inappropriate even for the 1980s setting of the series. They would have had to end or Harry would have been removed from his role as a judge. See more »
Seasons one and two of Night Court were good, but season three begins some of the best years of the show with Markie Post joining the cast as Christine, the public defender and Florence Halop replacing Selma Diamond as one of the two bailiffs - Selma died during the summer of 1985. Christine filled what was really missing from the bill that former public defender Billy just never could deliver. Christine is who we always knew was Harry's soulmate, a fact the two of them dance around for the entire duration of the series. Beautiful, compassionate, and somewhat naive, she also makes the perfect target for Dan Fielding's lechery. Harry's soulmate was something Billy just never convinced me she could be, and she simply wasn't the type to attract Dan Fielding.
Season three also marks a full turn away from the "Barney Miller" style of the first two seasons as the show turns into full scale mayhem with a courtroom as just an incidental backdrop for the parade of human oddities that come before Judge Harry Stone. This is also the first year John Astin begins to make regular appearances as someone who was married to Harry's mom after she deserted him as a child. It turns out the two met in a mental institution, but - as Astin never fails to mention - "He's feeling much better now". Astin's character at first provides a link to Harry's missing years with his mother, but in a later season he is revealed to be much more than that.
Another change that took place is that in season two Dan Fielding loses all of his considerable investment portfolio, when in the first season he was always going on about his substantial savings. Dan's desperation for both sex and money turn him into the ultimate greed machine, yet he still retains a likability that is comparable only to the likes of Jack Carson and Daffy Duck. No wonder John Larroquette won four Emmys for his portrayal before finally retiring his name from consideration.
Quan Le returns periodically as Mac's wife. Mac is the likable and efficient clerk of the court, and Quan Le is the girl that has loved Mac since she was a girl in Vietnam and he was a soldier there. Unfortunately, she is always having troubles confusing advertising with laws - trouble that usually costs Mac money. For example she believes that "American Express - Don't Leave Home Without It" is some kind of statute.
Most humor and movies from the 80's just haven't aged very well, but this show is different. It's timeless in the way that The Marx Brothers and the Three Stooges are, and I highly recommend it.
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