As far as TV sitcoms go, very few have ever been as funny as NBC’s Night Court. The show starred Harry Anderson as magic and Mel Tormé loving judge Harry Stone, John Larroquette as the sleazy (but lovable) prosecutor Dan Fielding, Richard Moll as Bull Shannon, the hulking but sweet-natured bailiff and more. Despite its long run, the show took a few years to get going, with cast members being replaced and not one but two of the supporting bailiffs dying in real life. Finally, however, the show’s ensemble started to cook when the late Charles Robinson as Mac (the court clerk), Marsha Warfield as Roz (the bailiff) and the late, great Markie Post as Christine Sullivan, the sweet-natured and lovable defence attorney, were introduced.
From there, the show was a ratings juggernaut, with Larroquette becoming one of the biggest comedy stars of the eighties thanks to his role, which he’s reprising on a Night Court sequel series starring Melissa Rauch as Harry and Christine’s judge daughter. Larroquette won four Emmys in a row for the part (and had his name taken out of contention as not to overshadow his cast-mates).
While not currently streaming anywhere, Night Court has held up a lot better than many other sitcoms of the era and is well worth discovering for those of you who may not have been around during its initial run. Learn all about it on this week’s Gone But Not Forgotten!