Covington Cross

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Covington Cross
Covington Cross Title Screen.jpg
Title screenshot of Covington Cross
Also known as Charring Cross
Genre Adventure
Created by Gil Grant
Written by Beverly Bridges
Chris Ruppenthal
Directed by William Dear
Alister Hallum
Starring Nigel Terry
Cherie Lunghi
James Faulkner
Jonathan Firth
Glenn Quinn
Composer(s) Carl Davis
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 1
No. of episodes 13 (6 unaired)
Production
Executive producer(s) Gil Grant
Production location(s) Allington Castle, Maidstone, Kent, England
Running time 60 minutes
Production company(s) Reeves Entertainment[1]
Distributor Thames Television[1]
Release
Original network ABC
Original release August 25 (1992-08-25) – October 31, 1992 (1992-10-31)

Covington Cross is a British/American television series that was broadcast on ABC in the United States from August 25 to October 31, 1992. The series was created by Gil Grant, who was also executive producer.[1] The program also aired in the United Kingdom and was scheduled to be broadcast in France. The series was filmed and produced in the UK, by a British production company, but it was ultimately accountable to an American television network.

Premise[edit]

Set in 14th-century England, the series follows the daily intrigues of Sir Thomas Grey, a widower, and his sons and daughter. Covington Cross is the name of Sir Thomas' castle. His children are eldest son, Armus; the serious Richard; free spirited Cedric; and strong-willed daughter, Eleanor. Another son, William, appeared in the pilot episode, but was then directed by the program's writers to fight in the Crusades. Also featuring in Sir Thomas's life is his love interest, Lady Elizabeth.

Characters[edit]

Production and broadcast[edit]

The Great Hall at Penshurst Place, c. 1915

Thirteen episodes were produced, but only seven aired in the United States after ABC pulled the series from the air in November 1992.[2] The series was an expensive show to produce, thanks to overseas production costs. Most of the cast and crew were British.[1] In addition, on several occasions the show's airing timeslot was bought by businessman Ross Perot for infomercials in an attempt to raise his poll numbers during his independent run for president.[3]

According to a Los Angeles Times article, it was "one of the few American prime-time shows ever to be shot entirely on location in England",[1] with much of the filming was done in and around castles in the English countryside. Allington Castle was used for the exterior scenes, while Penshurst Place in Kent were used for the interior scenes.[4] The village set was filmed at Shepperton Studios, and it was later reused in the sixth season of British television series Red Dwarf as the Gelf village in the episode "Emohawk: Polymorph II".[5]

Episodes[edit]

No.TitleOriginal air date 
1"Pilot"August 25, 1992 (1992-08-25)
2"Armus Returns"September 19, 1992 (1992-09-19)
3"Outlaws"September 26, 1992 (1992-09-26)
4"Cedric Hits the Road"October 3, 1992 (1992-10-03)
5"The Hero"October 10, 1992 (1992-10-10)
6"Blinded Passions"October 24, 1992 (1992-10-24)
7"The Persecution"October 31, 1992 (1992-10-31)
8"Eviction"Unaired
9"The Trial"Unaired
10"The Plague"Unaired
11"Revenge"Unaired
12"Celebration"Unaired
13"Brothers"Unaired

Reception[edit]

The show received mixed critical notice. Howard Rosenberg of Los Angeles Times was muted in his review of the show, describing it as a "pleasing, though occasionally plodding costume drama" that "brings a droll, self-mocking sense of humor to its Middle Ages saga."[6] Todd Everett of Variety praised the show for having "lots of color, production values and a script that doesn't take itself too seriously", further noting that "all tech credits are first rate, with a special nod to costume designer Barbara Lane."[7] However Entertainment Weekly found the show "ludicrous".[8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Jeff Kaye (August 21, 1992). "A Medieval 'Bonanza' : 'Covington Cross': Feudal Fun When Knights Were Bold". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2017-07-06. 
  2. ^ Beth Kleid (November 9, 1992). "Morning Report – Television". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2017-07-06. Crossed Off: ABC has pulled "Covington Cross" and "Crossroads" from its Saturday-night schedule. 
  3. ^ Beth Kleid (October 12, 1992). "Morning Report – Television". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2017-07-06. An hour-long infomercial with Ross Perot boosting his independent presidential campaign will preempt ABC's "Covington Cross" between 8 and 9 p.m. on Saturday. 
  4. ^ "Covington Cross (1992)". Kent Film Office. Retrieved 2017-07-06. 
  5. ^ Chris Howarth; Steve Lyons (1997). Red Dwarf: programme guide - Part 4. p. 126. 
  6. ^ Howard Rosenberg (August 25, 1992). "TV Reviews : 'Covington Cross': Pleasing, Though Plodding". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2017-07-06. 
  7. ^ Todd Everett (August 25, 1992). "Review: 'Covington Cross'". Variety. Retrieved 2017-07-06. 
  8. ^ "The fall 1992 TV preview: Saturday". Entertainment Weekly. September 11, 1992. Retrieved 2017-07-06. 

External links[edit]