Hot l Baltimore

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Hot l Baltimore
Created byLanford Wilson
Written byRon Clark
Decia Baker
Woody King
Lanford Wilson
Directed byBob LaHendro
StarringRichard Masur
Conchata Ferrell
James Cromwell
Al Freeman, Jr.
Jeannie Linero
Gloria LeRoy
Robin Wilson
Stan Gottlieb
Lee Bergere
Henry Calvert
Charlotte Rae
Composer(s)Marvin Hamlisch
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons1
No. of episodes13
Production
Executive producer(s)Norman Lear
Producer(s)Rod Parker
Editor(s)Terry M. Pickford
Running time22 minutes
Production company(s)T.A.T. Communications Co.
DistributorColumbia TriStar Television
Sony Pictures Television
Release
Original networkABC
Audio formatMonaural
Original releaseJanuary 24 (1975-01-24) – April 25, 1975 (1975-04-25)

Hot l Baltimore is an American sitcom adapted from an off-Broadway play of the same name by Lanford Wilson.

Premise and run[edit]

The show took place in the fictional Hotel Baltimore in Baltimore, Maryland, and drew its title from the cheap establishment's neon marquee which had a burned-out letter "e". The half-hour series premiered January 24, 1975,[1] and was produced by Norman Lear for ABC. It was the first Lear property to air on ABC.

The series had several controversial elements, including two primary characters who were prostitutes, one of whom was an illegal immigrant, and one of the first gay couples to be depicted on an American television series. Because of the subject matter, the show was the first ABC network show to have a warning at its opening, cautioning viewers about mature themes. (All in the Family, also produced by Lear, ran a similar disclaimer when it debuted in 1971 on CBS, but ceased doing so with its second telecast.) The network supported the show and gave it a full publicity campaign, but it failed to win an audience and was canceled after 13 episodes. Its last telecast was June 6, 1975.

WJZ-TV, then ABC's Baltimore affiliate, never carried the show, but instead, carried alternative programming, leaving Baltimore viewers to have to watch the show on WMAL (now WJLA), ABC's Washington, D.C. affiliate.[1]

This series is notable as the first failure for Lear after a streak of mega-hit TV series, beginning with All in the Family (1971) and continuing with Sanford and Son (1972), Maude (1972), Good Times (1974), and The Jeffersons (1975), the last of which premiered six days before this show.

Cast[edit]

Episodes[edit]

No.TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
1"Suzy's Wedding"Bob LaHendroRon Clark & Rod ParkerJanuary 24, 1975 (1975-01-24)
Suzy announces she is going to marry a Hollywood producer.
2"Millie's Beau"TBARudy De Luca & Barry LevinsonJanuary 31, 1975 (1975-01-31)
Millie's new boyfriend turns out to be one of Suzy's clients. The residents try to figure out a way to tell Millie.
3"Suzy's New Job"Bob LaHendroWoody Kling & David SwiftFebruary 7, 1975 (1975-02-07)
After she loses her job as a dance teacher, Suzy decides to complain to the White House.
4"The Rent Increase"TBABarry E. Blitzer & Jack KaplanFebruary 14, 1975 (1975-02-14)
Ainsley's mother issues an unexpected rent increase to the tenants. On the verge of being evicted, the residents are moved to protests, with a highly imaginative maneuver by Moose.
5"George and Gordon"Burt BrinckerhoffWoody KlingFebruary 21, 1975 (1975-02-21)
George and Gordon's latest spat promises to blossom into a hotel-wide fray.
6"The Date"Bob LaHendroRon ClarkFebruary 28, 1975 (1975-02-28)
Just to prove that he's not afraid of anything, Bill agrees to take April out on a date.
7"The Deportation of Suzy"Bob LaHendroElias Davis & David PollockMarch 7, 1975 (1975-03-07)
Suzy is threatened with deportation as an undesirable alien.
8"Mrs. Bellotti's Boyfriend"TBACharlie HauckMarch 14, 1975 (1975-03-14)
Mrs. Bellotti has fallen deeply in love with Chapman Packer, but her first love is her son Moose, and everything hinges on a very successful meeting of the two men in her life.
9"Bingham's Con"TBAJay SommersMarch 21, 1975 (1975-03-21)
Ex-convict Mojo Thompson arrives at the hotel in search of his old buddy Charles Bingham. Mojo soon enthralls the residents with wild tales of his former shenanigans, but in the process he also happens to divulge a few secrets from Charles' past, things Bingham would rather keep dead and buried.
10"Historic L Baltimore"TBADouglas Arango & Phil DoranMarch 28, 1975 (1975-03-28)
Ainsley's mother has successfully targeted the Hotel Baltimore for a wrecking ball. Hoping to save the building from an untimely demolition, Clifford manages to have it declared a historic landmark. However, the scheme quickly backfires; with the building now more valuable ever, a Japanese corporation decides to purchase it, but the unlikeliest of residents may prove to be the hotel's ultimate savior.
11"Ainsley Loves April"TBAWoody KlingApril 4, 1975 (1975-04-04)
An armed gunman invades the hotel lobby and threatens the residents, but is defeated by April. Having witnessed April's heroism, Clifford Ainsley suddenly sees her in a very different light; he falls head over heels in love with her, giving April a rare opportunity to be treated like a queen.
12"Suzy's Problem"TBACharlie HauckApril 11, 1975 (1975-04-11)
13"Ainsley's Secret"TBAElias Davis & David PollockApril 25, 1975 (1975-04-25)
Evie, a woman from Ainsley's past, arrives at the hotel and accuses him of being the father of her child, which he vehemently denies. Ultimately, he agrees to settle the problem with a payoff to Evie. Although he couldn't possibly be the father, the reason he couldn't forms the crux of Ainsley's secret.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Brooks, Tim; Marsh, Earle (Oct 1995) [1979]. The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network and Cable TV Shows: 1946-Present (trade paperback) (Sixth ed.). New York: Ballantine Books, a Division of Random House, Inc. ISBN 0-345-39736-3.

External links[edit]