1 9 8 8 – 1 9 9 8 (USA)
5 x 60 minute episodes
230 x 30 minute episodes
Fortysomething divorcee Murphy Brown worked on screen for news magazine TV show FYI based in Washington DC.
Murphy Brown hit the headlines in May1992 when then-Vice President Dan Quayle took a pot-shot at the show as part of the G.O.P.’s 1992 “family values” campaign, making a speech taking Candice Bergen’s character to task for having a baby out of wedlock.
Bergen admitted she “practically collapsed of a coronary” when she picked up the New York Times and saw herself on the front page, together with photos of Quayle and George Bush (the elder) “That’s a little higher profile than I’m comfortable with,” she admitted.
On the other hand, when she picked up an Emmy that year (two of three that the show was awarded in 1992), Bergen thanked Quayle during her acceptance speech.
That wasn’t the show’s last scrape with a government official who objected to a storyline.
When Murphy was shown puffing on a joint to relieve nausea caused by the chemotherapy she underwent in her battle with breast cancer in 1997, Drug Enforcement Agency administrator Thomas Constantine complained that the show’s producers “were doing a great disservice” and “trivialising drug abuse.”
Executive producer Mark Flanigan countered that the intent of the show was merely to show what’s going on in the world, not to take a stand on the issue.
When Murphy Brown‘s run ended, Candice Bergen – who had become a widow when her husband, Louis Malle, died – decided to retire temporarily and concentrate on raising her daughter, Chloe.
Haly Joel Osment