Home Television Comedy McKeever & the Colonel

McKeever & the Colonel

1 9 6 2 – 1 9 6 3 (USA)
26 x 30 minute episodes

Gary McKeever (Scott Lane) is a cadet in the notorious “Squad C” at the Westfield Military Academy, a California boys’ school led by long-suffering Colonel Harvey T Blackwell (Allyn Joslyn).

Chunky, baldheaded Sergeant Claude Barnes (Jackie Coogan) is Blackwell’s aide and Miss Frances Warner (Elisabeth Fraser) is the Academy dietician who acts as something of a surrogate mother to the boys – and occasional date for Sgt Barnes.

Harvey is a man who enjoys a disciplined school. McKeever – the son of an Air Force officer – is a very mischievous cadet and forever causing problems that make the Colonel’s life anything but peaceful.

Stories follow Harvey’s endless (and seemingly fruitless) efforts to discipline McKeever and his equally mischievous fellow cadets, roommates and partners in crime, Tubby (Keith Taylor) and Monk (Johnny Eimen). Harvey routinely maintains a supply of firecrackers in his locker, saving them for just the right moments, and has been known to put goldfish in the water cooler.

When he’s in a charitable mood, the colonel will say that Gary and his buddies are just mischievous. On the other hand, he considers Gary McKeever to have “one of the great evil minds of the century”.

Though Colonel Blackwell often ends up the hapless victim of the boys’ pranks and schemes, it isn’t usually intentional on their part – He just happens to be standing under their dorm room window when McKeever’s pet frog jumps out and lands on his coat, or looking out his office window just as the boys are spray-painting the building.

mckeever&colonel

Though he spends much of his time trying to keep McKeever and his pals in line, he is actually fond of the boys, and even offers to get Tubby a scholarship when it seems that his parents may be unable to afford the school’s tuition.

McKeever and the Colonel aired on NBC on Sunday evenings at 6.30 pm between 23 September 1962 and 16 June 1963. The show was the lead-in to another new military sitcom, Ensign O’Toole, which starred Dean Jones.

Guest stars included Ann B. Davis, Jim Backus, Mike Mazurki and Soupy Sales.

Cadet Gary McKeever
Scott Lane
Colonel Harvey T. Blackwell
Allyn Joslyn
Sgt. Claude Barnes
Jackie Coogan
Cadet Tubby Anderson
Keith Taylor
Cadet Monk Roberts
Johnny Eimen
Miss Frances Warner
Elisabeth Fraser
Major McKeever (Gary’s father)
Peter Hanson
Andrea (Harvey’s niece)
Susan Gordon
Harvey’s Mother
Ellen Corby
Sgt. Barnes’ Father
Charlie Ruggles
Tubby’s Father
Benny Baker
Tubby’s Mother
Doris Singleton

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