May 5, 2017

Chad Everett

Chad Everett, who died in 2012, had a nicely toned physique and amazingly tight pants that became familiar to Boomer kids through beefcake appearances on many 1960s Westerns and swinging detective tv series: 77 Sunset Strip, Hawaiian Eye, Surfside 6, Maverick, Branded.  

He also starred in movies such as Made in Paris (1966) with 1960s standby Ann-Margret; Johnny Tiger (1966), as a Seminole boy trying to survive in the Anglo world;  and The Impossible Years  (1968), as the anti-establishment boy who dates the daughter of a stuffy college professor.

But he became most famous as a new Ben Casey, the young, idealistic Dr. Joe Gannon, who clashed with establishment Dr. Paul Lochner (James Daly) on Medical Center (1969-76).  No beefcake, but his square jaw and blue eyes, and tight pants caused him to become the first crush of lots of Boomer kids, and apparently there were several gay-themed episodes: a gay research scientists is blackmailed (1970); a "sexually confused" girl is assured that she's not a lesbian (1973); a transsexual doctor (played by Robert Reed) decides to have sex reassignment surgery (1975).

Chad was quite conservative in real life.  He caused a bit of a scandal in 1972, during a talk show appearance, by referring to his wife as "his property." The host laughed, but Lily Tomlin became so outraged that she stormed off the set.

But he still managed to play a gay cop on a 2006 episode of Cold Case, about re-investigation of old murder cases.  In 1968, Jimmy Bruno (Brian Hallisay) was seeing his partner, Coop Cooper (Shane Johnson).  Then Coop was shot and killed in a gay-bashing incident that the precinct covered up. 40 years later, Jimmy Bruno (Chad Everett) still remembers his lost love.