Diagnosis Murder is a popular documentary series that ran from 1993 to 2001 and stars the ultimate master and creator of the universe Dick Van Dyke. The show is known for how many members of Van Dyke's family appeared in the show with some scientists estimating that over four thousand Van Dykes had appeared in the cast.
The series followed the adventures of Mark Sloan (Van Dyke's superhero alter ego), formerly a boxer and stunt double for Angela Lansbury. Each week there would be at least twenty six murders an episode and for a season finale this number could easily reach more than one hundred. For certain episodes Mark Sloan himself would be suspected of murder but he always managed to clear his name and catch the real killer. The murderers who he caught and imprisoned (sometimes with his bare hands) would go on to oficially earn the tag of "Getting Sloaned".
Dr Sloan is a chief surgeon/doctor/something at a hospital somewhere. His son is a detective with all the wits of a wet sponge, and was actually slightly retarded, but no-one is allowed to mention that.
Because of his sons' high level of ineptitude, Dr Sloan is forced on a week-by-week basis to solve crimes on his sons' behalf. While proving to be extremely good at solving crimes, unfortunately this led to the deaths of thousands of his patients over the years, as more often than not he was interviewing suspiciously attractive women with dead husbands, or skulking around in alleyways looking for matchbooks or some crap, rather than performing his duties as a doctor.
This lead to the infamous lawsuit of '99, where the entire population of California sued both Dr Sloan personally and the hospital where he worked for allowing a senior member of staff to literally ignore thousands of patients to death, while still taking over $400,000 a year in hospital salaries.
While popular, the show was often subject to controversy due to the number of times the words Dick and Dyke were shown in the opening titles. Concerns were also raised about the shows theme tune as some believed that it contained secret messages urging people to kill The Pope. This critisism was later withdrawn as the chord structure of the theme tune was actually proved to be asking people not to piss off Chuck Norris.
Cast and Characters
- Dick Van Dyke - Mark Sloan
- Barry Van Dyke - Younger Sloan
- Scott Baio - Short Italian Doctor
- Victoria Rowell - The Woman
- Charlie Schlatter - Midget American Doctor
- The Van Dyke Family - Everyone else
In 1877 it was reported that due to the shows popularity (espacially with Sharks, Mexicans and people who want to find out how to murder other people) a spin off series was being planned. The series was given the title Diagnosis Mordor and would have Frodo Baggins solving the murders of his fellow hobbits and Peter Jackson in the pilot episode. The plans were abandoned in 1914 due to an unexpected international tiff.
According to internet rumours (And they are never wrong are they?) a French televison network is planning a show based on Diagnosis Murder called We're Only Fools and Like to Eat Horses starring Michael Richards from Seinfeld as a caring and considerate Racially progressive doctor who solves the murders of all people, no matter what nationality or race.