Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Room 222

Today, the Soul Closet brings back a forgotten hit show of the 1970s: "Room 222." Set in Walt Whitman High School, the program largely centered on an American History class taught by the idealistic Pete Dixon, played by the supercool Lloyd Haynes. Denise Nicholas--looking mighty good, too--was guidance counselor (and love interest for Brother Dixon) Liz McIntyre.

"Room 222" premiered in September, 1969 and ran until January 1974. Here's a network promo of the show:

The 30 min "dramedy" was popular during its day, but dropped from sight after brief syndication runs in the 1970s. One of its co-stars, Karen Valentine, became a 1970s icon as cute student teacher Alice Johnson. But despite his good looks and charisma, fame eluded Haynes, the show's lead actor. After a few forgettable movies, Haynes did turn up as a judge on four episodes of the TV show "Dynasty" in 1981, according to IMDB, followed by a two-year run on the soap "General Hospital."

Haynes died of cancer in 1986. He was 52.

"Room 222" is on DVD, at least. Its first season was released in March. Here's an episode from a later season, featuring actor Bruno Kirby about two years before he would play young Clemenza in "Godfather II." And even here, he's trying to get his hustle on.

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