When it comes to Westerns, many people think the genre peaked in the '50s and '60s. However, it wasn't until the '90s that Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman hit the air. Taking place in the 1800s, a wealthy doctor named Michaela Quinn moves from Boston to the Wild West after her father dies. When she arrives, she takes on a motherly role for her friend's children while juggling her own practice — as the first female doctor the small town of Colorado Springs had ever seen.
The series wasn't expected to be picked up at all, but ran for six seasons, from 1993 to 1998. Here are some things you might not know about Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman.
Joe Lando is almost as rugged as Sully
Lando didn’t want to get a stunt double, so unless something was very dangerous to do himself, it was all him. According to IMDb, Lando said he was willing to do things like eat worms and run on top of a train because he couldn’t imagine being given another opportunity to do so again.
‘Dr. Quinn’ was offered to Seymour at a lucky time
In an interview with NPR, Seymour admitted that she would have taken any role offered to her at the time of Dr. Quinn. "I'd been married to one of the top business managers and one day I found out that I was completely beyond bankrupt," she said. "Like $9 million in the red with lawsuits from every major bank including the FDIC." She had a day’s notice about Dr. Quinn's pilot before she signed a five-year contract the next morning.
Sully's many dogs
Throughout the series Sully's dog "Wolf" was played by numerous dogs. The first dog to take on the role was Cody who had his very own stunt double, Mica, who was used exclusively for growling scenes. Cody eventually retired due to old age and was replaced by his son, Chaz.
There were a lot of cast changes
When the pilot aired, producers didn’t expect it to get picked up as a series, billing it as a TV movie instead. When it did get picked up, many actors were unable to commit to the grueling schedule and were replaced. Most notably, child star Erika Flores left her role as Colleen Cooper after two seasons when producers refused a raise. She was replaced with Jessica Bowman.
Mr. Rogers stopped by the neighborhood
Fred Rogers was a TV personality, but had never acted before. However, when he expressed how much he enjoyed Dr. Quinn, producers invited him to guest star as Reverend Thomas. It was the only fictional character he’s ever portrayed.
You can still join a fan club
If you were a big fan of William Shockley, who played the brothel owner Hank Lawson, you can join an active fan club called 'Hank’s Hussies,' which has an active Facebook Group to this day. As recently as 2014, the group attended a red carpet premiere for a movie he was in.
Albums were recorded at Jane Seymour's home
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