Welcome to the the section devoted to Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman or MH2. This section will feature a basic background and synapsis of this serial which was developed by Norman Lear. Also, you'll find pictures and descriptions of the characters of MH2.

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Syndicated Serial, aired 1976-77, USA


Developed by Norman Lear, this half-hour serial was part parody and part soap opera. Set in Fernwood, Ohio, the first season began with a mass murder and culminated with the heroine's crackup on a television talk show.

Louise Lasser starred as Mary Hartman, the pigtailed, gingham-frocked Ohio housewife who lived in a world where television commercials were as meaningful as personal experiences, and who tried to remain calm while her daughter was held hostage by a mass murderer, her husband was impotent, her father disappeared, and her best friend was paralyzed.

Other principals included Greg Mullavey as her husband, Tom Hartman, an assembly-line worker whose emotional development was arrested during adolescence

Mary Kay Place as Mary's best friend, Loretta Haggers, an aspiring country-and-western singer

Graham Jarvis as Charlie Haggers, Loretta's husband and Tom's co-worker

Dody Goodman as Martha Shumway, Mary's addled mother

Philip Bruns as George Shumway, Mary's father

Debralee Scott as Cathy Shumway, Mary's active younger sister

Claudia Lamb as Heather Hartman, Tom and Mary's sullen daughter

Victor Kilian as Mary's grandfather, Raymond Larkin, the "Fernwood Flasher''

Bruce Solomon as Sergeant Dennis Foley, the Fernwood cop who eventually convinced Mary to have an affair with him

(And Still Others.......)

Sparky Marcus as eight-year-old Jimmy Joe Jeeter, a child evangelist who was electrocuted when a TV set fell into his bathtub

Dabney Coleman as Merle Jeeter, Jimmy Joe's father

and Marian Mercer as Wanda Rittenhouse, wife of a Fernwood politician.

After 325 episodes Louise Lasser decided to leave the show; after a summer hiatus (during which Fernwood 2 Night, a TV talk show spoof, was telecast), production resumed with most of the other principals under the title Forever Fernwood. Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman was created by Gail Parent, Ann Marcus, Jerry Adelman, and Daniel Gregory Browne.

There's good reason to think that E! Television could re-air Mary Hartman episodes again. Sending in specific requests for Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman would be a big help, all the mails are read even though they are usually just answered automatically. Mail them now with this handy link! E-mail E!

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