Dr. Willoughby. Image shows from L to R: Emma Goodliffe (Isobel Middleton), Ralph Whatman (Brian Protheroe), Donna Sinclair (Joanna Lumley), Steve Lipton (Ian Puleston-Davies). Copyright: WitzEnd Productions.

Dr. Willoughby

Dr. Willoughby

Sitcom set behind-the-scenes on a third-rate daytime medical soap opera with a neurotic, insecure and egotistical star

Genre
Sitcom
Broadcast
1999
Channel
ITV
Episodes
6   (1 series)
Creator
Laurie Rowley
Starring
Joanna Lumley, Brian Protheroe, Isobel Middleton, Paula Bacon, Ian Puleston-Davies, Gillian Barge, Tanya Moodie, Ursula Holden Gill and others
Writer
Laurie Rowley
Director
David Skynner
Producer
Tony Charles

Behind the scenes at third-rate ITV daytime soap Dr. Willoughby, things run even less smoothly than they do on screen.

After five years on air the actors are wont to confuse reality and fiction. Donna Sinclair, star of the show, is a deeply insecure egomaniac with few people skills; her male lead, Ralph Watson, is equally insecure and troubled, but wimpish and ever the butt of the catering team's practical jokes, rather than overbearing.

Producer/director Emma is stuck in the middle, with lecherous executive producer Steve issuing dictats from above, Donna and Ralph becoming hysterical below, and her script-writers offering little help.

Which cast members will be axed by the producers - or by Donna? Who do the studio execs want to bring in - and why? And will Emma ever get off the show? Between them all, it's a wonder a single episode ever gets made...

Production data