Q & A: The Americans; Dead at 21

I get a lot of e-mails from people asking me about television shows, made-for-TV movies or miniseries they remember from years or decades past. I try to answer each question as best I can. Every now and then I like to dig through my inbox and pull out a few choice e-mails to answer here at Television Obscurities for everyone to read. Keep reading for today’s questions and answers.

Do you remember a show called The Americans (circa 1961-1965)? The plot revolved around two brothers who were on opposite sides during the Civil War.

The Americans ran from January 13th, 1961 until September 11th, 1961 on NBC, airing from 7:30-8:30PM. It was indeed about two brothers who fought on opposite sides during the Civil War. Darryl Hickman and Dick Davalos co-starred as Ben and Jeff Canfield. Ben fought for the Union while Jeff fought for the Confederacy. Episodes would alternate between the two brothers, presenting stories from their respective points of view.

In the mid 90s, during the time of Aeon Flux and Liquid Television, there was a sci-fi show about a guy who was on the run from some government-type organization who had either created him or operated on him or something, and he had something like a chip in his brain or some other genetically engineered quality that made the organization want to find him. The series consisted of him and a girl evading capture while trying to find out something, some secret or something, that if he didn’t find it on time it’d kill him/others? I remember (I hope you don’t mind spoilers) at the end of the last episode he does die; it was very startling, especially since it ruled out a second season. I’ve exhausted myself trying to find the name of this show but there’s no info to be found. If I didn’t know better I’d think I made it up myself!

Don’t worry, you’re not making the show up. The show was called Dead At 21 and ran for 13 episodes starting in June of 1994 on MTV. Jack Noseworthy starred as Ed Bellamy, a young man with a chip in his brain, implanted when he was an infant in an attempt to increase his brainpower. As a side affect, however, the chip would cause his brain to more or less much blow up when he reached 21 (hence the name of the show). So, Ed and Maria (played by Lisa Dean Ryan) set out to find the inventor of the chip hoping he could help. Agent Winston (played by Whip Hubley) was a government agent attempting to hunt down Ed and Maria.

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