About Us

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Over the years, television has rarely gone out of its way (with exception of PBS) to feature the disabled actor or character. Shown as single, lower class and often fair game for all sorts of abuses, the disabled have been the fodder for scriptwriter’s need to portray the dramatic, vulnerable side of the physically challenged person’s life rather than showing them as down to earth people with needs the same as the rest of us (for example, fathers, mothers, professionals, etc.).

Even as TV or movie extras, rarely have disabled actors been chosen for simple background scenes such as, spectators, shoppers etc. But recently TV programmers have started to include the disabled in their thousand of hours of broadcasts.

For the purposes of this website, we document portrayals of disabled characters that appear in recurring roles on television programs, be they produced in America (which is our main focus) or other countries.

Once in a while, however, we will include single episodic appearances when something happens to a major non-disabled character, such as when Hawkeye Pierce (Alan Alda) from M*A*S*H, Arthur “The Fonz” Fonzarelli (Henry Winkler) from HAPPY DAYS, or Mr. Spock (Leonard Nimoy) from STAR TREK were temporarily blinded.

For ease of access to a particular impairment, we have grouped each disability by categories. The tagged keywords on each web page or the internal search engine can also be used to target such things as actor or character names, geographical locations, genres or occupations.

  • Disease Impaired (cancer victims, diabetics, epileptics, birth defects, etc)
  • Hearing Impaired (deafness and other related hearing issues)
  • Height Impaired (diminutive in stature, commonly called “Little People” – midgets, dwarfs )
  • Mentally Impaired (autism, down syndrome, low IQs, OCD victims)
  •  Physically Impaired (damaged or missing limbs or body parts, wheelchair-bound)
  • Speech Impaired (mutes, stutterers)
  • Visually Impaired (Blind, color/night blindness, dyslexic, near or far sighted)

Note: This website is the sole creation of Jerome A.Holst, a retired librarian living in Greensboro, North Carolina. His other websites include Enchanted America, Character Nicknames.

If you have any comments for suggestions about our website, please contact us via email at jeraholst@gmail.com

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