The Count Of Monte Cristo/SYN/1955-1956 (Mute)
Jacopo (Nick Cravat), the ingenious and crafty mute sidekick of Edmond Dantes (George Dolenz) on the syndicated historical adventure THE COUNT OF MONTE CRISTO/SYN/1955-56. The TV series was based on the novel “The Count of Monte Cristo” (1845) by Alexander Dumas.
Dantes was falsely imprisoned for many years, but eventually escaped from his captors and with a fortune in gold and jewels found in a cave on the Isle of Monte Cristo. With a new found identity and wealth to support his needs, Dantes traveled the road of revenge back to the place of his betrayal and the woman he loved.
The Inhumans/ABC/2017 (Sign Language)
Black Bolt (Anson Mount), the leader of the mutant Inhumans society who lives on the Moon in the secret city of Attilan. Black Bolt’s voice is so powerful that even an utterance can destroy anything or anyone in his path. He communicates using sign language.
When Black was a baby, he was placed in a sound dampening chamber to protect members of his family and his society from his devastating voice. As he grew, he learned to control his ability and so became a leader of his people.
Sadly, during his teenage years, Black Bolt accidentally killed his parents in a moment of frustration when he spoke the word “Why?” They were instantly vaporized by the sound of his voice.
Note: Black Bolt and the Inhumans first appeared in the Marvel comic Fantastic Four #45 (1965) whose front cover depicted the phrase: “Among Us Hide…the Inhumans!”
South Park/Comedy Central/1997-2019 (Crutches / Stutterer)
Jimmy Valmer (voiced by Trey Parker), disabled ten-year-old boy who attends fourth grade at South Park Elementary School in the town of South Park, Colorado. He has brown hair with sideburns and wears a yellow long-sleeved shirt, blue jeans and black boots. He also wears braces and must use crutches to get around.
Jimmy aspires to be a stand-up comedian but has a problem with stuttering which interferes with his comic delivery on stage. Jimmy’s catchphrase is “Wow, what a terrific audience!” An example of one of his jokes: “I just flew into South Park and boy, my crutches are tired.”
He also loves to sing, but when he sang “Twelve Days of Christmas” at City Hall, his stutter lengthened the song to the point the audience got tired of listening to him.
Jimmy is friends with Timmy Burch (voiced by Trey Parker), another disabled youth with a strange combination of palsy and Tourette syndrome. They first met as adversaries in “Cripple Fight!” as members of Mountain Scouts (Troop Number 69) but have since become buddies.
Jimmy and Timmy interact with Stan Marsh, Kyle Broflovski, Eric Cartman and Kenny McCormick – four local boys who attend South Park Elementary.
Honoria (mentioned but never seen), the sister of Charles Emerson Winchester III (David Ogden Stiers), a snobbish, pompous Harvard educated physician from the City of Boston, Massachusetts.
During his reluctant tour of duty as a surgeon at the 4077th Mobile Army Surgical Hospital during the Korean War, Winchester communicated via tape recorded letters with his sister, Honoria who was afflicted speech impediment (stuttering).
Episodes dealing with Charles’ sister, Honoria and the topic of stuttering:
- “Dr. Winchester and Mr. Hyde” (February 27, 1978): Winchester mentions that his sister Honoria (pronounced ah-NOR-ee-uh) ran off and married a farmer. In the very next episode “Major Topper” Winchester says he attended his sister’s wedding.
- “Bottle Fatigue” (January 2, 1980): Honoria sends a letter announcing she is engaged to an Italian man. Charles is furious that his sister might marry a man from a lower social class.
- “Picture This” (April 5, 1982): Corporal Klinger overhears Winchester recording a letter to his sister Honoria, scheming to drive B.J. out of the “Swamp” (tent) so he can have the place to himself.
- “Run for the Money” (December 20, 1982): Charles helps Private Walter Palmer (Phil Brock) who stutters. When Winchester discovers that Captain Sweeney (Thomas Callaway) had mocked Pvt. Palmer in front of everyone, he takes him outside, and says, “Captain Sweeney, if you say one more unkind word to Private Palmer, I will personally write up a report detailing your inhumanity, and I will have it placed in your 201 file, where it will follow you for the rest of your career. IS THAT CLEAR?” (Sweeney answers “Yes, sir.”) Later, Winchester returns to his tent and listens to a tape recorded letter from his sister that arrived in the mail. Her stuttering is heard.
Note: Actor David Ogden Stiers stuttered from childhood until he took up acting. It was acting that cured him. As he said, “I didn’t stutter when the lines were written for me…Without lines to read was another story. One day, I noticed that I wasn’t stuttering anymore, with or without lines. I overcame it by not giving up, by continuing to play roles, and by overcoming my fear of saying something wrong, or sounding stupid.”
See also: M*A*S*H
SEARCH FOR TOMORROW/CBS/1951-1985 (Mute)
Wilbur Peabody (Don Knotts), a man from the town of Henderson who became mute from shock when he almost killed his foster father during the 1954 run of this popular soap opera.
Eventually, Wilbur reenacted the scene, regained his voice and was written out of the script.
Actor Don Knotts is best remembered as the bumbling, hypertensive deputy living in Mayberry, North Carolina on the rural comedy THE ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW/CBS/1960-68.
JESSE/NBC/1998-2000 (Refused to talk)
John “Junior” Warner (John Lehr), a deep-thinking auto mechanic from Buffalo, New York who refuses to talk “until he can find a more efficient use of the language.” He broke his silence, later in the series.
John’s sister, Jesse Warner (Christian Applegate) is a single mother with a young boy who works as a waitress at her father’s German-themed restaurant.
DOLPHIN COVE/CBS/1989 (Mute)
Katie Larson (Karron Graves) , the daughter of Michael Larson (Frank Converse) who moved to Queensland, Australia to conduct research on dolphins.
Michael’s daughter hasn’t spoken since her mother’s death. Sessions with her therapist have produced little results (she hates her therapist), but Karen soon finds solace when she learns to communicate and speak with the dolphins.
THE ADVENTURES OF SINBAD THE SAILOR/UPN/1996 (Mute)
Rongar (Oris Orhuero), a black, knife-throwing mute sailor who accompanied Sinbad the Sailor on his ancient mid-eastern voyages.
His tongue was cut out when he refused to betray his brother.
CONAN: THE ADVENTURER/SYN/1997-98 (Mute)
Zzeben (Robert McRay) a bald, mute gladiator/wrestler companion of the mighty warrior Conan the Barbarian (Ralf Moeller) who traveled the ancient world of Cimmeria in search of adventure. Zzeben wields a staff and communicates with sign language.
Other members of the team were Otli (Danny Woodburn/costar), a clever dwarf; Bayu, a black warrior with martial arts skills; and Karella, “Queen of Thieves”(Aly Dunne).
See also: Conan the Adventurer
87TH PRECINCT/NBC/1961-62 (Deaf Mute)
Teddy Carella (Gina Rowlands/costar), the deaf mute wife of New York police detective, Steve Carella (Robert Lansing). Some critics called her performance “magical.”
The characters were based on the novel “Cop Haters” (1956) written by Ed McBain.
See also: 87th Precinct (2)