CYRANO DE BERGERAC
AS SEEN IN:
AS PLAYED BY:David Cannon
TV DIMENSION:The Land of Fiction
SOURCE MATERIAL:"Cyrano De Bergerac"
From Wikipedia:"Cyrano de Bergerac" is a play written in 1897 by Edmond Rostand. Although there was a real Cyrano de Bergerac, the play bears very scant resemblance to his life.
The entire play is written in verse, in rhyming couplets of 12 syllables per line, very close to the Alexandrine format, but the verses sometimes lack a caesura. It is also meticulously researched, down to the names of the members of the Académie française and the dames précieuses glimpsed before the performance in the first scene.
The play has been translated and performed many times, and is responsible for introducing the word "panache" into the English language.
Hercule Savinien Cyrano de Bergerac, a cadet (nobleman serving as a soldier) in the French Army, is a brash, strong-willed man of many talents. In addition to being a remarkable duelist, he is a gifted, joyful poet and is also shown to be a musician. However, he has an extremely large nose, which is the reason for his own self-doubt. This doubt prevents him from expressing his love for his distant cousin, the beautiful and intellectual heiress Roxane, as he believes that his ugliness denies him the "dream of being loved by even an ugly woman."
The first English-language adaptation to be televised was made in 1938 by the BBC and starred Leslie Banks in one of the earliest live television broadcasts.
José Ferrer played Cyrano in two television productions, for 'The Philco Television Playhouse' in 1949 and 'Producers' Showcase' in 1953, winning Emmy Award nominations for both presentations.
Ferrer would go on to voice a highly truncated cartoon version of the play for an episode of The 'ABC Afterschool Special' in 1974.
In 1964, 'The Famous Adventures of Mr. Magoo' presented a cartoon adaptation of "Cyrano".
Peter Donat played Cyrano with Marsha Mason as Roxanne in a 1972 PBS telecast that was based on a successful American Conservatory Theatre production using the Hooker translation.
A 'Brady Bunch' Episode, 1972, Season 4, Episode 5: "Cyrano de Brady" Peter wants desperately to break the ice with his pretty classmate, Kerry, but nerves get in the way. Greg hides in a bush and tells him things to say. But Kerry has been studying "Cyrano de Bergerac" at school and concludes that Greg is the one in love with her.
An episode of the BBC series 'Blackadder the Third' parodies the balcony scene of "Cyrano", although the actual episode has nothing to do with the play plotwise.
The 'Seinfeld' episode "The Soul Mate" appears to parody the balcony scene of "Cyrano" as Kramer attempts to win over Jerry's girlfriend Pam with Newman supplying the poetry.
In the 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' episode "The Nth Degree", Dr. Crusher directs a version of this play with Lt. Barclay performing the lead role.
In addition, the 'Star Trek: Deep Space Nine' episode "Looking for par'Mach in All the Wrong Places", is inspired by "Cyrano", but with a completely different ending.
In an installment of "Monsterpiece Theater" on the children's show 'Sesame Street', there is a character named "Cyranose", who substitutes a sword with, appropriately, his exaggeratedly long nose. He has a very hot temper and goes ballistic, swinging his nose in blind rage, every time someone says the word "nose", as he automatically believes they are ridiculing him.
In the 'Roseanne' episode titled "Communicable Theater", Jackie, while going through a phase of appreciation to fine arts, is assigned to be Roxanne's understudy while playing a minor character in the show, and then has to play Roxanne having not studied the lines when her performer catches the flu.
The January 1995 episode of 'Boy Meets World' entitled "Cyrano" takes the play as its plot and involves two characters winning a girl secretly for another boy.
On the PBS show 'Wishbone', it was the story featured in the episode "Cyranose".
In 'All Dogs Go to Heaven: The Series', Itchy enlists Charlie to help him win over a pretty Cocker Spaniel named Bess (who ends up briefly thinking that Charlie's the one in love with her) in the episode "Cyrano de Barkinac".
In Season Seven of 'Sabrina, the Teenage Witch', when Sabrina had troubles saying she loved her boyfriend, Aaron, she conjured her own personal Cyrano, named Sarah. The episode was appropriately titled, "Getting to Nose You."
In the French anime show 'Code Lyoko' the Lyoko gang acts out part of this play at the beginning and end of the episode, "Temporary Insanity".
In 'Futurama', the popular animated series produced by Matt Groening, Fry, the main character, helps his alien friend, Dr. Zoidberg, seduce a beautiful girl of his species
'The Simpsons' episode, "My Big Fat Geek Wedding" (2004), alludes to the play when Homer, acting as a modern day Cyrano, attempts to help Principal Skinner gain back Ms. Krabappel's affections.
From the source material:
FIRST MARQUIS: Who is this Cyrano?
CUIGY: A fellow well skilled in all tricks of fence.
SECOND MARQUIS: Is he of noble birth?
CUIGY: Ay, noble enough. He is a cadet in the Guards. But 'tis his friend Le Bret, yonder, who can best tell you. Le Bret! Seek you for De Bergerac?
LE BRET: Ay, I am uneasy. . .
CUIGY: Is it not true that he is the strangest of men?
LE BRET: True, that he is the choicest of earthly beings!
LE BRET: Musician!
LIGNIERE: And of how fantastic a presence!
RAGENEAU: Marry, 'twould puzzle even our grim painter Philippe de Champaigne to portray him! Methinks, whimsical, wild, comical as he is, only Jacques Callot, now dead and gone, had succeeded better, and had made of him the maddest fighter of all his visored crew--with his triple-plumed beaver and six-pointed doublet--the sword-point sticking up 'neath his mantle like an insolent cocktail! He's prouder than all the fierce Artabans of whom Gascony has ever been and will ever be the prolific Alma Mater! Above his Toby ruff he carries a nose!--ah, good my lords, what a nose is his! When one sees it one is fain to cry aloud, 'Nay! 'tis too much! He plays a joke on us!' Then one laughs, says 'He will anon take it off.' But no! Monsieur de Bergerac always keeps it on.
LE BRET: He keeps it on--and cleaves in two any man who dares remark on it!