Doogie Howser, M.D. star Neil Patrick Harris pays tribute to Steven Bochco

Doogie HowserThere are so many different tributes out there across the internet to television icon Steven Bochco, but one of the most interesting to us comes via Neil Patrick Harris. While Bochco is known mostly for his work within the realm of crime TV, one of his forays into medicine just turned out to be one of the most famous shows of its era: Doogie Howser, M.D. This is a series that effectively launched the career of Harris as a child doctor; it aired for four seasons on ABC and was also co-created by another television icon in David E. Kelley, who is now working on HBO’s Big Little Lies.

Following the news of Bochco’s passing on Sunday, here is what Harris had to say on his Twitter account:

I’m terribly saddened by the news that Steven Bochco passed away yesterday. He was a true game changer in television. His work ethic shaped mine, his words of wisdom stick with me to this day. I’m so proud of Doogie Howser, mostly for being a Bochco show.

While Doogie Howser, M.D. isn’t always referenced as much as some of Bochco’s other shows, it’s had a rather big cult following over time for just being fun, lighthearted television that brought in an actor the TV world wasn’t that familiar with beforehand. Harris has also spoofed Doogie a few times since the show’s conclusion, but always in a loving way where he embraced the character and some of the humor that came with being a child doctor on TV.

Overall, though, Harris’ tribute is just one of hundreds from actors who feel like Bochco helped to launch their entire career. There are so many people, including Blair Underwood and Debra Messing, who have said that he offered them up some of their first jobs working in this business. They all recognize his place on TV history, which is understated in that he helped to really prove that this medium could be dark, gritty, and complex in the same way that movies are.

You can read more about Bochco’s passing over at the link here. Our thoughts and condolences go out to all who knew him. (Photo: ABC.)

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