Meet My New TV Hero

Robert EbsenNewsLeave a Comment

TV shows and movies starring superheroes are fine, but they are not my cup of tea.


I mean, didn’t you expect the bullets to bounce off Superman?


Wasn’t it a foregone conclusion that Wonder Woman would defeat 12 armed attackers?


I enjoy watching heroes who are more like me – quirky and unassuming, with a savant flare for visual memory skill, and perhaps a touch of autism.


So when I viewed the pilot this week for the new TV series, The Good Doctor, I was in heaven again.


Shaun Murphy, the Good Doctor, has high functioning autism and savant syndrome. The young, and good, autistic doctor solves medical mysteries because of his autistic sensitivities and memory.


He is a hero because his special talent not only gives him savant capabilities, but also the ability to be gracefully candid with others.


The Good Doctor now joins the ranks of my other three favorite TV heroes.


Frank Columbo is the outstanding detective from the show, Columbo.


Columbo solved crimes in spite of, and because of, his extremely humble and bumbling behaviors. The show ran from 1971 to 1978.  There were 69 episodes.


BTW, we figured out Columbo’s first name in a 1971 episode where he flashes his detective badge.


Adrian Monk is the outstanding detective from the show, Monk.  Monk solves crimes in spite of, and often because of his obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), fears,

and phobias.  The show ran from 2002 to 2009.  There have been 125 episodes.


Mike Ross, who finally became a lawyer this past season of Suits, uses his photographic memory to adjudicate legal cases with amazing skill.  Suits premiered in 2011. He still is going strong.  There have been 102 episodes as of Sept. 17.


We all have special talents.  It is just that the talents of my four TV heroes are somewhat exaggerated.  All behavior lies on a continuum.  And we all experience, at least from time to time, a bit of bumbling, OCD, sharpened memory, and/or autistic behaviors.


So let us celebrate the lives of these four fictional characters by looking within ourselves. Let us search for those behaviors, which not only are our strong points, but also allow us to communicate better with each other.  We may not be detectives, lawyers or doctors, but our skill sets are uniquely designed by our creator for the good.


Rabbi Israel Meir Kagan took his name The Chofetz Chaim, from Psalm 34: 

“What man is he that desires life, and loves many days, that he may see good?”


Mr. Ebsen may be contacted at

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