Adventures in Paradise is an American sitcom created by James Michener, who also wrote the screenplay. It was one of the first shows to focus on the concept of going to a tropical island paradise. It featured a series of short stories that took place on the fictitious island of Paradise. The characters included Frank, a retired Army vet who travels to the island with his friend Harry, and his wife, Beth. They are joined by their friend Bob, who is a partier.
Adventures in Paradise was one of the earliest series created by ABC during the early 1960s. It was a spin-off of the popular Situational Show called “The X Files”. According to the plot, several members of the audience have disappeared and it is up to the law enforcement agents, Bob and Holly, to search for the missing people. The series became very popular and lasted for eleven seasons.
After the series developed, there were two more seasons which starred John Candy and Don Knotts. The primary story revolves around the adventures of the main characters while they travel to various islands and assist in stopping criminal activities. Season one featured Holly Flowers, played by Joanna Berry, who is a resident of Paradise and is active in community affairs; she is the mother of Frank and tries to keep the peace between the various groups of people that live on the island.
Her best friend is Bob, played by John Candy. She and Bob travel on vacation to the west coast of California, where they meet a native American named Virgil. At the beginning of the first season, Holly notices that Virgil has some sort of supernatural powers and tries to talk him into using his talents for a good cause, such as saving animals or finding a cure for cancer. After convincing him, Virgil flees to England, where he becomes a well-known author, but he returns to California with an ulcer.
Hiring the services of a local actress Aprilicelli to play the role of Holly Flowers in the second season, the show gained popularity in the United States. Her performance earned her four Golden Globe Awards including Best Actress in a Supporting Role, Best Actress in a Comedy Series, Best Director for a Feature Film, and a Screenplay Oscar. Aprilicelli also had smaller films, such as A Midsummer Night’s Dream and The Heartbreak Kid. Her other notable films include Invictus, Meet the Parents and Edward Scissorhands.
After leaving Hollywood, Aprilicelli decided to make a film in England, entitled The Perils of Pompeii. She wrote and directed this film, which was released in March of the same year as the first episode of the television program Saturday Night Live. The film chronicled the rise of a British tank crew into World War II, as the country entered the war on the side of the Germans. The plot involved a group of teenage soldiers who were evacuated from their hometowns and shipped to a British camp in the Pacific Islands. This group of people would later become known as Sonderkund soldiers.
Aprilicelli returned to Hollywood and worked on several more films including A Boy. She also appeared in the television movie Band of Brothers. Finally, she received the chance to star in her own episode of Star Trek: The Original Series, “Amok Time.” She played the character of Ezhael on that series, who was an Arab-Armenian science officer. After the series ended, she appeared in a number of movies and TV shows in the mid-seventies and the eighties, such as Come As You Are, Come Here Marl, and Take Me Out to Dinner.
There is no doubt that Cats of Paradise was not the first African-American television show to feature an all-white cast. However, it certainly was one of the last. It is interesting to note that all four episodes of the second season of The Carol Burnett Show featured completely diverse casts. This also contributes to the notion that perhaps the concept of “anyone, anytime” holiday really did make a lot of sense. So, if you have not seen the series, try it out; you just might find yourself falling in love all over again.