Monroe gets homegrown sitcom

Monroe Public Access Cable TV (MPACT) will be airing its first home-grown comedic sitcom on Tuesday Sept. 28 at 9 p.m.

The cast and crew of this bi-monthly television show, appropriately named Public Access, are made up of some familiar faces to Monroe County Community College.

One of MCCC’s own English professors, Dr. Bill McCloskey, plays a leading role. Many of the 30 cast and crew members are MCCC alumni or current students, so Dr. McCloskey has some of his fellow cast members in class.

Patrick Dunn, 21 of Monroe, is the director, producer, writer, and also plays a leading role in the show. This show is Dunn’s brainchild that was put into motion all the way back in the winter of 2009.

“It’s definitely been in the works for a long time,” said Dunn.

The plot is based on a fictional college student named Mark Murdock, played by Dunn. Mark is a new and naive intern at his local public access television station. The fictional television station, called NVENT, is set in the town of Ventnor, somewhere in the Midwest.

Dr. McCloskey plays the drill sergeant director of NVENT named Perry Newhart.

“He’s a hard-ass with a soft side to him. He’s the type of boss that likes to put the fear of God in people,” said McCloskey.

“It’s a very extreme character that requires him to be absolutely crazy. Bill did not hold back at all,” said Dunn about McCloskey’s performance.

Carrie the studio secretary, played by Felicity Baker, is a lusty love interest of Mark’s throughout the show.

Jess, played by MCCC student Mackenzie Maxwell, is an experienced intern who spits out words of sarcasm, especially at super hyperactive intern Dick Stoner, played by Chris Slat.

Dunn got inspiration for Public Access from NBC’s, The Office. Both are filmed in the same documentary style, which incorporates a handheld camera.

He has done some work with MPACT channel in the past. This experience allowed him to portray the behind the scenes life of a local television station, but with a humorous slant.

“It’s a real experience working with these unique, interesting, and sometimes crazy people of the local T.V. industry,” said Dunn.

The cast and crew filmed almost the entire season of Public Access at MPACT studio. MPACT also provided the equipment to do the actual filming. Dunn hired a professional to do the editing of the show.

Public Access will air its first show on the 28th of this month at 9:00 p.m. It is on Charter Cable channel 95 and Comcast channel 21 and 916.

The half hour episodes can also be viewed online at facebook.com/publicaccess1