Is Hank Devereaux Based on a Real Professor? Is Railton a Real College?
The AMC series “Lucky Hank” tells the story of William Henry Devereaux, Jr., an English professor at Railton College. Hank is disliked not only by his students, but also by his fellow professors, who team up to force the former to leave the institution because he describes himself as “mediocre”. Hank also grapples with challenges that arise in his personal life, as his father and renowned professor William Henry Devereaux turns to him for support. With the comedy’s nuanced portrayal of Hank’s life in Railton, viewers must wonder if the professor and university have real-life counterparts. Here’s what we know!
Is Hank Devereaux based on a real professor?
Hank Devereaux is based in part on a real professor. “Lucky Hank” is based on the novel “Straight Men” by Richard Russell. Russo drew inspiration for the novel from her life as an English professor in the 1990s. The author, like Hank, has taught English at several prestigious educational institutions in Illinois, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, and Maine. While Hank isn’t exactly Russo’s fictional counterpart, the latter’s experiences form the basis for the former’s life in both the novel and the series. Some of Russo’s observations are incorporated into the character.
“Heterosexuality is the easiest book I’ve written, and it’s also the funnest. Part of the reason it’s funniest is because it’s the easiest,” Russo said in an interview with Eastern Washington University. willow spring”Hank was suffering, trying to get through that rock, and a middle-aged misery, he probably lost his wife, something was wrong with his daughter. That’s not to say there’s nothing at stake, but those I’ve stored for years academic absurdity,” the authors added. Hank’s interactions with his colleagues are an integral part of the series.Several of these colleagues are based in part on Russo’s colleagues in the late 20th centuryday century.
Like Hank, Russo had to put up with a dean struggling to make ends meet while working at a Pennsylvania institution on a tight budget. Hank’s tolerance of Emma Wheemer’s eccentricities can be compared to Russo’s experiences at an agency in Maine with a colleague who is Wheemer’s real-life counterpart. Russo also envisions Hank exploring the nuances of life as a tenured professor, which applies to several professors around the world. This ubiquity of Hank had a huge appeal to co-developer Paul Lieberstein. “I love this idea of tenure, like the way you get caught up in success. It makes people behave really badly,” Lieberstein said of what drew him to the novel, according to pack.
Is Railton College a real college?
No, Railton College isn’t really a college. The college is the television counterpart to the fictional Midwestern University of Pennsylvania, where Hank taught English in Russo’s series of original novels. The town of Railton, where the college is located, is also fictional. Still, Railton College can be seen as a combination of the four real educational institutions where Russo taught English: Southern Illinois University Carbondale, Southern Connecticut State University, Penn State Altoona, and Colby College . The “academic absurdity” that Russo witnessed at these institutions really inspired him to conceive of Railton College and how it would operate.
Russo met Dean Rose of Railton at Penn State Altoona in Logantown, Pennsylvania, and Emma Wheemer of Colby College in Waterville, Maine, and was the inspiration behind it. Russo taught at Penn State Altoona on a limited budget, similar to how Railton operates in the show. While these four institutions are the inspiration behind Railton, Hank’s English department in the series is somewhat similar to any English department in the world, making the novel and series relatable. Russo’s novel and its adaptations attempt to paint a brutally honest picture of life in any mediocre educational institution in the country, exploring the conflicts that arise in fictional and real institutions.
read more: Is Lucky Hank based on a true story?