Family Ties

Trivia, Quotes, Notes and Allusions

Quotes (187)

  • Steven (about Alex): I haven't seen him this excited since Reagan got elected.

  • Steven (to Elyse): Do you think maybe he was switched at birth and the Rockefellers have our kid?

  • Elyse: Alex, maybe you're getting a little carried away here. I mean, if Kimberly doesn't like you or your family for who they are, then maybe she isn't worth caring about at all, don't you think? Alex: Are you going to wear your hair like that, or are you going to put it up?

  • Mallory: (witnessing her parents kissing in the kitchen) You guys have been married for a long time. Haven't you had enough?

  • Alex: How do I look? Steven: Middle-aged. Alex: Dad, recent studies show, that you can predict success by the way a person dresses. Steven: Alex, you're a young man. You shouldn't be worried about success. You should be thinking about hopping on a steam trainer, and going around the world, or putting a pack on your back and heading down to Mexico, South America, or anywhere. Alex: The 1960's are over Dad. Steven: Thanks for the tip.

  • Alex: (wildly jealous about Stephanie's boyfriend) He's eating the groceries that I delivered!

  • Steven: Mallory, reading is one of the great joys of life. When you were young you used to read all the time. What happened? Mallory: I discovered shopping.

  • Alex: I've always thought immaturity was rather childish.

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Notes (106)

  • This four-part episode was not taped before a live studio audience.

  • This four-part episode was originally a two-hour TV movie.

  • Justine Bateman has shorter hair throughout Season 4.

  • The opening credits feature the family looking at a scrapbook.

  • Matthew Broderick was the first choice to play Alex P. Keaton, but turned it down because of a family crisis; he didn't want to move from New York to California while his father (actor James Broderick) was dying of cancer in the former state.

  • Jeremy Schoenberg lent his voice to THE CHARLIE BROWN AND SNOOPY SHOW, as "Linus Van Pelt." Another regular on that series was Stacy "Fergie" Ferguson...who later soared to fame with the singing groups Wild Orchid and, later, Black-Eyed Peas. (She remains best-known, however, as the longest-staying-ever cast member of KIDS INCORPORATED.)

  • This episode, Johnny Mathis and Deniese Williams sing the Theme Song.

  • This is the first time and only time we meet Steven's father.

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Trivia (87)

  • Steven enters a private country club wearing a flannel shirt and a baseball jacket, and walks right over to Alex's table. It seems highly unlikely that such an exclusive venue would allow him full access, especially as a non-member, dressed in such a way.

  • Steven reveals in this episode that the family car is a Volvo.

  • The song Steven has playing in the living room is a protest song called "Days of Decision" by folk singer Phil Ochs.

  • Elyse suggested to Steven that a romantic evening would include Johnny Mathis records. Johnny Mathis occasionally sings the Theme Song with Deniese Williams.

  • At the Carlton Country Club, a waiter offers Steven an hors d'oeurve called "rumaki," and Steven requests some without liver. Essential ingredients of rumaki include water chestnuts and chicken liver, wrapped in bacon.

  • During the father-son reconciliation scene, Steven compares his unusual relationship with Alex to the relationship he had with his own father, Jake. Grandfather Jake will be introduced and featured in Episode #5, I Never Killed for My Father.

  • In this episode we learn that Jennifer is 9 years old, Alex is 17 years old.

  • The Keatons were married 20 years ago. They will celebrate their 20th anniversary again, five years later, in episode #142, The Anniversary Waltz.

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Allusions (61)

  • Elyse and Jennifer saw many adoring qualities in Justin. But Jennifer made it clear that "he's no Alan Alda." Alan Alda was the star of M*A*S*H, a long-running show that was in it's finale season when this episode aired.

  • When Steven "confuses" Elyse with Sandra Dee, Elyse calls Steven "Moondoggie," alluding to Sandra Dee's co-star, James Darren who played Moondoggie in the 1959 movie Gidget, and two other Gidget movies. Steven responded by addressing Elyse as "Gidge."

  • As the Keatons prepare for guests to arrive, Elyse is dressed in a '50's style skirt, prompting Steven to "confuse" her with Sandra Dee. Sandra Dee is a '50's movie star - vaguely resembling Meredith Baxter Birney - who is best known for the title role in the 1959 movie Gidget.

  • Alex appears in the nifty fifties party wearing a leather jacket, prompting Steven to call him "Fonzie." Fonzie is Arthur Fonzerelli, a whose leather jacket became legendary in the long-running sit-com Happy Days, which was still popular when this episode aired.

  • Elyse likened negotiating the boys and girls to agree to dance together to the SALT talks. SALT II (the second round of the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks/Treaty, 1972-79) featured the United States and the Soviet Union negotiating to discontinue nuclear weapons.

  • The morning after spending the night with Stephanie, Alex is seen wearing a robe, smoking a pipe, and humming the words to Let's Do It, a 1938 song made popular by Cole Porter.

  • The title alludes to the 1971 movie Summer of '42, where a young man falls in love with a woman whose husband has gone to war.

  • In an Allusion within an Allusion, Steven assures Elyse that Jake will like light beer, for Bubba Smith and Dick Butkus like light beer. Bubba Smith and Dick Butkus co-starred in one of Miller Light's "less filling/tastes great" commercials, a series that Steven and Jake will parody a few moments later.

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