Eight is Enough

Season 5 Episode 16

The Best Little Telethon in Sacramento

Aired Unknown Mar 28, 1981 on ABC

Episode Recap

Jeremy wants to manage Tommy's band and tries to get him a gig. He begs Joanie to get Tommy Bradford And The Action on the telethon, but doesn't like the idea of playing for free. At school, he meets Kathy, who's head of the ecology club. She wants a band to perform at her function. When Tommy finds out what Jeremy did, he tells him to stop managing his career.

Joanie is chosen to organize a charity telethon (Unified Charities) and tries to get celebrities to appear on the show. Failing to do so, Mr. Kopell then decides to have local Sacramento stars perform on the telethon. So she recruits the family. Nancy and Nicholas want to get into the act (ala Lucy Ricardo), but Joanie (ala Ricky) rejects them because they lack professionalism.

David gets a new roommate to save money on the rent. But he ends up getting not only the roommate, but her mother as well.
On the telethon, Tommy and The Action perform. When phones start to ring, it turns out teenage girls call up liking Tommy, but don't pledge. Mr. Kopell orders Joanie to drop Tommy off the show. Very few calls happen while Elizabeth does a jazz dance, Abby does a song she wrote and David performs one of his coffee house songs. After all the other acts are afraid to go on, that leaves Nancy and Nicholas to save the day. Nicholas makes a speech, encouraging people to pledge for needy children. Then in formal wear, Nancy and Nicholas perform "Me And My Shadow". Real people call in for pledges at that point. When they were finished, Mr. Kopell and Joannie go back stage and asked if they would do an encore. However, they had to talk to their manager, Jeremy. Jeremy tells them they can do another number if Tommy and The Action can do another number (which they did).