• 21
    The Flintstones

    The Flintstones

    ABC (ended 2001)
    The Flintstones was a parody on modern suburban life, set in the Stone Age. The characters in the cartoon series all behaved and spoke in a contemporary manner, though they lived in the prehistoric city of Bedrock. Fred worked as operator of a dinosaur-powered crane at Rock Hard & Quarry Cave Construction Co. (slogan: "Own Your Own Cave and Be Secure"). Around their split-level cave the Flintstones enjoyed such conveniences as Wilma's Stoneway piano, a hi-fi on which Fred could play his "rock" music (it consisted of a turntable and a bird with a long beak to serve as a needle), a vacuum cleaner (a baby elephant with a long trunk), and an automatic garbage disposal unit (a famished buzzard stashed under the sink). Their car, which sported tail fins, also came equipped with steamroller wheels--to smooth out the rocky road. Then one day in 1963 they were blessed with a baby daughter, whom they named Pebbles. Not to be outdone, their neighbors the Rubbles adopted an orphan boy named Bamm Bamm. (The two kids later had a Saturday morning cartoon series of their own, Pebbles and Bamm Bamm.) The Flintstones was always as much adult satire as children's fun. In many respects it resembled Jackie Gleason's popular Honeymooners, especially in the relationships of the principals. A wide range of caricatures passed through the stories: Lollobrickida, a pretty cook; Ann-Margrock, whose voice was supplied by Ann-Margret; attorney Perry Masonry (he never lost a case); Ed Sullystone, a TV host; Eppy Brianstone, a teenage impresario; and Weirdly and Creepella Gruesome, the strange couple who with their son Goblin moved into a cave nearby (this was a parody on The Addams Family and The Munsters, then popular). The Gruesomes thought that they were normal, and everyone else in Bedrock was odd. The Flintstones and its spin-offs had a highly successful run on Saturday mornings--on NBC from January 1967-September 1970, on CBS from September 1972-January 1974, back on NBC from February 1979-September 1984, and on ABC with The Flintstone Kids from September 1986-September 1989. This series has also many movies and specials (about 10 specials). Some of them are:"A Flintstones Christmas Carol", a flintstones version of the famous Charles Dickens book, "A Flintstones Christmas" where Fred replaces Santa Claus (Pebbles and Bamm Bamm are speaking now), "I Yabba Dabba Do" where Pebbles and Bamm Bamm are grown up and get married, and "Holly-Rock-a-bye Baby" where Pebbles gives birth.moreless
  • 22
    McHale's Navy

    McHale's Navy

    ABC (ended 1966)
    A Lively, Light-Hearted Romp Through The Pacific Theater Of Operations –

    An experienced South Pacific sea dog, by the name of Quinton McHale, was commissioned as a Lieutenant Commander into the U.S. Navy Reserve, at the start of World War II, and made the Skipper of the Torpedo Patrol (PT) Boat #73, stationed at the U.S. Naval Installation on the island of Taratupa, in the Southwest Pacific. Assigned to his command were 6 free-spirited, good-hearted Swabbies who loved to have fun, but who – Though they usually ignored Navy regulations – Did their jobs, and did them well, when duty called. The 73 'Family' included, among others, a con man and amateur Magician, a womanizing hunk, a dedicated Family man, a guitar-picking, moonshine-making Tennessee good ol' boy, and even a deserter from the Japanese Navy, who was an excellent cook. Second in command, was Ensign Charles Parker, a young spit-and-polish, by-the-book Officer from Chagrin Falls Ohio, who was somewhat of a klutz, but who always managed to come out on top of a situation, usually with the help of McHale and The Crew.

    McHale and his men were under the command of Base Commander Captain Wallace B. Binghamton (Known as 'Old Leadbottom' to McHale and his men), in whose side, McHale and his Crew were a constant thorn. Most episodes centered around Binghamton's trying to find way to get rid of McHale and his rule-bending 'Pirates' (One would be hard-pressed to see an episode of this series without the military term 'Court Martial' being mentioned, at least once), with McHale and his fun-loving 'Eightballs' scheming to keep Binghamton from doing so, their exemplary performance in battle, more times than not, getting them out troublesome situations.

    McHale's Navy was first presented a straight action drama, on ABC's Alcoa Premiere anthology series, in April of 1962. The pilot episode – Entitled Seven Against The Sea – Found enough of an audience that it was converted to a comedy series, which premiered on the ABC Television Network on the evening of Thursday, October 11th 1962, at 9:30 p.m. EST. It got off to somewhat of a slow start, opposite NBC's popular Hazel, but held it's own, and gained a small following. It cracked the top 25 in it's 2nd season ('63/'64), on Tuesday nights, in the 8:30 time-slot, with a strong lead-in from ABC's Combat, landing at #23, with a Nielsen rating of 22.8. But, from that point on, it was all uphill for McHale. In it's 3rd ('64/'65) & 4th ('65/'66) seasons, in a losing battle with CBS's powerhouse Red Skelton Hour, it was soon on it's way out. An attempt to boost it's sagging ratings, by moving McHale, his Crew, and Captain Binghamton to a base in Italy, in it's 4th and final season, proved to do more harm than good, and resulted in the cancellation of the series, in 1966.

    The series was popular enough with the public to prompt the production of two full-length theatrical-release motion pictures, during it's run. McHale's Navy, released by Universal Pictures in June of 1964, featured all the regular cast members from the series, and McHale's Navy Joins The Air Force, in July of '65, this one sans Borgnine. Both were 90-minute extended episodes of the series, and mildly popular, at best. A 1997 big-budget movie, based on the series, and with Tom Arnold as McHale, was a total flop. All three are available on VHS or DVD.

    Lately, it's been tough to catch McHale's Navy on TV. Programming Managers don't seem to realize just how many loyal fans the show still has, and just how many new fans the show would doubtless make, were more people allowed to experience it. However – McHale fans, rejoice! – Shout! Factory came to the rescue, and began releasing McHale's Navy, on DVD, in boxed sets, beginning on March 20th, 2007, with Season 1. Season 2 was released on September 11th, 2007, Season 3, on March 18th, 2008, and Season 4, on November 18th, '08.

    With a highly talented cast including Academy Award® winner Ernest Borgnine, comic genius Tim Conway, the one-of-a-kind comic talent of Joe Flynn, and a solid supporting cast, McHale's Navy was – And is – TV comedy at it's very finest.moreless
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    ABC (ended 1997)
    Roseanne was one of the most successful series of the late '80s and early '90s. It always received great ratings and was awarded with 4 Emmys, 3 Golden Globes, 4 American Comedy Awards and a Peabody. The show ran from 1988 to 1997 and ended with one of the most original (and confusing for some) endings in TV history.

    Set in small town Lanford Illinois, the show followed The Conners, a blue collar family with a humerous backbone, through the trials of: life, marriage, raising a family, and making ends meet. ABC Broadcasting Schedule October 1988-February 1989.....Tuesday 8:30-9:00 February 1989-September 1994......Tuesday 9:00-9:30 September 1994-March 1995......Wednesday 9:00-9:30 March 1995-May 1995......Wednesday 8:00-8:30 May 1995-September 1995......Wednesday 9:30-10:00 September 1995-May 1997......Wednesday 8:00-8:30moreless
  • 24
    Spin City

    Spin City

    ABC (ended 2002)
    A talented cast provide a sophisticated ensemble comedy, filmed entirely in New York City. Michael Flaherty (Michael J. Fox, Back To The Future), Deputy Mayor and right-hand man to Mayor Randall Winston (Barry Bostwick, I'll Take Manhattan), expertly keeps his co-workers and City Hall under complete control while his personal life often spins completely out of control. With a staff of wildly diverse characters consisting of a neurotic press secretary, a gay activist in charge of minority affairs, a chauvinist chief of staff, a highly efficient accountant, an idealistic speechwriter and an intrepid Mayor's assistant, it's hard to believe anything gets done. After four successful, and hilarious, years, Michael J. Fox left Spin City. And was replaced by Charlie Sheen who played Charlie Crawford (Charlie Sheen, Two and a Half Men), the new, charismatic deputy mayor of New York City. The show's final season was simulcast in HDTV. Nielsen Ratings: #17 in 1996-1997 Season #47 in 1997-1998 Season #25 in 1998-1999 Season #33 in 1999-2000 Season #56 in 2000-2001 Season #66 in 2001-2002 Seasonmoreless
  • 25
    Leave It to Beaver

    Leave It to Beaver

    ABC (ended 1963)
    Leave It to Beaver portrayed the iconic postwar American family: June the perfect housewife, Ward the dad (what did he do for a living, anyway? And why did he always wear a suit to dinner?), big brother Wally, and of course Theodore ("The Beaver"), the good-hearted kid whose adventures propelled the show. Leave It to Beaver debuted in October of 1957 on CBS. In the fall of 1958, CBS dropped the series. ABC picked it up and ran it for an additional 5 years. Few people know that Leave it to Beaver was the first American television show broadcast behind the Iron Curtain -- perhaps part of the reason for so many references to God, Sunday School, Breaking Bread, etc. In several episodes, there are subtle references to the Soviet Union. In episode #31 ( New doctor ): Wally, has a model plane. Look close, it,s a Russian bomber. With, the red star decals. In episode #119 ( Beaver's House Guest ), the two boys are wearing their camp sweatshirts. With the name Camp Chekov on it. Propaganda? Maybe. What the average American family was like in the 1950's? I don't think so. What ever, I guess it worked. The series focuses on Theodore Cleaver (Beaver). Beaver (who was 7 when the series began) is your basic everyday little boy who had a knack of getting himself into trouble at every turn. His older brother Wally, is just entering his teen years and often wonders out loud how Beaver could be so dumb to get himself into stupid situations. (Examples: getting himself locked in the principals office, letting the bathtub overflow, letting the washing machine overflow, getting his head stuck in a fence at the park, constantly losing things (cats, change, etc.) His parents are your everyday 1950's parents, June and Ward Cleaver, who do their best to understand and support Beaver and Wally as they grew up. Other characters were mostly friends of Wally and Beaver. Wally's friends included Lumpy Rutherford and the two-faced Eddie Haskell. Eddie was courteous to June and Ward but when the grown ups weren't around he was a bully to Beaver and his friends. Beaver's friends include Whitey Whitney, Gilbert Gates/Bates/Harrison (inconsistent last name), Larry Mondello and Richard Rickover. Beaver's teachers, Miss Canfield and later Miss Landers were seen frequently as well as Lumpy's father, played by Richard Deacon known for his role on The Dick Van Dyke Show. While most people lump in Leave it to Beaver with other family sitcoms, such as Father Knows Best, and The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet, this series was truly an original, and very much ahead of its time. It showed the world through the eyes of a young boy, and sometimes dealt with rather controversial subjects. One episode ("Beaver and Andy") dealt frankly with the subject of alcoholism. Another episode ("Beaver's House Guest") showed how divorce can affect a child. In 1985, Leave It to Beaver was in a full blown revival after a 1983 reunion movie, Still the Beaver, when a spin-off series, with the title of the reunion movie, was proposed. It later begin airing in syndication under the title, The New Leave It to Beaver and starred all of the original cast members except Hugh Beaumont who died on May 14, 1982. First Telecast: October 4, 1957 Last Telecast: September 12, 1963 Episodes: 234 B&W Episodes +1 Unaired B&W Pilot Theme Song: "The Toy Parade" Written by: Melvyn Leonard, Mort Greene & Dave Kahn Spin-offs: The New Leave It to Beaver NOTE: All air dates have now been verified through TV Guide. CBS Broadcast History October 1957-March 1958----Fridays----7:30 p.m. March-September 1958----Wednesdays----8:00 p.m. ABC Broadcast History October 1958-June 1959----Thursdays----7:30 p.m. July-September 1959----Thursdays----9:00 p.m. October 1959-September 1962----Saturdays----8:30 p.m. September 1962-September 1963----Thursdays----8:30 p.m. Nielsen Ratings: (Top 30 or Better) Never hit the top 30moreless
  • 26
    The Goldbergs

    The Goldbergs

    ABC (Returning September 21, 2016)
    The Goldbergs are your typical '80s family, solving one problem at a time with family values, yelling and a complete disregard for political correctness.
  • 27
    Home Improvement

    Home Improvement

    ABC (ended 1999)
    Home Improvement is a sitcom about Tim Taylor, the accident prone host of a Detroit, Michigan television program about tools, who raises his dysfunctional family. Main Characters: Dr. Timothy "Tim" 'The Tool Man' Taylor is the accident prone host of Tool Time who teases his co-host Al. Jillian "Jill" Taylor is Tim's wife who wants to be a psychiatrist. Dr. Wilson Wilson, Jr. is the Taylors' strange neighbor who enjoys learning about other cultures and never shows his entire face. Albert "Al" Borland is Tim's flannel-wearing co-host. Heidi Keppert is the attractive Tool Time girl from season three through season eight, who is married with one child. Bradley "Brad" Michael Taylor is the Taylors' eldest son who is hoping for a soccer scholarship. Randall "Randy" William Taylor is the Taylors' middle child who is off at an environmental research study in Costa Rica. Mark Taylor is the youngest son who is frequently tortured by his older brothers. Tool Time: Tim's show themed around tools and cars. Tool Time aired between 1989 and 1999 with host Tim Taylor, assistant Al Borland and Toolgirl Heidi Keppert. Tool Time airs on Channel 112 every day @ 4:30. Tool Time can be seen on Channel 97 everyday @ 3:00 in Alpena,MI. Tool Time can be seen nationally via Comcast satellites! El Tiempo del instrumento se puede ver los sábados en 4:30 en el canal 97 Runtime: 30 min (204 episodes, 8 years) Glenview Road: The Taylors' and Wilson's street. Recurring Characters: Marty and Jeff Taylor are Tim's brothers. Lucille Taylor is his mother. Nancy is Marty's ex-wife. Claire and Gracie Taylor are Marty's twin daughters. Lisa is the attractive Tool Time girl in seasons one and two. Bud Harper is Tim's boss. Tim's friends include Harry, Benny Baroni, Eddie McCormack, and Felix Myman. Delores is Harry's wife. Marie Morton is the Taylors' neighbor and Jill's friend. Carrie is Jill's sister. Jill's other friends include Patty, Marge, and Karen. Lillian Patterson is Jill's mother. Willow Wilson is Wilson's niece. Dr. Ilene Markham is Al's girlfriend in seasons three through six. Trudy Borland is Al's girlfriend and wife in season eight. Jennifer Sudarsky is Brad's girlfriend in seasons one and two. Angela is Brad's girlfriend in seasons five and six. Jason is Brad's friend. Ronny is Mark's friend. Lauren is Randy's girlfriend in seasons six through eight. Rock Lannigan, Pete Bilker, and Dwayne Hoover are all construction workers for K&B Construction and frequent guests on Tool Time. Milton is a construction worker and frequent Tool Time guest. George "Sparky" Henderson is a mechanic and another frequent Tool Time guest. Antonio is a waiter at a restaurant frequently visited by the Taylors. Home Improvement Rating History •1991-92: Ranked 5th among All TV Programs (4th among non-news programs), First Season. •1992-93: Ranked 3rd among All TV Programs (2nd among non-news programs), Second Season. •1993-94: The #1 Non-News Program in the Nation, 2nd only to "60 Minutes", Third Season. •1994-95: Ranked 3rd among all TV Programs, Fourth Season. •1995-96: Ranked 7th among all TV programs, 5th-highest sitcom, Fifth Season. •1996-97: Ranked 9th among all TV programs, 7th-highest sitcom, Sixth Season. •1997-98: Ranked 11th among all TV programs, 6th-highest sitcom, Seventh Season. •1998-99; Ranked 10th among all TV programs, 5th-highest sitcom, 8th & Final Season. ABC Broadcast History •September 1991-August 1992---Tuesdays-8:30 p.m. •August 1992-September 1994---Wednesdays-9:00 p.m. •March 1994-May 1994---Wednesdays-8:00 p.m. •September 1994-May 1999---Tuesdays 9:00 p.m. Trivia for Home Improvement •The "Tool Time" audience is "Home Improvement"'s actual live studio audience. •While taping some episodes of Tool Time, Tim sometimes asks an unseen character Klaus to play music for Tool Time segments. Klaus Landsberg worked in the sound department on "Home Improvement". •Colleges and universities in Michigan sent star 'Allen, Tim' sweaters and T-shirts to wear on the air, and he did. •The name Binford Tools, the company that sponsor's the Tool Time show, is named after an anthropologist who made several new discoveries regarding stone age and tools. •There is a running gag regarding the Taylor's neighbor, Wilson; his face is always concealed from about the nose down. In most episodes, Wilson was being shot from behind a fence, but in later episodes where he got out more often, camera shots, actor movements, and prop placements were carefully orchestrated so that his full face was not revealed. In fact, during all the curtain calls for the show (except the series finale curtain call, where his entire face was shown), actor Earl Hindman, who played Wilson, would bring a miniature picket fence to hold in front of his face so that it would remain hidden from view. •The character Wilson is based on Tim Allen's childhood memories where he was too short to see over a fence, and was therefore unable to see his neighbor. •Originally, actress Frances Fisher was cast as Jill Taylor but was replaced with Patricia Richardson 4 days before the pilot episode was taped. •Richard Karn's wife, Tudi Roche, would occasionally make appearances on the show as Jill's sister Carrie. •The full names of the older two Taylor boys were Bradley Michael Taylor and Randall William Taylor. (Mark's full name isn't mentioned during the series.) •The label "WLS" was frequently used to cover up real corporate logos. WLS is the Chicago affiliate of ABC. •While meeting with Bud Harper, Tim is told "...Heidi tested better than Santa Claus." Tim Allen played Santa Claus in Santa Clause, The (1994). •As a running gag, whenever Tim enters the basement, he always bangs his head on a large pipe hanging overhead. •The character 'Tim Taylor' was ranked #20 in TV Guide's list of the "50 Greatest TV Dads of All Time" (20 June 2004 issue). Awards and Nominations •Won the 2000, 1999, 1998, 1997, 1996, 1995, 1994, 1993, and 1992 ASCAP Award for Top TV Series (Dan Foliart) •Won the 1999, 1998 and 1997 Emmy Award for Outstanding Lighting Direction (Electronic) for a Comedy Series (Donald A. Morgan - "Mark's Big Break" (1999) and "A Night To Dismember" (1998)) and nominated for the same award in 1997 (I Was A Teenage Taylor). •Won the 1996, 1995, 1994, 1993, and 1992 Emmy Award for Outstanding Individual Achievement in Lighting Direction (Electronic) for a Comedy Series (Donald A. Morgan - "Room Without a View" (1996), "My Dinner With Wilson" (1995), "Twas the Blight" (1994), "Bye Bye Birdie" (1993), and "Luck Be A Taylor Tonight" (1992)) •Nominated for the 1999 Emmy Award for Outstanding Music and Lyrics (Dan Foliart songs, "We've Got It All") •Nominated for the 1999, 1998, and 1997 Emmy Award for Outstanding Sound Mixing for a Comedy Series or a Special ("Love's Labor Lost, Part 1" (1999), "A Night To Dismember" (1998), and "Wilson's World" (1997)) •Nominated for the 1996, 1995, and 1994 Emmy Award for Outstanding Individual Achievement in Sound Mixing for a Comedy Series or a Special ("A Taylor Runs Through It" (1996), "Don't Tell Momma" (1995), and "5th Anniversary Show" (1994)) •Nominated for the 1999, 1998, 1996, 1995, 1994, and 1993 Emmy Award for Outstanding Technical Direction/Camera/Video for a Series ("The Long And Winding Road, Part 3" (1999) and "A Night To Dismember" (1998), "The Longest Day" (1996), "Tool Time After Dark" (1995), "5th Anniversary Show" (1994), and "Rites and Wrongs of Passage" (1993)) •Nominated for the 1998, 1997, 1996, and 1994 Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series (Patricia Richardson) •Nominated for the 1996, 1995, 1994, 1993, and 1992 Outstanding Individual Achievement in Editing for a Series - Multi-Camera Production (Roger Berger (1994-1996), Alex Gimenex (1992-1993) Marco Zappia - "The Longest Day" (1996), "Don't Tell Momma" (1995), "It Was the Best of Tim's it Was the Worst of Tim's" (1994), "Build or not to Build" (1993), and "Stereo Typical" (1992)) •Nominated for the 1995, 1993, and 1992 Emmy Award for Outstanding Comedy Series (Gayle S. Maffeo and John Pasquin (1992-1993)) •Nominated for the 1993 Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series (Tim Allen) •Nominated for the 1997, 1996, 1994, and 1993 Golden Globe Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a TV-Series - Comedy/Musical (Tim Allen) and Tim Allen won the same award in 1995 •Nominated for the 1995 and 1994 Golden Globe Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a TV-Series - Comedy/Musical (Patricia Richardson) •Nominated for the 1995 and 1994 Golden Globe Award for Best TV-Series - Comedy/Musical •Nominated for the 1998 Golden Satellite Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series - Comedy or Musical (Tim Allen) •Won the 1999 TV Guide Award for Favourite Actor in a Comedy (Tim Allen) •Nominated for the 2000 Young Artist Award for Best Performance in a TV Comedy Series - Supporting Young Actress (Courtney Peldon) and for Best Performance in a TV Comedy Series - Young Performer Age Ten or Under (Ashley Trefger and Lindsey Trefger) •Won the 1999 Young Artist Award for Best Performance in a TV Comedy Series - Guest Starring Young Actress (Ashley Trefger and Lindsey Trefger) and for Best Performance in a TV Drama or Comedy Series - Leading Young Actor (Zachery Ty Bryan) •Nominated for the 1999 Young Artist Award for Best Performance in a TV Comedy Series - Guest Starring Young Actress (Courtney Peldon) and for the 1999 Young Artist Award Best Performance in a TV Drama or Comedy Series - Leading Young Actor (Taran Noah Smith) •Won the 1997 Young Artist Award for Best Performance in a TV Comedy: Guest Starring Young Performer (Courtney Peldon) •Won the 1996 Young Artist Award for Best Performance by a Young Actress: Guest Starring Role TV Series (Kimberly Cullum) •Won the 1995 and 1993 Michael Landon Award •Won the 1994 Young Artist Award for Outstanding Youth Ensemble in a Television Series (Zachery Ty Bryan, Taran Noah Smith, and Jonathan Taylor Thomas) •Nominated for the 1993 Young Artist Award for Best Young Actor Starring in a Television Series (Zachery Ty Bryan and Jonathan Taylor Thomas), for the 1993 Young Artist Award for Best Young Actress Recurring in a Television Series (Jessica Wesson), and for the 1993 Young Artist Award for Outstanding Actor under 10 in a Television Series (Taran Noah Smith) •Won the 1992 Young Artist Award for Exceptional Performance by a Young Actor under Ten (Taran Noah Smith) •Nominated for the 1992 Young Artist Award for Best New Family Television Series •Won the 1999 YoungStar Award for Best Performance by a Young Actor in a Comedy TV Series (Zachery Ty Bryan) •Nominated for the 1998 and 1997 Best Performance by a Young Actor in a Comedy TV Series (Jonathan Taylor Thomas) Home Improvement is now airing in syndication. Check your local listings! In Memory of Earl Hindman (1942-2003)moreless
  • 28
    My Three Sons

    My Three Sons

    ABC (ended 1972)
    "MY THREE SONS" is the story of a Mid-West Aeronautical Engineer who watches his family grow up. This seemingly innocuous and simple, but effective sitcom, was a huge hit and a cornerstone of television's 'family programming' era in the 1960s. Second next to "The Adventures Of Ozzie & Harriet" as television's longest running family sitcom, "My Three Sons" was created by former "Leave It To Beaver" alumnus George Tibbles (1913-87). Executive Producer Don Fedderson (1913-94) campaigned the series as a probable vehicle for movie veteran Fred MacMurray (1908-91), who was reluctant to star in it at all. He spoke to Robert Young, of "Father Knows Best" fame and his suspicions were confirmed. He'd be working seven days a week and would barely see his real life family. Finally he gave in after the Producers guaranteed that they could have enough scripts available ahead of time to warrant filming the show within a set sixty five day period. He agreed to this, and so for example, all the scenes set in the kitchen of many different episodes were all shot together in one day, all out of sequence, which were then later edited into each episode in order. Co-star William Frawley (1887-1966), used to years of filming "I Love Lucy" in sequence before a captive studio audience and performed like a play, never got used to this schizophrenic method of filming. And thus this technique was dubbed 'The MacMurray Method' and was also used by Brian Keith on the "Family Affair" series, coincidentally also a Don Fedderson Production. Of course, the "MacMurray Method" isn't particularly novel in its creation (it is, after all, how most feature films are shot, and a method probably most comfortable and familiar to the film actor MacMurray), but its introduction to TV production methods was certainly innovative at the time.

    HISTORICAL OVERVIEW: When the series began in 1960, the boys were aged 18 (Mike), 14 (Robbie) and 8 (Chip). They were played by Tim Considine, Don Grady and Stanley Livingston, respectively. At the beginning of the series, storylines centred on the family's adventures in suburbia, and was perhaps the hybrid of what was to become the era of the Dom-Com (Domestic Sitcom). Steve Douglas also spent a good deal of time fending off attractive women who wanted to marry him and take over that loveable ready made family. The 'woman' in their lives was Bub O'Casey, Steve's maternal father in law, who did all the cooking, cleaning and chores. Other regulars in the early years were Peter Brooks as Robbie's best friend Hank Ferguson, and Ricky Allen as Sudsy Pfeiffer, Chip's best friend. The first of the show's format changes began at the start of the 1963-64 season. Meredith MacRae (1944-2000) was introduced as Sally Morrison, the girlfriend to eldest son Mike. They would become engaged and eventually marry. Meanwhile, Chip's new pal Ernie Thompson (co-star Stanley Livingston's real-life brother, Barry) was introduced and he would ultimately become a permanent part of the Douglas household. During the 1964-65 season, Frawley left the show for health reasons and Bub was written out of the show and replaced with his cantankerous younger brother Charley, a retired sailor played by William Demarest (1892-1983), whose crusty disposition masked a soft heart. At the start of the 1965-66 season, when the show moved from ABC to CBS, Mike and Sally got married in the very first Color episode, and moved back East so that Mike could accept a job teaching psychology on the college level. (Actor Tim Considine had at 24, outgrown the role and wanted out of the series to pursue a Directing career, which ultimately never eventuated). To re-establish the 'three sons', Steve subsequently adopted orphan child Ernie, who was not permitted to accompany his foster parents in their move to the orient. Things went along much the same for the next two seasons, although now the sons were Robbie, Chip and Ernie. Mike would never be referred to again after a few episodes.
    In a dramatic production move, the series, which for the first seven seasons was filmed mainly on Stage 11 at Desilu Studios in Hollywood, had to up anchor and begin filming at the former Republic Studios site, now rechristened the CBS Studio Center in Studio City, California. This necessitated moves behind and in front of the cameras. Lucille Ball, who by 1962 had bought out her ex-husband Desi Arnaz to take total control of Desilu, was, in February, 1967 talked into a deal by chief executive Charles Bludhorn of the giant Gulf and Western conglomerate, into selling Desilu. As G&W now owned Paramount Studios, Desilu was absorbed into this operation. To facilitate the placement of schedules for various TV series that lensed their shows at Desilu, all were forced to find other burgeoning accommodations. "My Three Sons" complimented the move to the CBS Studio Center (the Columbia Broadcasting System now owning the show) by introducing a new storyline at the start of the 1967-68 season, where Steve Douglas transfers to California, and the family moves to North Hollywood. (Thus, a new house, and new studio facilities). Although the adjustment was not too pleasant many of the Douglas's new acquaintances were not too friendly at first, there were good sides to the move. Robbie fell in love with college student Kathleen Miller (Tina Cole), and their romance blossomed into marriage. At the beginning of the following season 1968-69, the newly weds discovered that Katie was pregnant, and during the season she gave birth to triplets; three sons of course. Season 1969-70 brought new love to father Steve Douglas in the form of Barbara Harper (Beverly Garland), Ernie's English teacher. They were eventually married and Barbara's five year old daughter Dodie (Dawn Lyn), whom Steve subsequently adopted, also joined the family.

    Even original youngest son Chip (who was by now 18) got into the act, eloping with fellow college student Pauline ('Polly') Williams (Ronne Troup) in the 1970-71 season. Adopted brother Ernie was the only one of the sons not to get married on the show. As if the sprawling family had not gotten big enough already, the start of the final season (1971-72) saw a four part related episode that was sort of a continuation of a storyline that began in the 1963-64 season. Steve's Scottish nobleman cousin Fergus McBain Douglas (enacted by Fred MacMurray; voiced by Alan Caillou) came to the United States in search of a wife to take back to Scotland. In its later years, as the of the Douglas family grew on "My Three Sons" and separated into individual households, episodes could very rarely include the entire group. More and more often, they dealt with the specific problems of a large cast of regulars, with different members taking the spotlight from episode to episode. These multi-story elements were the brainchild of the show's creator and head writer for its twelve seasons, George Tibbles, who penned a massive 95 scripts of the series during this period. 16 of these were as a co-writer, in addition to him overseeing the work of the contributing staff writers during his tenure as Story Editor/Supervisor.

    "My Three Sons" never changed much in only in structure, its format changes having been discussed with the writing staff which increased the show's longevity with natural progressions for each character. For its time and of its type, the show was extremely well written and the writing of the series doesn't get enough credit to this day. As the series only filmed several months out of the year, the same Director was usually employed, which gave the show the behind the scenes continuity it probably needed. When the show was finally cancelled it had been running for twelve years and in reruns has run many, many more. By today's standards it appears wholesome, tame and perhaps slightly dated, but it's a slice of life that all of us can appreciate and learn from. One thing is certain. For all of its detractors, the series remains a favourite all over the world. The show's huge catalogue of 380 half hour episodes is a lasting legacy for Fred MacMurray and his TV family that will never be forgotten. While never a top ten hit during its original run, thanks to syndication the show remains extremely popular and continues to win new fans, young and old for its effective way of depicting an all-male family that did all-male things, even in its simplicity and its naiveté. The original Black and White episodes, considered by most fans as the show's best, were held back from syndication until the 1980s and enjoyed a new lease of life on Cable Television until the late 90s. The Color episodes are in constant syndication and are the only ones being distributed across the U.S. as of this writing (Jan. 2002). As long as TV stations are in need of quality programming the series will hopefully be played regularly to a whole new generation of audience.

    WHERE ARE THEY NOW? Fred MacMurray (b. August 30, 1908 in Kankakee, Illinois) died on November 5, 1991 aged 83, of pneumonia as a result of contracting chronic lymphocytic leukemia. MacMurray's off-screen role in the series was purely financial. A deal with Executive Producer Don Fedderson named MacMurray a silent partner, in effect giving him a 50% ownership stake in the series. In his 70s after he had all but retired from the business as one of Hollywood's wealthiest citizens, thanks to shrewd property investment deals among other business ventures, Fred suffered for a while with throat cancer. Sadly missed by all of us. The plaque in his mausoleum crypt at Holy Cross cemetery in Culver City, California says "Forever in the hearts of your family" (indeed!) which was arranged by his second wife, actress June Haver, to whom he was married for 37 years until his death. (June passed away aged 79 in 2005 and is now interred with him). He is survived by four children; two were adopted during his first marriage to the late actress Lillian LaMont, (Robert and Susan), and then in 1956 he and June adopted twin baby girls Katie and Laurie. Known as a devoted husband and father, no one ever talks of Fred as ever being a great actor, but when you think of it he never really gave a bad performance, and for the sheer number of movies and television shows he made, that's a pretty good epitaph for anybody in show business.

    William Frawley (b. February 26, 1887 in Burlington, Iowa) died on March 3, 1966 a week after his 79th Birthday from a massive coronary, while strolling down Hollywood Boulevard after seeing a movie. His constant companion, a male nurse, carried him into the nearby Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel but he was pronounced dead on arrival at Hollywood Receiving Hospital. His funeral was held at the Church of the Blessed Sacrament in Los Angeles and he is buried in the San Fernando Mission Cemetery in Mission Hills, California. Tracing his show business roots back to vaudeville, he was also a prolific character actor who appeared in more than 150 feature films from as early as 1916 and usually but not always was featured in comedic roles. Bill is best remembered for his long running role on "I Love Lucy" (1951-57) as the irascible Fred Mertz. Perhaps appropriately, his last performance was a cameo on an episode of "The Lucy Show" which aired in late 1965.

    William Demarest (b. February 27, 1892 in St. Paul, Minnesota) died on December 27, 1983 aged 91, from a heart attack, after a long battle with prostate cancer. One of the true stalwarts of the entertainment industry, he is one of the few performers who can lay claim to being there from the very beginning; he appeared uncredited alongside Al Jolson in Warner Bros. first ever talking motion picture, "The Jazz Singer" in 1927. He was a welcome face in many vintage movies where he usually played in support of the leads, and was instantly recognizable to audiences even if people didn't know his name. His career started when he was a headliner in vaudeville in the days before World War I and his last appearance was in a 1978 telemovie which capped off a remarkable 73-year career in show business. He was retired and living in Palm Springs, California at the time of his death, and he is buried at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, California.

    Meredith MacRae (b. May 30, 1944 in Houston, Texas) died on July 14, 2000 aged 56, of complications from surgery for brain cancer. The daughter of the late actor Gordon MacRae, Meredith had her own talk show in the 1980s called "Mid-Morning L.A." and she won an Emmy for her work on the show in 1986. Married three times, her only child Allison was born in 1975 during her second marriage (1969-87) to actor Greg Mullavey. She became a successful producer and garnered many awards during her long career. She did a series of acclaimed lectures to major companies and organizations, taught a in film and TV production at Chapman University, and recorded over a dozen best-selling books on tape. Former L.A. mayor Tom Bradley called her one of that city's most outstanding businesswomen. As per her wishes and because her hobbies had included water skiing and scuba diving she was cremated and her ashes were scattered into the Pacific Ocean.
    Beverly Garland
    (b. October 17, 1926 in Santa Cruz, California) died on December 5, 2008 aged 82 after a short illness. Beverly was the widow of land developer Fillmore Crank to whom she was married for 39 years until his death in 1999. She ran with the help of three of four of her grown children, the Beverly Garland Holiday Inn, located in North Hollywood which is a few blocks from Universal Studios. Until her death she was still occasionally active in show business, and was bestowed the honor of of being inducted into the Pacific Pioneer Broadcasters Hall of Fame, and celebrated the beginning of her "second" fifty years in show business in 2001. In recent years she had a recurring role on the series "Seventh Heaven". Garland's hotel is also the Los Angeles site of the famed annual celebrity autograph & collector's conventions.

    Don Grady
    (b. June 8, 1944 in San Diego, California) died on June 27, 2012 aged 68 after a long battle with cancer. Don began his career in show business and started where so many others have, at Disney. Don was one of the original Mousketeers, before landing his long-running role on "My Three Sons". During the series he was able to parlay his interest in music into a second career and left the show to become a reputable composer of film and television, although it took him almost ten years to finally make a living from it. His most recent credits include music for theme park attractions at Universal Studios as well as productions on the Lifetime and Discovery Channels. Married for the second time to Ginny, he is the father of two children, Joey and Tessa. Born Don Agrati, he is the son of a former talent agent and was the older brother of the late actress Lani O'Grady (1954-2001) who played Mary Bradford on the TV series "Eight Is Enough" (1977-81). In a recent TV Guide interview, Don said he still got mail from people who remembered the show and are thankful for its family values. He also said he grew extremely proud of the show over the years. Be sure to stop by www.dongrady.com - now his tribute site, to check out all about Don's musical career. 2008 also marked Don's 50th Anniversary in show business!

    Tim Considine (b. December 31, 1940 in Los Angeles, California): Tim, is now a well known sports photographer and writer involved in auto racing, which takes him all over the country. His most recent book, "American Grand Prix Racing: A Century of Drivers & Cars" - is an award winning definitive account of U.S. drivers in Grand Prix events, and was published in 1997. Divorced from actress Charlotte Stewart, he is now re-married to Willett Hunt and has a 29 year old son named Chris. Now basically retired from acting, Tim isn't afraid to go back to his roots however; he appeared in the reunion movie "The New Adventures Of Spin and Marty" in 2000 reprising the role of the original Spin Evans, the character he portrayed on the old Walt Disney series of shorts from 1955-58, which began as "The Adventures of Spin and Marty", a segment of "The Mickey Mouse Club". Recently as 2003 Tim also appeared as a supporting actor in the family TV movie, "The Monster Makers".

    Stanley Livingston (b. November 24, 1950 in Los Angeles, California): Stan is now the founder and Chief Executive Officer of "Kids In Show Biz, Inc". He has written feature films and directed commercials. Through his production company Premier Entertainment Group, he produced a feature film called "Checkers" in 2000 and the following year directed all 20 Episodes of a new children's TV Series for PBS. He was married to a dancer named Sandra at age 18 and the union which lasted six years, produced a daughter named Samantha, born in 1970. In recent years he has created stained glass artwork for celebrity clients including Tom Hanks and Lorenzo Lamas. He often sold his items through e-bay, but these days is all about showing actors and parents of actors the pitfalls of the industry and what to do to combat that. Check out his informative website at www.theactorsjourney.com

    Barry Livingston (b. December 17, 1953 in Los Angeles, California): Barry has had the most active post-series career. Married to Karen, with two children named Hailey and Spencer, Barry continued acting with roles in a host of made for TV movies of the week. This was followed by summer acting workshops and off-Broadway productions in New York. In the 90s, had a semi-recurring role on "Lois and Clark: The Adventures of Superman". Like his older brother Stanley, Barry has dabbled in directing and writing, but he's mainly a character actor. His most recent credits include guest star appearances on the popular television shows "Ally McBeal", "The West Wing", "Will and Grace", "Boston Public" and "Roswell". In 2011, he released his autobiography, aptly titled 'The Importance of Being Ernie'.
    Tina Cole
    (b. August 4, 1943 in Hollywood, California): Tina, the daughter of Yvonne King and the late Buddy Cole (of "The King Family" singers fame) is divorced from her second husband, Fillmore Crank Jr., stepson of her "My Three Sons" co-star Beverly Garland. In the last decade, she has worked with a "looping group" doing voice-over work for national television series and movies. With a teenaged son and a six month old baby boy (from her first marriage to producer Volney Howard III) Tina moved to Sacramento in 1982, and she has been the resident director of the Junior League of that city's Children's Theater for some years. By 1985 two daughters completed her family. Although divorced in 1995, her life still centers around her four children. Now remarried, a mom and a mother-in-law, apart from a recent local morning television talk show in 1999, her latest theatrical credits include the musical "I Do, I Do" and a starring role in the play "Six Women with Brain Death" in 2001. Tina also taught acting at a prominent local drama school for a few years but is now retired. Still stunningly beautiful, it's hard to believe that Tina is now in her late 60s!

    Dawn Lyn (b. January 11, 1963 in Hollywood, California): Dawn found it difficult to make the transition from child star to young adult. While she managed to appear in a few guest star roles during her teens like "Barnaby Jones", "The Streets of San Francisco" and "Wonder Woman", in effect, her career was stymied by her small stature and youthful appearance. The younger sister of former pop idol Leif Garrett, Dawn left the entertainment industry to pursue other interests. She married an architect named Michael Whitby in 1990, but it ended in divorce after nine years. Today, Dawn is happy and living her life out of the spotlight. She has a great time being involved with the local community theater and civic/volunteer activities, is still in contact with her co-stars and loves them like family. Dawn remarried in 2006 to John Reese, and as a result of her husband's career, she relocated in September 2007 to Germany to be with him. They lived there for nearly five years and have now returned to California as of late 2012. Like her co-stars, she was deeply saddened to hear that her TV mother Beverly Garland (with whom she had always kept in touch) passed away at the end of 2008. Ronne Troup (b. June 10, 1945): Ronne, who is now in her late 60s has kept a low profile with guest appearances but still occasionally acts and does commercials. The daughter of the late Bobby Troup and stepdaughter of the late Julie London, she had a recurring role on the night-time soap "Knots Landing" in the 80s and has appeared recently on programs like "The Practice", "E.R." and "The West Wing". Ronne is the younger sister of Cynnie, who was a script editor on their father's series "Emergency" in the early 70s. She has been maried twice and has been very happy in her own life, and is blessed to have two daughters, Bridget and Jamie Lawrence, and a wonderful husband, Bob Bayles. In spite of a career in acting, she has always enjoyed writing, since her days at UCLA when she imagined being a writer. I believe that in recent years, apart from the odd guest appearance on shows like "Coldcase" she has been teaching elementary school in the Los Angeles area.

    The Todd Triplets (Joseph, Michael & Daniel) (b. August 5, 1967): After being contacted by the boys' mother Lynn and their stepfather David, I can let you know (at the time of this writing) that Joe, his wife and two kids are living in Colorado Springs. Joe has now retired from active service. He was an 'E7' in the medical unit. Mike is also in the army, and is based in Washington. He too is an 'E7' and will retire in two years. He is now divorced and has two daughters in Hawaii where he spent four years on active duty before going to Washington. Danny is married and lives in Houston. He spent five years in the Army and settled in Houston where he is the owner of a company that installs yard water and lighting systems. The boys have spent many years overseas and all speak several languages. According to their Mom, they are happy and haven't done any TV work since they were 16 years old.

    First Telecast: September 29, 1960 on ABC. Last Telecast: August 24, 1972 on CBS. Number of Episodes: 380 (x half-hours). (184 Black and White, 196 Color). A Don Fedderson Production, Distributed Worldwide by CBS Television Distribution International Ltd. Original Broadcast History: ABC Sept. 1960-Sept.1963 Thurs. 9:00-9:30pm Sept. 1963-Sept.1965 Thurs. 8:30-9:00pm CBS Sept. 1965-Aug. 1967 Thurs. 8:30-9:00pm Sept. 1967-Sept.1971 Sat. 8:30-9:00pm Sept. 1971-Dec. 1971 Mon. 10:00-10:30pm Jan. 1972-Aug. 1972 Thurs. 8:30-9:00pmmoreless
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    ABC (ended 1983)
    Taxi's television history is filled with contradictions. Produced by some of television comedy's most well-regarded talent, the show was canceled by two different networks. Despite winning fourteen Emmy Awards in only five seasons, the program's ratings were rock-bottom for its final seasons. Although it thrives in syndication and is still well-loved by many viewers, Taxi will be best remembered as the ancestral bridge between two of the most successful sit-coms of all time: The Mary Tyler Moore Show and Cheers. In the mid-1970s, MTM Productions had achieved huge success with both popularity and critical appraisal. So it was an unexpected move when four of the company's finest writers and producers, James L. Brooks, Stan Daniels, David Davis, and Ed. Weinberger, jumped off the stable ship of MTM in 1978 to form their own production company, John Charles Walters Company. To launch their new venture, they looked back to an idea that Brooks and Davis had previously considered with MTM: the daily life of a New York City taxi company. From MTM head Grant Tinker they purchased the rights to the newspaper article that had initiated the concept and began producing this new show at Paramount for ABC. They brought a few other MTM veterans along for the ride, including director James Burrows and writer/producers Glen and Les Charles. Although Taxi certainly bore many of the trademark signs of "quality television" as exemplified by MTM, other changes in style and focus distinguished this from an MTM product. After working on the middle-class female-centered worlds of The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Rhoda, and Phyllis for years, the group at John Charles Walters wanted to create a program focusing on blue-collar male experience. MTM programs all had clearly defined settings, but Taxi's creators wanted a show that was firmly rooted in a city's identity--Taxi's situations and mood were distinctly New York. Despite MTM Productions innovations in creating ensemble character comedy, there was always one central star around which the ensemble revolved. In Taxi Judd Hirsch's Alex Reiger was a main character, but his importance seemed secondary to the centrality of the ensemble and the Sunshine Cab Company itself. While The Mary Tyler Moore Show proudly proclaimed that "you're going to make it on your own," the destitute drivers of Taxi were doomed to perpetual failure; the closest any of them came to happiness was Reiger's content acceptance of his lot in life--to be a cabby. Taxi debuted on 12 September 1978, amidst a strong ABC Tuesday night line-up. It followed Three's Company, a wildly-successful example of the type of show MTM "quality" sit-coms reacted against. Taxi used this strong position to end the season ninth in the ratings and garner its first of three straight Emmys for Outstanding Comedy Series. The show's success was due to its excellent writing, Burrows's award-winning directing using his innovative four-camera technique, and its largely unknown but talented cast. Danny DeVito's Louie DePalma soon became one of the most despised men on television--possibly the most unredeemable and worthless louse of a character ever to reside on the small screen. Andy Kaufman's foreign mechanic Latka Gravas provided over-the-top comedy within an ensemble emphasizing subtle character humor. But Kaufman sometimes also brought a demonic edge to the character, an echo of his infamous appearances on Saturday Night Live as a macho wrestler of women and Mighty Mouse lip-syncher. In the second season Christopher Lloyd's Reverend Jim Ignatowski was added to the group as television's first drugged-out '60s burn-out character. But Lloyd's Emmy-winning performance created in Jim more than just a storehouse of fried brain cells; he established a deep, complex humanity that moved far beyond mere caricature. The program launched successful movie careers for DeVito and Lloyd, as well as the fairly-notable television careers of Tony Danza and Marilu Henner; Kaufman's controversial career would certainly have continued had he not died of cancer in 1984. In its third season ABC moved Taxi from beneath Three's Company's protective wing to a more competitive Wednesday night slot; the ratings plummeted and Taxi finished the next two years in 53rd place. ABC canceled the show in early 1982 as part of a larger network push away from "quality" and toward the Aaron Spelling-produced popular fare of Dynasty and The Love Boat. HBO bid for the show, looking for it to become the first ongoing sitcom for the pay channel, but lost out to NBC, which scheduled the series for the 1982-83 season. Ironically, this reunited the show's executive producers with their former boss Tinker, who had taken over NBC. Tinker's reign at NBC was focused, not surprisingly, on "quality" programming which he hoped would attract viewers to the perennially last-place network. Taxi was partnered with a very compatible show on Thursday night--Cheers, created by Taxi veterans Charles, Burrows, and Charles. Although this line-up featured some of the great programs in television history--the comedies were sandwiched by dramas Fame and Hill St. Blues--the ratings were dreadful and Taxi finished the season in 73rd place. NBC was willing to stick by Cheers for another chance, but felt Taxi had run its course and canceled it at the end of the season. Had Taxi been given another year or two, it would have been part of one of the most successful nights on television, featuring The Cosby Show (co-created by Taxi creator Weinberger), Family Ties, Hill St. Blues, L.A. Law, and eventual powerhouse Cheers. Taxi lives on in syndication, but its most significant place in television history is as the middle generation between The Mary Tyler Moore Show and Cheers. It served as a transition between the star-driven middle-class character comedy of MTM programs and the location-centered ensemble comedy inhabited by the losers of Cheers and Taxi. Considered one of the great sit-coms of its era, Taxi stands as a prime example of the constant tension in television programming between standards of "quality" and reliance on high ratings to determine success. --Jason Mittel The Museum of Broadcast Communicationsmoreless
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    8 Simple Rules

    8 Simple Rules

    ABC (ended 2005)
    It's a time for healing and learning to deal with life without family patriarch Paul (the late John Ritter), as the Hennessys discover the frailties of life and the strength of the family unit, on 8 Simple Rules. Cate (Katey Sagal) now finds herself in the precarious position of raising three teenagers on her own while holding down a full time job as a hospital nurse near their Detroit-area home. She does, however, get a little relief, thanks to her father, Jim (James Garner), who's been staying at the house since Paul's death. Retired and separated from his wife, Jim mostly spends his days making home improvements to the house - with arguably mixed results - and, in his own inimitable way, gives comfort and guidance to his daughter and grandchildren during their time of need. But the family is thrown for a loop when Cate's wayward nephew, C.J. (David Spade), moves in and finds it hard to resist getting himself into trouble or offering questionable advice to the kids. Now more than ever, Cate needs to be there for her kids - particularly her daughters. Oldest daughter Bridget (Kaley Cuoco) has matured into a beautiful and popular teenager - especially with the boys. But since her father's death, she has begun to question the importance of running with the "in crowd" at school. By contrast, middle child Kerry (Amy Davidson) is intelligent and cute, but her continued lack of self-confidence has led her to hide behind a mask of sarcasm - which makes it difficult for her to get in touch with her true feelings. And youngest child Rory (Martin Spanjers), fondly referred to as "The Boy," is trying to fill his father's shoes by becoming the man of the family, while at the same time entering the world of puberty and discovering one of life's true mysteries - girls. Dating boys and fitting in with their peers will once again become a top priority for the girls. But no matter what, Cate will continue to enforce Paul's number one rule - "If you make my daughters cry, I'll make you cry." In Memory Of John Ritter (1948-2003). You will be missed! You are (and always will be) the funniest!moreless
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    America's Funniest Home Videos

    America's Funniest Home Videos

    America's Funniest Home Videos is ABC's longest-running comedy series. The show began with original host Bob Saget (Full House)The series was an instant sensation on Sunday nights and ran for seven successful seasons. The show was re-launched with new hosts John Fugelsang (a stand up comedian with a one man show called Junk Male) & Daisy Fuentes (Loving), with a new hour long format, and moved to Monday nights where it would once again become a ratings success and then aired on Saturday. Then, after several years of being shown as an occasional special hosted by D.L. Hughley (The Hughleys) and Richard Kind (Spin City), ABC brought the series back on Friday nights with new host Tom Bergeron (Hollywood Squares). In September 2003, it was moved back to Sunday nights. Once again, the series has become a success. On This Show First Price is 10,000 and second is 5,000 and 3,000 for third also there is a 100,000 grand price show every so often where the 10,000 winners compete for 100,000.moreless
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    Men in Trees

    Men in Trees

    ABC (ended 2008)
    After breaking off her engagement when she learns of her fiance's infidelity, Marin Frist, a relationship expert, finds herself living in Elmo, Alaska, surrounded by men and attracted to one in particular. She now has to forget everything she has learned about men and gain new knowledge about love and relationships. Men in Trees stars Anne Heche as Marin Frist, Abraham Benrubi as Ben Thomasson, Emily Bergl as Annie O'Donnell, Seana Kofoed as Jane, Suleka Mathew as Sara Jackson, Derek Richardson as Patrick Bachelor, Cynthia Stevenson as Celia Bachelor, Sarah Strange as Theresa, Lauren Tom as Mai Washington, James Tupper as Jack Slattery, and John Amos as Buzz Washington. The creator and executive producer is Jenny Bicks. The series is filmed in Vancouver, Canada, and is from Perkins Street Productions and NS Pictures, Inc. in association with Warner Bros. Television.moreless
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    Welcome Back, Kotter

    Welcome Back, Kotter

    ABC (ended 1979)
    Gabe Kotter, formerly a Sweathog, returns to James Buchanan High as a teacher and is assigned the remedial class to which he once belonged. Mr. Kotter is an involved and caring teacher, which one would have to be in dealing with a certain four students in his class, who end up in trouble on a regular basis -- lady's man Vinnie Barbarino, the always cool Freddie "Boom-Boom" Washington, the tough Juan (Luis Pedro Phillipo de Huevos) Epstein, and the sheepish Arnold Dingfelder Horshack. Welcome Back, Kotter was based on Gabe Kaplan's own high school experiences with redmedial education and a teacher who cared dearly for her students. Changes on the show. Gabe Kaplan left the series in the third season. He hadn't expected the show to run as long as it had. Kotter was made Vice-Principal, and thus was seen considerably less. John Travolta, of course, found his own place as a celebrity, leaving the show around the same time Gabe Kaplan did (returning every so often as a "special guest star"). The replacement for Barbarino was Beau, who didn't help things much. By now the show had essentially lost its two biggest stars. Theme song. "Welcome Back" by John Sebastian: opening credits Welcome back, your dreams were your ticket out. Welcome back to that same old place that you laughed about. Well, the names have all changed since you hung around. But those dreams have remained and they've turned around. Who'd have thought they'd lead ya (who'd have thought they'd lead ya) Back here where we need ya (back here where we need ya)? Yeah, we tease him a lot 'cause we've got him on the spot, welcome back. Welcome back, welcome back, welcome back. Welcome back, welcome back, welcome back. end credits The second verse of the full song plays partially over the end credits. It goes as thus: Welcome back, we always could spot a friend. Welcome back, and I smile when I think how you must have been. And I know what a scene you were learnin' in. Was there something that made you come back again? And what could ever lead ya (what could ever lead ya) Back here where we need ya (back here where we need ya)? Yeah, we tease him a lot 'cause we've got him on the spot, welcome back. Welcome back, welcome back, welcome back. Welcome back, welcome back, welcome back. Catchphrases. Welcome Back, Kotter was a breeding ground for memorable catch phrases. If you have one that's been overlooked, feel free to contact the editor. Gabe Kotter: "Hey, Julie, wanna hear a joke?" (or similar dialogue) Vinnie Barbarino: "What? Where?" "I'm so confused!" "Ooookay, fine." "I said a ba-ba-ba-ba-Barbarino..." Freddie "Boom-Boom" Washington: "Hi there." "I don't happen to have it...handy." Juan Epstein: "Signed, Epstein's mother." Arnold Horshack: "Ooh! Ooh, ooh!" "Hello. How are ya? I'm Arnold Horshack." "Very impressive, Mr. Kotter!" "Be brave, little soldier." (or "buckaroo") ...and a very distinctive laugh. DVD? Welcome Back, Kotter has yet to be released properly on either video or dvd. Be sure to visit TVShowsonDVD to vote for Welcome Back, Kotter on dvd (you will have to register for free in order to vote).moreless
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    Family Matters

    Family Matters

    ABC (ended 1998)
    A perfect spin-off from Perfect Strangers: Family Matters focused on Harriet Winslow (the elevator operator from the Chronicle) and her family of sorts. Carl Winslow, her husband, was a dutiful cop, and a gruff and lovable father to three kids: Eddie Winslow, the rebel son; Laura Winslow, the smart-aleck daughter; and cute little Judy Winslow. They had opened their home to Harriet's sister, Rachel Crawford and her little baby son Richie, and in the very first episode, Carl had to open his home to his cool and streetwise mother, Estelle Winslow, whether he wanted to or not.

    Everything was going along just fine until one day, Steve Urkel, the inventive nerd, barged into their home and eventually, into their hearts. Steve had a killer crush on Laura, but she would never give him the time of day. Steve Urkel was intended to be a one-shot appearance, but his popularity with the fans won him the number-one spot as America's favorite nerd.

    As the show went on, the characters and the stories evolved. Richie grew from a little baby into a rambunctious and impressionable little boy. The stories started revolving around Steve and his incredible inventions, which became the greatest sight gags on the show. In almost every episode, Steve ends up breaking furniture, windows, and Carl's patience. Eddie and Laura each had best buddies to hang out with: Eddie had dim-witted yet lovable Waldo Geraldo Faldo,and Laura had faithful and true-blue gal pal Maxine. The greatest mystery of Family Matters is Judy and Rachel's sudden disappearances from the show, but Rachel made guest appearances whenever possible.

    To stop Steve from chasing her, Laura matched him up with perky-yet-pushy Myra Monkhouse. Steve loved Myra physically, but his emotions will always go to Laura. Eddie had his share of steady girlfriends, and even he had an Urkel chasing him- Myrtle May Urkel, Steve's cousin from Biloxi (Jaleel White also). Every so often, Steve uses one of his inventions to turn himself into debonair, irresistable lover Stefan Urquelle or karate hero Bruce Lee to draw Laura closer to him, much to Myra's chagrin.

    At the end of season 6, the Winslows welcomed Steve into their home when Steve's family went to Russia. Pretty soon, Richie hung out with 3J, a tough, streetwise kid always running from the children's home. The Winslows then adopted 3J as one of their kids, as they did with Steve.

    In the final season, Family Matters - along with Step by Step - moved to CBS, and Steve slowly matured from the annoying nerd that he used to be. This was when Laura started falling in love with Steve, and Myra got kicked to the curb, but she vowed to get her "Stevie-kins" back. Also, the original Harriette, JoMarie Peyton, had left the show in mid-season and Judyann Elder took her role. Steve and Laura got engaged, but they never had a wedding because CBS dropped the ax on the show. But, nevertheless, Family Matters had a great successful run and is one of the longest running African-American comedies ever. In Germany the show is known as Alle unter einem Dach ("Under One Roof").
    In Spain it is known as Cosas de casa.
    In France it is known as La Vie de famille ("Life of the Family").
    In Italy it is known as Otto sotto un tetto ("Eight Under One Roof").
    In Sweden it is known as R�kna med br�k. In Croatia it is known as ''Pod istim krovom''moreless
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    ABC (ended 1968)
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    Sports Night

    Sports Night

    ABC (ended 2000)
    Sports Night ran nearly two full seasons on the ABC network in the United States during the '98-99 and '99-00 seasons. Created by Emmy Award winning writer/director, Aaron Sorkin (A Few Good Men, The American President), this was his first venture into television. Smart, fast-paced, witty and featuring a fine ensemble cast, Sports Night struggled in the ratings from the start, particularly during its second season, when it was routinely pre-empted and moved from night to night. Art imitated life imitating art, as the show-within-a-show took on a consultant (William H. Macy, in his first TV role since his stint on ER), hired to "tweak" the ratings. The show-within-a-show continued to falter, amidst rumors of the imminent sale of its network and the subsequent gutting of its staff. Upon its cancellation, several networks, most notably HBO, came to Sorkin for a possible move to the respected network, but nothing was ever solidified. Sports Night gained additional exposure through a subsequent syndication on Comedy Central.

    2001 Image Awards
    Nominated – Outstanding Actor in a Comedy Series; Robert Guillaume

    2001 Satellite Awards
    Nominated – Best Performance by an Actor in a Series, Comedy or Musical; Robert Guillaume

    2000 Emmy Awards
    Winner – Outstanding Cinematography for a Multi-Camera Series; Peter Smokler ("The Cut Man Cometh")
    Nominated – Outstanding Casting for a Comedy Series; Bonnie Zane and Paula Rosenberg
    Nominated – Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series; Thomas Schlamme ("Quo Vadimus")
    Nominated – Outstanding Multi-Camera Picture Editing for a Series; Janet Ashikaga ("The Cut Man Cometh")
    Nominated – Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series; William H. Macy

    2000 Golden Globe Awards
    Nominated – Best Performance by an Actress in a TV-Series, Comedy/Musical; Felicity Huffman

    2000 PGA Awards (Producers Guild of America)
    Nominated – Outstanding Producer of Episodic Television; Aaron Sorkin, Brian Grazer, Ron Howard, Tony Krantz, Thomas Schlamme, Rob Scheidlinger

    2000 DGA Awards (Directors Guild of America)
    Won – Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Comedy Series; Thomas Schlamme ("Small Town")

    2000 Eddie Award (American Cinema Editors)
    Nominated – Best Edited Half-Hour Series for Television; Janet Ashikaga ("Small Town")

    2000 SAG Awards (Screen Actors Guild)
    Nominated – Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series; Josh Charles, Robert Guillaume, Felicity Huffman, Peter Krause, Sabrina Lloyd, Joshua Malina

    2000 Artios (Casting Society of America)
    Nominated – Best Casting for TV, Comedy Episodic; Bonnie Zane, Paula Rosenberg

    2000 Image Awards
    Nominated – Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series; Robert Guillaume

    1999 Emmy Awards
    Won – Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series; Thomas Schlamme (pilot)
    Won – Outstanding Multi-Camera Picture Editing for a Series; Janet Ashikaga ("Small Town")
    Nominated – Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series; Aaron Sorkin ("The Apology")

    1999 DGA Award (Directors Guild of America)
    Won – Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Comedy Series; Thomas Schlamme (pilot)

    1999 Art Directors Guild
    Nominated – Excellence in Production Design Award, Television Series; Thomas Azzari

    1999 Artios (Casting Society of America)
    Nominated - Best Casting for TV, Comedy Episodic; Bonnie Zane and Paula Rosenberg
    Nominated – Best Casting for TV, Comedy Pilot; Bonnie Zane and Paula Rosenberg

    1999 TCA Award (Television Critics Association)
    Won – Outstanding Achievement in Comedy
    Nominated – New Program of the Year
    Nominated – Program of the Year

    1999 Humanitas Prize
    Won – 30 Minute Category; Aaron Sorkin, Matt Tarses, David Walpert, Bill Wrubel ("The Six Southern Gentlemen of Tennessee")
    Nominated – 30 Minute Category; Bill Wrubel, Aaron Sorkin ("The Quality Of Mercy At 29K")

    1999 Image Awards
    Nominated – Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series; Robert Guillaume

    1999 Genesis Awards
    Won – Television, New Series ("The Hungry and the Hunted")moreless
  • 37
    The Drew Carey Show

    The Drew Carey Show

    ABC (ended 2004)
    This long-running sitcom stars comedian Drew Carey as a sort of blue-collar everyman. The show chronicles Drew's working life, the ups and downs of his romances and his strong relationship with his long-time friends Lewis, Oswald and Kate. Episodes: 233 Color Episodes ABC Broadcast History: September 1995 - May 1996: Wednesday 8:30 May 1996 - September 1996: Tuesday 8:30 August 1996 - November 1996: Wednesday 9:30 December 1996 - May 2002: Wednesday 9:00 September 2002 - October 2002: Monday 8:00 November 2002 - November 2002: Friday 9:00 December 2002 - January 2003: Friday 9:30 June 2003 - July 2003: Wednesday 9:00/9:30 August 2003 - September 2003: Wednesday 9:30 June 2004 - September 2004: Wednesday 9:00/9:30 (Simulcast in HDTV on ABC beginning with the 2001-2002 season)moreless
  • 38
    According to Jim

    According to Jim

    ABC (ended 2009)
    Jim Belushi stars as Jim, the macho everyman, with a soft spot for his beautiful wife, Cheryl (Courtney Thorne-Smith), and their three precocious kids -- Ruby (Taylor Atelian), Gracie (Billi Bruno) and Kyle (Conner Rayburn). A success at his construction business and the family breadwinner, at home Jim seems to keep Cheryl in constant turmoil with his boyish bravado and ever-willful antics. But their underlying love for each other guarantees they are in this marriage for keeps. Cheryl, for her part, instinctively aims for the straight and narrow, but secretly enjoys it when Jim coaxes out her playful side. It's an odd-couple tug-of-war of happily-married opposites yet equals. This is a love story couched in a family comedy.

    At the conclusion of last season, Cheryl's high-strung sister, Dana (Kimberly Williams-Paisley), a career woman who seemed destined to remain forever single, finally met and married a doctor and the man of her dreams (Mitch Rouse). Jim's brother-in-law and partner in the Ground Up design/building firm, Andy (Larry Joe Campbell), is Jim's foil but also his truest friend. Andy doggedly covers for his pal whenever Cheryl gets close to uncovering Jim's incessant schemes.moreless
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    George Lopez

    George Lopez

    ABC (ended 2007)
    George Lopez, the hit family comedy starring popular standup comedian George Lopez, is on ABC. The series is from Bruce Helford, Deborah Oppenheimer and Robert Borden – all from ABC's long-running hit comedy series, The Drew Carey Show – and actress/producer Sandra Bullock (Miss Congeniality, Speed).

    George Lopez is a guy who has made lemonade from lemons at every turn. Since he became plant manager at an L.A. airplane parts factory, he has handled a complicated and tumultuous job, a strong but challenging marriage, two rebellious children and a mother who can't keep track of her own lies about his childhood -- all with his sense of humor intact.

    His affable compadre, Ernie (Valente Rodriguez, Erin Brokovich), still ribs George about his high-powered management position at the plant, but always lends a hand when George needs him. Ernie, who still lives with his mother and father, has learned some fathering skills of his own after foster-parenting a troubled twelve-year-old boy.

    Though their marriage has had some close calls, George and his devoted wife, Angie (Constance Marie), still chose to renew their vows recently. Angie deals with his questionable decisions and freewheeling approach to parenthood and his mother's insensitive wisecracks with the patience of a saint -- and some guidance from her father, Vic (Emiliano Díez) -- but her drive to build a still unprofitable wedding-planning business has nearly driven their family to the poor house.

    George's biggest test, both at work and home, is dealing with his tough and acerbic but loving mother, Benny (Belita Moreno, "Perfect Strangers"), while sifting through her vast assortment of lies about his family and childhood. After rediscovering and losing his father to kidney disease and learning of a long lost sister, George constantly wonders what, or who, is around the next corner.

    After running away from home, being expelled from school and falling in love with a handsome jock, sixteen year-old Carmen's (Masiela Lusha) free-spirited, teenage rebellion has left her parents at a total loss about what to do next. Always the practical joker, thirteen-year-old Max clearly maintains the sense of humor he inherited from his father, but continues to struggle with dyslexia and constantly tests his parents' limits by being drawn toward the wrong crowd.

  • 40


    ABC (ended 1962)
    Maverick told the story of the Maverick brothers, Bret and Bart, card sharps who lived during the Old West era. The show was originally a straightforward adventure tale, but it evolved when the writers began adding comedy to the scripts. Bret quickly became the television western's first quasi-mercenary, a character who would help the forces of justice but usually only if he stood to profit from doing so. When he resorted to gunfire, he wasn't the West's finest marksman. In fact, he was much more likely to outsmart his opponent or slip out the back door once trouble began. The writers also added a foil for Bret - his brother Bart. Bart was more conservative than the devilish Bret, but just as unlikely to join any fight that could be avoided. The two characters began alternating as leads on the show as they journeyed through small towns with odd names like Oblivion and Apocalypse. Along the way, they associated with fellow card sharps like Dandy Jim Buckley and Gentleman Jack Darby. There was also Samantha Crawford, a lovely female rogue who loved to challenge the Maverick brothers to see who could out-con the other.

    All these elements helped make Maverick a television western that stood apart from the crowd. Audiences responded to the mix of traditional Western adventure and good-natured humor, making the show an instant hit. Bret Maverick, in particular, became a hero for many armchair cowboys. As a result, the writers began to play up the comedy elements even more, expanding the storylines to satirize other prime time programming. Maverick lampooned everything from Gunsmoke to Dragnet. The show would also use actors known for other roles, like Edd "Kookie" Byrnes from 77 Sunset Strip, for cameo roles designed to make viewers' heads turn.

    Maverick continued to enjoy solid ratings through the end of the 1950's, but hit a snag in 1960 when James Garner left the program over a contract dispute. To replace him, the producers introduced a new Maverick cousin, Beau. Beau had been sent to London for disgracing the family name during the Civil War (by winning a medal). Beau would be played by Roger Moore, who would later move on to greater fame as James Bond. The show also briefly added another brother, Brent, played by Robert Colbert, before finally ending its run in the summer of 1962. Since then, Maverick has continued to be a popular member of the cult television pantheon. Its enduring status as a beloved show led to two short-lived follow-up series, Young Maverick and Bret Maverick. There was also a 1994 movie version of Maverick which featured James Garner alongside Mel Gibson and Jodie Foster. The follow-ups proved that the magical Maverick mixture of laughter and tumbleweeds was an enduring, age defying source of great family entertainment.

    Aired Sunday nights at 7:30pm on ABC. The final season aired Sunday nights at 6:30pmmoreless
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