The Courtship of Eddie's Father

Season 1 Episode 1

Mrs. Livingston, I Presume

Aired Wednesday 8:00 PM Sep 17, 1969 on ABC



  • Trivia

    • "Wakata" means "I understand" in Japanese; "Mata Asita" means "See you tomorrow."

    • The morning after Dolly has spent the night with the Corbetts, Eddie is seated at the breakfast table sipping orange juice. He is telling Mrs. Livingston about the talk he and his dad had the night before about why Eddie can't invite young ladies to stay with them. When he gets to the line "Actually, he couldn't explain it," Brandon lets out a small burp at the word "explain" - then continues delivering the line as if nothing had happened!

  • Quotes

    • Mrs. Livingston Little Boy Blue, Come blow your spoon.
      Eddie: The cow and the farmer, Jumped over the moon.

    • Norman (mistakenly to Dolly): Mrs. Livingston, I Presume.

      This line becomes the title of the first episode.

    • Tom: (to self, rehearshing how he's going to tell Norman he's fired.) I keep sticking my neck out, you keep chopping off my head.

    • Eddie: (to Tom, during closing "Peanuts" segment.) You know, Dad, when I stop to think about it, I got more than most kids. Most kids just have a father-father. I have a father who's my best friend.

  • Notes

    • In a pattern that would be repeated throughout the series, Tom always calls Mrs. Livingston by her last name (What is her first name anyway?), and she always calls him "Mr. Eddie's Father".

    • Eddie and Tom take a tour of the MGM studios in this episode. The series was filmed in Studio 22 on the MGM lot. In the first season, Brandon would frequently wander away from the set between "takes" and get lost on the huge lot. A cast or crew member would have to go find him. He was nicknamed "Mile-away", since he was usually a mile away when he was needed.

    • Brandon's mother once mentioned in an interview that he was not interested in watching the pilot the night it originally aired. His favorite rock band was appearing on another channel at the same time, and he wanted to watch that instead! This intense interest in rock music at a young age foreshadowed his future career - he would grow up to be the frontman in several punk rock bands, including Harmful If Swallowed, Twister Naked, Ugly Truth, Dead Kennedys, and Dr. Know.

    • Brandon looks about a year younger in this pilot episode than he does in the next several episodes. (Many months elapsed between the filming of the pilot and the filming of the next few episodes of the first season, which were ordered after ABC bought the series.)

    • In an online chat on "Password" in 1998, Brandon Cruz recalled his audition for "The Courtship of Eddie's Father". He was barely six, and couldn't read very well yet. Instead of having him read from a script, the casting directors asked him to walk across the room, turn around, and say, "Daddy, I love you." He delivered the line so well, he melted the hearts of everyone in the studio, especially Bill Bixby and James Komack. Brandon delivers a nearly identical line in the same way in the 1st (pilot) episode, in the scene in which Eddie tries to get his dad's attention while he's doing work he brought home from the office.

  • Allusions

    • The title alludes to a quote attrtibuted to Welsh journaist Henry Morton Stanley, who upon finding medical missionary David Livingstone, assumed missing in Central Africa, is alleged to have uttered, "Dr. Livingstone, I presume?"

    • Mrs. Livingston: Miss Hello Dolly gets no eggs. I have only four and you needed five.

      The film version of Hello Dolly premiered the same year The Courtship of Eddie's Father debuted on TV.