The Partridge Family

Season 1 Episode 1

What? And Get Out of Show Business?

Aired Friday 8:30 PM Sep 25, 1970 on ABC



  • Trivia

    • In the opening sequence, the Partridge Family bus is shown with two different license plates on the back: a white one with "4A689" in red letters, and a dark blue one with "NLX 590" in yellow letters.

    • The name of the family dog, who is hardly ever seen, is "Simone". The family dog gets its name from Partridge Family creator's own dog "Simon".

    • In this episode we see that Shirley's original day job was a bank teller.

    • In the scene where the family is frozen on stage, Shirley tells them to close their eyes and remember when the were all back in their garage "all five of us having fun". Unfortunately there were six members of the group.

    • In this episode you see "Shirley Partridge" driving the Partridge Family bus in Hollywood and in Las Vegas. Shirley Jones was actually driving the bus during these scenes.

    • In this episode, single mother Shirley Partridge describes herself as a widow. In the original scripts she was divorced, but the networks had the show's creator change this so that her character was widowed.

    • The first season's theme song was "When We're Singin'", not "C'mon Get Happy." Here's the lyrics:

      Come on now and meet everybody,
      And hear us singin'.
      There's nothin' better than being together
      When we're singin'.

      Five of us, and Mom workin' all day.
      We knew we could help her if our music would pay.
      And Danny got Reuben to sell our song
      And it really came together when Mom sang along.

      Come on now and meet everybody,
      And hear us singin'.
      There's nothin' better than being together
      When we're singin.'
      When we're singin.'
      When we're singin.'

  • Quotes

    • Tracy (after Danny calls Rueben and wakes him up to hear the demo tape): What did he say?
      Danny: He said if we don't stop bothering him, he's gonna send over a man with an axe to chop us up into little pieces!
      Tracy: you think he means it?
      Danny: No, I'm pretty sure he's bluffing!

    • Shirley: I keep seeing the headline in Variety... "Partridges Lay an Egg".

    • Laurie: Y'know, I've been thinking about these lyrics.
      Keith: Yeah, what about them
      Laurie: Well, do you think they're really relevant?
      Keith: Relevant? One lousy sit-in and suddenly she's Joan Baez.

    • Shirley: Tracy, don't stick that drum stick up your nose!
      Tracy: Why not?
      Shirley: You don't know where it's been!

    • Tracy: (to Reuben) Why are you wearing the Lone Ranger's mask?

  • Notes

    • This Episode's Music:
      "Together" (Shorty Rogers and Kelly Gordon).
      "Let The Good Times In" (Carol Bayer and Neil Sedaka).
      Since no actual cast members sang on these songs, they weren't included on any of the original albums.

      The Partridge Family Album (Bell6050), their first LP, was released in November, 1970 to coincide with the debut of the television show. It reached #4 on the charts and was certified Gold.

    • Shirley Jones actually had to have Teamsters teach her to drive a stick shift so she could drive the Partridge Family bus.

    • This is one of the few episodes in which David Cassidy's voice is not heard. In fact, Shirley Jones was the only member of the cast that was supposed to sing, but when the producers heard Cassidy's singing they decided, wisely, to let him sing as well. Also, that is actually David Cassidy playing guitar during the groups sound check at the beginning at the episode. In fact, the parents of the younger Partridge kids complained because Cassidy's playing was so loud.

    • For this premiere episode only, the opening credits superimpose over The Partridge Family singing "Together (Havin' a Ball)."

  • Allusions

    • Shirley: I never claimed to be Sophie Tucker.

      Sophie Tucker (1884-1966), a Russian-born singer/actress, was very popular in America's early 20th century entertainment business. "The Last of the Red Hot Mamas" long career included burlesque, vaudeville, stage, radio, film, and television appearances. Since her most popular recording, "Some of These Days", was released in 1911, it's understandable why the younger Partridges have never heard of her.

    • Reuben (as Danny looks over the contract): Well? What do you think, Mr. Darrow?

      Clarence Seward Darrow (1857-1938) was a prominant, self-made lawyer who was involved in many notable cases, including the "Scopes-Monkey Trial" of 1923. Rueben is referring to Danny's detailed examination of legal points in the management contract.

    • Reuben (when Danny first introduces himself): Terrific. Next time I see Ted Mack, I'll tell him!

      Ted Mack (1904-1976) was the host of The Original Amateur Hour, which ran on television from 1948 to 1970. This seminal talent-search show featured amateur entertainment acts of all kinds. Although a few contestants went on to huge careers (such as Pat Boone and Gladys Knight), Rueben's comment is based on the fact that most of the contestants were sub-par talents who had no chance for professional careers.

    • Keith (about Laurie): One lousy sit-in, and suddenly she's Joan Baez!
      Joan Chandos Baez, born in 1941, was a popular folk singer and activist. Her first "sit-in" occurred at the age of 16 when she refused to leave her seat for an air-raid drill at Palo Alto High School. Keith is referring to Laurie's continual stance as the "socially-aware" member of the family.

    • Shirley (talked into singing with the band): Well, all right...but don't expect Dinah Shore!
      Dinah Shore (1916-1994), the American singer and actress, was most popular during the Big Band Era of the mid-20th century. Shirley's reference was used to illustrate the generation gap between her and her children; ironically, Shore was just beginning to reach new audiences with her Dinah's Place (1970-74) television show, so this joke works only in the timeframe that the episode aired.

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