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Antenna TV Thread

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I really enjoyed the marathon, too. I think ive said this before, but I admire how well they transitioned into the 80s without really jumping the shark. The dynamics of the Jeffersons, Willises, Florence, and Bentley were perfect.

I'm looking forward to getting deeper into ODAAT. Two things I found interesting last night: beauty shot closing credits (have any other sitcoms done this? did ODAAT keep it up?), and it was awesome that episode 2 briefly called back to episode 1. I thought the plots were similar, and I was hoping they'd say something, then Julie did.

David Kane is annoying as hell.

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Nice seeing ODAAT finally airing somewhere again after so many years.

One thing I've noticed when watching the closing credits is that Gloria Monty was credited as one of the directors for the 4th episode, which aired tonight, and Marlena Laird has been listed as Associate Director on all of the Season 1 episodes so far. This was in 1975, and just a few years later both women would go on to work together for many years on General Hospital, with Monty as e.p. and Laird as a director.

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I'm finding the more interesting ODAAT episodes are the melodramatic ones that end up being screaming matches between Ann and someone or Julie and someone. Last night had Ann getting pissed at David for sleeping with her friend Denny, leading to a big argument where David accuses of Ann of taking him for granted, etc, and it was the first time I actually liked David, mainly because he wasn't just a desperate walking punch line. The attempts at more AITF/Maude type stuff are just not working. Case in point, that horrible, horrible episode with the President passing along the street in front of the building. I'm looking forward to the head-first dive into soapy histrionics that comes with season 2 and beyond.

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I think ODAAT's 1st season was definitely uneven. There's a different director on almost every episode as well as many different writers. I recall watching an interview with Bonnie Franklin back in the 90s where she said she was frustrated with many of the scripts in the 1st year or so. She sought out advice from Carroll O'Connor, who told her that she needed to become much more vocal in voicing her opinions and pushing for better scripts. (He was known for demanding re-writes of AITF scripts and refusing to do certain scenes/stories he felt weren't true to his show's characters.) She said that she did start voicing her concerns more after that.

I think with Season 2, we start to see more consistency in terms of the writing and directing. Then by Season 3, the cast is solidified (no more lovesick David or wacky sitcom neighbor Ginny) and the show seems very strong. It remains that way for a few years, until MP's drug addiction leads to a series of cast changes and shifts in storyline focus.

Still, these 1st season episodes are fun in showing the early stages along with some weird choices prior to the show finding its rhythm. And of course this was all taking place back in the days when the networks allowed time for shows with potential to figure things out rather than hitting the cancellation button after only 2 or 3 episodes.

Regarding David, I liked the character and the actor, but it was probably for the best that he was written out. Since this was early in the show's run, you knew Ann and David weren't going to become a serious couple; also, even if they'd remained just friends, the show is supposed to be about a newly divorced woman learning to become independent, so you couldn't have Ann continue to rely on David to help her out with each week's conflict. I'm glad, though, that they brought him back for one more show in one of the later seasons rather than just forget he exists like many shows do with a character once he or she is written out.

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I'm looking forward to Mary Louise Wilson as Ginny, but I didn't know she'd be a wacky neighbor type. I figured she'd kinda be like ODAAT's answer to Willona Woods. Is she just around for the season, or does she make any later appearances? In any case, I can't wait until we get deeper into the series. It had multipart episodes galore, and I'm just a sucker for that melodramatic late 70s goodness. I know the cast gets bigger as time goes on, too, but I generally think that's a good thing. It can't just be mom and the girls forever.

I like Bonnie Franklin a lot. Over the years, I've mostly read negative reviews of the show and her performance, labeling her as a shrieking drama queen mess, but that's kinda what I'm here for! Maybe a lot of that negativity towards the show comes from the fact that it was shamelessly soapy and took a break from comedy much more often than AITF, Good Times, and Maude did.

As much as I'm looking forward to getting further into the show's run, I just gotta say. They had a pretty nice opening sequence for the first season, and I know with David no longer a regular, they had to do something new, but jeez, they adopted what is probably THE plainest title sequence for any American 70s sitcom I've ever seen. Mack Phillips and Pat Harrington dancing their asses off notwithstanding.

Some notes on other shows:

I tuned in for a bit of Small Wonder yesterday, and wow, I had no clue they did VSEs. This one was pretty serious, it seemed, about a girl being kidnapped by her father and enrolled in Jamie's school. And holy hell, they jazzed up their little theme song. Serious business.

One of my fave Belvedere eps came on last night, the one where Marsha might be pregnant and makes a comment on how everything was ruined when Wesley was born and she just couldn't deal with it again. Wesley, of course, runs away. Again, the beauty of this show and the writing for that kid was that he wasn't looking for Marsha to be all "Oh, sweetie, you know I love you!" She told him all that jazz and he didn't make his decision to leave until AFTER that. What he really wanted was to be told the truth -- that he DID ruin a lot of plans when he was born but they managed to get through it and love him anyway. Fantastic stuff, and of course BB was great.

Edited by All My Shadows

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I'm looking forward to Mary Louise Wilson as Ginny, but I didn't know she'd be a wacky neighbor type. I figured she'd kinda be like ODAAT's answer to Willona Woods. Is she just around for the season, or does she make any later appearances? In any case, I can't wait until we get deeper into the series. It had multipart episodes galore, and I'm just a sucker for that melodramatic late 70s goodness. I know the cast gets bigger as time goes on, too, but I generally think that's a good thing. It can't just be mom and the girls forever.

I like Bonnie Franklin a lot. Over the years, I've mostly read negative reviews of the show and her performance, labeling her as a shrieking drama queen mess, but that's kinda what I'm here for! Maybe a lot of that negativity towards the show comes from the fact that it was shamelessly soapy and took a break from comedy much more often than AITF, Good Times, and Maude did.

As much as I'm looking forward to getting further into the show's run, I just gotta say. They had a pretty nice opening sequence for the first season, and I know with David no longer a regular, they had to do something new, but jeez, they adopted what is probably THE plainest title sequence for any American 70s sitcom I've ever seen. Mack Phillips and Pat Harrington dancing their asses off notwithstanding.

It's been so many years since I've seen an episode past the 1st season, but I do remember thinking that they seemed to want Ginny to be this show's Willona (early years Willona, at least)- walk right in, make a few jokes, then leave, without really having much involvement in the main stories. I think they tried to pair up Ginny with Schneider for a couple of episodes, but it didn't go anywhere. I've read that MLW wasn't happy and asked Lear to let her out of her contract. So after Season 2, Ginny is gone for good and I don't think she's ever even mentioned again. (There may be a clip that includes her in the flashback show later in the series, but I don't remember for certain.)

I like some of the characters that come on later in the run; I just think MP's situation kind of forced some things to happen that probably wouldn't have. For example, I think Julie's sudden marriage was a way to make it easier to write the character out if necessary (which they did end up having to do), and with one less daughter around, this led to more focus on Ann's work life to create some new conflict, which led to Nick, Alex, more appearances of Francine, etc. Much of it was good, and I liked the frenemy/business partner relationship of Ann and Francine, but I also could have done without so many Alex-centric plots later on.

I'm with you on liking that original opening credits sequence.

I, too, have read criticism of BF's performance and the whole "yells too much" thing. It's weird criticism (IMO); ODAAT is a Lear show, so of course there's going to be plenty of yelling. I think she did a great job with the role. Look for an episode in the 3rd season that she handles particularly well. It's a very Maude-ish type of episode that includes a lengthy monologue by Ann on her birthday, talking her way thru anxiety about her life and growing older.

Edited by Dave_01

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John Putch best known for his recurring role as Bob Morton on One Day at a Time is the son of Jean Stapleton (Edith on All in the Family).

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It's been years since I sat through One Day At A Time, but I feel it was a weird show at times. Bonnie Franklin could be grating and would do that hand slamming on the counter and screaming "Damn It Julie, Barbara, Schneider" etc.....and that " David hold me I'm scared" crap.

I read that Bonnie hated Mary Louise Wilson from day one because she felt she was being upstaged ( Like Linda Lavin did with Polly Holiday on Alice). They canned MLW after one season.

Michael Lembeck was brought on as Julie's husband so Mackenzie could go to rehab.

That Scarpelli kid drove me up the freaking wall.

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I'm loving all the discussion on ODAAT!! I'm really getting into it, so I'm eager to learn more. Antenna TV hit another home run! I can't remember the last time I became so interested in "new" old TV shows that I was seeing for the very first time.

The first-season finale two-parter, "Dad Comes Back," began last night and just concluded, and WOW, what a good hour of drama. I'm really surprised and impressed that they took the time to really focus on Ann's relationship with Ed, why it worked, and why it failed. Then, Ed's relationship with the girls. It would have been so effortless to just write him off via throwaway lines as just a deadbeat dad who ran off with a younger woman, but they took the time to elevate the plot above that, so kudos to them.

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I'm reading at various sites that Ben Powers (Keith off of Good Times) has passed away.

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That's so sad :( I don't think we've ever seen a "where are they now?" picture of him. I'm curious as to how the years treated him.

ODAAT has been immediately elevated with David's departure. I grew to like him towards the end, and I understood his character a little bit more, but the Ann/David saga was just too much, too soon. They should have spent at least a whole season on them gradually moving toward each other and then going with all of the dramatics.

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I have been so surprised by Belvedere. Completely underrated show.

Same here. I hated Belvedere when I was a kid. Everytime I watched it back in the day I was bored to death. But, as an adult. I love this show. It's so funny. It's not really a "syrupy" family show either even though I used to get that impression from it. I get kind of surprised at the jokes in it sometimes. The one I'm watching right now had a joke about Wesley watching porn.

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