Wandering Through The Shelves picked a tough one for me this week and I may have cheated with one. So...on with the show...TV show that is...
1. THE INITIATION OF SARAH-1978
This is my favourite of the 3 when we had a lot of TV movies to watch back in the day. To me, it’s a Carrie inspired theme starring Kay Lenz. She was the It gal that was expected to make it big only to go...pffft. It’s a shame because I liked her but she met and married David Cassidy which was not good in the long one since his fame was ebbing. Anyhoo, this is about 2 sisters, Kay and Morgan Brittany, the pretty one, who go to school and want to get into a stupid sorority led by evil Morgan Fairchild. Morgan B. is accepted right away but not shy, repressed Kay. The den mom played by evil, over the top, Shelley Winters, taps into Kay’s psychic, telekinetic abilities wanting her to use it for her evil gains. Little do they know whom they are dealing with. This is campy with a capital C..I mean..Morgan Fairchild and Shelley Winters equals fun.
2. DIFFERENT STROKES-1978-1986
In some ways this show is now more famous for the train wrecks of the 3 child stars than the series. The breakout star was Gary Coleman because he looked like such a cute shit with a give that brat a slap mouth. His “ what’s you talkin’ bout Willis" became a catch phrase and everyone thought he was the bees knees until he started growing up..Er...well, growing older, but staying the same size due to his kidney issues. He ended up working as a security guard..I think, and sued his parents for wasting money. Dana Plato played the daughter of Conrad Bains's character who got into drugs while on the show and was fired because of her addiction and died too young. Todd Bridges played older brother, Willis, and he, too, got into addiction and almost died, but he cleaned up his act and now does his best to help others. This show was about millionaire Bain adopting his housekeeper’s 2 sons when she died. They, I think, went to a private school and the daughter, later on, was sent off to college( aka she was fired). It had some basic stories but also dealt with some hard hitting subjects as well. I just couldn’t stand this show because of that brat, Played by Gary Coleman. I wanted him to get a slap for being a little asshole. Sorry but couldn’t stand this show.
3. THE FACTS OF LIFE-1979-1988
This was a shoot off from Different Strokes when the housekeeper, played by Charlotte Rae, decided to become the den mom to these 4 gals..or was it 3...no...4, at boarding school. You had rich, blonde and pretty girl, a brunette brain, token cute black girl and funny fat girl. Sorry just being direct and not politically correct. It’s all about their travails while at school...snore. I hated this show and tried watching it more than once but blecchhh...I just couldn’t get into it even if George Clooney was on this firca while. I hated this show.
Can you think of 3 shows that fit this bill?
It made me sad to learn that your were "poorly" yesterday. I hope today finds you feeling much better.
I am a sucker for TV movies and remember watching The Initiation of Sarah years ago. As you mentioned, Kay Lenz was an "it girl" of the period, and so were the two Morgans in the movie, Fairchild and Brittany. The film also featured Kathryn Grant, now known as Kathryn Crosby. The second wife of "The Binger," Kathryn appeared in one of my favorite movies, Otto Preminger's Anatomy Of A Murder (1959) starring Jimmy Stewart. In the court trial in Anatomy, Kathryn's character figures in one of the great "Perry Mason moments" in movie history. I remember you saying that you need to watch Anatomy Of A Murder. I agree. You need to see it. Of course, Robert Hays made a splash as Ted Striker in Airplane! I well remember Deborah Ryan as the girl in Kiss Meets The Phantom Of The Park, winner of 50 Academy Awards and another must-see TV movie.
Yessum, the curse of Diff'rent Strokes seems to be a thing, because the three rugrats had a tough go of it as they matured. A few weeks ago, I watched the TV movie High School U.S.A. which has Todd Bridges and Dana Plato in the cast. Poor Dana was a promising actress, but never lived to see the 21st century. The all-star cast of High School U.S.A. also includes the late Tony "Wally Cleaver" Dow and two other now deceased stars from Leave It To Beaver - Ken "Eddie Haskell" Osmond and Frank "Lumpy Rutherford" Bank, Bob "Gilligan" - "Maynard G. Krebs" Denver,
who is no longer with us, Dwayne "Dobie Gillis" Hickman, who is no longer with us, David "Ozzie & Harriet" Nelson, who is no longer with us and Dawn "Mary Ann" Wells, who is no longer with us. Getting back to Diff'rent Strokes, I agree that Gary Coleman's shtick got old real fast. He was more annoying than anything, and pretty unlikable in TV talk show interviews in subsequent years.
Nancy McKeon of Facts was actually the "female lead" in that star-studded TV movie I mentioned, High School U.S.A. Young George Clooney's star quality was already showing in that scene you posted. His casual, natural acting style and body movements and killer smile created a perfect storm that propelled him to major success as an actor. Clooney's future ER co-star, Anthony Edwards, also has a prominent role in the film I've been discussing, H.S. USA, playing a spoiled rich kid bully type who picks on Michael J Fox in particular.
I'm a burnout this morning and can't think of any other examples of boarding school TV series. Please get well. I hope to see you again soon, dear friend BB!
I have finally watched Anatomy of a Murder which is excellent and interesting. Phantom of paradise is right up too with many awards. Different Strokes is now know for the sadness behind the scenes. Yeah, Gary was not very likeable and sad that his wife was so wasted. It’s fu. To see how many famous stars started in tv shows and, I bet, would love to forget.Delete
We match on The Facts of Life! (and I can't believe I didn't think of Diff'rent Strokes, I never associate that with boarding school. I feel so sad for Dana Plato.ReplyDelete
Yes, we match! Yeah, it’s sad and ,when they fired her, the character was sent to boarding school.Delete
I'm a tv junkie, but I am NOT a comedy junkie. I admit I have never seen any of these and from the sound of it, I don't want to, either.ReplyDelete
Hope you are feeling better today, dear.
Yeah...you didn’t miss muchDelete
All of these films are strangers to me Brigit, but they look interesting.I hope you are well and that life is good to you and yours Kate xReplyDelete
Not feeling the best but nothing major. You haven't missed anything.Delete
Morgan Fairchild and Shelley Winters would be fun. ☺ Wish I had seen this film. Kay Lenz - blast from the past! The other two shows were pretty vapid, yet I did watch them. So sad what happened to the child stars of Different Strokes. I always liked the rebel, Jo, played by Nancy McKeon, on Facts of Life.ReplyDelete
Yes, Kay Lenz is a blast from the past. I think Different Strokes is now always thought of for these sad kids. I could never get into either tv showDelete
Not watched any of these, though I have heard of the second and third choices. I can't think of any shows. Not my genre - comedy, in a boarding school?ReplyDelete
Yeah, this was a tough week. Who would want to be in a boarding schoolDelete
I went to boarding school. It wasn't a barrel of laughs! :PDelete
Oh The Initiation of Sarah!!! I remember it well, Shelley chewed the high grade ham in that one and did so deliciously! As I hear my bones creak I will admit to watching it when it was first broadcast as a Movie of the Week (LOVED that series). Kay Lenz was undeniably happening in the 70's especially in the TV movie genre but that might have hindered her making the jump into features. She's never stopped working but the heat of her career cooled after that 70's heyday.ReplyDelete
I was never a big fan of Different Strokes but I did see a few episodes which is more than I can say about The Facts of Life although because it was so popular and referenced so often I'm familiar with the characters and the actresses who played them. George Clooney sure did have a flowing mane back in the day.
At first I didn't have a clue for this outside of Facts of Life but your choosing Initiation of Sarah led me to think in the TV movie vein which brought the original Satan's School for Girls with other queens of 70's television Jamie Smith Jackson, Pamela Franklin and Kate Jackson. Also the Connie Stevens '72 comedy Call Her Mom where she becomes housemother to a bunch of guys. It was one of the highest rated TV movies ever and would have gone to series except the head of ABC didn't like Connie Stevens personally so he torpedoed it. Those two might not qualify though since I think both have to do with college not boarding school proper. If so than I've got nothing.
Yes! Satan’s School for Girls!! I would picked that but I couldn’t remember the name. I don’t know that show with Connie Stevens nor the issues behind the scenes. I so miss the movie of the week....so many were fun to watch.Delete
I never really followed these. Hope you're having a good one.ReplyDelete
I know them enough from all the hoopla.Delete
Other than seeing a few episodes of Different Strokes I am unfamiliar with your picks. I can't even think of any TV shows that had to do in any way with boarding schools.ReplyDelete
This topic was way too hard for me to come up with anything.
Tossing It Out
This was a tough week for sure.Delete
I think Enid Blyton’s Malory Towers was made into a series. I used to live those books as a kid - and also be terrified that my parents would send me to boarding school. As if!ReplyDelete
It was made into a series but I never watched it. Good pick!Delete
I never saw the TV movie, but I watched the two shows. I enjoyed them. But I was a kid, so my taste was iffy. (Not all of my childhood shows hold up so well anymore.) Gary Coleman was roughly my age.ReplyDelete
Oh, I know what show I'd pick! Legacies. It's about a boarding school for witches, werewolves, and vampires. I'll have to think a bit to come up with some others.
I heard of Legacies but never watched it.Delete
Only worth it as it was a spin off of two other shows I watched. I ended up liking it better than the other two.Delete
I haven't seen any of your picks, though I have heard of Different Strokes and The Facts of Life. One of the actresses on The Facts of Life I think played on Survivor.ReplyDelete
I was never a fan as you may have guessed and I neve4 watched SurvivorDelete
I've watched some of all these shows. But I wasn't a big follower of any of them. Different Strokes was definitely my favourite though. Have yourself a wonderful week!ReplyDelete
I hope you are well!! I didn’t follow any of these...I just didn’t like them,Delete
I loved watching Diffrent Strokes. Gary Coleman was a cute shit. And George Clooney in that clip? Natalie's right. He's adorable.ReplyDelete
Be well and happy, Birgit.
Yes..well, I couldn’t stand that kid but George...well, his mane of hair deserves a star on the walk of fame.Delete
Have a great one. Boarding Schools is a tough one.ReplyDelete
Hope you are feeling better. This was a tough oneDelete
George Clooney on TV sitcom! I just don't remember this one. All of these were great shows. :) I can't think of any movies/series right now. My brain is fuzzy on a lot lately. I've been working it too hard.ReplyDelete
I loved your first choice Morgan Brittany and Shelley Winters. Really must see this...ReplyDelete