We all remember Full House, Family Matters, Perfect Strangers, and Boy Meets World as foundation shows of the ABC Friday Night lineup. These shows were great family fun, brought in huge ratings, and are now hilarious as syndicated shows we can catch on Nick at Nite. While these shows flourished on Friday nights, did you know that the lineup changed on a yearly basis?
During the 1988-89 television season, the original lineup consisted of Perfect Strangers, Full House, Mr. Belvedere, and Just the Ten of Us. Other shows rotated in and out during the twelve season run, some great, others absolutely ridiculous in premise. Just as we are now trying to trade our bench players for quality studs as the fantasy football playoffs approach, here are some of the fun shows I dug up that made up the bench of the ABC lineup:
Debuting in the 9:30 EST time slot in the spring of 1991, Baby Talk was a show based on the idea that made Look Who’s Talking successful: a mainstream actor (in this case Tony Danza) provides the voice of a baby who provides the comic relief in an otherwise terrible show. This show failed miserably for two reasons; it wasn’t as funny as the movie it was based on and the show failed to capitalize on the young talent they had tucked away in the cast.
They re-casted the mother in between their pilot run in 1991 and their first full season in 1992. It’s kinda confusing that the same baby could possibly belong to two different mothers. As if that wasn’t confusing enough, the mother decided she would try to fill the role of father with members of a construction crew (most notably an unknown George Clooney) that were remodeling her New York City loft. Here you go kid. Your real father isn’t in the picture, but your father figure could be one of these random construction workers.
As if that weren’t enough, when they re-casted the role of the mother for the first full season, they scrapped the idea that the construction crew could fill the role of father figure and brought in Scott Baio. Good lord, Chachi. It looked good on paper, similarly to Ray Rice and Trent Richardson, but once inserted into the lineup, it carried the ball five times for two yards and left early with an injury.
On Our Own
Picture this: seven children lose their parents in the urban backdrop of St. Louis and trick the authorities so they can stay together. Hilarious, right? Wrong. This is horribly tragic and somehow, ABC thought this was funny enough to stick into their premiere television lineup.
This is pretty much the same thing as starting the Jets’ fourth wide receiver in a road matchup with Seattle. Not only was the premise horrible for situation comedy, but the cast was a group of no-names and the six youngest children were real-life siblings. No wonder it only ran for twenty episodes.
Here’s how this show came about. Howard Hessman took his sweet 1980’s pony tail and left the cast of Head of the Class before the final season and was replaced by Scottish comedian Billy Connolly. Despite being from Scotland, Connolly was deemed a big enough star to warrant his own spin off, placed squarely into the revolving door 9:30 PM time slot. The show was terrible at best, as Billy moved from Manhattan to California and married a single mother so he could avoid deportation. Worst of all, he didn’t take the fat kid (Dennis) who always sat in the corner next to the sweet Apple 2E computer. You following this?
Johnny Galecki was on the show as the eldest child of the woman Billy married. It should have worked right? After several time changes and thirteen agonizing episodes, Billy was scrapped similarly to how you treat your fantasy kicker. You don’t care that he’s there as long as he doesn’t miss any kicks. Once his bye week rolls around, you unceremoniously drop him because the position just doesn’t matter.
After bragging about my Week 9 success, I flopped miserably in Week 10. Here are my Week 11 Plays and Stays, hoping to get back from this state of chaos:
Santonio Holmes, WR New York Jets
Coming off the bye, the New York Jets look to buck their trend of trading wins and losses. They have yet to win or lose consecutive games this season, and their last game was a shocking win against the New Orleans Saints. The betting public will likely side with the home favorite Bills, but if you look at their first matchup, rookie QB Geno Smith was able to pick apart the Bills secondary for 331 yards and two scores.
Smith was able to get two WRs over the 100 yard mark, with Holmes receiving ten targets good for six catches, 154 yards and a TD. Holmes has missed the last five games due to an aching hamstring, but he’s back at practice and I like him to put up some big numbers. Look for 80-90 yards and a score this weekend. If you’re missing Dez Bryant this week, Holmes could be a high upside replacement. PLAY
Danny Amendola, WR New England Patriots
Prior to their Week 10 bye, New England finally seemed to put it all together offensively. They had almost their entire arsenal of passing game weapons back on the field and Tom Brady broke out of his season long slump. This week, they play Monday night against the suddenly dominant defense of the Carolina Panthers.
The Panthers have allowed only two receivers to score TDs this year, and only one has crossed the century mark. They are allowing the second fewest points to fantasy WRs on the season. In a week with only two teams on bye, there are better WR choices than Amendola this week. STAY
Houston Texans Defense
Houston was a hot draft commodity after their 2012 dominance. By Week 7, however, after back to back zero point performances, Houston likely was tucked away in your league’s waiver wire. Now is the time to pick them up and stream.
If you’ve been riding the Kansas City Chiefs defense, now is the time to make a shrewd move and play Houston. In the next four weeks, they will tangle with the Oakland Raiders (allowing the fifth most points to fantasy defenses) and see the Jacksonville Jaguars twice. Don’t be fooled by Jacksonville’s win against the Titans in Week 10. They are still the premiere team to stream against. Look for double digit points this weekend, as JJ Watt and crew will get to Terrelle Pryor early and often. PLAY
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