Are weak spin-offs a lost cause???

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by Scott+W, Mar 14, 2007.

  1. Scott+W

    Scott+W Agent

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    I just completed my "Three's Company" collection, but I'd love to have both seasons of "The Ropers" and all the episodes from "Three's a Crowd."

    When I get around to collecting "The Golden Girls," I'm going to want "The Golden Palace." It didn't last, but it told more of the story.

    Or "Checking In," which was the Florence spin-off from "The Jeffersons." It lasted about four episodes -- wish this could be bonus material for one of their seasons.

    Or "Gloria" to go along with "Archie Bunker's Place."

    And, to round off the "Sanford and Son" collection, I want to round up "Grady," "The Sanford Arms," and "Sanford."

    These shows didn't fare very well, and they might not be a big draw, but I'm one collector who'd like to have them just because they existed and further the story of some of the characters.

    So, what do you think? Are these weaker spin-off shows a lost cause?
     
  2. Ben King

    Ben King Stunt Coordinator

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    It would depend entirely on how well the original series sold, I would imagine.
     
  3. Radioman970

    Radioman970 Lead Actor

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    I'm right with you. Although not real funny, I always love watching spin off show imbedded in the original show, like the Grady episode from Sanford. Even the Brady Bunch had a spinoff episode with Ken Berry which is kind of trippy to watch since it uses the same music. I don't think that one went anywhere after...did it?
     
  4. AndyMcKinney

    AndyMcKinney Cinematographer

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    What you're referring to was an "in-show" pilot and yes, it never went anywhere, although the concept was reworked and used later with a different cast.

    The sequel I remember the 1980s spin-off The Brady Brides, where Marsha and Jan both get married, and they and their spouses live in the same house/apartment. My main memory of this series is the episode where the characters appeared on The Newlywed Game, complete with the actual host, Bob Eubanks.

    Then, there's the short-lived dramedy The Bradys from around 1990.

    As for the larger question of the "worthiness" of short-run sequels, if studios don't see them as financially viable on their own, I think using them as extras on the "parent" series are a great idea, especially if licencing isn't problematic (or prohibitively expensive). They'd be a ready-made bonus feature without any production costs needed.

    One good example of this type of extra was including the failed Black Bart pilot on the DVD of the film Blazing Saddles.

    I'd say of the shows mentioned, the two Three's Company spin-offs, and the two Sanford ones stand the best chance of a release. Sanford and The Sanford Arms could probably all be released in the same set.

    Odd how the two Three's Company offshoots weren't very successful. The two sequels to Company's British counterpart went on to be even more successful than the originating programme.
     
  5. Ethan Riley

    Ethan Riley Producer

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    The Ken Berry sitcom had its pilot as part of the Brady Bunch series...it really is a Brady Bunch episode, and no--it did not sell.

    Besides the ones mentioned above, there's other "weak" spin-offs that should be on dvd some day...I hope to see:

    Flo (Doubtful, since they can't even get "Alice" off the ground...!)
    Rhoda and Phyllis (Also doubtful, since Mary Tyler Moore seems to be having its own problems on dvd)
    AfterMASH (MASH is done; where is AfterMASH?)
    The Brady Brides (ditto my comment about MASH)
    The Colbys (if Dynasty ever gets going again)
    Fish (if Barney Miller ever gets going)
    Joanie Loves Chachi (if Happy Days gets into gear)

    It's funny how some of these "weaker" spin-offs are coming from parent shows that are having troubles making it onto dvd. Let's see what the future brings.
     
  6. Jason_V

    Jason_V Producer

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    I thought after Lifetime showed Golden Palace in a limited revival a couple years back, that one would have been a shoe-in for release. I'm not sure what the ratings were, but I'd love to have it to complete the GG set. Lifetime reran the series two or three times, so the ratings had to at least be decent.
     
  7. Tory

    Tory -The Snappy Sneezer- -Red Huck-

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    I think Rhoda should be strong enough to stand on its own, Benson too (spinoff of Soap). These were more of a hit like Frasier was to Cheers, than some of the others, though I do think the others should make it to DVD, Sanford and Three's Company spinoffs especially.

    Also there was that Diff'rent Strokes cross over show, I can't recall the name. Day by Day off of Family Ties, Just the 10 of Us off of Growing Pains, Enos and the Dukes off of Dukes of Hazzard, and all the animated versions of Gilligan's Island, Happy Days, Laverne & Shirley, Mork & Mindy, I Dream of Jeannie, Brady Bunch, and Partridge Family among others. I still think I saw an animated Three's Company hosting Saturday morning once, very limited short animated bumpers.

    In the case of Rhoda, there was an animated spinoff primetime special featuring Carlton the Doorman called Carlton Your Doorman. If Rhoda gets released on DVD, this needs to be a special feature bonus. EVen though it aired in 1980,it would be best to get it done on Season 1, if we ever see it on DVD. It won an Emmy.
     
  8. Robert13

    Robert13 Supporting Actor

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    I would definitely buy the Three's Company spin-offs on dvd if they were released. I would also buy Gloria. I loved watching the show when it was on in syndication when I was growing up. I would also buy Shirley Hemphill's short-lived series after What's Happening!! even though it's not a spin-off.
     
  9. Tory

    Tory -The Snappy Sneezer- -Red Huck-

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    I never saw Gloria, how was it?

    Shirley Hemphill? Was it One in a Million? What's Happening Now should be released too. Also shows like The Royal Family and She's the Sheriff featuring stars of some of these long running series should fly under the wings of better known shows.
     
  10. Radioman970

    Radioman970 Lead Actor

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    Funny, I just got done watching the next to the last episode of Season 3 of What's Happening? My thought was how great it would be to have What's Happening Now? at the ready.
     
  11. Robert13

    Robert13 Supporting Actor

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    Many will say that Gloria was sub-par tv entertainment but I have always been fond of it. It's pretty simple comedy. It was just about Gloria moving on after her divorce from Mike and trying to create a life for her and Joey. I've always enjoyed the episodes I've seen but I would like a complete set.

    Yes, it was One in a Million. I've never seen it. I do agree with you about What's Happening Now!! Not sure why it hasn't been released yet as the 3rd season of WH!! was out quite a while ago. And there is a demand for it out there.

    I almost forgot about She's the Sheriff! Another one I would definitely buy. It had an appearance from Don Knotts too, didn't it? Would LOVE to see that one come to dvd.
     
  12. Jeff#

    Jeff# Screenwriter

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    During their original runs on NBC, I used to watch Sanford and Son and the last (and best) of its spinoffs Sanford, which was on for almost 2 seasons. The writing was just as sharp on the early 1980s show as the 70s original, and Dennis Burkley was just fine as Fred's new partner -- overweight Cal Pettie. It wasn't quite the same without Lamont, who was said to be working in construction on the Alaskan pipeline.

    Fred got a new RICH girlfriend who replaced Donna and his new foil was the woman's bitchy maid. They never did get married, although they came close by becoming engaged.

    Clinton Derricks-Carroll was another new regular. He played Esther and Woody's son.

    Grady (Whitman Mayo) turns up as a guest in an episode or two, and the producers even got LaWanda Page back as his sister-in-law Esther for a 2 parter in which she and Fred discovered that a mix-up on Fred and Elizabeth's marriage document show that Esther (!!) was his wife!! [​IMG]
    It was the one of the funniest stories they did in either this or the original series.
    Fred chaining Cal to the refrigerator, and booby-trapping it with an alarm.....not so funny.

    Also back from the old show was Rollo, since Nathaniel Taylor was a regular. I'm pretty sure that Hal Williams and Howard Platt returned as uniformed police officers Smitty and Hoppy too.
     
  13. Robert13

    Robert13 Supporting Actor

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    Sony should seriously just go ahead and release Sanford in one complete set. I'd buy it. [​IMG]
     
  14. Jeff#

    Jeff# Screenwriter

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    That was the late Shirley Hemphill's only leading role in a TV series of her own. However...it was not the same character she played on What's Happening? (and later in the mid 1980s sequel series What's Happening Now?).

    On those 2 other sitcoms she played Shirley Wilson, who had taken over the diner from her former boss by the time the later series started. In between on "One in a Million" in early 1980, she played Shirley Simmons. I barely remember that show from my pre-teen youth. Bald character actor Keene Curtis co-starred. The show wasn't that good, and that's why it didn't last long. The premise was that Shirley is a cabbie who inherits a huge corporation, so the woman uses her streetwise knowledge to run the business. Fat jokes and bald jokes dominated every script. I don't believe this one will ever see the light of DVDay.
     
  15. Jay_B!

    Jay_B! Screenwriter

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    I don't get why Anchor Bay keeps releasing "best of" sets of Three's Company instead of giving TC fans what they want... The Ropers and Three's A Crowd
     
  16. Tory

    Tory -The Snappy Sneezer- -Red Huck-

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    From what I understand, Anchor Bay has not licensed Three's a Crowd and Ropers, at least not at last checking but they do still have a license for Three's company and can release any configuration of that they want right now.


    About that One in a Million, I was born in 1978 and I remember the show. While it is possible that I could be remembering it from original airing, I do remember shows from that time that only aired at that time, but I think I saw it later. Does anyone know if it aired in syndicated reruns 5-6 years later on? I seem to recall only seeing one episode of it, thinking oh wow its Shirley in a different show and then not seeing it again. I think it aired on the weekend hours before Saturday morning cartoons started here, probably 4 AM, that is when my local station aired What's Happening, Webster and several other syndicated repeats and What's Happening Now new. Disney stuff would air at 5. It seems that people do not like this show but it also seems that What's Happening is not so popular with critics, I am certain that it would be slightly entertaining to me.
     
  17. Jeff#

    Jeff# Screenwriter

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    Hey, that's cool that you remember watching a TV show when you were only 2 years old, Tory! [​IMG]
    My earliest memory is when I was only 1 year old in 1969, watching Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In in my crib. It wouldn't be until early 1980s half-hour versions were rerun on Nikelodeon that I got to see Laugh-In again. The last time was just last month online at Guba.com (uploaded from DVD releases).
     
  18. Greg_S_H

    Greg_S_H Executive Producer

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    It was called Together We Stand, starred Elliot Gould, and came out in the mid-'80s.
     
  19. Tony S

    Tony S Stunt Coordinator

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    I would love to have Sanford as well. I also want the Cheers spinoff, The Tortellis. Also Just The Ten Of Us.
     
  20. Cheetah

    Cheetah Stunt Coordinator

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    I also would love to have all the Sanford and Son spin-offs. In addition, I would be interested in Steptoe and Son which of course was the original U.K. version.
     

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