Serving up this steaming pile of
Celebrity Gossip
Gay Politics
Gay News
and Pointless Bitchery
Since 1995

The Facts of Life, lesbian idyll

I watched a few FOL episodes recently and couldn't believe how thinly veiled its lesbian overtones were. They start out in a boarding school but go on to establish what's basically a commune. They make a pretense of leaving to visit family around the holidays but always gravitate back to each other due to "missed flights" or "bad weather." Tootie and Natalie are inseparable, and the steamy Lo/Blair sexual tension is well already well documented. Cloris Leachman shows up with her feminine son, who is clearly the product of artificial insemination, to show the other women how to be same sex parents. And there are almost NO MEN except for George Clooney, fictional off screen boyfriends like Snake, and rapists (both Natalie and Jo are attacked). There is even an ultra-masculine baby dyke who is mentored by the ladies in later seasons. This show was the original L Word.

by Anonymousreply 43601/19/2013

It will be interesting to hear from Lisa W on the show now that she is freeing herself from that odd interim life.

She never said anything bad about the show or Blair, but now that she can tell it, we might be treated to some truth.

by Anonymousreply 112/20/2012

Wow OP, you have rocked my world.

by Anonymousreply 212/20/2012

Tuti's tits alone, led to the gay rumors which ruined her blossoming career...she was so talented!

I weep when I think of what could be!

by Anonymousreply 312/20/2012

R1 the baby dyke was introduced in season 5 (the firsr Edna's Edibles season) and was played by Pamela Seagull (WHET), but I don't remember her characters name and I know she had a lesbionic crush on Jo.

by Anonymousreply 412/20/2012

Pamela Segall (Kelly) is the voice of Bobby on King of the Hill.

by Anonymousreply 512/20/2012

R1, the boy, Andy, was an orphan who had been bounced around to various foster parents. Cloris Leachman's character adopted him shortly after her arrival in Peekskill. But your point still remains....

by Anonymousreply 612/20/2012

I sometimes have the reruns playing in the background while I'm getting ready for bed. Kim Fields, as Tootie, is the worst actress of the four girls. She screams her lines and emphasizes every point, even when she's face-to-face with other actors. To show petulance, she rocks back and forth, almost in and out of frame, as she shouts her lines (again). She was great as a little kid on roller skates, but as soon as she outgrew them her limitations as an actress became obvious.

Mindy Cohn, as Natalie, was much better with the dramatic scenes, and she was actually pretty good at comedy (despite her obvious smirk in the earlier seasons).

Nancy McKeon, as Jo, was sort of flat and predictable, but Lisa Whelchel always gave Blair a quirky, interesting spin on what could have been a stereotypical rich girl.

by Anonymousreply 712/20/2012

R5 thanks Kelly sounds about right. I actually prefer the 2 Edna's Edible seasons more than the Eastland years, the writing was much better as was the acting and the show REALLY started to have an '80's feel. Season 6 is probably my favorite season there's the classic Cruisung episode, the episode where Jo and the gang fill in a DJ'S at Langley's radio station, the spring break two-parter, the drive in episode and the video diary episode when Natalie graduates from Eastland and a former students interviews the whole cast to hear what made Eastland so special. Season 7 is good too but the show changes a lot, and it had became a dopey '80's sitcom instead of the Norman Lear produced issue oriented shoe it was intended to be. As for the last 2 Cloris Leachman seasons, well I kinda hated them.

by Anonymousreply 812/20/2012

I always thought Jo was the weakest link in the cast. She was neither funny nor appealing, and she always seemed too angry.

by Anonymousreply 912/20/2012

Pamela Segall is Pamela Adlon who played Louis CK's wife on his HBO show, "Lucky Louie" and she's been on "Californication" for six (or whatever) seasons. She is also a producer/writer on "Louie".

by Anonymousreply 1012/20/2012

BTW one of the Xmas shows I watched featured Blair's pregnant mom--no husband was with her, just a vague mention of an ex. Obviously a turkey baster baby to be raised in an accepting matriarchal non-judgmental lesbian environment. And the baby was a girl too. This show should've been called WORLD WITHOUT MEN.

by Anonymousreply 1112/20/2012

No way Tootsie was the best.

Before she was on the FOL, she played Mrs Butterworth and Eliza Doolittle and was Fred Sanford's grandkid on ABC.

Mindy Cohn always laughed at her own lines which weren't even funny. They just had her on 'cause she was the fat kid. And that didn't work when the other girls became fatter than the fat kid.

The lez dyke was Pam Segal related to MWC Katey Segal and the Double Trouble Twins, Beth and Jean Segal and her father was Steven Segal and her grandfather was George Segal

by Anonymousreply 1212/20/2012

Pamela Segall is the only cast member to win an Emmy

by Anonymousreply 1312/20/2012

Oh, Cloris Leachman! She was overqualified for this gig.

by Anonymousreply 1412/20/2012

Scientology Paul Haggis is responsible for all of the plot lines OP mentioned in his post.

by Anonymousreply 1512/20/2012

Wrong, R12. Pamela Segall is not related to the Sagal family ("Double Touble" twins Jean and Liz, plus Katey from "Married with Children").

by Anonymousreply 1612/20/2012

Shirley Booth was overqualified for Hazel, what's your point?

by Anonymousreply 1712/20/2012

Jo and Blair clearly wanted each other. You could cut that sexual tension with a knife.

And I always thought the Natalie character was very endearing. I think Mindy Cohn did a good job.

by Anonymousreply 1812/20/2012


by Anonymousreply 1912/20/2012


Of course she was read her IMDB it says she was from an acting family and changed her name because she wanted to make it on her own. Like Emilio Estevez and not Charlie Sheen. Or Sara Gilbert.

by Anonymousreply 2012/20/2012

Remember the episode where Tootsie yelled at Charlene from Designing Women for leaving her kid alone.

by Anonymousreply 2112/20/2012

That was OK but it wasn't as good as when she went to NYC and the kid from Angie tried to make her into a prostitute.

by Anonymousreply 2212/20/2012

Indeed, R21. That episode also showed that Jean Smart is either freakishly tall or the Facts actresses were all midgets.

by Anonymousreply 2312/20/2012

When "Square Pegs" premiered, the writers and producers took a lot of price that they weren't FOL, a fellow Embassy production.

Flah forward a year, "Square Pegs" is canceled and many SP personnel are shuttled over to FOL and Jami Gertz is cast as a similar character as Muffy.

by Anonymousreply 2412/20/2012

I like the episode where she was all upset because the poor black kid said she was rich and acted too white.

And then he finds out she is going to be partners with a white boy in a dance contest.

Then the black ghetto kid is all like "He only wants to be your partner so he can win."

And she says, "Well he'd be pretty stupid if he wanted to dance with me cause he thought I'd lose."

Then the black kid calls her all sorts of name and she forms a black girl's club but all the sistas at Eastland are like Condie Rice, you know oreo cookies.

by Anonymousreply 2512/20/2012


by Anonymousreply 2612/20/2012

Did Norman Lear actually produce the show or not? I've seen documentaries on the show where Charlotte and Mindy mention Lear as being the man in charge. Also writers Linda Marsh and Margie Peters were brought over by Lear from his One Day at a Time to save the show after the disastrous first season. They left the show sometime during Season 6 and you can definitely see a big change in the show once they left. Edna's Edibles burned down and the '80's kitschy Over our Heads replaced it, the hair got enourmously big on the girls and the lighting and cinematography as well as new cameras were all updated given the show a very "pastel" look. Also serious storylines like a student at Eastland kills herself or Tootie runs off to NYC where she's almost tricked into prostitution are replaced by more light, fun storylines. I mean the show actually felt like a sitcom during the last 3 years.

by Anonymousreply 2712/20/2012

Embassy productions was owned by Lear, I believe.

by Anonymousreply 2812/20/2012

The best episode is where Toddie went off to NY to see Jermaine Jackson. And it was funny because she never like Jermaine, she was always talking about Michael Jackson.

And you know the writers couldn't get Michael so they had to switch it to, loser, Jermaine, who was so desperate for publicity.

And you just know that the only reason she liked Michael Jackson is cause the white writers couldn't think of any other black celebrities.

by Anonymousreply 2912/20/2012

I never watch anything past the first 6 seasons. You can definitely tell the show changed after that. I hated all the useless randoms they added in the later seasons as well

by Anonymousreply 3012/20/2012

I liked the Christmas episode where they went to prison.

And Blaire didn't want to go and Jo was all like, "My dad was in prison," and Blaine says, "Well he's out now, so get over it."

by Anonymousreply 3112/20/2012

Mindy Cohn was easily the best comedic actress out of the four girls.

by Anonymousreply 3212/20/2012

Tootsie always had the best episodes. Remember when Fatty wanted the part in South Pacific but Totoie got it instead.

And then she was all like "Look if I drop out how do you know you'll get it, maybe you weren't next on the list, maybe you were last."

And you just now Nataly was gonna call her the "N" word.

by Anonymousreply 3312/20/2012

Remember when MacGuyver was Tootie's uncle?

by Anonymousreply 3412/20/2012

If I mention Marj Dusay and Nicolas Coster as Blair's folks, will this get banned as a soap thread?

by Anonymousreply 3512/20/2012

The first season was too populated and too silly. Molly and her nasal voice was especially a drag. Poor Sue Ann couldn't act. Nancy was made out to be a big whore.

But within five minutes of the second season opener, the show just falls into place.

by Anonymousreply 3612/20/2012

R30 Pippa was the worst addition ever! Andy wasn't too annoying but George (George Clooney) was pretty useless. What they should have done during the later years was dig into the history of the show and bring back recurring characters like Cousin Geri(who just dissappeared), Roy, Jami Gertzs snooty Langley character (would of been a great foil for Blair) and the other original 4 Sue Ann, Cindy, Nancy and Molly(though I'm sure Molly Ringwald would have said no). Hell bring back Mr. Bradley or Mrs. Mahoney for an episode or two. The show was a spinoff of Different Strokes but after Facts' second season they stopped having crossevers. Strokes ended in '86, Facts ended in '88, Kimberley Drummond who was a day student at Eastland could of been made a regular during Facts' last 2 seasons, even with Mrs. Garrett gone she was still friend with all the girls. I'm sure Dana Plato had a lot of free time. Also I just remebered that the first season set was the same set used on Maude, so facts was definitely a Lear production, also Lear discovered Charlotte Rae (like he did Bea Arthur) on the New York stage and casted her in an ep of All in the Family which lead to a guest spot on Maude then Different Strokes and finally The Facts of Life.

by Anonymousreply 3712/20/2012

Nancy was supposed to be the star. When the revamped the show, the producers found that only Blair, Natalie and Tootie were even remembered by people. So they kept them and then added Jo as the others were not memorable.


That was a good episode. I like it when the black kid is dancing and Jo walks by and casually says "Another myth exploded."

by Anonymousreply 3812/20/2012

Pippa was the worst addition ever! Andy wasn't too annoying but George (George Clooney) was pretty useless.

What they should have done during the later years was dig into the history of the show and bring back recurring characters like Cousin Geri(who just dissappeared), Roy, Jami Gertzs snooty Langley character (would of been a great foil for Blair) and the other original 4 Sue Ann, Cindy, Nancy and Molly(though I'm sure Molly Ringwald would have said no).

Hell bring back Mr. Bradley or Mrs. Mahoney for an episode or two. The show was a spinoff of Different Strokes but after Facts' second season they stopped having crossevers. Strokes ended in '86, Facts ended in '88,

Kimberley Drummond who was a day student at Eastland could of been made a regular during Facts' last 2 seasons, even with Mrs. Garrett gone she was still friend with all the girls.

I'm sure Dana Plato had a lot of free time. Also I just remebered that the first season set was the same set used on Maude, so facts was definitely a Lear production,

also Lear discovered Charlotte Rae (like he did Bea Arthur) on the New York stage and casted her in an ep of All in the Family which lead to a guest spot on Maude then Different Strokes and finally The Facts of Life.

Reposted so you can read it. Dude seriously use the carriage return

by Anonymousreply 3912/20/2012

Actually Kimberly stopped going to Eastland shortly after Mrs Garrett was written out.

She went to school with Willis and Janet Jackson.

Charlotte Rae was well known long before Lear. She was the wife of Lilly Munster's father on "Car 54 Where Are You?"

by Anonymousreply 4012/20/2012

R40 I remember that now. I also remember Mrs. Garrett going to the wedding of Philip Drummond(Conrad Bain) and the character with the annoying red headed son played by a pre Designing Women Dixie Carter.

Mrs. Garrett tells Willis and Arnold about her new business venture Edna's Edibles and what Blair, Jo, Tootie and Natalie are up to. This was a Different Strokes episode from around 1983-1984.

by Anonymousreply 4112/20/2012

Wasn't Nancy a couple years younger than Lisa in real life?

by Anonymousreply 4212/20/2012

You can't talk Facts of Life dyke-otomy without talking Cousin Geri!

by Anonymousreply 4312/20/2012

Charlotte Rae was extremely cold and frosty towards Geri Jewell on the set.

by Anonymousreply 4412/20/2012

R44 Cousin Geri was pretty terrible when they wrote episodes that revolved around her character, however when she was more of a supporting/background player she wasn't too bad. The sad fact is that for a stand up comic she wasn't funny at all.

The thing that irratated me the most was that she was in her last episode towards the end of Season 5 and then gone. She recurred on the show for 4 seasons and there was no explanation given to where she went, hell her name was never even MENTIONED on the show again. Did she move to LA to "make it big" or die in some tragic accident, she just dissappeared.

by Anonymousreply 4512/20/2012

R45 that was the transition period where they got rid of the bakery to the novelty store.

by Anonymousreply 4612/20/2012

R45, Geri Jewell was pissed because the producers only offered her a guarantee of two episodes for season six, so she turned them down. That was the end of cousin Geri.

by Anonymousreply 4712/20/2012

Another obvious lesbian aspect to the show was that ALL the girls stayed virgins (with men, anyway) until they were well into their 20's. It was completely unbelievable, unless they were all closet cases who were screwing each other, which we all know was the case.

by Anonymousreply 4812/20/2012

One of my faves from the later seasons is "Come Back to the Truck Stop Natalie Green, Natalie Green." (If memory serves, it was another Haggis script). While stranded at a truck stop in the middle of nowhere, Natalie begins writing a story about the people at the diner, starring her friends. Jo is the typical gum-snapping, wisecracking diner waitress; Blair is a sophisticated femme fatale with a dark secret; Tootie is a crop-dusting, adventure-seeking aviatrix; George is the short-order cook.

It's kooky fun -- everyone played it very OTT, and there's a lot of breaking of the fourth wall, as the characters step out-of-character to comment (or give an eye-roll) on Natalie's story-development. And then, in the middle, fucking CHARO shows up -- out of nowhere --to lead a conga-line through the diner! (b/c Natalie had lost control of the story). When I saw this episode again a few years ago (for the first time since original run), I roared with laughter! It was so out there...but also clever (about the writing process).....and they all looked like they were having SO much fun!

Lisa Whelchel has said in several interviews that she preferred the later seasons, to the Eastland years....because of the opportunities to play broad, physical comedy. She particularly excelled at that. Even during the Eastland years, she was always the best of the four, at physical comedy (I'm thinking of yo-yo episode, the paint fight).

by Anonymousreply 4912/20/2012

Lisa was and is very good at broad comedy - you could even see that in some of the confessionals she had during Survivor.

by Anonymousreply 5012/20/2012


You only know that Blair, Tootsie and Natalie were virgins. Nothing was ever said about Jo being a virgin.

by Anonymousreply 5112/20/2012

That's 'cuz I wuz gettin' the high hard one from Mrs. G. and her 10" vibratin' dildo, ya smartass R51

by Anonymousreply 5212/20/2012

I think my favorite episode is where Mindy walks into a restaurant and is starving, but also has a stomach ache and demands a bucket because she's going to throw up.

by Anonymousreply 5312/20/2012

Here' the true Facts of Life

by Anonymousreply 5412/20/2012

Jo and Blair were the first lesbian couple in tv history.

by Anonymousreply 5512/20/2012

I actually just checked YouTube to see if anyone made a Jo/Blair lesbian fan video.

...There are...many...of them...

by Anonymousreply 5612/20/2012

Blair and Jo, Cagney and Lacey and Anne Murray were all lesbians had in the 80s.

by Anonymousreply 5712/20/2012


That was cool as it had all the old housekeeper as well as the roach lady.

by Anonymousreply 5812/20/2012

Tootie has always ben my favorite on the Facts of Life

by Anonymousreply 5912/21/2012

Watching the first seasaon - Blair, Natalie, and Tootie definitely had the most screen presense. You can see why Blair ended up eclipsing Sue Ann as the lead. Sue Ann left no impression as all, Nancy was kind of a bland bad girl, and Molly and the girl with braids were kind of just there. (My exposure to the first season is pretty limited, so these might not be accurate observations).

by Anonymousreply 6012/21/2012

[quote]Jo and Blair were the first lesbian couple in tv history.


by Anonymousreply 6112/21/2012

What's really crazy was the fact that the entire pilot episode revolved around the possibility that tomboy Cindy might be a lesbian.

Blair teases her by saying she acts like a boy, and looks like a boy and is into all boy things and being touchy feely with other girls. Blair also tells her that it's not normal. Mrs. Garrett tells her she's beautiful as she is and shouldn't change herself because of what Blair says. In other words Mrs. Garrett is more than OK with Cindy being a muff diving baby dyke in training!

by Anonymousreply 6212/21/2012

R54 thanks for that link. I hadn't seen it in a while and I was laughing out loud.

by Anonymousreply 6312/21/2012

I don't think anyone here has mentioned the first episode in 1979:

by Anonymousreply 6412/21/2012

[quote]She was neither funny nor appealing, and she always seemed too angry.

So, was there any doubt Jo was a lesbian?

Kim Fields (Toto) was a terrible actress.

by Anonymousreply 6512/21/2012

I want to see the rest of the pilot episode.

by Anonymousreply 6612/21/2012

You'll have to search for part 2 on youtube R66.

by Anonymousreply 6712/21/2012

The most moving episode:

by Anonymousreply 6812/21/2012

I thought Geri Jewell was still identifying as straight back then, not realizing her same-sex attraction until much later?

I could never understand WHY a gay guy (like me) would WANT to watch a show where the idea was to have as little onscreen presence by males as possible?

by Anonymousreply 6912/21/2012

OP I applaud you for your lesbian reading/deconstruction of the Facts of Life. Bravo!

by Anonymousreply 7012/21/2012

R15, Paul Haggis has given scathing interviews on his association with the Scieno cult.

by Anonymousreply 7112/21/2012

Facts of Life is the only family-oriented sitcom from my childhood that I can still watch as an adult because it was so camp-tastic and of course the lesbian (I'm a guy, btw) subtext. It is so sweetly charming.

When I was a kid, I watched all the family sitcoms and like them - Different Strokes, Webster, Mr. Belvedere, Family Ties, Growing Pains etc. Whenever I've caught a rerun of one of those shows as an adult I have to change the channel after two minutes. They were all just awful and I have no idea how I sat through them all when I was growing up. Facts of Life is the only one that I still find watchable.

by Anonymousreply 7212/21/2012

[quote]This show was the original L Word.

Agreed, in that they both SUCKED.

by Anonymousreply 7312/21/2012

I love Lisa Whelchel (yeah, I know she's a "fundy" and all, but I don't care--I watched every episode of Survivor this season plus FOL back in the day). Still, I wonder how she feels about being hot grist for babydyke fan fiction and mashup videos?

by Anonymousreply 7412/21/2012

[Quote]And there are almost NO MEN except for George Clooney, fictional off screen boyfriends like Snake, and rapists (both Natalie and Jo are attacked).

There was a male headmaster at Eastland for the earliest seasons.

by Anonymousreply 7512/21/2012

From Wikipedia. I had no idea Lisa Whelchel was such a fucked-up fundie even 30 years ago!

"The show's writers created a storyline in this season for the episode titled "The First Time" in which Natalie became the first of the girls to lose her virginity. Lisa Whelchel refused this particular storyline that would have made her character, not Natalie, the first among the four young women in the show to lose her virginity. Having become a Christian when she was 10, Whelchel refused because of her Christian convictions. Whelchel appeared in every episode except that one."

by Anonymousreply 7612/21/2012

I think all the girls were nearly raped at one point. Blair nearly date-raped in the first season and Tootie had all those pedophiles after her.

I think Lisa tweeted a Jo/Blair video once, commenting on their unfortunate hairstyles. Maybe she didn't realize what kind of video it was.

by Anonymousreply 7712/21/2012

So, do we think Lisa may be headed for a comeback with the Survivor visibility? Up til now, really only Teetee and Jo have had any success. It';d be sort of cool if Bliar eclipses them witgh na later-in-life, back-from-the-dead comeback.

by Anonymousreply 7812/21/2012

Christ, I'm typoing like a drunk with fat fingers on a tiny phone.

My apologies.

by Anonymousreply 7912/21/2012

It was embarrassing on the ABC News interview they had the entire cast including Gerri and Cloris and Gerri was like

"I wanna say something."

And Charlotte says: "Get on with it dummy, damn it takes forever to drag that shit out of your crippled ass mouth."

And the rest of the cast was stunned.

And Charlotte was like, "Well it's true isn't it?"

And Lisa says, "Just 'cause it's true doesn't mean you have to say it."

by Anonymousreply 8012/21/2012

Joan Rivers used to call the show "The Fats of Life".

by Anonymousreply 8112/22/2012

The theme song was performed by Gloria Loring, wife of Alan Thicke and mother of singer Robin Thicke. She's best known for playing Liz Chandler Craig Dimera Curtis on Days of Our Lives from 1980-1986.

BTW I hated the "rock" version of the theme song that debuted in season 7 with all the other changes the show had that year. They also got rid of the closing theme which had different lyrics but the same melody and replaced it with some '80's electro pop lyric free music.

by Anonymousreply 8212/22/2012

R30 Seriously . . . there were more than six seasons? If there was ever a "MARY" thread, this is it. How can there be so much collective knowledge on the drivel that was FOL?

by Anonymousreply 8312/22/2012


Mindy Cohn said in an interview that "someone had to get laid on the show" so she took up the slack when Lisa refused...

I don't agree with Lisa's religious views or child rearing methods (I'm an atheist) but she seems like a genuinely nice person (if you watched Survivor this season). Also you have to look at the alternatives, and the realties of child stardom. The FOL cast has turned out to be remarkably well-balanced in adulthood. Would you prefer they had ended up like the cast of Diff'rent Strokes?

by Anonymousreply 8412/22/2012

The big reunion (minus 2):

by Anonymousreply 8512/22/2012

Mrs. G says they are all straight:

by Anonymousreply 8612/22/2012

R51 Jo was definitely not a virgin. The main reason she ended up at Eastland was because her mom didn't approve of her relationship with Eddie.

In a season 2 two parter Jo and Eddie run off to get married, until Mrs. Garrett and Blair find the motel they were staying at and naturally talk them out of it. The motel room has a SINGLE bed that they were sharing, more than implying that they were sexually active.

by Anonymousreply 8712/22/2012

Jo seriously considered being a nun at one point. Don't you have to be a virgin to become a nun?

by Anonymousreply 8812/22/2012

Sad that I remember this, back when sitcoms used to do "very special" episodes and did something that they thought was controversial, they always made sure that one character represented the "traditional" family values view. When Natalie lost her virginity, Jo and Tootie were discussing it, and Jo said she planned on waiting until she was married. I think that was originally supposed to be Blair's point of view, but they had to alter it when Lisa did not do the show.

They kind of mellowed Jo's attitude after she had been on the show a couple of years. She became a bit more goody-goody and they probably white-washed or altered things she would have done prior to coming to Eastland.

by Anonymousreply 8912/22/2012

Waiting until marriage couldn't have originally been Blair's point of view, could it, if Blair was supposed to be the one to lose her virginity first.

by Anonymousreply 9012/22/2012

R87, the way I remember it, Jo was incredibly shy and nervous in that motel room scene with Eddie. She practically shot off the bed when he leaned over to kiss her. I thought it was crystal clear that she was a virgin, and that night would have been their first time.

I remember that, too, R89. (Jo saying that she was waiting until she got married). What didn't quite jive with me about that.....the season prior, there was a little story-arc about Jo dating a 30-year old professor. What 30 year-old man would date a 19-20 year-old, if he wasn't getting any??

And yes, they absolutely softened Jo in the later years. Long-gone was the girl who hot-wired cars, made fake i.d.'s and didn't think twice about shoplifting. While they probably swung a little too far in the opposite direction, I think they were trying to make the point that Eastland/Langley/Mrs. Garrett really had changed her. (we actually started seeing this at the end of S3, when Jo goes home for a visit and realizes she no longer has anything in common with her best friend from the neighborhood).

by Anonymousreply 9112/22/2012

R89 very true, but also think the whole show became more cookie cutter beginning with season 7, hell the opening credits even had a shot of that cheesiest '80's sitcom cliche with the whole cast gathered around a piano singing.

Linda Marsh and Margie Peters really were the force that made Facts a hit and gave voice to the characters. When they stopped writing the show in Season 6, Facts was never the same again. Sure the show could still be entertaining but the episodes weren't about anything anymore.

Norman Lear brought them over from One Day at a Time, so they alteady had great experience writing for females. Peters was interviewed on a Facts documentary and she admitted that her and Marsh had knock down, drag out fights with NBC over the controversial suicide episode from Season 2. NBC expected the episode to end with Cynthia, the suicidal Eastland student, surviving her overdose but instead ended with her dying. Reportedly production was halted for a few days and Lear convinced NBC to let them finish filming Marsh and Peters episode and to air it.

NBX only aired it once, and for years has been known as a "lost episode", because NBC decided never to drop the episode in it's syndication cycles. It wasn't until the season 2 DVD release that this "lost episode" was found.

by Anonymousreply 9212/22/2012

Did Jen Aniston watch this growing up? (she & Kim Fields are the same age).

by Anonymousreply 9312/22/2012

Mrs Garrett likes dick

by Anonymousreply 9412/22/2012

Facts of Life parody with Paul Vogt as Mrs. Garret, who is hilarious.

by Anonymousreply 9512/22/2012

[quote]There was a male headmaster at Eastland for the earliest seasons.

He was run off the Land.

by Anonymousreply 9612/22/2012

R87 Jo "lost it" when she went to Paris.

I guess you die-hard fans don't remember that episode!

by Anonymousreply 9712/22/2012

R92 is functionally illiterate. Her and Marsh? Seriously?

by Anonymousreply 9812/22/2012

Did she really lose it to the French guy, David, she met on her way to Le Mans?

Remember when they sang that terrible "You Wear It Well" song (as a fake band named Sexy Lingerie) in some contest, even though none of them had ever expressed any interest in music in any of the previous thousand episodes?

by Anonymousreply 9912/22/2012

[quote]fictional off screen boyfriends like Snake

Snake was actually in the episode where Natalie lost her virginity to him. He was played by Robert Romanus--AKA Mike Damone from "Fast Times at Ridgemont High".

by Anonymousreply 10012/22/2012

Robert Romanus was also a regular on Fame

by Anonymousreply 10112/22/2012

Cloris Leachman's "feminine son" wasn't her son at all. He was Andy--a character that was introduced to the show before Cloris even came on board. He was also played by Mackenzie Astin, who would later grow up to be hot.

by Anonymousreply 10212/22/2012

I was shocked to find out that Nancy McKeon is straight in real life. She played Jo in such a realistically dykey way that I just knew the actress playing her was probably gay. When I'd read about how she dated Michael J. Fox back in the day, I assumed her was a beard.

by Anonymousreply 10312/22/2012

I meant, I assumed "he" was a beard.

by Anonymousreply 10412/22/2012

Lol R35

by Anonymousreply 10512/22/2012

Hah, Nancy & Michael. I don't care what any of the FOL girls have said about their relationship (first true loves), I still think there was something WAY too convenient & manufactured their "romance." He was America's Reagan-loving "boy next door". She was America's tomboy-ish "sweetheart". They both had hit shows on the same network; supposedly hooked up after doing an MOW together. I can see how the suits & publicists thought, "Ah-ha!" Femmes up Nancy, makes Mike look less like a coke-head party-boy (gay, bi or straight). Win-win for everyone.

by Anonymousreply 10612/22/2012

I liked how Nancy McKeon finally became feminine in the last season. She had longer, stylish hair, long painted nails and often wore miniskirts, blouses and girlie boots. It was a complete 180 from the Jo of yore.

by Anonymousreply 10712/22/2012

I am also surprised that Nancy McKeon is apparently straight. She played the biggest dyke in tv history.

There was a poster here years ago (male) who allegedly was FB's with Michael J. Fox in his 'Family Ties' days. He went into a lot of detail about their encounters.

by Anonymousreply 10812/22/2012

MJF diddled with dick?? Wow, never would have thought that. I do know he was a druggie back in the day, but never heard any gay rumors.

by Anonymousreply 10912/22/2012

I've watched a few recently too. Talk about inability to act. They're all terrible.

by Anonymousreply 11012/22/2012

I've posted about this before, but my sister is good friends with Nancy. Lives a pretty quiet life in TX with her husband and two kids, but will still take an occasional acting role.

by Anonymousreply 11112/22/2012

R107 another reason I hate the later seasons.

by Anonymousreply 11212/22/2012

I have the episode where Natalie loses her virginity on tape and no where does Jo say she's waiting till she's married.

by Anonymousreply 11312/22/2012

Can someone explain Natalie getting raped by a mime to me?

by Anonymousreply 11412/22/2012

r114, TV writers in the 80s were known to do a lot of coke. That's all I can come up with.

by Anonymousreply 11512/23/2012


She's straight but a kinky mutha fucka.

She dated her REAL LIFE BROTHER, the guy who was Timmy on Alice.

by Anonymousreply 11612/23/2012

There's a place you gotta go

For learning all you want to know

About being a 'ho

I say "ho, ho, ho"

When the books are what you're there about

But looks are what you care about

It's is the time is wrong

Do fuck Dorothy Sarong

When the world only seems

To be producing wet dream

It's time you started finding out

What everything is all about

When she boys you used to hate, make you late

I bet you best investigate

The facts of life

They shed a lot of light

If you hear it from your brother

Better share it with your mother

Better get it right

Call her late at night

You got the babies in the palm of your hands

All you got to do

Is eat the goo

You'll never make it through without the cues

The fact of life are all about Jews

by Anonymousreply 11712/23/2012

LOL R117

by Anonymousreply 11812/23/2012

Does anyone remember a fantasy episode from the last season, where the girls are still living together as seniors. It was obvious that the whole episode is a rift on "The Golden Girls". The episode title was even "The Golden Oldies".

Blair had the Blanche role, Beverly Ann was Sophia, Tootie was ditzy and childlike like Rose, and both Natalie and Jo has the Dorothy role with their sarcastic humor and zingers.

In fact some of the zingers Jo hurled at the aging and slutty Blair(in this one episode anyway) could have been directly lifted from the Golden Girls. Hell Jo's ex husband even shows up and he wants to get back together with Jo, he even wears a rug and there's bald jokes just like Stan Zbornack. To make matters more interesting he's played by Bill(Maude) Macy.

by Anonymousreply 11912/23/2012

I totally remember that episode R119, but never got the GG references until just now!

by Anonymousreply 12012/23/2012


by Anonymousreply 12112/24/2012

My dad used to complain when I watched the show, I never understood why.. I had numerous VHS recordings I watched over and over again. Now I'm a real life Jo.

by Anonymousreply 12212/25/2012

r122, ugh please save the 'I was always a tomboy' story.

by Anonymousreply 12312/25/2012

R123 = masturbates in Tootie skates

by Anonymousreply 12412/25/2012

Saw a block of reruns about a month ago -- totally charming. Nancy McKeon is the standout actress of the bunch, and possibly the only one with any dignity, as she declined the reunion movie. But they're all cute, and Mindy Cohn had some good comic timing.

I saw the credits and wondered if FOL's Paul Haggis was THAT Paul Haggis. Hope he's not ashamed of the show. I was more entertained by the girls' two-part trip to Ft. Lauderdale than I was by "Crash."

by Anonymousreply 12512/25/2012

The fat yenta was always laughing at her own jokes.

by Anonymousreply 12612/25/2012

Nancy and Lisa are the standout talents - Nancy is better at drama, Lisa is better at comedy.

by Anonymousreply 12712/25/2012

R125, I don't think he's ashamed of it at all.

I remember seeing him on TMZ a few years ago -- they caught him leaving a restaurant in NYC -- and the cameraman called out "Paul Haggis!! You wrote The Facts of Life!" He laughed, clearly surprised that someone would bring up FOL, but smiled brightly and enthused, "Yes, that's right, I did!" and stopped to talk to the guy. The cameraman asked if he remembered the lyrics to the theme song, and if so, would he sing it? And incredibly, he DID! He only remembered the opening refrain, but he sang it! (I was dying laughing). If he was ashamed or embarrassed by FOL, he would have just said "no" and kept walking.

Then, about 6-9 months after that encounter, TMZ caught him again -- this time leaving an LA restaurant. The cameraman yelled out, "Paul, who was you're favorite on FOL - Blair, Jo, Natalie or Tootie?" He threw his head back and laughed, and replied, " Tootie, of course!" I think he was just trying to be funny -- Tootie is a funny name -- because he immediately followed, seriously, "No, actually, I loved them all equally. They were ALL great girls!" I don't know if he meant the characters, the actresses, or both.....but it was nice and he seemed genuinely sincere.

He's also appeared on a couple of those Cast Confessions/Behind the Sitcom Scandals type shows about FOL. He does not shy away from talking about FOL.

by Anonymousreply 12812/25/2012

That was certainly true the first couple seasons, R126. However, in Mindy's defense, she was not a trained actress! She was just a funny kid that they plucked from a prep-school, and threw into the middle of this sitcom. By the 3rd season she got the giggles under control.

by Anonymousreply 12912/25/2012

If he cheats on you

You say you're through

You grab a gun

And blow his ass to kingdom come

To kingdome come

When the world only seems...

by Anonymousreply 13012/26/2012

I just finished watching the very short first season for the firdt time in a couple of years and here's some observations.

The acting is pretty dreadful for the most part and EVERYBODY screams their lines and you could totally tell that it's the MAUDE set.

Kim Fields and Lisa Welchel are the best of the girls and they really click, no wonder they were kept, Mindy Cohn on the other hand is DREADFUL not only does she laugh at her jokes but she also talks in this ridiculous, "cutesy", baby voice her background acting during the flood epidode has to be the worst I've ever seen, it looks like she's about to burst out laughing everytime the camera cuts to her.

Blair and Sue Ann had the original rivalry going, similar to thr Blair and Jo rivalry in subsequent seasons.

Who would have thought Molly would go on to become Molly Ringwald, has she ever spoken of her time on the show?

Helen Hunt makes a guest appearance as a pothead in the episode titled Dope.

What the hell happened to Mrs. Mahoney (Jenny O'Hara) after the 4th episode she just dissapears never to be heard from or referenced again.

by Anonymousreply 13112/27/2012

[quote] The acting is pretty dreadful for the most part and EVERYBODY screams their lines and you could totally tell that it's the MAUDE set.

Is it really the Maude set?

by Anonymousreply 13212/27/2012

Screaming was de riguer on the Maude set.

by Anonymousreply 13312/27/2012

R133 both shows are Norman Lear shows, but for whatever reason Lear never took an Executive Producer credit on Facts even though he was a very hands on producer during the early seasons. Instead his production company was credited.

Cohn's bad acting could be attributed to the fact that she had no acting background whatsoever. Cohn claims she was discovered by Lear and Charlotte Rae, while attending the Westlake School for girls in California.

Also in her recent autobiography Geri Jewell (cousin Geri) admits that Norman Lear caught her stand up act and had the Facts writers created the role of Geri for her. She was also the first handicapped actress to have a continuing role on a TV show ever.

by Anonymousreply 13412/27/2012

Why be a skinny pencil when you can be a happy magic marker!

by Anonymousreply 13512/27/2012

Conrad Bain was on both FoL and Maude sets.

by Anonymousreply 13612/27/2012

Long Live Conrad Bain.

He was one of the few people that played polar roles. He was totally opposite as liberal Mr Drummond and conservative Dr Harmon.

Like Larry Hagman was good guy Major Nelson and evil JR Ewing.

by Anonymousreply 13712/27/2012

The writers grew up screaming between Flatbush tenement apartments, so sometimes the girls spent whole episodes doing the same.

by Anonymousreply 13812/28/2012

I'm suprised that the cast always speaks so positively about the show. They retooled it like every two years, I would imagine that could cause lots of backstage drama but the cast always goes to pains to talk about how wonderful they got a long.

by Anonymousreply 13912/28/2012

I had never heard of this show until I saw that Ms. Whelchel woman on Survivor. I watched a few episodes on YouTube out of curiosity and I thought it was pretty lame. I guess it was before my time and maybe if had been born 20 years earlier I would have gotten into it.

by Anonymousreply 14012/28/2012

R77, I always thought it was weird that Natalie was nearly raped on Halloween while dressed up as Charlie Chaplin and then when the Over Our Heads store opened what was decorating the store front and center but a Charlie Chaplin mask.

by Anonymousreply 14112/28/2012

It was originally supposed to be about a woman who remarries and we learn about second marriages. And her kid was going to be Felice. But the Charlene Ray complained that it was ridiculous to think she would be capable of remarriage at her age and to have such a beautiful step daughter.

So they changed the "Fats of Wife" to "Facts of Life."

by Anonymousreply 14212/28/2012

R140 - How old are you?

R131 - "Blair and Sue Ann had the original rivalry going, similar to thr Blair and Jo rivalry in subsequent seasons."

Blair and Sue Ann were competitive because they were so similar. Blair and Jo were competitive because they were so different.

"Who would have thought Molly would go on to become Molly Ringwald, has she ever spoken of her time on the show?"

Haven't heard. Am curious.

"Helen Hunt makes a guest appearance as a pothead in the episode titled Dope."

I have to see that!

by Anonymousreply 14312/28/2012


I don't think Mindy was the best comedic actress... she was always smirking and laughing at her own jokes.

However, the fact that she had never acted before and had her character written into the show after writers had gone to visit her private school and saw her cracking other kids up in the cafeteria or something, is a great story.

by Anonymousreply 14412/28/2012


I don't think that they could have gotten Dana Plato on the show in later years... she was pretty drugged out, so yeah, don't think that would have worked.

by Anonymousreply 14512/28/2012

I thought it was Charlotte Rae who had discovered her (like you said, cracking people up at school)

The biggest laugh I ever got from FoL was their last reunion movie and Mrs Garrett was excited about something and she said "Girls, I'm vibrating" and she was b/c she has that shaky thing Katherine Hepburn had.

by Anonymousreply 14612/28/2012

[quote]I had never heard of this show until I saw that Ms. Whelchel woman on Survivor. I watched a few episodes on YouTube out of curiosity and I thought it was pretty lame. I guess it was before my time and maybe if had been born 20 years earlier I would have gotten into it.

Gawd, you're a BABY!

by Anonymousreply 14712/28/2012

When I was in grade school, I watched Facts of Life re-runs during the week on WGN, and then, watched the original episodes on NBC on Saturday nights. I remember watching a new episode where Sue Ann, Nancy and Cindy came back to Peekskill for a reunion with the other girls. Anyhow, they acted like they didn't even know Jo and totally ignored her! I remember being floored because I had just seen a re-run from the second season in which Sue Ann and Nancy were talking and laughing with Jo in the Eastland cafeteria.

by Anonymousreply 14812/28/2012

It's L______ idyll.

by Anonymousreply 14912/28/2012

The only episode I really remember was when they were studying for finals and Natalie put on her hat with "brain wave conductors". I thought it was hysterical at the time.

I actually found it on youtube and did not hold up.

by Anonymousreply 15012/28/2012


AU Gumme back my Gold watch

by Anonymousreply 15112/28/2012

From an article in "Entertainment Weekly" about the reboot of "Boy Meets World," wherein they suggest other '80s sitcom reboots:

"Twenty-plus years after [bold]The Facts of Life[/bold] ended, lesbian couple Jo and Blair open up a bed-and-breakfast in New England and attempt to start a family."

by Anonymousreply 15212/28/2012

Molly Ringwald has spoken of her time on FOL.

She said, it was very difficult for her as the first year, there was no direction and all the girls were competing for story lines.

Then when it was retooled she said, it got worse as she wanted to go on and do other things and the girls not in the retooled version were still under contract and were put into background roles with only a line or two.

She said she couldn't wait for the 2nd season to end so she was free to do other things.

by Anonymousreply 15312/28/2012

When I was around 9 or 10 years old (1980 or 1981) I told my mom that I was going to marry Natalie. I thought she was sooooo cute, like a cuddly teddy bear. I told people Natalie was my "girlfriend". LOL, people thought I was just a kid and didn't know what I was saying, but I meant business. I still like "cuddly women" and I think Mindy Cohn is a gorgeous woman today. Other baby-dykes loved Jo, but I went for Nat all the way.

by Anonymousreply 15412/28/2012

R154 Is the term "chubby chaser" used among lesbians?

by Anonymousreply 15512/28/2012

Has ANYONE noticed how Natalie laughs at her own lines during the first few seasons? I thought someone should mention it. Does anyone know why she would do that?

by Anonymousreply 15612/28/2012

Roseanne did too during her first season. Maybe it's a fat girl's thing.

by Anonymousreply 15712/28/2012

R155 I've never heard that term before but I will roll with it. I know what I like and there is no shame in this lady's game. LOL.

by Anonymousreply 15812/28/2012

I was always willing to overlook Natalie's laughing at her own jokes because, after all, she's just a kid. Roseanne's laughing at her own jokes makes the entire first season unwatchable for me.

by Anonymousreply 15912/28/2012

R148 that was a "new writers" mistake during season8. I'm surprised that McKeon didn't realize that she knew Nancy, Cindy and Sue Ann quite well as they recurred during seasons 2 and 3.

I don't think the writers in the last couple of seasons "got" the characters.

The should of ended at season 7, instead of Edna's Edibles burning down and replacing it with the tacky Over Our Heads, keep EE for one more season. And end the show with a two-parter where Tootie graduates Eastland and Mrs. Garrett gets married. The end of an era.

by Anonymousreply 16012/28/2012

Time warp thread.

by Anonymousreply 16112/28/2012

R153 Molly only did one episode of the second season, then she was gone.

by Anonymousreply 16212/29/2012

Which Eastland girl was the one that couldn't deliver a line without laughing at her own jokes? Was it Cindy or Sue Ann?

by Anonymousreply 16312/29/2012

I just watched the season 2 episode The New Girl and I had forgot that Gary Coleman (Arnold) is heavily featured in this episode.

He even gets a "watchou talking about" line out, and I think it's funny that Jo thinks that Tootie and Arnold are dating.

by Anonymousreply 16412/29/2012

I read an interview with Molly in the Advocate. She comes across as very condescending to gay people. Like "Oh yes, I love my gay fans," but prolly doesn't know any gay people.

She also said she doesn't remember the first episode of the FOL where Blair calls Cindy a lesbian.

She also claims that she was supposed to be in the second season full time and signed a contract and at the last minute was booted out and replaced by Nancy McKeon.

by Anonymousreply 16512/29/2012

R165 I think she was booted for Mindy Cohn.

Fred Silverman was head of NBC and he just watched the movie "Little Darlings" He felt a new character was needed to be a stark contrast to the Blair character.

Sue-Ann was a scholarship student and Cindy was the tom-boy. Those two characters were melded into the Jo character. They already had Blair so they didn't need Felice's character.

That left Molly and Mindy. Tootie needed a best friend, and Molly's character would have fit the bill. Molly had much more acting experience than Mindy, who was an amateur

But Natalie had more storyline potential. The character was chubby, adopted and Jewish. That was all dealt with in the first year. There would be much more storyline opportunity for the Natalie character, than Molly who's only characteristic was being a women's libber. Girls could relate more to the Natalie character because of her weight issues.

I think that is why Mindy was saved from the chopping block and Molly got the boot.

by Anonymousreply 16612/29/2012

Also, the first season was a cloud of blonde girls, often hard to tell apart. Bringing in brunette Jo helped with contrast.

by Anonymousreply 16712/29/2012

Whatever the reasons, they got it right and the four girls live on in our hearts and minds!

by Anonymousreply 16812/29/2012

One mysterious bit about "The Facts..." is, what in the hell is Gloria Loring saying at the start of the end credits version of the theme song? People speculate many things, but it's kind of garbled and hard to make out...

by Anonymousreply 16912/29/2012

Mindy Cohn is really close to the Jolie/Pitts. She's one of their kid's godmother, I believe.

by Anonymousreply 17012/29/2012

I love the El Debarge episode. Look at how mortified George Clooney looks toward the end, when he has to join in with El and the girls while they're singing his hit "You Wear It Well". He can't even bring himself to sing along. If they ever roast George, this is THE clip they need to show!

by Anonymousreply 17112/29/2012

[quote]Helen Hunt makes a guest appearance as a pothead in the episode titled Dope.

Pretty impressive that a guest star got the title role.

by Anonymousreply 17212/29/2012

R169, I hear them as:

You'll avoid a lot of damage and enjoy the fun of managing the facts of life, they shed a lot of light

If you hear 'em from your brother, better clear 'em with your mother, better get 'em right, call her late at night

You got the future in the palm of your hands, all you gotta do to get you through is understand, you think you'd rather do without, you'll never make through without the truth

the facts of life are all about you

I cannot, however, explain why the "applause" lasts for 15 seconds at the beginning of the clip.

by Anonymousreply 17312/29/2012

Right, R173, all the lyrics are clear except the very first part. I tend to think it's "You'll avoid...", but it sounds kind of garbled.

by Anonymousreply 17412/29/2012

I actually like the closing theme, which they crudely got rid of for the 85-86 season during their neon/pastel makeover, better than they opening theme. Does that make me a wierdo?

by Anonymousreply 17512/29/2012

People actually watched this crap?

by Anonymousreply 17612/29/2012

I believe Cohn helped found WESPARK which is a big cancer support center. The late Wendie Jo Sperber was also a founder.

Anyway, along with St. Jude, it is the biggest hollywood supported cancer charity.

by Anonymousreply 17712/29/2012

Did George give MacKenzie his first taste of cock?

Last few minutes of TFOL - the series, featuring Juliette Lewis as new lesbian student under Blair's wing. And check out the package of Jo's boyfriend starting at 2:47.

by Anonymousreply 17812/29/2012

[quote]Did George give MacKenzie his first taste of cock?

They did seem kinda close in some episodes.

by Anonymousreply 17912/29/2012

George did 17 episodes and Mackenzie did 65. (The girls did 201, except Nancy who did 189.)

by Anonymousreply 18012/29/2012

Lisa only did 200 because she boycotted one episode.

by Anonymousreply 18112/29/2012

Co-creator Dick Clair was gay, right?

by Anonymousreply 18212/29/2012


I don't know why anyone would think the lyrics are unclear or need to speculate. As someone already stated the first line is:

You'll avoid a lot of damage and enjoy the fun of managing...."

by Anonymousreply 18312/29/2012

I am aghast at the length of this thread and the multitude of posters who appear to be posting on it.

Have I missed something? Is "Must have encyclopedic knowledge of obscure 80's sitcom The Facts of Life" on the gay card? Maybe in the fine print?

by Anonymousreply 18412/29/2012

r184, those of us who were kids in the 80s watched FOL and fondly remember it for its kitsch factor. Not to mention Jo and Blair, the first lesbian couple on tv.

by Anonymousreply 18512/29/2012


Facts of Life an obscure show from the 80s?

I think not.

by Anonymousreply 18612/29/2012

"C'mon Blair, you know you want to."

by Anonymousreply 18712/29/2012

Mrs. Garrett: "Oh, good. Then you decided to room together?"

Tootie: "They're gonna do all kinds of things together."

by Anonymousreply 18812/29/2012

Gayby Boomers love "The Facts of Life". They like to congregate in dark archways and hiss the theme song in unison. They will hiss until the locals throw salt and Oil of Olay in the archway, causing the Gayby Boomers to glitterflutter away.

by Anonymousreply 18912/29/2012

Remember the spin off attempt episode with Richard Dean Anderson playing Tootie's Uncle, who was married to Tootie's Aunt. It was supposed to be a "controversial" sitcom but it was never picked up.

Tootie's Grandma on the show was played by Ja'net (Wilona from Good Times) Dubois.

Norman Lear sure hooked his actors up with other gigs once their shows went off the air.

Look at Conrad Bain

by Anonymousreply 19012/29/2012


There were a number of attempts to do spin offs of Facts of Life.

And Kim Fields herself got the Norman Lear favor... she was on Good Times prior to getting Facts of Life.

by Anonymousreply 19112/29/2012


Or it was because back then, Michael was actually the biggest pop star around and pretty much loved by everyone.

by Anonymousreply 19212/29/2012

R191 I forgot Fields was on Good Times.

Charlotte Rae guested on All in the Family, Maude and Good Times (all Lear shows) before she was cast as Ms. Garrett on Different Strokes.

In fact Lear created the role of Ms. Garrett especially for Rae as she had always been one of his favorite actresses from when she was on Car 54 and her stage work.

by Anonymousreply 19312/29/2012


I completely forgot that Pamela Segall was in Grease 2... along with her sisters.

by Anonymousreply 19412/29/2012


No he wasn't the biggest, he couldn't even get airplay on MTV, till the blacks picketed it.

by Anonymousreply 19512/29/2012

I just watched all 5 parts of Biography: The Facts of Life on YouTube, and recommend it for all fans of Lisa and the show.

by Anonymousreply 19612/29/2012


It's only been mentioned like 20 times already

by Anonymousreply 19712/29/2012

There was a bread guy before George Clooney who was to Jo as Joxer was to Xena.

No one ever talks about him.

by Anonymousreply 19812/29/2012

Remember when the youngest Cassidy brother was on the show for several episodes? There was an episode where he lived in the attic and he wore this ridiculously SHORT bath robe. It was one of several "Hmmm, I might be gay" TV moments for me.

by Anonymousreply 19912/29/2012

Roy! I loved Roy, but really, there's not much to say about him.

by Anonymousreply 20012/29/2012

The show was really gasping in its last couple seasons. But I stayed watching because while losing Charlotte Rae was a blow, the four girls were still on it- somewhere underneath all that hair.

Too many episodes by the end were very, very silly - the Twilight Zone episode (which was then oddly rewritten as an "It's a Living" episode), the Bobby Rydell/Fabian episode, the old age episode... Stacy Q as Cinnamon (did anybody else want to puke at how anorexic Q was?) and the annoying musical cues.

When Sue Anne and the rest come for the visit in Season 8, Blair does say, "You remember Jo..." but then the girls speak about her as if they'd never met her but only heard of her.

At least it never got "Happy Days" bad.

by Anonymousreply 20112/29/2012

[quote]The show was really gasping in its last couple seasons.

That first season with Cloris Leachman had some really bizarre episodes. I remember one where Andy's grandmother plagiarized one of Natalie's short stories and had it published in a journal. Natalie was pissed and wanted to take the old woman down, but the rest of the girls were like, "What's the big deal?"

It was also weird how they quickly closed Over Our Heads in a single episode. Beverly Ann complained that she was having to cover everyone's shifts, and someone was like, "Well, we're all busy, so let's just close it down and turn the store into bedrooms for Andy and Pippa!"

by Anonymousreply 20212/29/2012

"I just watched all 5 parts of Biography: The Facts of Life on YouTube, and recommend it for all fans of Lisa and the show."

Link, please, you bitch. Do you think any of us have time to go to YouTube and type, "Facts of Life Biography"? For Christ's sake, be decent and post a link to the first part first, then a second post with the link to part two and so on. And don't come back until you do it and do it right.

by Anonymousreply 20312/29/2012

Am I the only one who had the 12" single of Kim Fields' "He Loves Me (He Loves Me Not)", coupled with her first single, the ballad, "Dear Michael"? When I bought that single, I was maybe 14 and thought it was perhaps the gayest thing I had done yet. I still think it ranks up there.

by Anonymousreply 20412/29/2012

"Over Our Heads" was sooo 80s it was ridiculous.

by Anonymousreply 20512/29/2012

Facts was my favorite show until Charlotte Rae left. It became stupid after that. I love Cloris, but the show was just insipid with that Pippa girl. I find the later seasons tougher to watch because of all the late 80s big hair and bad clothes. The earlier 80s were a tad more conservative in respect to hairstyles and clothing than the latter part of the decade. It should have gone off the air in 1985 instead of 1988. Thank you to Mrs. Garrett, Blair, Jo, Natalie and Tootie for all the good times. I wish they could come back and do a new sitcom together.

by Anonymousreply 20612/29/2012

R204 Yes, yes you are.

by Anonymousreply 20712/29/2012

I loved Natalie's two-toned Guess Denim overalls!

by Anonymousreply 20812/29/2012

When the boys you used to hate you date I guess you best investigate the facts of life. I love it. I forgot about this show until I saw this thread. My favorite show ever ever ever. I gotsta go by the DVDs. Toodles.

by Anonymousreply 20912/29/2012

I also have the Downton Abbey threads on my Thread Watch and I gotta say that surfing back and forth between those and TFOL has been quite a trip.

by Anonymousreply 21012/30/2012

Pipa was an attempt to cash in on the Australia craze, unfortunately, like ON-Lez's Koala Blue, it came about five years after the craze ended, with Men At Work, Air Supply and Prisoner: Cell Block H.

by Anonymousreply 21112/30/2012

[quote]with Men At Work, Air Supply and Prisoner: Cell Block H.

What am I, chopped liver?

by Anonymousreply 21212/30/2012

Andy was never mentioned as being a foster child before the episode when Beverly Ann decided to adopt him, was he? That came out of the blue and the social worker scene when she decided Beverly Ann would be a fit mother was ridiculous.

by Anonymousreply 21312/30/2012


Yeah it was like Ernie on My Three Dads.

He was in Chips class and was supposed to be his age.

Then suddenly Mike marries the Petticoat Junction girl and Ernie becomes an orphan in foster care.

by Anonymousreply 21412/30/2012

[quote]At least it never got "Happy Days" bad.

yes it did, it was even, L&S in California after Shirley quit, bad

by Anonymousreply 21512/30/2012

I remember being a kid in the late '80's/early '90's and watching Facts in reruns in daily sydication on Channel 17 in Phillly and for whatever reason they never showed the episodes in chronological order, so you never knew what you were gonna get.

Everytime the rock version of the theme song and the Over Our Heads interior was shown at the beginning of the episode, I'd get so PISSED because even as a kid I knew the last 3 seasons SUCKED and I'd change the channel.

by Anonymousreply 21612/30/2012

I just watched the 5 part biography on YouTube and producer Al Burton said that Lear never wanted any of his shows to be "fluff" and he always wanted them to be about something. Than what the hell happened with the last 3 seasons it was very fluff, right up there with "Charles in Charge", "Growing Pains", "Mr. Belvedere" and all those other crappy mid- late '80's sitcoms.

BTW Burton also said that he producd "Good Times" and that set was like a combat zone compared to how mellow the Facts set was.

Mindy Cohn also said that they taped right next door to "Different Strokes" and "One Day at a Time" and she'd always hear feuding on those sets, but on Facts everyone got along.

She said it was amazing that 4 teenage girls on the same menstrual cycle would get along so well!

by Anonymousreply 21712/30/2012

As Charlotte Rae has said, it is a miracle that four young actresses basically grew up on a hit show, and none of them had any huge issues, outside of some pudgy years. But they all stayed clear of the substance abuse issues that plagued other shows.

by Anonymousreply 21812/30/2012


Actually, from what I recall, Andy was introduced to the show as an Orphan, or at least a couple of episodes in? I just remember him sneaking around and I think they found him sleeping in the store or in the garage or something.

by Anonymousreply 21912/30/2012

Geri Jewell said Charlotte Rae treated her like garbage

by Anonymousreply 22012/30/2012

Is this thread all the rage with the fortysomethings?

by Anonymousreply 22112/30/2012

R221 I just turned 30. I fell in love with the show in reruns.

by Anonymousreply 22212/30/2012


You sound like a gay

by Anonymousreply 22312/30/2012

R223 actually I'm bi and wanted to fuck the shit out of Jo!

by Anonymousreply 22412/30/2012

There's an error in the GMA segment.

The narrator states that Kim Fields was only 9 when the first episode aired. However Kim was born in Feb. of 1969 and the first ep of Facts aired 8/24/79. So that makes Kim 10 during production of the first season.

by Anonymousreply 22512/30/2012

R u a man or a woman, R224? (I'm assuming man, 'cause trolldar is telling me you're the "star" of another thread here on the DL)

by Anonymousreply 22612/30/2012

Kim's mother Chip Fields told an amusing story about Kim getting the part. She said that the producers asked if Kim could skate, and while she couldn't, her mother told them she could, and later told Kim "Oh, we gon' get some skates, and you WILL know how to skate by tomorrow!"

by Anonymousreply 22712/30/2012

Chip Fields Beat up Janet Jackson and burned her with an iron!

by Anonymousreply 22812/30/2012

R226 I'm a dude, but when I'm attracted to a woman it's always the soft-butch type, like Jo.

by Anonymousreply 22912/30/2012

R227 Chip Fields played Tootie's mother on the show in a couple of eps. Also Kim's drop dead gorgeous sister Jere was in the infamous Jermaine Jackson episode, that has to be seen to be disbelieved.

Jere Fields also played Anita the "ooh baby" girl in Friday the 13th part V, who got killed by the fake Jason, while boyfriend Demond was on the shitter!

by Anonymousreply 23012/30/2012

Yes, Chip played Penny's mother in "Good Times". Kim spoke in a FOL E! special about how she and Janet were always be up for the same commercial parts when they were little girls. Kim said she felt intimidated, but her mother always put confidence in her, telling her she could get it if she put her all into the audition. Kim would go on to co-star on GT with Janet, after her mother had left the series.

by Anonymousreply 23112/30/2012

Chip Fields was great as Penny's mom. Totally believable. Enough to make you wonder if she did that she got her inspiration from her dealings with lil Tootie.

Whatever, Kim probably had it coming. She seems like a bitch.

by Anonymousreply 23212/30/2012

Also starring in Friday the 13th part V was Shavar Ross who played Arnold's best friend Dudley on Different Strokes.

When I was a kid in the late '80's/early '90's I used to watch DS and FACTS reruns back to back on Philly's channel 17. I was OBSESSED with those shows.

I also loved Sanford & Son, WKRP in Cincinnati and The Jeffersons, which channel 17 would show in reruns later at night after prime time. When I should of been in bed sleeping for school in the morning.

by Anonymousreply 23312/30/2012

Here is the infamous 'Iron' scene!

by Anonymousreply 23412/30/2012

Janet and Chip were robbed of Emmys!

by Anonymousreply 23512/30/2012

One of the worst episodes in the otherwise excellent 3rd season was the "Americanization of Miko" episode. Season 3 was one of the peak seasons of the show and this episode was so boring.

Especially when Miko steals Jo's motorcycle and Jo doesn't even get that pissed at that dumbass Miko!

This was definitely when they started to mellow out Jo's character.

The 2 spin-off attemp episodes that season the Bates academy dance one with Jimmy Baio and the Jo's cousin babydyke, uncle Sal, with lots of hot guys one were better!

by Anonymousreply 23612/30/2012

Can we talk a minute about Jimmy Baio? So hot. I used to watch reruns of Soap and fantasize about him.

by Anonymousreply 23712/30/2012

R237 yeah he was cute. Isn't he Scott's little brother? WHET?

One of the things I noticed after watching the reruns on DVD this past week is that the first 4 seasons still have "a 70's feel" to them, they ran from 79-83 but definitely feel '70's.

It's not until the 83-84 season, first Edna's Edibles, that they show really feels '80's.

And from 1985 on out, the dreaded Over Our Heads years, the show is so '80's looking it's pathetic!

by Anonymousreply 23812/30/2012

The early 80's still had a feel similar to the 70's in general. It seems like the 80's look exploded around 1983.

by Anonymousreply 23912/30/2012

The DVDs stop at the end of Season Five, sparing us the Andy, Pippa, George, and Leachman years that followed.

by Anonymousreply 24012/30/2012

R240 true, but FULL episodes of the later seasons are up on YouTube.

Every episode from season5-9 are up, except for the Facts of Life Down Under 1987 TV movie.

by Anonymousreply 24112/30/2012

Jimmy Baio is Scott's cousin, R238.

I met him once, when he shot an episode of Too Close for Comfort. I was 15, he was about 19-20 -- we sat next to each other during cast/crew dinner and talked. He was a VERY nice, very unassuming guy.

by Anonymousreply 24212/30/2012

R241.....for your viewing pleasure.....

I loved the "Down Under" movie! Jo & Blair attached at the hip -- as it should be!

by Anonymousreply 24312/30/2012

I like the later seasons of the show, when it was less preachy -- anything from Edna's Edibles, forward. Didn't particularly care for Pippa, of course, but Beverly Ann was funny.

The revamp in the fall of 1985 updated the look of the show to better match the brighter, pastel-colored program that aired directly after FOL that year: the first season of The Golden Girls. And of course the look and setting of The Golden Girls was an extension of the success NBC had found the previous year in Miami Vice. So, really, we have Don Johnson to thank for Over Our Heads.

by Anonymousreply 24412/30/2012

R244 exactly the show tried to reinvent itself and change with the times and I don't know if they succeeded.

As for the Golden Girls, I always though it was funny how Facts (taken the mother figure of Mrs. Garrett and the first season girls out of the equation) was really the first FEMALE FOUR sitcom and set the standard for other shows to follow the FEMALE FOUR formula.

Shows like GG, Designing Women, Living Single, Sex and the City, Desperate Housewives and Hot In Cleveland all follow the female four formula to a tee that Facts started. Yer the Golden Girls, which I'm also a fan of, seems to get credit for it

by Anonymousreply 24512/30/2012

[quote]should of been in bed sleeping for school in the morning.


Oh, dear.

by Anonymousreply 24612/30/2012

I just watched the controversial suicide episode from season 2. Penned by Marsh and Peters and straight out of the Norman Lear controversial, hard hitting topics, TV factory.

It's still shocking that they killed Cynthia off and didn't write in some lame hospital scene (which NBC wanted) where she survives and goes away to get help and everything is all roses and sunshine.

The writers in the later seasons WOULDN'T DARE do an episode like this, instead they did fluff episodes like Pippa starts a rock band!

by Anonymousreply 24712/30/2012

[quote]the Norman Lear controversial, hard hitting topics, TV factory.

Overall, I like the earlier seasons better than the later, but the Very Special Episodes, often one after another, can get tiresome.

by Anonymousreply 24812/30/2012

Even though I would have loved to see a Pippa suicide episode!

by Anonymousreply 24912/30/2012

"Geez, Mrs. G. . .I feel horrible about Pippa knockin' herself off like that. Look--even Blair's upset. Miss Rich and Distant even has tears in huh eyes!"

"Of course I'm sad, Jo! She hung herself with one of my best silk scarves!"

by Anonymousreply 25012/30/2012

By mid-'80s, the Lear days were over, and sitcoms of that kind were pretty much done. Even as Lear's own shows went on, they relied less and less on topical or dramatic stories. All in the Family and Maude were consistently topical, but The Jeffersons, One Day at a Time, Diff'rent Strokes and FOL were all much less so. And toward the end of each of those show's runs, they were pretty much all standard sitcom fare.

by Anonymousreply 25112/30/2012

Remember when Blair got into a devastating car accident that left her with a big nasty scar on her forehead?

by Anonymousreply 25212/30/2012

Till Marriage Do Us Part.

Lisa looks really good here.

by Anonymousreply 25312/30/2012

Oh wait -- here's a Season Nine episode (one of the last) that gets all Very Special:

206 t919 t"On the Edge" t

Jo finds herself in a big spot when the suicide counselor decides she wants to die, and it is up to Jo to talk her out of it.

by Anonymousreply 25412/30/2012

Miami Vice aside.....I'm pretty sure the inspiration for Over Our Heads was a small chain of novelty stores in L.A. -- incuding one near UCLA -- called "Aahs!" (which still exists today). Everything you saw in Over Our Heads -- candy, cards, calendars, posters. t-shirts, inflatable palm trees, etc. -- was for sale at "Aahs!" (Older Angelenos will recognize Heaven!, Camp Beverly Hills, and Fiorucci as its forerunners).

by Anonymousreply 25512/30/2012

R255, there were a dozen small novelty store chains like that all over the place in the 80s, but FOL's new lighting and color palette was "the Miami look". NBC had tested out the look in a 2-part FOL in the previous season (when they still had Edna's Edibles) when the girls went to Florida for spring break, which was filmed just after NBC had seen a few months of success with Miami Vice.

by Anonymousreply 25612/30/2012

HA! R254, I just watched that episode, a couple days ago. I thought the S2 or S3 suicide episodhe was well done, and very poignant.....but I could BARELY sit through that one from S9.

by Anonymousreply 25712/30/2012

Watching season 2 is so much fun! The Countess Calvay cosmetics episode featuring Zsa Zsa Gabor as the Countess and guest starring Todd Bridges as his Different Strokes Willis character is so much fun to watch.

Followed up by the Tootie-modeling, child pornography episode is almost too good to be true!

Especially with Mrs. Garrett's big anti-child pornography rant!

by Anonymousreply 25812/30/2012


by Anonymousreply 25912/30/2012

Jonathan Dutton in leather pants--priceless...

by Anonymousreply 26012/30/2012

"Make love to the camera, Tootie!"


"Stop acting like a child, Tootie!"


by Anonymousreply 26112/30/2012

Here's one for the ladies....

by Anonymousreply 26212/30/2012

I remember the Stacey Q episode well, because even at age 10 or however old I was I thought she looked disgusting because she was clearly anorexic. It was really off-putting to look at her.

by Anonymousreply 26312/30/2012

The 80s - Best Decade for TV:

Facts Of Life

Gimme A Break

Diff'rent Strokes

It's A Living

Silver Spoons



Punky Brewster

Valerie/The Hogan Family

Family Ties

The Cosby Show

Solid Gold

by Anonymousreply 26412/30/2012

R264 so true.

by Anonymousreply 26512/30/2012

I wished they had kept Edna's Edibles but most likely, they already knew Rae would be leaving at the end of Season 7 so they just sped up the process of a new store so they wouldn't have Leachman, a new store and everything all at once.

Edna's Edibles was much cozier than Over Our Heads which was so cold and, face it, pretty impractical.

by Anonymousreply 26612/30/2012

I remember seeing the suicide episode in syndication so I know it couldn't have been withheld.

What's interesting about it is that by episode's end, they are no closer to figuring out why she did it. They all have their theories but none are ever proven.

I loved the Eastland years.

by Anonymousreply 26712/30/2012

Why did Charlotte Rae leave? It was so long ago I can't remember.

by Anonymousreply 26812/30/2012


Which is sort of the genius of it.

by Anonymousreply 26912/30/2012

Does anyone remember the 4th season episode, when Jo's favorite teacher announces she's leaving Eastland under mysterious circumstances.

Ww come to find out that she's going away to die as she has terminal cancer but wanted to spare Jo the truth.

Jo has this great scene with Ms. Garrett when she tells her that her and the teacher made it out of the slums and now she's 28 and dying and has nothing to show for it and it's not fair.

Ms. Garrett then tells Jo that the fact that she inspired Jo and every other student at Eastland and impacted their lives proves that her life did mean something.

There's this great scene at episodes end, where Jo is in the class room and the teacher has already left to die and a substitute has taken over, and Jo just sort of looks out at the window, signifying that her favorite teacher had passed but her spirit is everywhere.

by Anonymousreply 27012/30/2012

I wonder if it ever pissed any of the actresses off that Nancy McKeon was considered the star and that she got the, "and Nancy McKeon as Jo" in the opening credits.

by Anonymousreply 27112/30/2012

R264 Please tell me you weren't being serious.

by Anonymousreply 27212/30/2012

R271, In one or the DVD interviews, Lisa more or less admitted that she was a little jealous when Nancy got the "as Jo" billing at the end of the credits in S4. She realized she was no longer the second-banana, after Charlotte....and it took some getting used to.....

by Anonymousreply 27312/30/2012

And yet today Lisa has a re-born career and is remembered as the star of the show!

by Anonymousreply 27412/30/2012

Nancy seems to have dropped off the face of the earth. It's been a long time since I've seen her in anything.

by Anonymousreply 27512/30/2012

Nancy McKeon demanded that as she was the sister of the famous Tommy Hyatt.

And the lady that had a terminal illness (I don't think it was ever said, she had cancer) went on to have 10 kids)

by Anonymousreply 27612/30/2012


They were still trying to make the guy Dancer from San Pedro Beach Bums happen

by Anonymousreply 27712/31/2012

R276, Hyatt was the surname of his character, not the actor himself.

by Anonymousreply 27812/31/2012

R250, I could totally hear the laugh track accompanying that script!

by Anonymousreply 27912/31/2012

To many of you seem to be having trouble providing proper links.

Copy the COMPLETE URL address from the source of the clip, and paste it on the cell labeled Url below.

Now could someone do that properly with the Tootie as a model and child prostitute clip? Would love to see it and can't seem to find it.

by Anonymousreply 28012/31/2012

Never mind, I found it: Pretty Babies

by Anonymousreply 28112/31/2012


Or you could just google it, dumb ass

by Anonymousreply 28212/31/2012


I did, asswipe. And at first I couldn't find it. Knowing that someone here already had it (even if they couldn't post it correctly) I decided to ask for it and also explain how to post it. Getting no response, I dug much more, found it, and had the civility and good courtesy of posting it properly.

You, on the other hand, decided to simply be a cunt.

It's all-talk-no-action assholes like you who are part of the problem and not the solution. I bet you are under 25 and the eerie future of our globe.

by Anonymousreply 28312/31/2012

Girls, girls -- you're both pretty.

by Anonymousreply 28412/31/2012

The series finale where Blair buys Eastland is a star studded affair! There's Mayim Bialik, Juliette Lewis and Seth Green (Eastland had become coed).

The episode was another spinoff attempt, the show was gonna be called "Blair's School" but producers releasized the new show would have been too similar to Facts' unsuccessful first season, and didn't pick it up.

By the way I thought they did a bad job recreating the Season 1 Eastland set in the final episode.

by Anonymousreply 28512/31/2012

Embedding disabled by request.

by Anonymousreply 28612/31/2012

That only show it was BLAIR who should've got the ending credit.

And Phyllis just walks in and steals top billing. Sure she had an Emmy and an Oscar but that was decades ago. If she had any respectability left she wouldn't have been on a dying show at all.

Jo should've moved from the end to the top, like Barrie Youngfellow and Blair should've got the end, like the hostess lady and then Phyllis could've got the the middle like Ann Jillian in year one.

by Anonymousreply 28712/31/2012

R283 just revealed himself to be... An eldergay.

by Anonymousreply 28812/31/2012

I notice a lot of ass slaps and no "good games" in this show.

Jo had a sailor boyfriend that she planned to marry, although she appeared to be repulsed by his attempted chaste kisses.

The way boyfriends were in this show is almost as if the "boyfriend in Canada" could materialize in person just to prove you aren't a lesbian.

With exception of the kids and headmaster, all the males in the show look like gay strippers.

by Anonymousreply 28912/31/2012

I liked it when Scott Baio was on, he was nice looking and the fat kid that was the male Natalie was on Ann Jillians ghost show, the one with the gay kid who was Ann Romano's partner's son.

by Anonymousreply 29012/31/2012


It was the 80's... all men under the age of 25 looked like strippers.

by Anonymousreply 29112/31/2012

My favorite male extra ever was the guy who comes in to apply for the kitchen job in the episode when the girls are forced to take that job or be expelled. (Jo's first story.)

He had on the tightest t-shirt.

by Anonymousreply 29212/31/2012

R263 you were only 10 when the Stacy Q episode aired? God you're young.

by Anonymousreply 29312/31/2012

Remember Steve from the first year that called Natalie obese?

by Anonymousreply 29412/31/2012

Here's the website of the guy who ruined Natalie's reputation

by Anonymousreply 29512/31/2012

One for the lezzies

by Anonymousreply 29612/31/2012

[quote]The episode was another spinoff attempt, the show was gonna be called "Blair's School" but producers releasized the new show would have been too similar to Facts' unsuccessful first season, and didn't pick it up.

It actually came down to the Facts/Blair spin-off and Empty Nest, the Golden Girls spin-off. I much would have rather watched Sam Behrens than David Leisure.

by Anonymousreply 29712/31/2012

R296, Felice Schacter was a hottie. I loved her in "Zapped!" with Scott Baio.

As for Steve from season one, he really was one fuckable blonde dude. Coincidentally, he was in "Zapped!" as well.

by Anonymousreply 29812/31/2012

Greg Bradford in coochie cutters.

by Anonymousreply 29912/31/2012

Didn't Greg Bradfaord becomde a Chippendale at one point then go all born-again claiming that his career went nowhere because Hollywood was full of homosexuals trying to fuck him?

Methinks he doth protest a tad too much--and that he needed his own very special episode, where Mrs. Garret tells him, "Boy! Boy! You're a homo!"

by Anonymousreply 30012/31/2012

I didn't know he was born again, nor about the Chippendales thing, but I can totally see how they'd want him to be a part of the troupe.

by Anonymousreply 30112/31/2012

Mindy Cohn has said that Facts taped right next to one day at a time and different strokes

Glenn Scarpelli (Alex from ODAAT) used to hang with the Facts girls during lunch and in between filming. Isn't he gay? No wonder!

I wonder if Dana Plato and Mackenzie Phillips did drugs together?

I also wonder if Charlotte Rae and Bonnie Franklin got along. I know that in 1982 they were both in competition for the Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series Emmy award.

Neither one.

by Anonymousreply 30201/01/2013

Neither one won.

by Anonymousreply 30301/01/2013

Neither one won the

by Anonymousreply 30401/01/2013

Neither one won the SEXIEST GINGER AWARD.

by Anonymousreply 30501/01/2013

Remember the episode where Eve (Jan Brady) Plumb guest starred as Blair's never before mentioned older sister?

The look on Tootie and Natalie's faces was priceless, when Plumb (Meg) mentions that her parents had accused her of being a lesbian, when she told them she wanted to be a nun.

It was like the worst thing ever!

by Anonymousreply 30601/01/2013

I remember that episode well, R306

by Anonymousreply 30701/01/2013

Thanks R307. I like that hairstyle on Eve. She and Lisa worked well together.

by Anonymousreply 30801/01/2013

In her episode, Eve Plumb stands out with her more subtle, natural approach to acting, as opposed to the high-pitched screaming and shouting of the regular cast.

by Anonymousreply 30901/01/2013

R309 it was a 2 parter right?

I always thought of Facts as a more modern Brady Bunch. It has that same campy, kitsch appeal that BB had, as well as a HUGE gay following.

I would love it if they did a "Facts of Life Movie" like they did with the Brady Bunch. Harvey Fierstien would make a great Ms. Garrett!

by Anonymousreply 31001/01/2013

My daughter Willow would make a great Tootie! Consider the movie green lighted!

by Anonymousreply 31101/01/2013

Yes, you're right, r310, it was a two-parter. I'm not sure if Plumb appeared in the second part, because the story evolves into Jo questioning whether she should become a nun.

by Anonymousreply 31201/01/2013

That's actually a great idea r310! I would love to see 'Facts of Life' get a campy, tongue-in-cheek movie treatment like the Brady Bunch got in the 90s.

by Anonymousreply 31301/01/2013

"Gees, Mrs. G. . .I can't decide if I should become a lesbi--um, a nun. That's right. A NUN."

"Jo, I can't tell you what to do but I do think you need to do some hole searching. Er. . .i mean SOUL searching. That's right: soul searching."

by Anonymousreply 31401/01/2013

[quote]That's actually a great idea [R310]! I would love to see 'Facts of Life' get a campy, tongue-in-cheek movie treatment like the Brady Bunch got in the 90s.

There was a stage production called "Carrie's Facts of Life" where Margaret White became a housekeeper and moved into Mrs. Garrett's attic with her daughter Carrie just as the Facts girls were getting ready for the Eastland prom...

by Anonymousreply 31501/01/2013

Jennifer Lawrence would make a good Jo.

by Anonymousreply 31601/01/2013

Eve Plumb should have played Sister Aloysius in the film adaptation of "Doubt".

by Anonymousreply 31701/01/2013

[quote]In her episode, Eve Plumb stands out with her more subtle, natural approach to acting, as opposed to the high-pitched screaming and shouting of the regular cast.

They had to screech -- the writers were afraid they wouldn't be heard in the next tenement.

by Anonymousreply 31801/01/2013

Eve's also a good deal thinner than the others.

by Anonymousreply 31901/01/2013

One of my gal pals said she heard that they may be making a new Facts of Life reunion movie for the Lifetime Network soon. I couldn't find anything online. I hope Nancy McKeon will be in this one. She wasn't in the last one and it made the whole affair bittersweet. I wish they would just make a new FOL series with the original cast members. I know I would watch it every week. Keep it in the spirit of the old show and have the girls all be neighbors/co-workers. A bonus would be to have Blair and Jo be life partners but I know Lisa Whelchel might have a problem with that. LOL. It would be a lot better than most of the junk on tv these days.

by Anonymousreply 32001/03/2013

What did Blair and Jo wind up doing career wise?

by Anonymousreply 32101/03/2013

They teach syncronized swimming to homeless people at the church mission. It's volunteer work.

by Anonymousreply 32201/03/2013

I think Nancy would probably be up for another reunion show this time.

by Anonymousreply 32301/03/2013

Blair runs a charm school and Jo's a mechanic.

by Anonymousreply 32401/03/2013


On the Reunion show, Jo was mentioned as being a Cop... she never made it to the reunion but she had a daughter who did and was *surprise* a wise-cracking, angry, tom-boy.

by Anonymousreply 32501/03/2013

Facts was the BEST.SHOW.EVER. My partner and I watch the dvds every weekend. We have marathons. Our daughters love the show. I guess we're passing the torch of great television. I used to watch it with my mom and sisters back in jr. high and high school.

by Anonymousreply 32601/03/2013

R321, in the Reunion movie, Blair was the CEO of Warner Enterprises, which included a successful chain of hotels that she ran with her husband, Tad Warner. (yes, she married a guy whose last name was also Warner; she was Blair Warner Warner)

by Anonymousreply 32701/03/2013

R327 So, in the new reunion show, will Tad turn out to be gay, too?

by Anonymousreply 32801/03/2013

[quote]On the Reunion show, Jo was mentioned as being a Cop...

What a comedown, although it was probably because she was doing that cable cop show at the time the reunion movie was made.

by Anonymousreply 32901/03/2013


Yes, it was a tongue in cheek nod to her gig on the cop show she was on.

I watched something about it and had no idea that in the cop show she played a drug and sex addicted cop with some serious problems. Interesting stretch. I also didn't realize she was working on that show not too many years ago and recently played Demi Lovato's mom on some Disney show.

by Anonymousreply 33001/03/2013

In the season 3 episode where Jo Blair go back to NYC for the weekend, the actress that plays Jo's best friend reportedly died not long after.

She was also in "Pretty in Pink" with Facts alum Molly Ringwald.

Any details on what happened?

by Anonymousreply 33101/04/2013

I had a friend who played Jo's friend. And she died.

See how simple that was?

by Anonymousreply 33201/04/2013

You take the good, you take the bad

you take them both and there you have

the facts of life, the facts of life...



My sisters and I use to play Facts of Life. I was always Jo or Nancy. My older sister was Blair. My younger sisters were Nat and Toots. My brother use to laugh at me for being girly but FUCK HIM. It was fun. LOL.

by Anonymousreply 33301/04/2013

r332 is so witty and clever, and he gets to show everyone on DL! Hail DL for being there so R332 can show us how smart he is.

His brilliance has given him an erection, and he's off showing it to his mother.

by Anonymousreply 33401/04/2013

r331 --

Her name was Alexa Kenin

by Anonymousreply 33501/04/2013

Haven't seen this show since probably its initial airing. Funny how some things just aren't the same the second go around.

Case in point... I never realized just how bad of an actress Kim Fields was. She was the most annoying of the bunch. I know they all shouted their lines, but she was by far the worst offender. Funny, considering her character was supposed to be the "actress."

by Anonymousreply 33601/04/2013

You could tell the retarded cousin, wanted Blair. She would look at her with love in her eyes.

by Anonymousreply 33701/04/2013

[quote]in the Reunion movie, Blair was the CEO of Warner Enterprises, which included a successful chain of hotels that she ran with her husband, Tad Warner.

I don't remember much about the reunion movie (haven't seen it since it originally aired), but I do remember this insane scene where Blair confronts the woman whom she believes is fucking her husband. Lisa really brought the crazy!!

by Anonymousreply 33801/04/2013

I liked how during a serious scene, the girls would lean forward on a table with their two arms, backs to the others.

by Anonymousreply 33901/04/2013

Tootie really didn't have much more talent than Natalie while singing "I'm Gonna Wash That Man Right Out of My Hair," especially the way she's flopping that mushroom cut around.

by Anonymousreply 34001/04/2013

Tootsie rocked. Natalie was a fat Jew, enough said.

Blair was pretty only when she was thin, which was in season 1 before Jo and later on with Enda's Edibles she lost a ton.

Jo was never pretty and acted and sounded like Timmy from Alice.

by Anonymousreply 34101/04/2013

I think they were all brilliant actresses. Facts was so much better than most of the other crap on at the time (MASH, Magnumb PI, One Day At A Time, 227, Airwoof, Alf). I wish they would do at least one more reunion movie.

by Anonymousreply 34201/04/2013

R342 - Facts of Life was okay, but it was NOT better than M*A*S*H or Magnum, P.I. - not by a long-shot.

by Anonymousreply 34301/04/2013

"Jo gonna fuck Blair with a strap on"!

"Uh oh somebody's gonna be in trouble"!

by Anonymousreply 34401/04/2013

I just watched the slasher movie inspired "Seven Little Indians" episode from season 8.

The episode is a lot of fun but again it's not really about anything important.

To me the REAL Facts of Life ended at season 6, and with Ms. Garrett gone and the girls all grown up what's the point of the later seasons.

by Anonymousreply 34501/04/2013

Quiche me once, and quiche me twice and quiche me once again!

by Anonymousreply 34601/04/2013

F&F R341

by Anonymousreply 34701/04/2013

Mindy Cohn was a charming little girl -- I can see why she was chosen to join the cast.

by Anonymousreply 34801/04/2013

Mindy Cohn, despite her lack of training the first season, really had charisma and good comic timing. She was also developed as a dramatic actress, too, after that first season, especially in the episode where her father dies.

Tootie, who was so cute and a great natural comedian in the first season, really never grew as an actress, actually getting worse as the seasons progressed. Which is too bad, because her mother, Chip Fields, is an excellent actress.

by Anonymousreply 34901/04/2013

Kim Fields went to the Chicken Little School of Acting. Everything out of her mouth came out as if she were being set on fire.

by Anonymousreply 35001/04/2013

One thing that always got me about the Facts opening credits.

In the S3 credit there's this hideous shot of Tootie combing her hair and smiling wide with her braces in full view.

Poor thing looks like she's being possessed by the devil or maybe it was her Jermaine Jackson obsession.

She grew up to be beautiful, but they linger on that shot for a couple of seconds and it's creepy!

by Anonymousreply 35101/04/2013

Tootie was also the only one who didn't get the full treatment in the credits starting in Season 7. They show her as a little girl but then next three shots were all from Season 6 or higher. They didn't show any of her real awkwardness or weight gain (pregnancy.)

by Anonymousreply 35201/04/2013

It's Tommy, R341 and you know that was Jo's real-life brother.

by Anonymousreply 35301/04/2013

I don't understand how they choose the frozen frames at the end of the show, I think there is a hideous one of Blair in season 2.

by Anonymousreply 35401/04/2013

So who knocked up the little black gal?

by Anonymousreply 35501/04/2013

Yeah, let's talk about Kim Fields' hidden pregnancy!

by Anonymousreply 35601/04/2013

Lies. No one would ever have touched Tootie.

by Anonymousreply 35701/04/2013

I think Lisa, Nancy, Mindy and Kim were fabulous actresses who were perfect for their roles. Mindy was a little rough the first season but improved greatly by the second. They ditched the right girls after season one. All of the girls who didn't come back for the second season were just awful. A couple were cute, but heinous actresses. This includes Molly Ringwald. She was just terrible on Facts. I was shocked a few years later when Sixteen Candles came out by how much she had improved. She became an awesome actress.

by Anonymousreply 35801/04/2013

I love R358 simply because they signed as Farmer Ted.....but I Agree with every word, too!

by Anonymousreply 35901/04/2013

Is this DL wishful thinking, or is there credible evidence Alexis is Kim's daughter? Her current husband seems gay as a goose.

by Anonymousreply 36001/04/2013


Wait someone is seriously trying to say that Alexis is Kim's daughter?

So Kim somehow got pregnant at age 10?

by Anonymousreply 36101/04/2013

Who is this Alexis that you're talking about??

by Anonymousreply 36201/04/2013

[quote]They didn't show any of her real awkwardness or weight gain (pregnancy.)

How's this for "awkward?"

by Anonymousreply 36301/05/2013

Kim Fields is noticeably big in the 82-83 season. Then her mother had her "baby sister" whom Fields has been gushing about in interviews ever since as "the most important person in my life."

by Anonymousreply 36401/05/2013

Best parody I could find online. Natalie's body language and Blair's helium voice are dead on. Thought it was MAD TV but the NBC logo and the length of the sketch are throwing me off; what was "The Rerun Show?"

As always, Jo and Mrs. G played by men.

by Anonymousreply 36501/05/2013

R364 Alexis Fields birthday was March 3, 1979.

by Anonymousreply 36601/05/2013

Oops - here's the link to the parody

by Anonymousreply 36701/05/2013

Thanks so much for posting the parody.

by Anonymousreply 36801/05/2013

I love Mindy Cohn, she makes me smile - and nothing you say about her will ever change my mind!!

by Anonymousreply 36901/05/2013

I guess the "baby" rumor is something else Kim has in common with Janet Jackson.

by Anonymousreply 37001/05/2013

Seriously--the story goes that Kim got knocked up during the 1982-83 season, but that they managed to shoot around her. The mother claimed the baby was hers to avoid scandal. Of course, now that we know that Kim would have been 10 at time she allegedly gave birth, this story is obviously bullshit.

by Anonymousreply 37101/05/2013


God forbid she just be fat because she was fat.

I guess that means all four of the girls hid pregnancies during the run of that show.

by Anonymousreply 37201/05/2013

Until she could finally no longer hide behind the tah-tahs

by Anonymousreply 37301/05/2013

Ladies, which did you prefer?

Butch Jo

by Anonymousreply 37401/05/2013

Uniformed Jo?

by Anonymousreply 37501/05/2013

Mullet Jo?

by Anonymousreply 37601/05/2013

Big-hair and nails femme Jo?

by Anonymousreply 37701/05/2013

Fat Jo aka Bea Arthur Jo?

by Anonymousreply 37801/05/2013

...or Hockey Pro Jo?

by Anonymousreply 37901/05/2013

Charlotte Rae was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2009. It was caught extremely early because she already knew she had a strong family history of the disease -- her mother, older sister, and uncle all died of it -- and she's been declared cancer-free by her doctors.

by Anonymousreply 38001/05/2013

I prefer Jo like like she is in R107, the way she was in the last season.

by Anonymousreply 38101/05/2013

Alexis Fields was not born in 1979. It was 1983 because all the teen mags my sister read at the time reported on how ecstatic Kim Fields was over her little sister.

Fields would have been 13.

by Anonymousreply 38201/05/2013

[quote]Alexis Fields was not born in 1979. It was 1983 because all the teen mags my sister read at the time reported on how ecstatic Kim Fields was over her little sister.

Hmmm who to believe? An official showbiz statistic biography that puts her birth date at 1979 (see link) or some posters recollection (1st degree of separation - uncertainty) of the teen mags (2nd degree - unreliability of teen mag info) her sister (3rd degree of separation)read "at the time" of 1983.

And I don't think Miss Fields would lie about her age to make herself look older, not at this stage.

by Anonymousreply 38301/05/2013

According to a google news search, the baby was born in the spring of 1982.

by Anonymousreply 38401/05/2013

I liked it how they changed Mrs Garret into an RN in season one, so she could teach a sex ed class, and then forgot all about it until the last episode when she married a doctor who conveniently needed an RN.

She must've been making a packet for Drummond to hire her as a maid, if she was an RN.

by Anonymousreply 38501/05/2013

Gee, R383, look at this you sanctimonious ass.

They're covering up something.

by Anonymousreply 38601/05/2013

No DOB, r386? Just a plain ol' year?

I think my hot, sanctimonious bubble butt is staying with rotten tomatoes and March 3, 1979.

by Anonymousreply 38701/05/2013

June 1982 article discusses new baby

by Anonymousreply 38801/05/2013

R388 it doesn't say when the child was born

by Anonymousreply 38901/05/2013

Read it -- it says it was born that spring.

by Anonymousreply 39001/05/2013

I read it and it doesn't say that at all.

by Anonymousreply 39101/05/2013

The June 1982 article just refers to Alexis as her infant sister. It doesn't DISCUSS a new baby or anything of that sort.

According to Wikipedia (not the best source but the platinum source ship sailed a while ago):

[quote]The term infant is typically applied to young children between the ages of 1 month and 12 months; however, definitions may vary between birth and 3 years of age.

by Anonymousreply 39201/05/2013

Try this one:

by Anonymousreply 39301/05/2013

Another item that may put Alexis age into question.

She was hired to play an 11 year old on the sitcom Roc

The year was 1993. If she was born in 1979 that would make her 14. But if she was born in 1982 (as the article above suggests) that would make her the exact age as the character she was playing on Roc!

by Anonymousreply 39401/05/2013

LOL R379

by Anonymousreply 39501/05/2013

Well the plot definitely thickens then...

by Anonymousreply 39601/05/2013

Well, it looks like Alexis was on some shows in 1993.

Someone look up clips or photos. Certainly we can tell if she looks 10 or 13/14 in them, right?

by Anonymousreply 39701/05/2013

On the other hand the article in R393 said Alexis was born in the spring of 1982

Below is the last episode of 'Facts', before it went on hiatus for the summer. This was filmed in the spring of 1982 (which would mean Kim would have been 9 months pregnant).

She has a pretty flat stomach for someone who is suppose to be 9 months pregnant.

by Anonymousreply 39801/05/2013

The Herald Journal article that gives Alexis' b-day as spring 1982 also says Kim was 14 at the time.

by Anonymousreply 39901/05/2013

Something is obviously weird about the whole thing... but I would also think that if Kim Fields were pregnant back then they would have 1) made her abort the baby or 2) someone by now, some cast or crew member would have spilled it.

It was also filmed via live Audience so if they were filming around it, someone would have noticed her stomach.

Unless we're going to chalk it up to her having one of those pregnancies where no one can ever see it.

by Anonymousreply 40001/05/2013

Could you bitches COOL IT on the Alexis talk?

by Anonymousreply 40101/05/2013

^ R401

Chip Fields.

by Anonymousreply 40201/05/2013

There's no California birth record for Alexis Fields in spring 1982.

There is a birth record for an Alexis Hurd born in March 1982 in Santa Cruz County, Hurd being the surname of the man Chip married in 1994.

by Anonymousreply 40301/05/2013


Is there a birth record for an Alexis Fields in 1979?

by Anonymousreply 40401/05/2013

Interesting. There's a birth record for an Alexis Fields in March 1984 with the mother's name being listed as Ms. Gordon.... which was Chip Fields' name in Good Times. I know it's a year after but still funny.

by Anonymousreply 40501/05/2013

[quote]Is there a birth record for an Alexis Fields in 1979?

No -- the earliest Alexis F. was born in 1984 in Alameda Co.

by Anonymousreply 40601/05/2013

"She's my sister!"


"She's my daughter!"


"Mrs. Garrett! There's gonna be trouuuuuuuble: She's my sister and my daughter!"


by Anonymousreply 40701/05/2013

So who is Kim's father?

by Anonymousreply 40801/05/2013

And no one ever mentions Jere Fields, Chips other daughter.

by Anonymousreply 40901/05/2013

All of the episodes filmed in the spring of 1982 (which is when Alexis was born) show Kim Fields have a very flat stomach.

by Anonymousreply 41001/05/2013

Enough already. Kim Fields has a son, who was born not long ago. That's it. Alexis is her sister. Now can we please move back to the topic at hand?

by Anonymousreply 41101/05/2013

Chip at r411 is getting bent -- do you think she'll burn us with an iron if we continue to speak of her family's charade?

by Anonymousreply 41201/05/2013

It's just boring as fuck, seeing this thread go from an informative, often witty take on TFOL to a bunch of drivel about Kim Fields's non-daughter.

by Anonymousreply 41301/05/2013

Remember, the power of editing means that actors can film scenes long before they are needed and they can be added to the rest of the show later.

by Anonymousreply 41401/05/2013

I guess now we know where Janet got the idea from.

by Anonymousreply 41501/05/2013

Can anyone recall. . .what was the connection between Mrs. G and Beverly? Were they sisters or something and why were Jo and Blair still living with Mrs. G and then Beverly anyway? Weren't they college grads by some point in the series?

by Anonymousreply 41601/05/2013

Mrs. Garrett and Beverly Ann were sisters. Beverly Ann was mentioned quite a bit (but not seen ) in Season 7 when Mrs. Garrett was on a road trip. (Charlotte Rae was only really doing half-seasons by then.)

Blair and Jo were only college grads in the final season. Jo had tried to move to California at one point but it didn't work out. Why they stayed in the house? Convenience for the writers.

by Anonymousreply 41701/05/2013


They were also part owners of the business/building so they also just lived there I suppose.

by Anonymousreply 41801/05/2013

Charlotte Rae and Cloris Leachman were actually college classmates at Northwestern (in real life)

In terms of Blair & Jo, after graduating Langley Blair entered Langley's law program, while Jo was going for her grad degree.

That all got dropped when Blair bought Eastland (and used her entire inheritance for it) and Jo got married.

by Anonymousreply 41901/06/2013

Chip was a Ronnette.

I wonder why she allowed Kim to stay knocked up...

by Anonymousreply 42001/06/2013

[quote]Chip was a Ronnette


by Anonymousreply 42101/07/2013

Maybe a neo-Ronnette.

I read that on her wiki page:

by Anonymousreply 42201/07/2013

Stop trying to make Tootsie's mother happen. She couldn't cut it as an actress, while her little kid starred in not one, but TWO hit series.

by Anonymousreply 42301/07/2013

R423 Tootsies mom is not going to happen.

Tootie's mom however, has happened. Deal with it.

by Anonymousreply 42401/09/2013

I read Warren Littlefield's Top of the Rock book and was surprised to read that Nancy was almost cast as Monica on Friends. It came down to her and Courtney Cox, and many of the executives at NBC and Warner Bros. wanted Nancy. But they let the creators decide -- and they chose Courtney because she was less known!

by Anonymousreply 42501/09/2013

I can understand why the suits wanted McKeon. Beloved teen star of long-running 80s sitcom, high TV-Q, etc. Her presence alone would draw some to tune in. I also completely understand why the creators wanted to go with someone who wasn't so well-known. If McKeon had been cast, she would have instantly been perceived as "the star" (and Monica, the lead character) by the network, the media, and viewing audience, since the rest of the cast was virtually unknown. (I only knew of Kudrow, from her few appearances on Mad About You). It wouldn't have felt like such an ensemble. I applaud the creators for sticking to their guns, and the suits, for allowing them to make the final decision. As much as I love McKeon, obviously, they made the right one. I can't imagine anyone else playing Monica.

On a related note, I'm curious.......many years ago, Lisa claimed in one of her blogs that she auditioned for Rachel, and was in the final running, but they went with Jennifer Aniston. (Does anyone else remember that?) This was during her REALLY looney phase, so I suspected it might be total bullshit/wishful thinking, and she was just projecting Nancy's story onto herself. Yet, the fact that they DID audition Nancy gave it some creedence -- it wasn't totally outside the realm of possibility. Anyone know? Did they really read her for Rachel?

by Anonymousreply 42601/09/2013

No - it was Cox who got offered Rachel (which makes the whole McKeon thing a bit complicated but I guess possible)

by Anonymousreply 42701/09/2013

Oh, right. Thanks, R327, I'd forgotten that Cox was originally offered the Rachel role. clearly the creators really wanted Cox, period. And I can see how that would have also affected their thinking about casting that Cox & McKeon looked somewhat alike (both brunette with green/blue eyes). In a perfect casting-world, you'd want three actresses who looked very different from each other -- which is what they ended up with.

But that still doesn't really answer my question. Did they REALLY audition Whelchel, or did she make that up?

by Anonymousreply 42801/09/2013

Lisa would have been a good Rachel, maybe even more in keeping with the original premise of Rachel than how the role became =after Rachel had it for awhile. The original Rachel was a good deal like Blair.

by Anonymousreply 42901/09/2013

Agreed, R429. And that's the only reason why I gave Lisa's claim any credence, whatsoever. There was definitely some Blair in early-Rachel.

by Anonymousreply 43001/09/2013

All those, "I was supposed to be so and so" are lies made up by press agents, or vague truths.

Like someone will say "I want a Blair type." That doesn't mean the actress was ever considered.

by Anonymousreply 43101/09/2013

Okay...... I don't disagree with you R431......but it still doesn't answer the question. Can anyone CONFIRM that Lisa Whelchel auditioned for Friends?? Or didn't??

by Anonymousreply 43201/09/2013

Do they ever explain Gary Coleman's presence and age? What about the little dykelettes Cindy and Molly from the first season? Did they get rid of them to make room for the more refined butchness of Jo?

by Anonymousreply 43301/16/2013

[quote]What about the little dykelettes Cindy and Molly from the first season? Did they get rid of them to make room for the more refined butchness of Jo?

I heard it was because it was hard to tell all the blondes apart except for Blair. By reducing it to four girls, you could get racial/ethnic/economic diversity, contrast in appearance, and each girl would get more story lines.

by Anonymousreply 43401/16/2013

I think the only time I saw Conrad Bain (in the Lear Universe) was on his guest appearance on TFOL.

He wasn't a screamer.

by Anonymousreply 43501/17/2013

Chip Fields as a replacement Ronette

by Anonymousreply 43601/19/2013
Need more help? Click Here.

Follow theDL catch up on what you missed

recent threads by topic delivered to your email

follow popular threads on twitter

follow us on facebook

Become a contributor - post when you want with no ads!