Archie Bunker's Place

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Archie Bunker's Place
Archie Bunkers Place.jpg
Genre Sitcom
Based on Till Death Us Do Part created by Johnny Speight
Starring Carroll O'Connor
Jean Stapleton
Martin Balsam
Danielle Brisebois
Allan Melvin
Denise Miller
Jason Wingreen
Barbara Meek
Bill Quinn
Anne Meara
Barry Gordon
Opening theme"Those Were the Days"
by Lee Adams and Charles Strouse (Ray Conniff instrumental version)
Ending theme"Remembering You"
by Roger Kellaway and Carroll O'Connor (Ray Conniff instrumental version)
Country of originUnited States
No. of seasons4
No. of episodes97 (list of episodes)
Running time22 minutes
Production companies Tandem Productions
The O'Connor-Becker Company
(season 1)
UGO Productions Inc.
(seasons 2–4)
Original network CBS
Original releaseSeptember 23, 1979 (1979-09-23) 
April 4, 1983 (1983-04-04)
Related Maude
The Jeffersons
Good Times
Checking In

Archie Bunker's Place is an American television sitcom produced as a continuation of All in the Family . It aired on CBS from September 23, 1979, to April 4, 1983. While not as popular as its predecessor, the show maintained a large enough audience to last for four seasons. It performed so well during its first season that it displaced Mork & Mindy from its Sunday night time slot (a year earlier, during its first season, Mork & Mindy had been the No. 3 show on television).



Although the Bunker home continued to be featured, the scenes were primarily set in the title's neighborhood tavern in Astoria, Queens, which Archie Bunker (Carroll O'Connor) purchased in the series' eighth-season premiere of All in the Family. During the first season as Archie Bunker's Place, Bunker takes on a Jewish partner, Murray Klein (Martin Balsam), when co-owner Harry Snowden decides to sell his share of the business. Early in the first season, to increase business, Archie and Murray build a restaurant onto the bar; the additions include a separate seating area for the restaurant and a well-equipped kitchen with a service window. The regular patrons include Barney Hefner, Hank Pivnik, and Edgar Van Ranseleer. [1]

Archie Bunker's Place was the sounding board for Archie's views, support from his friends, and Murray's counterpoints. Later in the series, after Murray remarries and leaves for San Francisco, Archie finds a new business partner, Gary Rabinowitz (Barry Gordon), whose views were liberal, in contrast to Archie's political conservatism.

Jean Stapleton

In December 1978, in the middle of the ninth season of All in the Family, Jean Stapleton announced that she did not want to renew her contract at the end of that season, stating that she felt her character of Edith Bunker had run its course on the show. At that time, Norman Lear, the creator of All in the Family, wanted the series to end while it was still on top. However, Robert Daly, who was then vice-president of CBS Television, persuaded Carroll O’Connor to continue with All in the Family for at least another year. Daly felt that since the show was still garnering high ratings, it was still valuable to the network and could run at least for another year. Since Lear was insistent on ending the program, Daly asked O’Connor to convince Lear to reconsider. After meeting with O’Connor, Lear finally agreed to let the show's characters continue but that the series could not be called All in the Family anymore. As a result, Archie Bunker’s Place was created and the show's plots centered less on Archie's home life and more on Archie's bar as well as his colleagues and patrons who frequented his place of business. In order to help with this transition, Stapleton agreed to continue playing Edith Bunker on the newly titled series for five appearances during the 1979–80 season. At the start of the following (1980–81) season, her character would die (off screen) and be written out of the series.



Unlike All in the Family, which took place largely in the Bunker family home, Archie Bunker's Place was set primarily in the local tavern Archie owned, and was not videotaped with a live studio audience. [2] Instead, the show was shot on a closed set with multiple cameras, with the best takes being edited together utilizing a laugh track. The finished product was then shown to live audiences attending tapings of One Day at a Time , thus providing a laugh track from real laughter for the show. [3]

Production of all seasons of Archie Bunker's Place took place at Studios 31 & Bob Barker Studio at Television City Studios in Hollywood,[ citation needed ] the original production home of All in the Family for that show's first six seasons.

The theme song for Archie Bunker's Place was a re-scored instrumental version by Ray Conniff of "Those Were the Days," the long-familiar opening theme to All in the Family. The closing theme, "Remembering You," was a re-scored version of All in the Family's closing theme. Both versions featured a Dixieland-styled arrangement. The opening credits featured a view of the Queensboro Bridge, which connects Manhattan to Queens, followed by shots taken along Steinway Street in Astoria.

Carroll O'Connor was frustrated over the cancellation when the show did not have an appropriate closure. He vowed never to work in any type of show with CBS again.[ citation needed ] He would later work for CBS again when he starred in In the Heat of the Night , when NBC decided not to renew the series it moved to CBS who allowed the series to continue for two more years and have a proper ending. [4]

The series was briefly rerun on TV Land in 2002 and 2003, including the unaired Gloria pilot. The last episode did air in a marathon along with the final episodes of All in the Family, The Jeffersons and Gloria . The series is currently shown on Antenna TV as of August 2018.

Whereas All in the Family had been inspired by a British series, Till Death Us Do Part , the British series would later get a sequel; first, the short-lived Till Death... , and then In Sickness and in Health . Dandy Nichols, who had played Else Garnett (the British inspiration for Edith Bunker), coincidentally died after the first season of In Sickness and in Health, and the second-season premiere (strongly paralleling "Archie Alone") deals with her widower Alf Garnett dealing with grief in much the same way as Archie did with Edith's death.


SeasonEpisodesOriginally airedRankRating
First airedLast aired
1 24September 23, 1979 (1979-09-23)March 23, 1980 (1980-03-23)1122.9
2 20November 2, 1980 (1980-11-02)May 10, 1981 (1981-05-10)1321.4
3 29October 4, 1981 (1981-10-04)June 1, 1982 (1982-06-01) [lower-alpha 1] 1221.6
4 24September 26, 1982 (1982-09-26)April 4, 1983 (1983-04-04)2218.3 [lower-alpha 2]
  1. Season 3 officially concluded on May 16, 1982, after which the intended pilot episode for Gloria was broadcast.
  2. Tied with That's Incredible! .

Notable episodes

The series' most notable episode among critics was "Archie Alone," which originally aired November 2, 1980, as a one-hour special to open the second season of the series. In that episode, viewers learn that Edith had died of a stroke a month earlier (Jean Stapleton had resigned from her role), and Archie is unable to grieve. His refusal to let go of his emotions takes its toll on Stephanie, until one day Archie finds a single slipper of Edith's (overlooked when her clothes were collected for charity) in the bedroom. Holding the shoe, Archie laments aloud that Edith slipped away before he could tell her he loved her, and finally breaks down and cries. Later, after a talk with Stephanie, he agrees to take her to visit Edith's grave, fulfilling the request Stephanie had made to Archie at the beginning of the episode. [5] The British TV series In Sickness and in Health, the continuation of Till Death Us Do Part on which All in the Family was based, had a similar episode in which Edith's British counterpart, Else Garnett, had died from natural causes. This was not a case of one series copying another; both series were forced to write these deaths due to unexpected departures by the actresses (Stapleton's resignation and Dandy Nichols's death).

"Thanksgiving Reunion" ABPThanksgiving79.jpg
"Thanksgiving Reunion"

The first-season episode "Thanksgiving Reunion" marked the final time the original ensemble from All in the Family—O'Connor, Stapleton, Sally Struthers and Rob Reiner—appeared together. In that episode, Mike announces that he has lost his job as a college professor after his participation in a nude protest of a proposed nuclear power plant became public. [6] This puts a further strain on his already troubled marriage to Gloria (who at the episode's end lets it slip to Archie that Mike participated only because Gloria did not want to march alone), and foreshadows the Stivics' divorce.

Another notable episode was "The Return of Sammy," when Sammy Davis Jr. [7] comes to the bar and restaurant after Archie calls up his talk show. He, like Murray, is surprised that Archie has a Jewish niece. Later, when Sammy chokes on some food, Archie uses the Heimlich maneuver to save Sammy's life. At the end of the episode, Archie and Stephanie simultaneously kiss Sammy, contrasting what happened in the parent show's episode "Sammy's Visit."

In a special 1982 episode, which aired immediately after the Super Bowl, baseball superstar Reggie Jackson almost sues Archie, but decides not to when Jackson realizes the bad press would hurt his career.

Later, comedian Don Rickles guest-starred as a crusty boarder named Al Snyder, who rented a room from Archie's friend and neighbor Barney, whose wife Blanche had left him sometime earlier. Highlights of this episode are exchanges combining Rickles' insult humor and his character's curmudgeonly disposition with Archie's sincere but misguided efforts to resolve disputes between Snyder and Barney. Eventually, the Rickles character is exhausted by the constant chatter and decides to rest. The Rickles character drifts off to sleep and dies. The episode ends with Barney pondering whether he will wind up like Mr. Snyder: "Sore at the world, 'cause I'm all alone."

Archie's last appearance

The last scene in which Archie Bunker ever appears comes in the episode, I'm Torn Here (season 4, episode 24; airdate April 4, 1983). [8]   He is at the bar with bartender Harry Snowden and regular patron Mr. Van Ranseleer, recounting a dream he had:

Archie:  "So, at the end of the dream, the president [ Reagan] ushers me right into the Oval Office."

Mr. Van R:  "What happened?"

Archie: "Well, sitting around on the floor is the 20 mules from the Death Valley Days ."

Mr. Van R:  "Sounds like his Cabinet."

Archie: "Jeez, I guess that's who they was because one of 'em takes off his nosebag -- and it's [then-vice president] George Bush!  And he says the way to tame El Salvador is to make the damn place into the 49th state."

Mr. Van R: "Was there any music in this dream?"

Archie: "No, but there was a toilet flush.  That's what woke me up."

Home media and streaming

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment released The Complete First Season of Archie Bunker's Place on DVD in North America on January 31, 2006. On August 27, 2013, it was announced that Mill Creek Entertainment had acquired the home media rights to various television series from the Sony Pictures library including Archie Bunker's Place. [9] On July 7, 2015, Mill Creek re-released the first season on DVD. [10] In 2022, the complete series was made available for streaming in Canada on CTV. [11]

Cultural references

"Eulogy and Tavern," the 12th chapter (Chapter 4, Part 3) of Jonathan Lethem's novel Dissident Gardens , is set within the world of the television show. One of the book's main characters, Rose, begins frequenting a bar called Kelcy's on Northern Boulevard near her home in Sunnyside Gardens, Queens, where she befriends the owner, Archie Bunker, and eventually tries to seduce him with her old Communist rhetoric. ("Your lifelong dream, Archie, only you don't know it. Hump a hot Red.") The chapter includes appearances by series-regulars Barney Hefner, Hank Pivnik, Edgar Van Ranseleer, Harry Snowden and Stephanie Mills. [12]

Related Research Articles

<i>All in the Family</i> American sitcom television series

All in the Family is an American television sitcom that aired on CBS for nine seasons, from January 12, 1971, to April 8, 1979. Afterwards, it was produced as the continuation series Archie Bunker's Place, which picked up where All in the Family had ended and ran for four more seasons through 1983.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Carroll O'Connor</span> American actor (1924-2001)

John Carroll O'Connor was an American actor, producer, and director whose television career spanned over four decades. He became a lifelong member of the Actors Studio in 1971. O'Connor found widespread fame as Archie Bunker, the main character in the CBS television sitcoms All in the Family (1971–1979) and its continuation, Archie Bunker's Place (1979–1983). O'Connor later starred in the NBC/CBS television crime drama In the Heat of the Night (1988–1995), where he played the role of police chief William "Bill" Gillespie. At the end of his career in the late 1990s, he played Gus Stemple, the father of Jamie Buchman on Mad About You. In 1996, O'Connor was ranked number 38 on TV Guide's 50 Greatest TV Stars of All Time. He won five Emmys and two Golden Globe Awards.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Archie Bunker</span> Fictional character

Archibald "Archie" Bunker is a fictional character from the 1970s American television sitcom All in the Family and its spin-off Archie Bunker's Place, played by Carroll O'Connor. Bunker, a main character of the series, is a World War II veteran, blue-collar worker, and family man. All in the Family premiered on January 12, 1971, where he was depicted as the head of the Bunker family. In 1979, the show was retooled and renamed Archie Bunker's Place; it finally went off the air in 1983. Bunker lived at the fictional address of 704 Hauser Street in the borough of Queens, in New York City.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Edith Bunker</span> Fictional character

Edith Bunker is a fictional character on the 1970s sitcom All in the Family, played by Jean Stapleton. She is the wife of Archie Bunker, mother of Gloria Stivic, mother-in-law of Michael "Meathead" Stivic, and grandmother of Joey Stivic. Her cousin is Maude Findlay, one of Archie's nemeses.

<i>Maude</i> (TV series) American television series 1972–1978

Maude is an American sitcom television series that was originally broadcast on the CBS network from September 12, 1972, until April 22, 1978.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Jean Stapleton</span> American actress (1923–2013)

Jean Stapleton was an American character actress of stage, television and film.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Sally Struthers</span> American actress and activist

Sally Anne Struthers is an American actress and activist. She played Gloria Stivic, the daughter of Archie and Edith Bunker on All in the Family, for which she won two Emmy awards, and Babette on Gilmore Girls. She was also the voice of Charlene Sinclair on the ABC sitcom Dinosaurs and Rebecca Cunningham on the Disney animated series TaleSpin.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Michael Stivic</span> Sitcom character

Michael Casimir "Mike" Stivic is a fictional character played by Rob Reiner on the 1970s American television sitcom All in the Family. He is the live-in son-in-law of the series' lead character, Archie Bunker, who frequently calls him "Meathead". Michael is the husband of Archie's daughter Gloria.

Gloria Stivic is a fictional character played by Sally Struthers on the American situation comedy All in the Family and the spin-off series Gloria. The only child of Archie and Edith Bunker, Gloria is married to—and eventually divorced from—Michael Stivic. She was born 11 months after Archie and Edith were married, according to the fifth season episode “The Longest Kiss”.

<i>Gloria</i> (American TV series) American sitcom of the 1980s

Gloria is an American sitcom television series and a spin-off of Archie Bunker's Place that aired Sundays at 8:30 p.m. (EST) on CBS from September 26, 1982, to April 10, 1983. The series stars Sally Struthers reprising her role as Gloria Stivic, the daughter of Archie Bunker on All in the Family.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Barney Martin</span> American actor (1923–2005)

Barney Martin was an American actor, best known for playing Morty Seinfeld, father of Jerry, on the sitcom Seinfeld (1991-1998). He also played supporting roles in Mel Brooks' The Producers (1967), and the Dudley Moore comedy Arthur (1981). He also originated the role of Amos Hart in the 1976 Broadway production of Chicago.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Joey Stivic</span> Fictional character

Joseph Michael "Joey" Stivic is a fictional character who first appeared on the 1970s American sitcom All in the Family. Joey Stivic was the son and only child of Mike Stivic and Gloria Stivic, and the grandson of Archie Bunker and Edith Bunker. The character first appeared as a newborn baby in a two-part episode of All in the Family that aired in December 1975.

Stephanie Mills is a character from the 1970s American television situation comedy All in the Family and the follow-up series Archie Bunker's Place. She was portrayed by child actress Danielle Brisebois, who joined All in the Family in 1978. Brisebois continued in the role until Archie Bunker's Place ended its run in 1983.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Lionel Jefferson</span> Fictional character on American sitcoms All in the Family and The Jeffersons

Lionel Jefferson is a supporting character from the hit sitcoms All in the Family and The Jeffersons. He is the son of George and Louise Jefferson. He was originally portrayed by D'Urville Martin for two unaired pilots, before the role was recast with Mike Evans. He was later played by Damon Evans, though Mike Evans eventually returned to the role before the end of the series. Jovan Adepo portrayed the character for the television special Live in Front of a Studio Audience: Norman Lear's All in the Family and The Jeffersons.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Maude Findlay</span> Fictional character

Maude Findlay is a fictional character and protagonist on the controversial 1970s sitcom Maude. She was portrayed by the Emmy-winning actress Bea Arthur.

"Edith's 50th Birthday" are the fourth and fifth episodes of the eighth season of the American television sitcom All in the Family. The episodes, which originally aired as a two-part one hour story on CBS on October 16, 1977, were written by Bob Schiller and Bob Weiskopf, and directed by Paul Bogart.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Cousin Liz</span> 3rd episode of the 8th season of All in the Family

"Cousin Liz" is an episode of the American television sitcom All in the Family. The story concerns Edith Bunker's inheritance of a silver tea service from her deceased cousin Liz and her decision to let her lesbian lover keep the tea service to remember Liz by. The second episode of season 8, "Cousin Liz" originally aired on October 9, 1977 on CBS.

"Maude" is the twenty-fourth and final episode of the second season of the American television sitcom All in the Family; the episode also served as the eponymous pilot episode of its first spin-off series, Maude. The episode, directed by John Rich and written by Rod Parker, was videotaped on February 18, 1972, in front of a live audience at CBS Television City in Hollywood, California, and aired on March 11, 1972, at 8:00 p.m. EST on CBS.

"The 200th Episode Celebration of All in the Family" is a 90-minute retrospective of the American television sitcom All in the Family starring Carroll O'Connor, Jean Stapleton, Rob Reiner and Sally Struthers which aired on March 4, 1979, on CBS. It was directed by Walter C. Miller, hosted by Norman Lear and videotaped on February 19, 1979, in front of a live audience at Mark Taper Forum of the Los Angeles Music Center in Los Angeles, California.

<i>Live in Front of a Studio Audience</i> Live performances of classic sitcom episodes

Live in Front of a Studio Audience is a series of live television specials that was first broadcast by ABC on May 22, 2019. Conceptualized and hosted by Jimmy Kimmel, the specials feature all-star casting for live recreations of sitcom episodes that originally aired in the 1970s and 1980s.


  1. 1 2 Spelling according to the end credits of All in the Family, episode 186.
  2. Lee, Ashley (22 January 2016). "Norman Lear Opens Up About His Battle to Keep 'Archie Bunker's Place' Off the Air". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 30 January 2020.
  3. Wojnar, Jason (September 10, 2019). "10 Things You Never Knew About All In The Family". Retrieved 10 August 2020.
  4. "CBS Grabs 'Heat of the Night,' but NBC May Want It Back".
  5. Martin Gitlin (7 November 2013). The Greatest Sitcoms of All Time. Scarecrow Press. pp. 15–. ISBN   978-0-8108-8725-1.
  6. TV Guide. Triangle Publications. November 1982.
  7. Sylvia Lovina Chidi (13 June 2014). The Greatest Black Achievers in History. pp. 277–. ISBN   978-1-291-90933-3.
  8. "Watch Archie Bunker's Place Season 4 Episode 24 Online". Retrieved 2019-09-03.
  9. "Mill Creek Entertainment Signs Deals With Sony Pictures Home Entertainment To Expand Their Distribution Partnership". TV Shows On DVD. 2013-08-27. Archived from the original on 2014-10-06. Retrieved 2014-07-17.
  10. 'Season 1' is Getting Re-Release to DVD by Mill Creek Archived 2015-05-01 at the Wayback Machine
  11. "Archie Bunker's Place".
  12. Lethem, Jonathan. Dissident Gardens, Vintage Paperback 2013, pp. 261–278