Just the Ten of Us

Last updated
Just the Ten of Us
Just the Ten of Us (logo).png
Genre Sitcom
Created byDan Guntzelman
Steve Marshall
Starring Bill Kirchenbauer
Deborah Harmon
Heather Langenkamp
Jamie Luner
Brooke Theiss
JoAnn Willette
Matt Shakman
Heidi Zeigler
Opening theme"Doin' It the Best I Can" performed by Bill Medley
Composer Steve Dorff
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons3
No. of episodes47 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producersDan Guntzelman
Steve Marshall
Mike Sullivan
ProducersHenry Johnson
Nick LeRose
Running time22–24 minutes
Production companiesGuntzelman-Sullivan-Marshall Productions
Warner Bros. Television
Distributor Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution
Release
Original network ABC
Original releaseApril 26, 1988 (1988-04-26) 
May 4, 1990 (1990-05-04)
Chronology
Related shows Growing Pains

Just the Ten of Us is an American sitcom starring stand-up comedian Bill Kirchenbauer as Coach Graham Lubbock, a teacher and the head of a large Catholic family with eight children living in Eureka, California. The series is a spin-off of Growing Pains , in which Kirchenbauer portrayed the same character on a recurring basis. [1] As the series progressed, Coach Lubbock's four eldest daughters, the teenagers Marie (Heather Langenkamp), Cindy (Jamie Luner), Wendy (Brooke Theiss), and Connie (JoAnn Willette), became the primary focus of the show.

Contents

Just the Ten of Us aired on ABC starting with a trial run from April 26 to May 17, 1988. After the first four episodes in an abbreviated first season were aired, the show was renewed for two more seasons, eventually ending after 47 episodes on May 4, 1990. The show was a part of ABC's early TGIF programming block.

Synopsis

The series focuses on Graham Lubbock (Bill Kirchenbauer), a Catholic gym teacher who used to teach at the high school that Growing Pains characters Mike and Carol Seaver (Kirk Cameron and Tracey Gold) had attended on Long Island, and the father of eight children.

In the pilot episode (which aired on Growing Pains in the spring of 1988), Graham's job is in jeopardy due to district budget cutbacks. Mike leads a protest after he learns that Lubbock is trying to support a large family (including yet another baby on the way). Despite this, Graham loses his job but soon receives an offer at St. Augustine's Academy, an all-boys private Catholic school in Eureka, California. Graham and his pregnant wife Elizabeth promptly move their family to California.

By special arrangement, the older children — four teenage girls — were allowed to attend St. Augustine's, much to the chagrin of the school's administration (and, of course, the delight of the male students). They were:

The younger children — two girls and two boys — were:

The first season consisted of four episodes for a trial run in the spring of 1988. ABC was pleased with their success and ordered a second season. In the second season, Cindy and Wendy seemed to switch personalities, with Cindy becoming more ditzy, and Wendy becoming the schemer. Also, the show focused more and more on the four older girls and frequently revolved around the family's efforts to save money, dating, and other typical family sitcom issues. In later episodes, the four teenage girls formed a singing group called "The Lubbock Babes" (partly to help bring in much-needed extra income). The girls had many boyfriends and love interests that Graham took great pride in testing—and in most cases, fending off—but the most permanent fixture among them was Marie's goofy boyfriend, Gavin Doosler (Evan Arnold).

Those on the St. Augustine's staff included Father Robert Hargis (Frank Bonner), the affable headmaster; Coach Duane Johnson (Dennis Haysbert), Graham's earnest young assistant during the first two seasons and pulled some strings with Father Hargis to hire Lubbock; and in the third season, featured teachers Father Budd (Lou Richards) and elderly, madcap Sister Ethel (Maxine Elliott).

Cast

Response

Ratings

A week after the series debuted on April 8, 1988, the show placed 7th in ratings. [2] The second season garnered a total of 20.1 million viewers. [3]

Episodes

SeasonEpisodesOriginally aired
First airedLast aired
1 4April 26, 1988 (1988-04-26)May 17, 1988 (1988-05-17)
2 20October 28, 1988 (1988-10-28)April 28, 1989 (1989-04-28)
3 23September 13, 1989 (1989-09-13)May 4, 1990 (1990-05-04)
Broadcast History
[4]

Syndication

USA Network picked up the entire series in reruns shortly after it was canceled, and aired the show on a daily basis until 1996.

Awards and nominations

YearAwardCategoryRecipientResult
1989ASCAP Film and Television Music AwardsTop TV Series John Bettis Won
1990 Primetime Emmy Award Outstanding Lighting Direction (Electronic) for a Comedy SeriesGeorge Spiro Dibie
(For episode "Highway To Heaven")
Won
Young Artist Award Best Young Actor/Actress Ensemble in a Television Comedy, Drama Series or SpecialHeather Langenkamp, Jamie Luner, Matt Shakman, Brooke Theiss, JoAnn Willette and Heidi ZeiglerNominated
Best Family Television SeriesJust the Ten of UsNominated
Best Young Actress Supporting Role in a Television SeriesHeidi ZeiglerNominated

See also

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References

  1. Brooks, Tim; Marsh, Earle F. (2003). The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network and Cable TV Shows, 1946–Present (8 ed.). Random House Digital, Inc. p. 627. ISBN   0-345-45542-8.
  2. Voland, John (May 4, 1988). "TV RATINGS : New Programs Open Strong". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved September 9, 2017.
  3. "RETRO 89–90 : le classement intégral de la saison 89–90". September 10, 2009. Retrieved September 9, 2017.
  4. Brooks, Tim; Marsh, Earle (2007). The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network and Cable TV Shows 1946–Present (Ninth Edition). Ballantine Books. pp. 723–724. ISBN   978-0-345-49773-4.