Film Score Monthly
Search Terms: 
Search Within:   search tips 
You must log in or register to post.
  Go to page:    
 Posted:   May 11, 2024 - 7:39 AM   
 By:   Justin Boggan   (Member)


It's easy to forget, but this was actually a spin-off of another comedy series, "Perfect Strangers". There was an episode titled "Crimebusters" and the couple proved to be popular, so a series was made around them. Carl was only in that episode, but Harriette was in multiple episodes.

Most of the series is scored by Bennett Salvay and Jessie Frederick. A significant number of episodes, however, were scored by Steven Chesne; I have noted his efforts. Chesne was also a main contributing composer to the parent series "Perfect Strangers".
And during season three, Gary Boren also joins as a contributing composer.

Other TV shows I have done:
  • "Seinfeld":
  • "Night Court":
  • "Just Shoot Me":

    "The Mama Who Came to Dinner"

    This is a good introduction to the show. It's sets up a simple premise, executes it well, and the entire cast just seems to "click" and work together.

    In the this first episode, and only this episode, Judy is played by actress Valerie Jones (and it shows -- the replacement actress is way better). Judy is then played by Jaimee Foxworth until her character vanishes from the show later on...

    RATING: *** *** *

    Carl: "Okay, how about this: We buy an RV, stick mama in it, and don't give her a key to the house?"

    Carl: "Is that all you've got?"
    Harriette: "That's all I need."

    "Two-Income Family"

    Harriette selling herself to get the job, is what god television is all about. While on another show active a the time, "Roseanne", Roseanne put herself down, claimed there were no jobs, and even went for one involving computers -- which she knew nothing about -- here we see a character who knows what she can do and goes for it.

    RATING: *** *** **

    Carl: "Edward, I would not pay seventy dollars for a pair of shoes if Lola Falana was in 'em."

    Carl: "Things aren't so bad."
    Harriette: "Did I mention that the car was on fire?"

    Carl: "Harriette -- we should feed this boy turnips five times a day!"

    Rachel: "I'm so happy I could slap myself!"

    "Short Story"

    RATING: *** *** *.5

    (NtM: 9:35/gif)

    Carl: "You know Barbara Bush?"
    Grandma: "Oh, sure. But I haven't heard from her since they moved."

    Harriette: "Boy, it sneaks up on you, doesn't it?"

     Posted:   May 18, 2024 - 7:28 AM   
     By:   Justin Boggan   (Member)

    Continuing SEASON 1:

    "Rachel's First Date"

    First episode appearance by Steve Urkel (but its one scene and only like two minutes at most). According to information online, Steve wasn't supposed to be a regular character, but fans liked him so much that he was written into the show as a regular cast member during the first season.

    RATING: *** *** *

    Grandma: "I could never play airplane with your uncle Carl -- he was a 747 from the day he was born."

    Carl: "If it's one thing I hate, it's three hands in my popcorn tub."
    Harriette: "Carl, two of them were yours."

    "Straight A's"

    Nothing really wrong with the episode, it just wasn't as good as the episodes so far.

    RATING: *** ***.5

    Edward: "I could tie my shoes with both hands tied behind my back."

    Rodney (Edward's token white friend): "You thought you were smart? What are you -- stupid?"

    "Baseketball Blues"

    You know what, this show brings back a lot of wistfulness and feel goods. Things really were different back then. Yeah, we have some good things now we didn't have them, but I'd trade a lot of them for what we had back then, in a heart beat. And it's all around good characters, too.

    RATING: *** *** *

    Harriette: "Careful you don't pull a muscle pattin' yourself on the back."

    Out-of-context quote...
    Carl: "Hey Edward, come here -- Will's gonna show you something."

    "Body Damage" (7)

    Second appearance of Urkel. It's like half a minute long.

    Steven Chesne scores.

    About 20:00 in: Frist four notes of the "Dragnet" theme.

    RATING: *** *** *

    Laura: "Eddie -- you have the I.Q. of frozen yogurt!"

     Posted:   May 23, 2024 - 10:58 AM   
     By:   Justin Boggan   (Member)

    Continuing SEASON 1:

    "Mr. Badwrench" (8)

    Steven Chesne scores.

    RATING: *** *** *

    (Note to Me: 14:36/gif)


    The most inferior episode thus far. It's not bad, but it suffers from the old tired husband might be cheating plot, and worse by the embarrassing way Carl -- the COP -- handled the whole stake out. Comedy shows have done serious cop work before, so it's not out there to have expected more. Hell, on the comedy series "Frasier" -- Frasier's dad got shot and retired from the force before the show began in-universe, but we eventually got a serious episode where Martin attends a probation hearing or some such thing, where we see the man who shot him and how Martin feels about it.

    Continuity Error: Laura says mom was a police woman, too, but the info' I find online is that she applied (I think during the series "Perfect Strangers") and passed the examine, but didn't become a cop.

    RATING: *** ***.5

    Harriette: "Not another trashy romance novel."
    Rachel: "Honey, when you ain't got it, you read about it."

    "False Arrest"

    The Urkel fan mail must have come in after the second appearance, but now has a last name instead of being a first-name nobody, and is interacting more with the cast.

    So ... what was that prop man doing with the stuffed bunny? Playing tennis with it? Spanking it in some perverse sexual way? He said he was on break, so it's not like what he was doing was work related.

    RATING: *** *** *

    (NtM: 16:20/gif)

    Carl: "The Buddy Goodrich Show? Mamma, you'd rather watch TV than talk to me?"
    Grandma: "Well, he's only on once a week -- you here every day."

    Harriette: "Carl, you're not ivy league, you're bowling league."

     Posted:   Jun 1, 2024 - 2:27 PM   
     By:   Justin Boggan   (Member)

    Continuing SEASON 1:

    "The Quilt" (regular old broadcast picture quality)

    Remember when quilts in TV series were a thing? This, "The Simpsons", probably others.

    RATING: *** *** *

    "Laura's First Date"

    For all the crap Laura gives Eddie, in this Eddie shows he's a good brother.

    Continuity Error: Why is Steve remaking at the house, why does Harriette not know him, and why does Carl act kind of like he doesn't know him? This is the fourth appearance of the character, each time first being seen in the house. And it's implied he's been coming there before the pilot, since they already know him and let him in.

    RATING: *** *** *

    "Man's Best Friend" (regular old broadcast picture quality)

    Steve's parents (not seen) are Herb and Diane.

    RATING: *** ***.5

    (NtM: 13:27/gif)

    Eddie: "Urkel, won't do you ever knock?"
    Steve: "Well, if I did, nobody would ever let me in."

     Posted:   Jun 7, 2024 - 2:23 PM   
     By:   Justin Boggan   (Member)

    Continuing SEASON 1:

    "Baker's Dozens"

    So, established so far: Eddie eats paste and dog treats.

    The $24 profit -- forgot electricity, water, and wear and tear on the oven. They are in the red.

    RATING: *** *** *.5

    Carl: "Son, we've talked about the birds and the bees, now its time to talk about the flour and the filling."

    Steve: "Can I have a glass of milk to go with my face?"

    Out-of-context quote...
    Carl: "You shot your bag at me..."

    "The Big Reunion" (regular old broadcast picture quality)

    Seeing all these fat people reminds me of this infamous scene from an episode of "Family Guy":

    RATING: *** *** *

    "The Party" (regular old broadcast picture quality)

    RATING: *** *** *

    (NtM: 15:10/gif)

    Steve: "Boy, nobody slams a phone down like Laura."

     Posted:   Jun 15, 2024 - 8:31 AM   
     By:   Justin Boggan   (Member)

    Continuing SEASON 1:

    "The Big Fix" (regular old broadcast picture quality)

    Urkel is 13 years old.

    RATING: *** *** **

    (NtM: 7:34/gif)

    Steve: "You ever been down to the slaughter house? It's fascinating. One minute, mmmooooo, the next minute -- rump roast."

    "Sitting Pretty" (18) (regular old broadcast picture quality)

    Steven Chesne scores.

    Actor Tim Russ (Lt. Tuvok from "Star Trek: Voyager") makes a short guest appearance as Rachel's date. Even though its strongly implied he'll be a re-occurring love interest by the end of his only scene, he is never seen again.

    RATING: *** *** *

    "In a Jam" (19) (regular old broadcast picture quality)

    Steven Chesne scores.

    This episodes has some good stuff in it: Steven standing up for himself (which, considering this is a TV series, happened very early on for the character), Eddie doing the right thing, and various other little moments.

    Even though it's news footage, this is the first time we've scene Carl on-the-job.

    Carl is named after his great grandfather's horse.

    RATING: *** *** **

    Laura: "Urkel, don't your parents feed you?"
    Steve: "Not every day."

    Steve: "A man's gotta do what a man's gotta do."
    Laura: "Yeah, but what are you gonna do?"

     Posted:   Jun 22, 2024 - 9:28 AM   
     By:   Justin Boggan   (Member)

    Finishing SEASON 1:

    "The Candidate"

    The problem with Rachel's line up of recycling trashcans is it makes the viewer aware of that side of the kitchen, so you then wonder: how come nothing they ever need is on that side (where the filming cameras are)? How come we never see that side? What's on that side? Of course we all know the reality of why when making a TV series, but again -- the cans make it suddenly obvious.

    RATING: *** *** *.5

    (NtM: 11:10/gif, 12:50/gif)

    Rodney: "You got charisma."
    Eddie: "You think so? I use a dandruff shampoo."

    "Bowl Me Over" (21) (regular old broadcast picture quality)

    Steven Chesne scores.

    Plothole: Why is Steve still at the bowling alley? That's a long time. And they certainly didn't pick him up to bring him with them.

    RATING: *** *** *

    Steve: "Hi, Laura, my little photogenic fox."

    Eddie: "Is it just me, or do I get better looking every year?"
    Laura: "It's just you."

    "Rock Video" (22)


    RATING: *** *** *

    (NtM: 3:20/gif)

    Rachel: "I got ideas so 'fresh' I haven't even thought of them yet."

    Eddie: "Steve, we don't need an accordion player."
    Steve: "Why -- too hip?"

    Steve: "This is going to be the biggest bomb since Howard the Duck."

    Carl: "You know, when a man decides to go on an ego trip, he usually ends up traveling alone."

     Posted:   Jun 28, 2024 - 2:10 PM   
     By:   Justin Boggan   (Member)

    SEASON 2:

    "Rachel's Place" (regular old broadcast picture quality)

    Now that Steve is an established main character, he's been added to the opening credits.

    Harriett notes when looking at the grocery receipt that eight heavy and full bags of groceries was a $170 dollars. Under Bidenomics you'd be hard-pressed to spend $170 or less with just two full bags. I remember the good old days during that period.

    And with this episode we not only get to see Carl on duty, but he races up to a fire in his unit. We also get some completely atypical dramatic scoring for the fire sequence.

    RATING: *** *** **

    Steve: "A peck on my lip area would steam me on my way."
    Laura: "So would a left hook."

    Grandma: "Is a frog's butt water tight?"

    "Torn Between Two Lovers"

    I enjoyed the whole cliched plot idea of a character thinking somebody has the hots for them, when that person does not. Steve really had some good moments throughout the episode.

    And Rachel's baby was a baby last season, and in the prior episode, but now he's suddenly aged -- like three years. And in that prior episode he couldn't talk, now he's very good at speaking. I remember when this happened in "Days of Our Lives", when one episode there were kids, then next they were teenagers.

    RATING: *** *** **.5

    (NtM: 11:57/gif)

    Steve: "The concept of a girl actually enjoying my presence is all brand new to me."

    "Marriage 101"

    This was a good episode and showed more to both Laura and Steven's characters, also showing how Laura is emotionally maturing as she gets older.

    RATING: *** *** **

    Steve: "You know that in Kenya 'Urkel" means a benign cist on the foreleg of a wilder beast?"

    Steve: "I just can't help but loving you. It's like wanting to touch a star: You know you'll never reach it, but you just gotta keep trying."

     Posted:   Jul 5, 2024 - 2:37 PM   
     By:   Justin Boggan   (Member)

    Continuing SEASON 2:


    Steven's love of Polka is introduced in this episode.

    Piggly Wiggly named dropped.

    RATING: *** *** *

    Steve: "Hi, angel lips."

    Carl: "I could tell he was a goober from the get-go."

    Steve: "I'm your bus ticket out of Lonesometown."

    Steve: "Laura, you have no shame. I love that in a woman."

    "The Crash Course"

    Eddie's sudden girlfriend is sudden!

    Steve plays the bagpipes.

    RATING: *** *** **

    Laura: "How can you be so disgusting?"
    Steve: "It's a gift."

    "Boxcar Blues"

    Steve is fascinated by cows (amongst other things), so if there was ever a reboot of the series, I would imagine Steve has a collection of Far Side comics with cows on his fridge, and probably how a black & white cow-colored mail box (ever seen one of those?).

    Steve's father is a brain surgeon.

    RATING: *** *** *.5

    Steve: "It's a scientific fact: rats can't vomit."
    (TRIVIA: I actually looked this up, and it's true!)

     Posted:   Jul 13, 2024 - 8:34 AM   
     By:   Justin Boggan   (Member)

    Continuing SEASON 2:

    "Dog Day Halloween"

    I have to say -- Eddie looks really good as Frankenstein's monster.

    RATING: *** *** *

    (NtM: 5:40/gif, 6:49/gif, 18:06/gif)

    "Cousin Urkel" (8)

    Steven Chesne scores.

    In the play world of "What If..." scenarios, what if this was really Steve and it turned out he was a psycho?
    Still looks better than nuBruce Jenner.

    RATING: *** ***.5

    "Dedicated to the One I Love" (regular old broadcast picture quality)

    Trivia: I had to look it up, and yes -- ancient Egyptians shaved their eyebrows to mourn the death of their cats. Kind of makes you wonder what they do after loosing two cats in quick succession. While looking that up, I pulled up an article that talked about it and they noted because Egyptians had such reverence for cats (something I think most readers here already knew), that when a house caught fire, instead of putting the fire out, they'd position around the house to try and save the cats when they ran out.

    RATING: *** ***.5

    Steve: "There's always hope, Laura. What if we're stranded o n a desert island together?"
    Laura: "I'm a strong swimmer."

    Carl: "Oh, no this is my very first pair of ... singing underpants."

     Posted:   Jul 20, 2024 - 7:37 AM   
     By:   Justin Boggan   (Member)

    Continuing SEASON 2:

    "The Science Project" (10)

    Steven Chesne scores.


    RATING: *** *** *

    Rachel: "Destroying Chicago won't look good on your permanent record."

    Steve: "I offered you my heart and you stomped that sucker flat!"

    "Requiem for an Urkel" (11) (regular old broadcast picture quality)

    Steven Chesne scores.

    Money can't be that scare for the Winslow family. They'd repaired the front of the house after Eddie drove threw it, fixed holes in the ceiling, the second floor, ceiling, and the roof from Steven setting off a rocket, and probably repaired the station wagon.

    RATING: *** *** *

    "Fast Eddie Winslow" (12)

    Steven Chesne scores.

    Amazing at how hen it comes to cliched pool-husting episode, suddenly nearly half the main cast can play pool. No, really -- four people! Three of them the Winslows! Still a good episode, though.

    Couple of things we learned about the universe of the show: Carl has been living in that city for a long time, and they live in Cook county.

    RATING: *** *** *

    Steve: "How was your day?"
    Steve: "Ah, great -- I have a stakeout at Doughnut World."

    You must log in or register to post.
      Go to page:    
    © 2024 Film Score Monthly. All Rights Reserved.
    Website maintained and powered by Veraprise and Matrimont.