Busting Loose (TV series)
Title card, with Adam Arkin as Lenny Markowitz at right.
|Theme music composer||Mark Rothman|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||2|
|No. of episodes||21, plus 4 unaired|
|Executive producer(s)||Lowell Ganz
|Producer(s)||Lawrence Kasha (Season One)
John Thomas Lenox (Season Two)
|Running time||30 minutes|
|Production company(s)||Hayadou Productions/Paramount Television|
|Original run||January 17, 1977– November 16, 1977|
Busting Loose is a 1977 United States comedic television series starring Adam Arkin which centers on a young man in New York City who has moved out of his parents' house to live on his own for the first time. The show aired on CBS between January 17, 1977, and November 16, 1977
The show should not be confused with the situation comedy Bustin' Loose, an unrelated television series which aired in syndication from 1987 to 1988.
- Adam Arkin....Lenny Markowitz
- Barbara Rhoades....Melody Feebeck
- Jack Kruschen....Sam Markowitz
- Pat Carroll....Pearl Markowitz
- Danny Goldman....Lester Bellman
- Steve Nathan....Allan Simmonds
- Greg Antonacci....Vinnie Mordabito
- Paul Sylvan....Woody Warshaw
- Paul B. Price....Ralph Cabell
- Ralph Wilcox....Raymond St. Williams
- Louise Williams....Jackie Gleason
Lenny Markowitz is a 24-year-old Jewish American man who recently graduated from engineering school. Tired of living with his overprotective and meddling parents Sam and Pearl, he secretly moves out on his own for the first time – "busting loose" from them – into a low-rent apartment in a rundown apartment building in New York City where his neighbor is Melody Feebeck, a beautiful, voluptuous, older redheaded woman who works for an escort service. Lacking the money even to replace the duck-covered wallpaper in his new apartment and still looking for work as an engineer, he temporarily takes a menial job at the Wearwell Shoe Store, operated by Ralph Cabell, where his coworker is Raymond St. Williams, a "hip" young African American man. His childhood friends Lester Bellman, Allan Simmonds, Vinnie Mordabito, and Woody Warshaw frequently visit him; they play poker together and get involved in various escapades. In the fall of 1977, Lenny finds a regular girlfriend, Jackie Gleason, an attractive young woman unrelated – and bearing no resemblance – to the real-life television star Jackie Gleason.
Mark Rothman and Lowell Ganz created Busting Loose and served as its executive producers, and Rothman composed the show's theme music. Lawrence Kasha was the producer for the first season; John Thomas Lenox produced the second season. Lenox also directed one episode; the other episode directors were Greg Antonacci, James Burrows, Mel Ferber, Norm Gray, Asaad Kelada, Harvey Miller, Tony Mordente, Alan Myerson, Bill Persky, Howard Storm, and Joel Zwick. Antonacci, Ganz, Rothman, Chet Dowling, David W. Duclon, Howell Gewirtz, Joe Glauberg, Sandy Krinski, David Lerner, Deborah Leschin, Babaloo Mandel, and Barry Rubinowitz all wrote or co-wrote one or more episodes.
During its first season, Busting Loose aired on CBS on Monday at 8:30 p.m. from January to May 1977. The show then left the air until July 1977, when reruns of the first season began to air on Wednesday at 8:30 p.m. The second season also ran at 8:30 p.m. on Wednesday in the fall of 1977.
In "Mr. Dennis Steps Out," broadcast on October 26, 1977, as the fifth episode of the second season of Busting Loose, Melody is afraid that her boss at the escort service, Roger Dennis – played by guest star Ted Knight – is going to fire her. The episode served as the pilot for Knight's first show of his own, the short-lived 1978 situation comedy The Ted Knight Show, which centered on Roger Dennis's firm, the Mr. Dennis Escort Service. However, Barbara Rhoades and her Melody Feebeck character did not appear in The Ted Knight Show.
Busting Loose was broadcast over two seasons. Thirteen episodes aired during its first season in the winter and spring of 1977. Eight more were broadcast during its second season in the fall of 1977, and four other episodes produced for that season never aired.
|Season #||Episode #||Title||Plot/Notes||Original air date|
|1||1||Pilot||?||January 17, 1977|
|1||2||"Five's a Crowd"||Annie Potts and Deborah White guest-star.||January 24, 1977|
|1||3||"The Harder They Come, the Bigger They Fall"||?||February 7, 1977|
|1||4||"Still Nutsy After All These Years"||?||February 14, 1977|
|1||5||"Grandpa Markowitz"||?||February 21, 1977|
|1||6||"Hell Hath No Fury"||Annie Potts guest-stars.||February 28, 1977|
|1||7||"Love's Labor Lost"||?||March 7, 1977|
|1||8||"Kiss and Dwell"||Annie Potts guest-stars.||March 14, 1977|
|1||9||"A Nut at the Opera"||Mavis Neal Potter and Peggy Rea guest-star.||March 21, 1977|
|1||10||"House of Noodles"||Jack Soo guest-stars.||March 28, 1977|
|1||11||"Together Again As Never Before"||?||April 11, 1977|
|1||12||"The Famous Announcers School"||Eddie Bracken guest-stars.||April 25, 1977|
|1||13||"Singles' Weekend"||Stephanie Silver guest-stars.||May 2, 1977|
|2||1||"Smoke Gets In Your Face"||?||September 28, 1977|
|2||2||"Foiled Again"||?||October 5, 1977|
|2||3||"Roomies"||Dorothy Butts guest-stars.||October 12, 1977|
|2||4||"A Knight in Tarnished Armor"||?||October 19, 1977|
|2||5||"Mr. Dennis Steps Out"||Melody fears that her boss at the escort service, Roger Dennis, is going to fire her. Ted Knight guest-stars as Roger Dennis. This episode was the pilot for the 1978 situation comedy The Ted Knight Show.||October 26, 1977|
|2||6||"The Decision: Part 1"||Christine Baranski, Kim Lankford, Colleen Minahan, and Rick Podell guest-star.||November 2, 1977|
|2||7||"The Decision: Part 2"||Kim Lankford guest-stars.||November 9, 1977|
|2||8||"All in Love's Unfair"||Annie Potts guest-stars.||November 16, 1977|
|2||9||"Welcome to Fleckman's"||?||Never|
|2||10||"Mordabito's Ragtime Band"||?||Never|
|2||12||"Scenes From An Engagement"||?||Never|
- Brooks, Tim, and Earle Marsh, The Complete Directory to Prime-Time Network and Cable TV Shows, 1946-Present, Sixth Edition, New York: Ballantine Books, 1995, ISBN 0-345-39736-3, p. 147.
- ctva.com Busting Loose
- McNeil, Alex, Total Television: The Comprehensive Guide to Programming From 1948 to the Present, New York: Penguin Books, 1996, p. 128.
- imdb.com Busting Loose (TV series 1977)