Love on a Rooftop

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Love on a Rooftop
Love on a Rooftop Cast No 2.jpg
Love on a Rooftop cast:
(Top, L–R) Peter Duel (Dave Willis), Judy Carne (Julie Hammond Willis), (Bottom, L–R) Edith Atwater (Phyllis Hammond), Herb Voland (Fred Hammond)
Genre Sitcom
Created by Harry Ackerman
Bernard Slade
Starring Pete Duel
Judy Carne
Theme music composer Howard Greenfield
Jack Keller
Composer(s) Warren Barker
Mundell Lowe
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 1
No. of episodes 30
Production
Executive producer(s) Harry Ackerman
Producer(s) E.W. Swackhamer
Cinematography Emil Oster
Camera setup Single-camera
Running time 22–24 minutes
Production company(s) Screen Gems
Distributor Sony Pictures Television
Broadcast
Original channel ABC
Audio format Monaural
Original run September 6, 1966 (1966-09-06) – April 6, 1967 (1967-04-06)

Love on a Rooftop is an American sitcom about a newlywed couple, Dave and Julie Willis, and their humorous struggles to survive in San Francisco on Dave's apprentice architect's salary of $85.37 a week. Matters were complicated by the fact that Julie's rich father did not approve of their less than luxurious lifestyle and often took it upon himself to try to improve it, much to Dave's chagrin.

The series was produced by Screen Gems, the production company behind shows such as Gidget, Bewitched, and I Dream of Jeannie. It premiered on September 6, 1966 on ABC and stars Pete Duel, credited at the time as Peter Deuel, and Judy Carne in the leads. Also in the regular cast were Rich Little and Barbara Bostock as the Willis’ neighbors, and Herb Voland and Edith Atwater as Julie's parents. All thirty episodes of the series were filmed in color.

Characters[edit]

Dave Willis (Pete Duel) is an apprentice architect who strongly believes in the importance of being practical. His wife, Julie Willis {born Julie Hammond} (Judy Carne), an art student, is the opposite, placing more emphasis on attending to the needs of the heart and soul than on keeping the budget.

Fred Hammond (Herb Voland) is Julie's father. He owns nine used car lots and is quite wealthy because of it, a fact that he often points out to Dave. Fred is reluctant to let go of his daughter and spends much of his time trying to protect her from what he sees as the life of abject poverty to which Dave has doomed her. Phyllis Hammond (Edith Atwater) is much more understanding than her husband and does her best to welcome Dave into the family, even though Fred would prefer he get out.

Stan (Rich Little) and Carol Parker (Barbara Bostock) live in the same apartment building as the Willises. Stan is an eccentric who never holds a steady job because he spends most of his time coming up with inventions and oddball moneymaking schemes. Carol is his devoted wife who has full faith in all of his ideas. Both are Dave and Julie's best friends.

Plot[edit]

Apprentice architect Dave Willis meets art student Julie Hammond when his liverwurst on pumpernickel sandwich falls into her bag while she is passing by a building on which he is working. In pursuit of his lunch, he chases after her until she stops in a local park. Upon getting his first good look at Julie, Dave loses interest in the sandwich and the two start to talk. So begins a whirlwind courtship that quickly leads to marriage, despite Dave's misgivings about getting married while he only makes $85.37 a week.

In need of a new place to start their lives together, Julie finds an unfurnished converted store room with no windows that has one major perk: direct access to the roof of the apartment building which offers a beautiful view of San Francisco. Julie feels that the place has charm and atmosphere, plus the rent is cheap.

The newlywed couple becomes friends with fellow tenants, Stan and Carol Parker. Stan quickly develops the habit of coming into their apartment unannounced in order to share his ideas with them. Also in the habit of showing up unannounced, although much less welcome than Stan, is Julie's father, Fred Hammond, who is always finding a way to meddle in Dave and Julie's lives, while his ever-patient wife, Phyllis, watches in amusement. Dave, however, is adamant that he and Julie will not accept Fred's help, especially if it is monetary, a stance that causes much contention between the two men.

The humor in the series is formed, not simply out of the situations in which the characters find themselves, but out of the ways in which the differing personalities that regularly pass through the Willis’ apartment react to the situations and, in the process, to each other.

Reception[edit]

Despite having better ratings than That Girl, another ABC series that premiered that year and went on to have a five-year run, Love on a Rooftop was cancelled at the end of its first season.[1] However, both Judy Carne and Pete Duel continued with their television careers - she, as a regular on Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In, which ended when she left the series in late 1969 - and he co-starring in Alias Smith and Jones, which ended shortly after his death in 1971.

During the summer of 1971 (when Duel was starring in Alias Smith and Jones), ABC re-broadcast Love On a Rooftop. However, the series was never sold into syndication and has not been seen on television since. It has been cited as an influence on 1990's sitcom Dharma and Greg..[2]

Episode list[edit]

# Title Director Writer Original airdate
1 Pilot E.W. Swackhamer Albert Mannheimer* September 6, 1966
2 "117 Ways to Cook Hamburger" E.W. Swackhamer Bernard Slade September 13, 1966
3 "My Husband, the Knight" E.W. Swackhamer Bernard Slade September 20, 1966
4 "The Big Brass Bed" E.W. Swackhamer Bernard Slade September 27, 1966
5 "The Six Dollar Surprise" E.W. Swackhamer Bernard Slade October 4, 1966
6 "The Chocolate Hen" E.W. Swackhamer Bernard Slade October 11, 1966
7 "Homecoming" E.W. Swackhamer Bernard Slade October 18, 1966
8 "One Picture is Worth…" E.W. Swackhamer Bernard Slade October 25, 1966
9 "Chinchilla Rag" Robert Rosenbaum James Henerson November 1, 1966
10 "Who is Sylvia?" Claudio Guzmán Richard Baer November 15, 1966
11 "War on a Rooftop" E.W. Swackhamer Bernard Slade November 22, 1966
12 "Dave's Night Out" Claudio Guzmán John McGreevey November 29, 1966
13 "There's Got to Be Something Wrong with Her" Jerry Bernstein John McGreevey December 6, 1966
14 "But is it Really You?" E.W. Swackhamer Bernard Slade December 13, 1966
15 "The Fifty Dollar Misunderstanding" Alex Grashoff James Henerson December 20, 1966
16 "Frocks of Trouble" Claudio Guzmán Barbara Avedon December 27, 1966
17 "Going Home to Daughter" Robert Ellenstein James Henerson January 3, 1967
18 "Let It Rain" E.W. Swackhamer Dorothy Cooper January 12, 1967
19 "King of the Castle" Jerry Bernstein Bernard Slade January 19, 1967
20 "My Father, the TV Star" Richard Kinon Bernard Slade January 26, 1967
21 "Who Was That Husband I Saw You With?" Gene Reynolds Marty Roth February 2, 1967
22 "Shotgun Honeymoon" Mack Bing Dorothy Cooper Foote February 9, 1967
23 "Musical Apartments" Jerry Bernstein James Henerson February 16, 1967
24 "Low Calorie Love" Russell Mayberry Tom August, Helen August February 23, 1967
25 "The Sell Out" Leo Phillips Ron Friedman March 2, 1967
26 "The Letter Bug" Russell Mayberry James Henerson March 9, 1967
27 "Debt of Gratitude" Russell Mayberry John McGreevey March 16, 1967
28 "Murder in Apartment D" Jerry Bernstein Bernard Slade March 23, 1967
29 "One Too Many Cooks" Mack Bing James Henerson March 30, 1967
30 "Stork on a Rooftop" E.W. Swackhamer Bernard Slade April 6, 1967

*The unaired version of the pilot episode credits Bernard Slade as the sole writer

Production notes[edit]

In an interview conducted while the series was still in production, Judy Carne stated that she and co-star Pete Duel had "a love-hate relationship" and that many of the problems that they had on set were caused by Carne's insistence on punctuality and Duel's tendency to show up late.[3] However, Carne would also later remember Duel as a kind and caring man who was very protective of her.[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "The Pete Duel Site: Bernard Slade". August 2003. 
  2. ^ Dharma and Greg
  3. ^ Melvin Durslag, TV Guide, "Judy Carne—Brash, Confident, Scared!", cited at Alias Smith & Jones Collection.
  4. ^ Judy Carne, Laughing on the Outside, Crying on the Inside, cited at Alias Smith & Jones Collection.

External links[edit]