Rita Rocks

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Rita Rocks
Format Sitcom
Created by James Berg
Stan Zimmerman
Starring Nicole Sullivan
Richard Ruccolo
Tisha Campbell-Martin
Ian Gomez
Natalie Dreyfuss
Kelly Gould
Raviv Ullman
No. of seasons 2
No. of episodes 40 (List of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s) James Berg
Stan Zimmerman
Camera setup Multi-camera
Running time 22–24 minutes
Production company(s) Media Rights Capital
Broadcast
Original channel Lifetime
Original run October 20, 2008 (2008-10-20) – December 7, 2009 (2009-12-07)
External links
Website

Rita Rocks is a Lifetime original sitcom that ran from October 20, 2008 to December 7, 2009. It is the network's first original comedy in over a decade. The series debuted alongside re-runs of Reba as part of a new comedy hour for Tuesday nights, which later changed to Monday nights. The show stars Nicole Sullivan as Rita, Tisha Campbell-Martin, Richard Ruccolo, Raviv Ullman, and Kelly Gould.

On January 11, 2010, Lifetime cancelled the series after two seasons due to low ratings.[1]

Plot[edit]

A hard-working mom and wife splits her time between a job she doesn’t particularly like, running the kids around and managing the household. She believes that if she can just get a few hours a week to herself, she can figure a few things out. After finding her old guitar in the garage and the prompting of a new friend, they start up a weekly jam session and are joined by a neighbor, the mail-woman and her daughter’s boyfriend for nightly rehearsals. The plot is set in the Metropolitan Detroit area, most likely the Southfield area as Shannon attends Southfield Elementary School, which is shown throughout season 1.

In a February 2009 interview on Anytime with Bob Kushell, Sullivan agreed the main character is going through a midlife crisis, but she does not like using the term "midlife". [2]

Characters[edit]

  • Rita Clemens (Nicole Sullivan): a working mom with a busy life. She is the leader of a garage band and also the assistant manager of Bed Bath & Max. She was formerly training assistant before her boss learned of her pregnancy.
  • Jay Clemens (Richard Ruccolo): Rita’s husband who tries his best to support her band. He sometimes takes care of the household, getting himself into funny situations in the process.
  • Patty Mannix (Tisha Campbell-Martin): a postal worker and Rita's best friend who convinces her to take down her guitar and start the band.
  • Hallie Clemens (Natalie Dreyfuss): Rita's absent minded and rebellious teenage daughter.
  • Shannon Clemens (Kelly Gould): Rita's nine-year-old daughter. She goes to a school for gifted children and is interested in space camp and astronauts.
  • Kip (Raviv Ullman): Full name is Skip; Hallie's goofy and likable boyfriend/ex-boyfriend is the drummer in Rita's band. His parents are separated and he spends all of his time at the Clemens' household.
  • Max: Rita & Jay's new baby. Rita gave birth to him in the Season 2 finale.
  • Owen Delgado Jr. (Ian Gomez): Rita's unemployed neighbor who joins her garage band. He has two kids with wife Audrey. (left in 2009 to join Cougar Town)

Minor characters[edit]

  • Audrey (Lauren Bowles): Owen's wife and mother of his two children who seems to love her job more than her own husband.
  • Chuck (Duane Martin): Rita's new neighbor, a former baseball player who is a huge annoyance to Rita and Jay. He and Patty (played by his Duane Martin's wife Tisha Campbell-Martin) begin dating in late Season 2.
  • Marilyn (Swoosie Kurtz): Rita's mother, who visits and stays for four episodes before leaving at Rita's request to talk to her father.
  • Rusty (Paul Vato): the owner of the bowling alley where Rita's band performs publicly for the first time.

Guest appearances[edit]

Guest Star Season Character
Mindy Sterling 1 Mrs. Portman, customer at Rita's workplace, Bed Bath & Max
Tony Danza 1 Jay's boss
Andrew J. West 1 Craiger
Harry Shum Jr. 1 Zach
Craig Gellis 1 Grungy Counter Guy
Brooklyn McLinn 1 Roger
Bayne Gibby 1 Genna, customer at Bed & Bath Max
Deborah Gibson 1 Cindy Schatz (Rita's old band friend)
Melissa Peterman 1, 2 Jennifer
Jessie Pavelka 1 Jessie (himself); Patty's trainer and Kip's temporary replacement
Mimi Kennedy 1 Aunt Mavis (Jay's aunt who has a grudge towards Rita)
Paul Vato 2 Rusty is the bowling alley owner who gives Rita her first big break
G. Hannelius 2 Brianna Boone

Episodes[edit]

Series overview[edit]

Season Episodes Originally aired
Season premiere Season finale
1 20 October 20, 2008 February 23, 2009
2 20 October 5, 2009 December 7, 2009

Season 1: 2008/09[edit]

No in
Series
No in
Season
Title Original air date
1 1 "Pilot" October 20, 2008 (2008-10-20)
2 2 "Lies, Lies, Lies, Yeah-ah" October 21, 2008 (2008-10-21)
3 3 "You Gotta Have Friends" October 22, 2008 (2008-10-22)
4 4 "Flirting With Disaster" October 23, 2008 (2008-10-23)
5 5 "Nobody Does It Better" October 24, 2008 (2008-10-24)
6 6 "Mother's Little Helper" October 28, 2008 (2008-10-28)
7 7 "Take This Job and Shove It" November 11, 2008 (2008-11-11)
8 8 "The Crying" November 18, 2008 (2008-11-18)
9 9 "Under Pressure" November 25, 2008 (2008-11-25)
10 10 "Got No Time" December 2, 2008 (2008-12-02)
11 11 "Love on the Rocks" December 9, 2008 (2008-12-09)
12 12 "I Write The Songs" December 16, 2008 (2008-12-16)
13 13 "The Girl Is Mine" January 5, 2009 (2009-01-05)
14 14 "Old Friends" January 12, 2009 (2009-01-12)
15 15 "It's My Party" January 19, 2009 (2009-01-19)
16 16 "I Can't Make You Love Me" January 26, 2009 (2009-01-26)
17 17 "Get Off My Cloud" February 2, 2009 (2009-02-02)
18 18 "Killer Queen" February 9, 2009 (2009-02-09)
19 19 "What's Love Got Do To With It?" February 16, 2009 (2009-02-16)
20 20 "We Can Work It Out" February 23, 2009 (2009-02-23)

Season 2: 2009[edit]

No in
Series
No in
Season
Title Original air date
21 1 "A Change is Gonna Come" October 5, 2009 (2009-10-05)
22 2 "Breaking Up is Hard to Do" October 6, 2009 (2009-10-06)
23 3 "Nothings Gonna Change My World" October 7, 2009 (2009-10-07)
24 4 "Welcome to the Working Week" October 8, 2009 (2009-10-08)
25 5 "Stuck in the Middle with You" October 9, 2009 (2009-10-09)
26 6 "The Shape of Things To Come" October 13, 2009 (2009-10-13)
27 7 "Mr. Bassman" October 20, 2009 (2009-10-20)
28 8 "Mommy's Alright, Daddy's Alright" October 26, 2009 (2009-10-26)
29 9 "Vogue" October 26, 2009 (2009-10-26)
30 10 "Bad Company" November 2, 2009 (2009-11-02)
31 11 "Why Can't We Be Friends?" November 2, 2009 (2009-11-02)
32 12 "Mother and Child Reunion" November 9, 2009 (2009-11-09)
33 13 "Anchors Aweigh" November 9, 2009 (2009-11-09)
34 14 "Shower The People" November 16, 2009 (2009-11-16)
35 15 "Is She Really Going Out With Him?" November 16, 2009 (2009-11-16)
36 16 "Sympathy For The Devil" November 23, 2009 (2009-11-23)
37 17 "Jingle All The Way" November 23, 2009 (2009-11-23)
38 18 "The Jealous Kind" November 30, 2009 (2009-11-30)
39 19 "Should I Stay or Should I Go?" November 30, 2009 (2009-11-30)
40 20 "Born In The USA" December 7, 2009 (2009-12-07)

DVD release[edit]

Rita Rocks: The Complete 1st Season was released on a 3-disc combo pack on April 27, 2010.[3]

International broadcasting[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Lifetime Cancels "Rita Rocks", Entertainment Weekly, January 11, 2010
  2. ^ "Anytime with Bob Kushell feat. Nicole Sullivan". Anytime with Bob Kushell. Season 1. Episode 12. 2009-02-27.
  3. ^ http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00366BBSA

External links[edit]