The Charmings

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The Charmings
Genre Fantasy sitcom
Written by Prudence Fraser
Mark Fink
Ellen Guylas
Carrie Honigblum
Danny Kallis
Robert Sternin
Directed by Gerren Keith
Howard Murray
Jack Shea
Starring Christopher Rich
Caitlin O'Heaney (1987)
Carol Huston (1988)
Judy Parfitt
Cork Hubbert
Brandon Call
Garette Ratliff Henson
Paul Eiding
Dori Brenner
Paul Winfield
Composer(s) Ray Colcord
Jonathan Wolff
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 2
No. of episodes 21 (1 unaired)
Production
Executive producer(s) Prudence Fraser
Robert Sternin
Producer(s) Danny Kallis
Running time 22–24 minutes
Production company(s) Sternin & Fraser Ink
Embassy Communications (1987-1988)
ELP Communications (1988)
Columbia Pictures Television (1988)
Distributor Columbia TriStar Domestic Television (2001)
Sony Pictures Television
Broadcast
Original channel ABC
Original run March 20, 1987 (1987-03-20) – February 11, 1988 (1988-02-11)

The Charmings is an American fantasy sitcom that aired from March 1987 to February 1988 on ABC. Based on the fairy tale Snow White, it chronicles Snow White and Prince Charming after they are transported in time from the Enchanted Forest to the 20th Century Los Angeles suburbs.

Synopsis[edit]

The opening voice-over sets up the premise:

The premise of the series' plot was that fairy tale characters Snow White and Prince Charming were magically transported to a 20th-century suburb in Burbank, California. Each episode shows the Charmings trying to adapt to their new life while Lillian, the wicked stepmother, and her wise cracking Magic Mirror watch from upstairs. After the first season, Caitlin O'Heaney (who portrayed Snow White), was replaced by Carol Huston.

After mild success as part of ABC's Friday night lineup, the series was moved to Thursday nights for its second season, in a head to head battle with NBC's Family Ties. Due to low ratings, the series was canceled after twenty episodes. One episode remains unaired in the US, though it was shown during the show's run in the UK.

Characters[edit]

Snow White Charming
Played by Caitlin O'Heaney (1987) and Carol Huston (1987-1988). Her "fairy tale" motif caught the attention of a department store executive, who then sponsored a line of interior decorating products and gave her a job overseeing the designs.
Prince Eric Charming
Played by Christopher Rich. Unskilled at anything in the modern world, he later finds that is good at being a carpenter/handyman, which becomes his job.
Thomas and Cory Charming
The two Charming children. Played by Brandon Call and Garette Ratliff Henson. Due to their spending the least time in the fairy tale world, they had been the most assimilated into 20th Century society, and they faced difficulties accepting they were from fairy tales.
Queen Lillian White
The wicked stepmother, whose sorcery often backfired on her, but would occasionally prove useful in helping her family. Played by Judy Parfitt.
Luther
One of the Seven Dwarfs. Played by Cork Hubbert.
The Magic Mirror
Played by Paul Winfield. The Mirror frequently reminded Lillian that her daughter and son-in-law would come out on top and make it in this new land because unlike her, they were good hearted people who respected others. A running gag was that he would make remarks about how Snow White is the fairest and telling Lillian "it ain't you!" whenever she asks who is the fairest. However, it is implied he may have been joking, because at one point when Lillian has lost her powers and he must depart, he confides in her that she has always been the fairest.
Don "King of Carpets" Miller and Sally Miller
The Charmings' neighbors who found their new neighbors' penchant for medieval fairy tale style odd but never figured out they were the real Prince Charming and Snow White. Even when Eric was under a truth spell and confided in Don that they were Prince Charming and Snow White, Don considered it a joke. Played by Paul Eiding and Dori Brenner.

Episode list[edit]

  • = Overall episode number
  • Ep = Episode number by season

Season 1: 1987[edit]

Ep Title Directed by: Written by: US air date
1 1 "The Charmings" Will Mackenzie Prudence Fraser,
Robert Sternin
March 20, 1987 (1987-03-20)
Prince Charming, Snow White and their family find themselves in the 20th century and have problems trying to adapt to the modern world.
2 2 "The Mirror Cracked" Mark Cullingham Rich Reinhart March 27, 1987 (1987-03-27)
Eric and Snow throw a party in an attempt to make new friends. Annoyed by their reluctance to invite her, Lillian uses her magic to spoil the festivities, but it results in her own beloved Magic Mirror getting broken.
3 3 "Modern Romance" Gerren Keith Doug Bernstein,
Denis Markel
April 3, 1987 (1987-04-03)
Luther and Lillian make a bet that they can get a better date. While Luther finds an attractive girl, Lillian chooses to drag a bum off the street and makes a potion to turn him into a hunk.
4 4 "The Charmings Buy a Car" Bill Foster Ellen Guylas April 10, 1987 (1987-04-10)
For their 1,010th anniversary, Eric buys Snow a lemon of a car from a sleazy used car dealer. Meanwhile, the Mirror tries to coax Lillian into taking a trip to Las Vegas.
5 5 "The Incredible Shrinking Prince" Jack Shea Bob Myer,
Bob Young
April 17, 1987 (1987-04-17)
Attempting to find a way to earn money, Lillian concocts a diet potion, but it turns out that it is actually a "reducing" formula; Eric inadvertently drinks it and shrinks to 12 inches high.
6 6 "An '80s Kind of Prince" Gerren Keith Christopher Ames,
Carolyn Shelby
April 17, 1987 (1987-04-17)
Lillian tries to break up Snow and Eric by putting a spell on a neighbor to fall in love with Eric.

Season 2: 1987–88[edit]

Ep Title Directed by: Written by: US air date
7 1 "Lillian Loses the Kids" Jack Shea Ellen Guylas September 17, 1987 (1987-09-17)
To keep them quiet, Lillian turns the children into mannequins, but she's unable to change them back.
8 2 "The Charmings Go Plastic" Jack Shea Mark Fink September 24, 1987 (1987-09-24)
When Snow gets a credit card the family goes on a shopping spree, not realizing they have to pay. And when the bill comes they're shocked at how much it is. Snow and Eric have a big fight. Lillian magically gets her own credit card but, because of the information she placed on it, she is audited by the IRS.
9 3 "The Witch Is of Van Oaks" Jack Shea Danny Kallis October 1, 1987 (1987-10-01)
Snow and Eric set up Lillian with a new neighbor, but they quickly come to realize that he's actually the devil. Meanwhile, Luther gets an ego boost regarding his short stature from the children.
10 4 "The Fish Story" Jack Shea Jeff Greenstein,
Jeff Strauss
October 8, 1987 (1987-10-08)
After Lilian uses magic to restore a broken lamp, the children decide to use her spell-book to revive their recently deceased pet fish. Meanwhile, Eric faces Snow's wrath when he misses her wildlife preservation meeting.
11 5 "Cindy's Back in Town" Jack Shea Carrie Honigblum,
Renee Phillips
October 15, 1987 (1987-10-15)
Lillian's attempt to zap herself back into the Enchanted Forest goes awry, landing Cinderella in the Charming home. Cinderella's arrival doesn't bode well with Snow — particularly when "Cindy" makes a play for Eric.
12 6 "A Charming Halloween" Jack Shea Dan O'Shannon October 29, 1987 (1987-10-29)
Embarassed by his family's antics, Thomas neglects to tell Eric about a father/son car wash. But the family causes even more humiliation for the lad when Eric insists on hosting the neighborhood Halloween party.
13 7 "Trading Places" Jack Shea Mark Fink November 12, 1987 (1987-11-12)
Luther expresses his envy of Eric's looks, so Lillian casts a spell to make the dwarf as handsome as a prince. The catch is that Luther and Eric switch bodies and can only return to normal if Luther wishes — and sincerely means it.
14 8 "Lillian Loses Her Powers" Jack Shea Jay Folb November 19, 1987 (1987-11-19)
As a result of Cory passing the flu to the family, Eric becomes a hypochondriac and Lillian loses her magic powers (and as a non-witch, she has to say goodbye to her Magic Mirror).
15 9 "The Charmings and the Beanstalk" Jack Shea Danny Kallis November 26, 1987 (1987-11-26)
Lillian throws out some beans and they sprout into a beanstalk and a giant comes down. When they chop the beanstalk down the giant finds himself stuck. At the same time Snow and Eric are having problems. And the giant takes a liking to Lillian. Eventually the giant's wife follows him but he refuses to go back with her.
16 10 "Yes, Lillian, There Is a Santa Claus" Jack Shea Carrie Honigblum,
Renee Phillips
December 17, 1987 (1987-12-17)
Lillian tries to ruin Christmas by telling the children that there is no Santa Claus, but gets a shock when Santa does arrive at the Charming house only to find no "believers" left there. Since Santa only delivers gifts to true believer, Lillian must use her powers to try to correct the damage she has done.
17 11 "The Charmings Get Robbed" Jack Shea Carrie Honigblum,
Renee Phillips
January 7, 1988 (1988-01-07)
After two teen crooks rob the Charmings', Eric over-zealously protects their home. Meanwhile, Lillian tries to track down the family's stolen possessions, but finds it difficult, having lost her spell-book and beloved Magic Mirror in the robbery.
18 12 "Birth of a Salesman" Howard Murray Mark Fink January 14, 1988 (1988-01-14)
Eric gets a job working as a salesman for Donny. And on his first day he's just too nice, so Donny tells him he'd better shape up. So before he goes to work, Snow wishes that Eric wasn't so nice, so Lillian casts a spell that turns Eric into a crude salesman.
19 13 "The Man Who Came to Dinner" Phil Squyres Carrie Honigblum,
Renee Phillips
January 21, 1988 (1988-01-21)
Lillian puts a spell on Eric to make him tell the absolute truth. Meanwhile, Don winds up rooming with the Charmings after he and Sally have a fight; and Lillian transcribes all of her spells into her computer.
20 14 "The Woman of His Dreams" Howard Murray Lan O'Kun February 11, 1988 (1988-02-11)
Eric denies that he ever fantasizes about other women, so Lillian puts a spell on him to make his fantasy woman appear whenever he thinks of her.
21 15 "Lillian's Protege" Jack Shea Prudence Fraser,
Robert Sternin
N/A
Amused by a devious shoplifter, Lillian takes her in — but has a change of heart when the girl sets up Thomas to get caught stealing. Meanwhile, Snow and Eric question their parenting skills in the modern world.

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Result Category Recipient
1987 Emmy Awards Nominated Outstanding Technical Direction/Electronic Camerawork/Video Control for a Series Warren Cress, Ross Harmon, Charles T. Henry, Bud Holland, Stephen A. Jones, Art LaCombe, Bill Scott, and Dave Smith (For episode "The Incredible Shrinking Prince")
Outstanding Achievement in Costuming for a Series Betsey Potter (For episode "Modern Romance")
1988 Outstanding Technical Direction/Electronic Camerawork/Video Control for a Series Warren Cress, Ross Harmon, Charles T. Henry, Joe Talosi, Harriet Uhl, Dave Smith, and Dale Walsh (For episode "Trading Places")
Won Outstanding Lighting Direction (Electronic) for a Comedy Series Mark Buxbaum (For episode "The Witch Is of Van Oaks")
1988 Young Artist Awards Nominated Exceptional Performance by a Young Actor in a Television Comedy Series Brandon Call

External links[edit]