George Lopez (TV series)

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George Lopez
George Lopez show title card
Genre Sitcom
Created by
Starring
Theme music composer Thomas Allen, Harold Ray Brown, Morris Dickerson, Gerald Goldstein, Lonnie Jordan, Lee Levitin, Charles Miller, and Howard E. Scott
Opening theme "Low Rider",
performed by War
Ending theme Instrumental closing theme, composed by Nicholas "Aqua" McCarrell (select episodes of seasons 2–6 seen in syndication)
Composer(s) W.G. Snuffy Walden (season 1)
Nicholas "Aqua" McCarrell (seasons 2–6)
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 6
No. of episodes 120 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s) Bruce Helford
Deborah Oppenheimer
Sandra Bullock (all; entire run)
Robert Borden (season 1-6)
Dave Caplan (seasons 3–6)
Mark Torgove &
Paul A. Kaplan
George Lopez (seasons 4–6)
Camera setup Film; Multi-camera
Running time 22 minutes
Production company(s) Fortis Films
Mohawk Productions
Warner Bros. Television
Distributor Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution
Release
Original network ABC
Picture format

NTSC (480i) (SDTV)

NTSC (1080i) (HDTV)
Audio format Surround (Dolby Digital 5.1)
Original release March 27, 2002 (2002-03-27) – May 8, 2007 (2007-05-08)
External links
Website

George Lopez is an American television sitcom created by comedian George Lopez, Bruce Helford and Robert Borden, which originally aired for six seasons, 120 episodes, on ABC from March 27, 2002, to May 8, 2007. It is currently in syndication. George Lopez stars the titular comedian George Lopez, who plays a fictionalized version of himself and revolves around his life at work and raising his family at home. The series was produced by Fortis Films and Mohawk Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television. The executive producers consisted of Lopez himself, Bruce Helford, Deborah Oppenheimer and Sandra Bullock.

Premise[edit]

The season 4 cast of George Lopez (from left to right): Valente Rodriguez as Ernie Cardenas, Constance Marie with Luis Armand Garcia as Angie and Max Lopez, Emiliano Díez as Vic Palmero, Belita Moreno as Benny Lopez, George Lopez as George Lopez, and Masiela Lusha as Carmen Lopez.

The comedy revolves around a fictionalized portrayal of Lopez, working at the Powers Brothers aviation factory and raising his family consisting of his wife Angie, his daughter Carmen, and his son, Max, after having endured a dysfunctional and miserable childhood at the hands of his alcoholic, neglectful mother Benny, who is portrayed as selfish and cold-hearted. Other characters include Angie's indulgent father Vic Palmero, a wealthy doctor, and George's best childhood friend Ernie Cardenas, noted for his unsuccessful attempts at dating and his socially awkward behavior. After Carmen's departure from the series, the role fulfilled by her character was replaced with Angie's overindulged niece Veronica, with a large trust fund that has been entrusted under George's care.

Multiple storylines in the series are established through the unveiling of a secret guarded by Benny throughout George's whole childhood, most notably the discovery that his father Manny is still alive after George had been convinced by his mother that he died. Throughout a majority of the program, George tries to locate the whereabouts of his father, who was introduced at last in one episode and was revealed to be a nasty, yet successful businessman, having remarried with his second lover Lydia and fathered a few more children. However, Manny's personality was commonly depicted as being abusive toward his son and former wife in the few appearances that he made, before his death in one episode of kidney disease. Nonetheless, he prohibits his son's family from attending his funeral in protection of his reputation, much to George's fury.

Characters[edit]

Character Portrayed by Seasons
1 2 3 4 5 6
George Edward Lopez George Lopez Main
Angelina "Angie" Lopez (née Palmero) Constance Marie Main
Ernesto "Ernie" Cardenas Valente Rodriguez Main
Maximilian "Max" Victor Roberto Magic Johnson Lopez Luis Armand Garcia Main
Carmen Consuela Lopez Masiela Lusha Main Flashback
Benita "Benny" Lopez (née Diaz) Belita Moreno Main
Dr. Victor "Vic" Garcia Lantigua Palmero Emiliano Díez Recurring Main
Veronica Ann Palmero Aimee Garcia Recurring Main

Episodes[edit]

SeasonEpisodesOriginally airedNielsen ratings
First airedLast airedRankViewers (in millions)
14March 27, 2002 (2002-03-27)April 17, 2002 (2002-04-17)709.0[1]
224October 2, 2002 (2002-10-02)May 14, 2003 (2003-05-14)5010.4[2]
328September 26, 2003 (2003-09-26)May 21, 2004 (2004-05-21)967.4[3]
424September 28, 2004 (2004-09-28)May 17, 2005 (2005-05-17)797.2[4]
522October 5, 2005 (2005-10-05)April 12, 2006 (2006-04-12)827.2[5]
618January 24, 2007 (2007-01-24)May 8, 2007 (2007-05-08)956.1[6]

Production[edit]

Conception[edit]

Comedian George Lopez had been performing standup throughout the early 1990s, expressing interest in having his own comedy television show like Seinfeld.[7] Lopez was only willing to do a show if it meant that the roles were not demeaning to Latinos, vowing never to play a murderer, drug dealer or gang member.[7] With an absence of TV deals, he continued to perform standup through the 1990s and into the 2000s.[7] In August 2000, after being given one of Lopez's comedy albums to listen to, actress Sandra Bullock saw Lopez perform live at the Brea Improv Comedy Club.[8] Bullock had been interested in developing a TV show with a Latino storyline, being concerned about the lack of visibility for Latinos on American television.[8] Bullock approached Lopez backstage after the show and made her pitch to produce and star in a situational comedy centered around the comedian.[9]

Though Bullock had connections through Hollywood, The George Lopez Show was not an easy sell.[10] Bullock sought the help of Bruce Helford (who created The Drew Carey Show and had been a head writer for Roseanne), and, due to his history with ABC on those shows, became a co-creator and executive producer of Lopez's show.[10] Bullock, Helford, and two of the show's other executive producers met with ABC executives later that month, and the network tested the show with 4 episodes, before committing to 13 episodes the following fall and eventually adding an additional 9.[9][10] Lopez was given full starring, creator, producer and writer credits for the show.[9] The George Lopez Show was seen as an attempt from ABC to diversify their programming, while still appealing to the widest possible audience.[9] ABC executives were hopeful that Lopez's humor and relatability would draw a large family audience, focusing on marketing the series as much as possible.[9] The network bought promotional time for the show on Spanish-language networks, and took out full-page ads in some magazines.[9]

Lopez drew much of the material for the show from his own life experiences, especially his upbringing in the San Fernando Valley.[9] Upon the series debut, Lopez became one of the few Latinos to star in a television comedy series, following in the footsteps of Desi Arnaz, Freddie Prinze, and John Leguizamo.

Casting[edit]

For the first five seasons, the show had an all-Latino cast with the exception of Albanian American actress Masiela Lusha, who played George's daughter Carmen. During the show's fifth season, Aimee Garcia was cast as George's niece, Veronica.

Music[edit]

The show's theme song is "Low Rider", performed by War. The theme plays in the opening credits and was present when the show aired on ABC as well as syndication, but was replaced in the DVD releases of all seasons except 1 episode due to licensing costs. At the 9th ALMA Awards in 2007, George Lopez called the song the "Chicano National Anthem".

Cancellation[edit]

The series finale aired on May 8, 2007, after the show was canceled by ABC.[11] According to Lopez, ABC prime-time entertainment president Steve McPherson called him over the weekend and explained that the network would lose money if the show was picked up again, and that it wasn't doing well financially.[12] Lopez stated that the explanation was "painful to hear," noting that the show had four different time slots in only five years and had to constantly compete against shows like American Idol, yet the final season of the show was still able to outperform two comedy series that were renewed by ABC: Notes from the Underbelly and The Knights of Prosperity. Lopez said that ABC "dealt with us from the bottom of the deck" and that it was "hard to take after what was a good run."[12]

Lopez attributed the cancellation in part to the fact that the show was not produced directly by ABC Studios, but instead by Warner Bros. Television.[12] Lopez also criticized ABC's decision to approve the show Cavemen, being perplexed at the circumstances: "So a Chicano can't be on TV, but a caveman can?" According to Lopez, 170 staff members who worked on the show lost their jobs. Lopez explained that he "took the five years of good, and I did a lot with the good. My popularity, I was involved in charities, I overcame my illness, all on TV. I shared all of that with America – every secret I had... Every emotion. Everything was open to the show. And what happens?"[12] In spite of the cancellation, nightly episode re-runs continue to air on various networks both in the United States and abroad (see the "Syndication" section below).

On September 2, 2016, George Lopez announced through his Instagram that there are talks to bringing the show back on the air, but nothing has been announced.

Distribution[edit]

Broadcast and syndication[edit]

The show entered syndication one month after the series finale on ABC, and is distributed by Warner Bros. Television Distribution. The show aired in broadcast syndication on independent stations, and affiliates of Fox, The CW and MyNetworkTV as well as The CW Plus stations in the United States from 2007-2011 and on Telelatino in Canada. The show moved to ION Television on Thursday, Sept. 29, 2011.[13]

On March 8, 2007, it was announced that George Lopez would join the Nick at Nite lineup. It first aired on Nick at Nite on September 10, 2007 – it was the most current non-original show to air on Nick at Nite[14] (until it was announced that Everybody Hates Chris would join the lineup, followed by The Goldbergs and Mom). To this date, it continues to be their highest rated series and one of cable's best for an off-network sitcom.

Never a major hit in primetime, the show became an unexpected success in syndication. Many markets also moved the show from overnight timeslots to more desirable ones.[15]

Episodes from the first four seasons of George Lopez do not use those respective seasons' opening titles, the season five version is used instead (this is evident as Emiliano Diez is credited in the sequence, which is slightly longer than how they were originally broadcast on ABC, though there is also a short version also used in syndication that also differs from the original short opening credits that does not credit him for seasons 1-3, even though Diez did not make his first guest appearance until season two and did not become a cast regular until season four); the final two seasons use those seasons' appropriate versions of the opening credits.

On MTV Tr3s, the show premiered on the network's redebut July 12, 2010 and reruns are being shown there.

On ION Television, the show premiered on the network's Sunday marathon starting on October 2, 2011 but then, was later pulled off their schedule.

In May 2016, the series was added to TV Land's line-up.

DVD[edit]

On April 17, 2007, Warner Home Video released seasons 1 and 2 on DVD in Region 1.[16] After over six years since the release of the first and second seasons, Warner Bros. released the third season on July 16, 2013.[17] The fourth season was released on June 23, 2015.[18] The fifth season was released on August 18, 2015.[19] The sixth and final season was released on November 24, 2015.[20]

Online media[edit]

The complete series was also published in high-definition on the iTunes Store and Amazon Video. The show's theme song "Low Rider" is intact in these releases.[21][22]

Reception[edit]

Critical reception[edit]

George Lopez was critically acclaimed and received positive reviews from critics.

Ratings[edit]

Season Timeslot Season premiere Season finale TV season Rank Viewers (in millions)
1 Wednesday 8:30 pm March 27, 2002 April 17, 2002 2001–02 70 9.0[23]
2 October 2, 2002 May 14, 2003 2002–03 50 10.4[24]
3 Friday 8:00 pm September 26, 2003 May 21, 2004 2003–04 96 7.4[3]
4 Tuesday 8:30 pm September 28, 2004 May 17, 2005 2004–05 79 7.2[4]
5 Wednesday 8:00 pm October 5, 2005 April 12, 2006 2005–06 82 7.2[5]
6 January 24, 2007 May 8, 2007 2006–07 95 6.1[6]

Awards[edit]

Year Award Category Nominee(s) Result
2002 Young Artist Award Best Performance in a TV Series (Comedy or Drama) – Leading Young Actress Masiela Lusha Won
Best Performance in a TV Series (Comedy or Drama) – Young Actor Age Ten or Younger Luis Armand Garcia Nominated
Best Family Television Series (Comedy or Drama) George Lopez Won
2003 ASCAP Film and Television Music Awards Top TV Series Thomas Allen, Harold Ray Brown, Morris Dickerson, Gerald Goldstein, Lonnie Jordan, Lee Levitin, Charles Miller, and Howard E. Scott Won
Imagen Awards Best Primetime Comedy Series – Television George Lopez Won
Young Artist Award Best Performance in a TV Series (Comedy or Drama) – Leading Young Actress Masiela Lusha Won
Most Popular Mom & Dad in a Television Series Constance Marie & George Lopez Nominated
2004 Imagen Awards Best Supporting Actress in a Television Comedy Belita Moreno Won
Best Primetime Series – Comedy George Lopez Won
Best Actress in a Television Comedy Constance Marie Won
Best Actor in a Television Comedy George Lopez Won
Young Artist Award Best Performance in a TV Series (Comedy or Drama) – Recurring Young Actor J. B. Gaynor Nominated
Primetime Emmy Award Outstanding Cinematography for a Multi-Camera Series Peter Smokler (director of photography) for "Bringing Home the Bacon" Nominated
2005 Imagen Awards Henessy Privilège George Lopez Won
Primetime Emmy Award Outstanding Art Direction for a Multi-Camera Series John Shaffner (art director) and Judi Giovanni (set decorator) for episodes "Leave it to Lopez" / "The Simple Life" / "Trouble in Paradise" Won
2007 ALMA Award Outstanding Television Series, Mini-Series, or TV Movie George Lopez Nominated
Outstanding Actress – Television Series, Mini-Series, or TV Movie Constance Marie Nominated
Outstanding Supporting Actress – Television Series, Mini-Series, or TV Movie Aimee Garcia Nominated
Belita Moreno Nominated

References[edit]

  1. ^ "How did your favorite show rate?". USA Today. May 28, 2002. Retrieved February 12, 2010. 
  2. ^ "Rank And File". Entertainment Weekly Published in issue #713 Jun 06, 2003. June 6, 2003. Retrieved February 12, 2010. 
  3. ^ a b "I. T. R. S. Ranking Report: 01 Thru 210". ABC Medianet. Archived from the original on September 30, 2007. Retrieved February 12, 2010. 
  4. ^ a b "Primetime series". The Hollywood Reporter. Nielsen Business Media. May 27, 2005. Archived from the original on November 15, 2009. Retrieved February 12, 2010. 
  5. ^ a b "Series". The Hollywood Reporter. Nielsen Business Media. May 26, 2006. Archived from the original on January 11, 2010. Retrieved February 12, 2010. 
  6. ^ a b "2006-07 primetime wrap". The Hollywood Reporter. Nielsen Business Media. May 25, 2007. Retrieved February 12, 2010. [dead link]
  7. ^ a b c Doggrell, Glenn (March 11, 1992). "Getting Funny, Not Angry : Comedy: George Lopez deals with the stereotyping of Latinos by using humor to help fight the slights. He is appearing in Oceanside". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on December 23, 2017. Retrieved December 22, 2017. 
  8. ^ a b Sachs, Mark (January 12, 2003). "The good, the bad, the funny". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on December 23, 2017. Retrieved December 22, 2017. 
  9. ^ a b c d e f g Calvo, Dana (April 14, 2002). "George Lopez". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on December 23, 2017. Retrieved December 22, 2017. 
  10. ^ a b c Navarro, Mireya (November 27, 2002). "A Life So Sad He Had to Be Funny; George Lopez Mines a Rich Vein of Gloom With an All-Latino Sitcom". The New York Times. Archived from the original on December 23, 2017. Retrieved December 22, 2017. 
  11. ^ TV Series Finale - 2007 Canceled Shows: ABC Cuts Some Beloved Series, TV Series Finale, archived from the original on 2007-05-17, retrieved 2007-05-15 
  12. ^ a b c d George Lopez lashes out at ABC - Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles Times, archived from the original on 2013-10-14, retrieved 2014-06-25 
  13. ^ Pavan -- SitcomsOnline.com (2011-09-12). "ION Television Fall 2011 Schedule Now Has George Lopez; Centric Weekend Marathons - SitcomsOnline.com News Blog". Blog.sitcomsonline.com. Archived from the original on 2014-03-01. Retrieved 2014-02-28. 
  14. ^ "George Lopez at Nick At Nite". Nick At Nite. Archived from the original on 2007-12-27. Retrieved 2007-12-27. 
  15. ^ "'Lopez' A Sleeper Hit | Broadcasting & Cable". www.broadcastingcable.com. Archived from the original on 2018-02-04. Retrieved 2018-02-04. 
  16. ^ "George Lopez DVD news: Warner to release Seasons 1 & 2 - TVShowsOnDVD.com". www.tvshowsondvd.com. Archived from the original on 1 April 2008. Retrieved 6 May 2018. 
  17. ^ "George Lopez DVD news: Announcement for George Lopez - The Complete 3rd Season". TVShowsOnDVD.com. Archived from the original on 2014-03-05. Retrieved 2014-02-28. 
  18. ^ "George Lopez DVD news: Announcement for George Lopez - The Complete 4th Season - TVShowsOnDVD.com". tvshowsondvd.com. Archived from the original on 9 September 2017. Retrieved 6 May 2018. 
  19. ^ "George Lopez DVD news: Announcement for George Lopez - The Complete 5th Season - TVShowsOnDVD.com". tvshowsondvd.com. Archived from the original on 9 September 2017. Retrieved 6 May 2018. 
  20. ^ All of these releases are now out of print.Finalized Release Date for the 6th and Final Season on DVD Archived 2015-11-06 at the Wayback Machine.
  21. ^ "George Lopez, Seasons 1 & 2 on iTunes". iTunes. Archived from the original on 2014-10-27. 
  22. ^ Amazon. "Amazon.com: George Lopez: The Complete First and Second Seasons (HD)" Retrieved on June 24, 2014. Archived March 4, 2016, at the Wayback Machine.
  23. ^ "How did your favorite show rate?". USA Today. May 28, 2002. Archived from the original on February 22, 2017. Retrieved February 12, 2010. 
  24. ^ "Rank And File". Entertainment Weekly Published in issue #713 Jun 06, 2003. June 6, 2003. Archived from the original on January 5, 2011. Retrieved February 12, 2010. 

External links[edit]