Just the Ten of Us

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Just the Ten of Us
Justthetenofus.jpg
GenreSitcom
Created byDan Guntzelman
Steve Marshall
Written byKevin Abbott
Kate Boutilier
Bob Burris
Dan Guntzelman
Steve Marshall
Tim O'Donnell
Rich Reinhart
Rachelle Romberg
Craig Shoemaker
Brad Slaight
Michael Ware
Jake Weinberger
Mike Weinberger
Directed byJohn Guntzelman
Dan Guntzelman
Robert Heath
Jim Johnston
Howard Storm
John Tracy
StarringBill Kirchenbauer
Deborah Harmon
Heather Langenkamp
Jamie Luner
Brooke Theiss
JoAnn Willette
Matt Shakman
Heidi Zeigler
Opening theme"Doin' it the Best I Can" performed by Bill Medley
Composer(s)Steve Dorff
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons3
No. of episodes47 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s)Dan Guntzelman
Steve Marshall
Mike Sullivan
Producer(s)Henry Johnson
Nick LeRose
Running time22–24 minutes
Production company(s)Guntzelman-Sullivan-Marshall Productions
Warner Bros. Television
DistributorWarner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution
Release
Original networkABC
Original releaseApril 26, 1988 (1988-04-26) – May 4, 1990 (1990-05-04)
Chronology
Related showsGrowing Pains

Just the Ten of Us is an American sitcom starring stand-up comedian Bill Kirchenbauer as Coach Graham Lubbock, a teacher and the head of a large Catholic family with eight children living in Eureka, California. The series is a spin-off of Growing Pains, in which Kirchenbauer portrayed the same character on a recurring basis.[1] As the series progressed, Coach Lubbock's four eldest daughters, the teenagers Marie (Heather Langenkamp), Cindy (Jamie Luner), Wendy (Brooke Theiss), and Connie (JoAnn Willette), became the primary focus of the show.

Just the Ten of Us aired on ABC starting with a trial run from April 26 to May 17, 1988. After the first four episodes in an abbreviated first season were aired, the show was renewed for two more seasons, eventually ending after 47 episodes on May 4, 1990. The show was a part of ABC's early TGIF programming block.

Synopsis[edit]

The series focuses on Graham Lubbock (Bill Kirchenbauer), a Catholic gym teacher who used to teach at the high school that Growing Pains characters Mike and Carol Seaver (Kirk Cameron and Tracey Gold) had attended, and the father of eight children.

In the pilot episode (which aired on Growing Pains in the spring of 1988), Graham's job is in jeopardy due to district budget cutbacks. Mike leads a protest after he learns that Lubbock is trying to support a large family (including yet another baby on the way). Word of this spreads, and Graham's fate is sealed; he loses his job. However, he is soon offered a job at St. Augustine's Academy, an all-boys private Catholic school in Eureka, California. Graham promptly moves his family to California.

Six of Graham's children were girls, four of them teenagers. They were:

His younger daughters were eight-year-old Sherry (Heidi Zeigler) and infant Melissa. By special arrangement, the older girls were allowed to attend St. Augustine's, much to the chagrin of the school's administration (and, of course, much delight of the male students). Graham and Elizabeth's sons were 11-year-old Graham, Jr. (Matt Shakman), familiarly known as "J.R.", and toddler Harvey (Jason and Jeremy Korstjens).

The first season consisted of four episodes for a trial run in the spring of 1988. ABC was pleased with their success and ordered a second season. In the second season, Cindy and Wendy seemed to switch personalities, with Cindy becoming more ditzy, and Wendy becoming the schemer. Also, the show focused more and more on the four older girls and frequently revolved around the family's efforts to save money, dating, and other typical family sitcom issues. In later episodes, the four teenage girls formed a singing group called "The Lubbock Babes" (partly to help bring in much-needed extra income). The girls had many boyfriends and love interests that Graham took great pride in testing—and in most cases, fending off—but the most permanent fixture among them was Marie's goofy boyfriend, Gavin Doosler (Evan Arnold).

Those on the St. Augustine's staff included Father Frank Hargis (Frank Bonner), the affable headmaster; Coach Duane Johnson (Dennis Haysbert), Graham's earnest young assistant during the first two seasons and pulled some strings with Father Hargis to hire Lubbock; and in the third season, featured teachers Father Bud (Lou Richards) and elderly, madcap Sister Ethel (Maxine Elliott).

Cast[edit]

Response[edit]

Ratings[edit]

A week after the series debuted on April 8, 1988, the show placed 7th in ratings.[2] The second season garnered a total of 20.1 million viewers.[3]

Episodes[edit]

SeasonEpisodesOriginally aired
First airedLast aired
14April 26, 1988 (1988-04-26)May 17, 1988 (1988-05-17)
220October 28, 1988 (1988-10-28)April 28, 1989 (1989-04-28)
323September 13, 1989 (1989-09-13)May 4, 1990 (1990-05-04)
Broadcast History
[4]
  • April 1988–May 1988, ABC Tuesday 8:30–9:00
  • September 1988–June 1989, ABC Friday 9:30–10:00
  • July 1989, ABC Wednesday 8:30–9:00
  • August 1989–July 1990, ABC Friday 9:30–10:00


Syndication[edit]

USA Network picked up the entire series in reruns shortly after it was canceled, and aired the show on a daily basis until 1996.

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Recipient Result
1989 ASCAP Film and Television Music Awards Top TV Series John Bettis Won
1990 Primetime Emmy Award Outstanding Lighting Direction (Electronic) for a Comedy Series George Spiro Dibie
(For episode "Highway To Heaven")
Won
Young Artist Award Best Young Actor/Actress Ensemble in a Television Comedy, Drama Series or Special Heather Langenkamp, Jamie Luner, Matt Shakman, Brooke Theiss, JoAnn Willette and Heidi Zeigler Nominated
Best Family Television Series Just the Ten of Us Nominated
Best Young Actress Supporting Role in a Television Series Heidi Zeigler Nominated

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Brooks, Tim; Marsh, Earle F. (2003). The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network and Cable TV Shows, 1946–Present (8 ed.). Random House Digital, Inc. p. 627. ISBN 0-345-45542-8.
  2. ^ Voland, John (May 4, 1988). "TV RATINGS : New Programs Open Strong". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved September 9, 2017.
  3. ^ "RETRO 89–90 : le classement intégral de la saison 89–90". September 10, 2009. Retrieved September 9, 2017.
  4. ^ Brooks, Tim; Marsh, Earle (2007). The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network and Cable TV Shows 1946-Present (Ninth Edition). Ballantine Books. pp. 723–724. ISBN 978-0-345-49773-4.

External links[edit]