Working (TV series)

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Working
Genre Sitcom
Created by Michael Davidoff
Bill Rosenthal
Directed by Robert Berlinger
Linda Day
David Owen Trainor
Fred Savage
Andrew Tsao
James Widdoes
Steve Zuckerman
Starring
Opening theme "Working in the Coal Mine" performed by Devo
Composer(s) Craig Jerris
Mark Mothersbaugh
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 2
No. of episodes 39 (4 unaired)
Production
Executive producer(s) Michael Davidoff
Bill Rosenthal
Producer(s) Sy Rosen
Noah Taft
Andrew Tsao
Werner Walian
Mark Wilding
Camera setup Multi-camera
Running time 30 minutes
Production company(s) Davidoff/Rosenthal Productions
NBC Studios
Release
Original network NBC
Original release October 8, 1997 (1997-10-08) – January 25, 1999 (1999-01-25)

Working is an American sitcom that aired on NBC. The series was created and executive produced by Michael Davidoff and Bill Rosenthal. It aired for two seasons from October 8, 1997 to January 25, 1999. The series stars Fred Savage and an ensemble cast including Maurice Godin, Arden Myrin, Yvette Freeman, and Steve Hytner.

Synopsis[edit]

Working took a satirical (and sometimes over-the-top) look at office life within a big corporate company. The show starred Fred Savage as the naive Matt Peyser who had just graduated from college and was ready to climb the corporate ladder. His ideals are constantly challenged by his boss, Tim Deale, played by Maurice Godin. Other characters included dim-witted Jimmy (Dana Gould), under-appreciated secretary Hal (Sarah Knowlton), overly perky Abby Cosgrove (Arden Myrin), acerbic Delaney (Steve Hytner), and no-nonsense manager Evelyn (Yvette Freeman), that Matt makes friends and work with.

Due to faltering ratings, the network attempted to breathe new life into the show during the second season with some cast changes. This included writing out the characters of Jimmy and Hal. They were replaced by Debi Mazar as the ruthless Liz and Rebecca McFarland as Val (As an in-joke, when Matt first sees Liz and Val he mistakenly calls them Jimmy and Hal). During the series run, Danica McKellar, formerly Savage's costar in The Wonder Years, made two guest-appearances playing a woman Savage's character meets in a bar, and of whom he says "she reminds me of a girl I grew up with!"

Ratings for the series didn't improve, however, and NBC canceled Working in January 1999. 35 of the 39 episodes produced were aired.

Theme song[edit]

The show used a cover of the song "Working in the Coal Mine" performed by Devo, set over top of scenes of work, including marching workers from the film Metropolis, frantic work scenes from Terry Gilliam's Brazil and office scenes from Billy Wilder's The Apartment. The vocals of the theme song were removed for the USA Network broadcasts.

Cast and characters[edit]

Episodes[edit]

Series overview[edit]

SeasonEpisodesOriginally aired
First airedLast aired
122October 8, 1997 (1997-10-08)May 18, 1998 (1998-05-18)
217September 22, 1998 (1998-09-22)January 25, 1999 (1999-01-25)

Season 1 (1997–98)[edit]

No.
overall
No. in
season
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date 
11"Pilot"Andrew TsaoMichael Davidoff & Bill RosenthalOctober 8, 1997 (1997-10-08)
22"Close Quarters"James WiddoesSy RosenOctober 15, 1997 (1997-10-15)
33"Rumoring"TBATBAOctober 29, 1997 (1997-10-29)
44"Quick Out of the Gate"TBATBANovember 5, 1997 (1997-11-05)
55"Sexual Harassment"TBAMatt GoldmanNovember 12, 1997 (1997-11-12)
66"Lost Weekend"TBATBANovember 19, 1997 (1997-11-19)
77"Creative Matt"James WiddoesSteve TompkinsDecember 3, 1997 (1997-12-03)
88"Top o' the World Ma"TBATBADecember 10, 1997 (1997-12-10)
99"Medieval Christmas"TBATBADecember 17, 1997 (1997-12-17)
1010"The Breakfast"Andrew TsaoMichael Davidoff & Bill RosenthalJanuary 7, 1998 (1998-01-07)
1111"Enemies: A Love Story"TBATBAJanuary 14, 1998 (1998-01-14)
1212"Sam I Am"TBATBAJanuary 21, 1998 (1998-01-21)
1313"Boys Club"TBATBAJanuary 28, 1998 (1998-01-28)
1414"Hatchet Man"TBATBAFebruary 4, 1998 (1998-02-04)
1515"Mum's the Word"TBATBAFebruary 25, 1998 (1998-02-25)
1616"As Bad As It Gets"TBATBAMarch 18, 1998 (1998-03-18)
1717"Labor Pains"TBATBAMarch 25, 1998 (1998-03-25)
1818"The Gold Digger"TBATBAApril 1, 1998 (1998-04-01)
1919"Equality"TBATBAApril 15, 1998 (1998-04-15)
2020"The Lying Game"TBATBAApril 29, 1998 (1998-04-29)
2121"Due Process"TBATBAMay 6, 1998 (1998-05-06)
2222"The Brown Noser"TBATBAMay 13, 1998 (1998-05-13)

Season 2 (1998–99)[edit]

No.
overall
No. in
season
TitleOriginal air date 
231"Home-o-Apathy"September 22, 1998 (1998-09-22)
242"The Closer"September 29, 1998 (1998-09-29)
253"Armageddon Outta Here"October 27, 1998 (1998-10-27)
264"Performance Review"November 3, 1998 (1998-11-03)
275"Good Val Hunting"November 10, 1998 (1998-11-10)
286"Networking"November 17, 1998 (1998-11-17)
297"A Boy, a Girl, and His Bird"December 1, 1998 (1998-12-01)
308"The Consultant"December 8, 1998 (1998-12-08)
319"Greenery"December 18, 1998 (1998-12-18)
3210"The Christmas Party"December 22, 1998 (1998-12-22)
3311"Romeo and Julie"January 11, 1999 (1999-01-11)
3412"The Retreat"January 18, 1999 (1999-01-18)
3513"The Prodigy"January 25, 1999 (1999-01-25)
3614"Manifesto Destiny"Unaired
3715"The Other Executive"Unaired
3816"She Loves Me, Yeah, Yeah, Yeah"Unaired
3917"Sliding Doors"Unaired

Broadcast and syndication[edit]

Working later[when?] reaired on the USA Network, including the four episodes that were unaired during its original run.

Awards[edit]

Year Award Result Category Recipient
2000 Young Artist Awards Best Performance in a TV Comedy Series – Young Performer Age Ten or Under Sara Paxton Won

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b Listed after Dana Gould and Steve Hytner in the opening credits from episode 2 on.

References[edit]

External links[edit]