Airdate: CBS at Friday 8:00 PM (30 min.)
Status: Ended Premiered: September 20, 1991 Last Aired: June 26, 1998
Show Category: Comedy
Step by Step
Two appealing stars, winsome kids, and a can't miss time slot in the middle of ABC's hit Friday lineup was more important than plot in the early success of this standard issue family sitcom. Frank (Patrick Duffy of Dallas) is a freewheeling, divorced contractor who impetuously marries widowed beautician Carol (Suzanne Somers of Three's Company) when they meet during separate vacations in Jamaica. They flew home to Port Washington, Wisconsin, where they both lived, told their kids-his three and her three - and all the problems of a merged family began. She is orderly and borderline OCD, he is laid back and almost chaotic. The kids eyed each suspiciously. Hers were teenagers Dana (the oldest), as compulsive as her mom, middle sis Karen, a budding fashion plate and young, nerdy Mark. Frank's were teenager J.T. (short for John Thomas), a cool customer, preteen Al, into sports and animals, and carefree Brendan. Working with Carol in her beauty shop next door were her mother Ivy and sister Penny. Cody was Frank's spaced-out 19-year-old nephew, whose nutty schemes and obsessions kept everyone in an uproar but who was really smarter than he seemed.
Show History: SBS was the latest addition to the already successful Friday night lineup on ABC, dubbed "TGIF." Scheduled right after the hit Friday night mainstay, "Family Matters" @ 8:30, it soon became an equally big hit. By the beginning of the 3rd season the series blossomed into the night's "tent pole" position @ 9:00, a position it would retain for a solid three year run.
"The Brady Bunch for the 90's" as it was hailed by critics upon its debut, was pretty much a straight forward "fun around the house" comedy, that ABC thrived on in the late 80's and early 90's. The series was Developed and Produced by the same team (Michael Warren, William Bickley, Robert L. Boyett, and Thomas L. Miller) responsible for many of ABC's hits (including all of T.G.I.F at one point) in that same era.
In the small town of Port Washington, Wisconsin you have newly married couple Frank Lambert and Carol Foster and their 6 kids. Frank (Patrick Duffy) and Carol (Suzanne Sommers) having met only a week before on vacation and impulsively married, now face the monumental task of blending their very different families into one. All kinds of personalities filled the house. On the Lambert side, there was Cody (Sasha Mitchell), the spaced-out but good hearted and lovable nephew of Frank, Al (Christine Lakin), the tomboy daughter, JT (Brandon Call), the joker and oldest son and Brendan (Josh Byrne), the youngest son. On the Foster side was Mark (Christopher Castile), the genius younger brother of the Fosters, Dana (Staci Keanan), the genius older sister and Karen (Angela Watson), the beautiful, popular and full of herself middle sister.
There were many others, notably Rich (Jason Marsden), Dana's short and well-meaning boyfriend, as well as friend of JT's, and Jean-Luc (Bronson Pinchot, "Meego"), the French hairstylist who worked with Carol.
Step By Step Season 7
Episode 1: Making the Grade
First aired: 9/19/1997
Karen's aghast when Carol registers for the same college classes and proceeds to embarrass her. Dana's upset with Rich for being complacent with a C on a quiz. J.T. secretly raids the family fridge.
Episode 2: A Star is Born
First aired: 9/26/1997
Al's ready to quit school and move to Hollywood after winning a small role in a local film. Lilly feels left out when Carol takes over a baking project to show up a rude mother.
Episode 3: Your Cheatin' Heart
First aired: 10/3/1997
Dana fears the worst when Al and Karen report seeing Rich at another girl's house. Frank and Carol look for some romantic alone time.
Episode 4: Take This Job and ...
First aired: 10/10/1997
Sam quickly regrets securing J.T. a job at the garage where she works. Frank quickly becomes obsessed with fixing a boat he received as payment for a job.
Episode 5: Poetic Justice
First aired: 10/17/1997
Karen's grades are in jeopardy when a shady T.A. threatens to lower her marks if she won't date him. Mark brings home a most unlikely date.
Episode 6: Can't Buy Me Love
First aired: 10/24/1997
Dana learns there's an ulterior motive when she and Karen are asked to rush Delta Tau Zeta. An old friend of Carol's gives Frank a job on a building project, and then uses it as a chance to try to make a move on her.
Episode 7: Dream Lover
First aired: 10/31/1997
The kids host their own Halloween party in an old, abandoned house after a major affair gets cancelled. Meanwhile, Lilly seeks advice when she gets frightened at her own party at home.
Episode 8: Girls Just Wanna Have Fun
First aired: 11/7/1997
When Rich's former friend, Cassie, moves back to town, Dana's jealous over the fun they have together and seeks J.T.'s help. Meanwhile, Frank's con-man cousin, Bert, shows up.
Episode 9: Goodbye, Mr. Chip
First aired: 12/5/1997
Carol's meddling in another relationship leads to Karen getting dumped. Meanwhile, Dana helps to mend a rift between J.T. and Rich.
Episode 10: Too Many Santas
First aired: 12/19/1997
Lilly becomes disillusioned when she recognizes that it is J.T. portraying Santa Claus at the local department store. Meanwhile, J.T. pines for his former girlfriend, Sam, after finding a Christmas present that he bought for her back in July.
Episode 11: Phoney Business
First aired: 1/9/1998
Al gets an acting job in what she thinks is a commercial for suntan lotion, but altered dialogue turns it risqué. Meanwhile, Carol and Dana try to force healthy food on the family after taking a nutrition class.
Episode 12: Goin' to the Chapel
First aired: 1/16/1998
When Carol forbids Dana from having sex before marriage, Dana decides to elope with Rich. Meanwhile, J.T. pretends to be a fitness fanatic to impress a sexy aerobics instructor.
Episode 13: Feet of Clay
First aired: 1/23/1998
When Dana and Rich take a pottery class, she must cope with him being better at it than she is. Meanwhile, Carol and Frank's sexual role-playing make J.T. and Karen think Carol is dating another man.
Episode 14: Pain in the Class
First aired: 1/30/1998
When J.T. watches TV instead of paying attention to babysitting Lilly, she disappears. Frank is reluctant to attend his 25th high school reunion and confront his childhood nemesis.
Episode 15: The Half Monty
First aired: 2/27/1998
When Rich and J.T. need money for a ski trip, they enter a male-stripper contest rather than admit that they are penniless. Meanwhile, while speaking about their successful marriage to young couples at their church, Carol and Frank get into a fight.
Episode 16: And Justice for Some
First aired: 6/5/1998
After switching seats at a Bulls game, J.T.'s seat is drawn to win a new truck while Frank feels the truck should really be his. Karen and Al join Dana's woman's self-defense class to be closer to the hot instructor.
Episode 17: The Understudy
First aired: 6/12/1998
Miffed over only being an understudy at the local theatre, Al quickly regrets her angry decision to not learn the role. Dana seeks to help Lilly realize her full intellectual potential.
Episode 18: We're in the Money
First aired: 6/19/1998
After traveling around the world for a year, Cody returns with gifts for the family, but a check for Frank and Carol leaves them arguing over how to spend it.
Episode 19: Movin' On Up
First aired: 6/26/1998
When confronted with an offer to buy their home, the prospect of moving to a new house excites everyone in the family but Lilly.