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Encyclopedia > Perfect Strangers (sitcom)
Perfect Strangers

Larry (left) and Balki realize the lottery ticket they thought was worth a fortune has the wrong numbers on it, in episode "The Lottery" (1988).
Format comedy
Running time 21 min. 30 sec.
Creator(s) Dale McRaven
Starring Bronson Pinchot
Mark Linn-Baker
Melanie Wilson
Rebeca Arthur
Country United States
Original network/channel ABC
Original run March 25, 1986August 6, 1993
No. of episodes 150
IMDb profile
TV.com summary

Perfect Strangers is a sitcom television series which ran for eight seasons from 1986 through 1993 on ABC. The show was moved around in the prime-time lineup and eventually landed on Fridays as part of TGIF. It is about Larry Appleton (Mark Linn-Baker), a high-strung Chicago resident, sharing his apartment with his distant cousin Balki Bartokomous (Bronson Pinchot), a shepherd from the (fictional) island nation of Mypos. Balki is naive, idealistic, and new to America; he often misunderstands the culture (with humorous results). Many episode plots involve Larry's schemes getting the better of him, causing him to subsequently need Balki's rescue. The series is rich in slapstick physical comedy. ImageMetadata File history File links Perfectstrangers. ... ImageMetadata File history File links Perfectstrangers. ... Comedy is the use of humor in the form of theater, where it simply referred to a play with a happy ending, in contrast to a tragedy. ... Bronson Pinchot (right) as Balki with Mark Linn-Baker as Larry on Perfect Strangers. ... Mark Linn-Baker (left) as Larry with Bronson Pinchot (right) as Balki on Perfect Strangers. ... The American Broadcasting Company (ABC) is a television and radio network in the United States. ... March 25 is the 84th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (85th in leap years). ... 1986 (MCMLXXXVI) is a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... August 6 is the 218th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (219th in leap years), with 147 days remaining. ... 1993 (MCMXCIII) was a common year starting on Friday of the Gregorian calendar and marked the Beginning of the International Decade to Combat Racism and Racial Discrimination (1993-2003). ... A sitcom or situation comedy is a genre of comedy performance originally devised for radio but today typically found on television. ... A television program is the content of television broadcasting. ... 1986 (MCMLXXXVI) is a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... 1993 (MCMXCIII) was a common year starting on Friday of the Gregorian calendar and marked the Beginning of the International Decade to Combat Racism and Racial Discrimination (1993-2003). ... The American Broadcasting Company (ABC) is a television and radio network in the United States. ... TGIF is the slogan of a programming block on the ABC TV network. ... Mark Linn-Baker (left) as Larry with Bronson Pinchot (right) as Balki on Perfect Strangers. ... Bronson Pinchot (right) as Balki with Mark Linn-Baker as Larry on Perfect Strangers. ... In a draw in a mountainous region, a shepherd guides a flock of about 20 sheep amidst scrub and olive trees. ... Slapstick is a type of comedy involving exaggerated physical violence. ... Physical comedy is comedic performance relying mostly on the use of the body to convey humor. ...


Although Balki's home country of Mypos is discussed as an independent nation on the show, it is evident that it is based on the Greek isles. The Myposian accent Pinchot performed in the series was originally based on a Greek accent, but later into the show is morphed into more of a Russian dialect. Balki's catch phrase is, "Of course not, don't be ridiculous!" (usually said in response to having been found out for something he did). Balki and Larry occasionally celebrate good fortune by dancing the "Dance of Joy," a silly cross between a Dosado and the Hokey Pokey. A catch phrase is a phrase or expression that is popularized, usually through repeated use, by a real person or fictional character. ... Dosado (also writted do sa do) or Dos-a-dos (also written dos a dos) is a basic dance step in such dances as square dance, contra dance, polka, various historical dances, and some reels. ... The Hokey Pokey is a participation dance that became popular in the USA in the 1950s. ...

Contents


Synopsis

The series begins in 1986 with Larry living in an apartment somewhere in Chicago (a few different addresses were mentioned — the actual building, which has since been torn down, was on the south side of downtown Los Angeles). Balki moved in with Larry in the first episode. Their apartment is above the Ritz Discount Store, where they work for Donald Twinkacetti (Ernie Sabella), who was also their landlord. In the beginning, the show has a very 80s flavor, with Balki singing songs and making references that have become somewhat dated. Susan (Lise Cutter), Larry's original girlfriend in the series, is replaced early on by Jennifer Lyons (Melanie Wilson), who lives upstairs with her roommate and Balki's girlfriend, Mary Anne Spencer (Rebeca Arthur). 1986 (MCMLXXXVI) is a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Ernie Sabella (born September 19, 1949) has been an actor on Broadway, television and film since the late 1970s. ...


At the beginning of the third season, in 1987, Larry and Balki get jobs together in the basement of the Chicago Chronicle, a fictitious newspaper, with Larry Burns (Eugene Roache) as their boss. Larry worked as a journalist and Balki worked in the mailroom. They worked with Sam Gorpley (Sam Anderson), who was head of the mailroom and Balki's boss, and Miss Lydia (Belita Moreno), who wrote an advice column for the chronicle. They also worked with Harriet Winslow (Jo Marie Payton-Noble), who was the elevator operator in the chronicle in the third and fourth seasons. She left the show in 1989 to do the show Family Matters where she played the same character (see Family Matters section below). Mr. Wainwright (F. J. O'Neill) was Larry's boss in the chronicle, after Harry Burns left the show. 1987 (MCMLXXXVII) is a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Sam Anderson is an American actor from Wahpeton, North Dakota. ... Jo Marie Payton Jo Marie Payton (Born August 3, 1950 in Albany, Georgia) is an African-American actress, who starred as Harriette Winslow on Family Matters and its parent series Perfect Strangers. ... 1989 (MCMLXXXIX) is a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


At the beginning of the seventh season, in 1991, Perfect Strangers began to change. Larry and Jennifer got married at the beginning of the season, moved into a house along with Mary Anne and Balki as roommates. Balki and Mary Anne got married at the end of the season. More emphasis was placed on the romantic relationships, and Larry's "plans" became more far-fetched. By this point, the flavor of the series had changed completely; by some it is considered to have jumped the shark when Larry and Balki married their girlfriends, moved into a huge castle-like house, and were promoted to the top floor at the Chronicle. On February 1, 1992, Perfect Strangers had moved from its traditional Friday night slot on ABC's TGIF to a new "I Love Saturday" lineup, along with Who's the Boss, Growing Pains and Capitol Critters. 1991 (MCMXCI) is a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Jumping the shark is a slang term used by television critics since the 1990s. ... February 1 is the 32nd day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar. ... 1992 (MCMXCII) was a leap year starting on Wednesday. ... Cast of Whos the Boss? Whos the Boss? was a television sitcom starring Tony Danza which aired for eight seasons on ABC from 1984 to 1992. ... Growing Pains was a television sitcom that ran on the American ABC network from 1985 until 1992. ... Cousins Max and Berkeley Jammett and his mother Trixie Capitol Critters is an animated television series about the lives of mice, rats, and roaches who reside in the basement and walls of the White House in Washington, D.C.. The series was produced by Steven Bochco and Hanna-Barbera Productions...


The show went on hiatus in August 1992 (the last first-run episode aired before this was on April 18, 1992). The show did not return from its hiatus until July 9, 1993 for its final (8th) season of six episodes. The last season of off-the-wall episodes had their impact diminished by the fact that the series had been on hiatus for around a year, and that the last season was aired during the summer, when most shows are in reruns. The series ended on August 6 with a two-part episode where Larry, Balki and Jennifer went up in a hot-air balloon to try to induce labor, after Mary Anne had already given birth before Jennifer. After both families had given birth, the show ended with a heartwarming musical montage of memorable scenes from the series. April 18 is the 108th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (109th in leap years). ... July 9 is the 190th day of the year (191st in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar, with 175 days remaining. ... 1993 (MCMXCIII) was a common year starting on Friday of the Gregorian calendar and marked the Beginning of the International Decade to Combat Racism and Racial Discrimination (1993-2003). ... August 6 is the 218th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (219th in leap years), with 147 days remaining. ...


Episodes

Main article: List of Perfect Strangers episodes

There were a total of eight seasons of the series. The first and last seasons were six episodes each, and the second through seventh seasons had between 22 and 24 episodes each. There were a total of 150 episodes in the series. The following is a list of episodes of the show Perfect Strangers // Season 1 1. ...


Family Matters

Main article: Family Matters (television)

Perfect Strangers spawned the spinoff series Family Matters, also set in Chicago, which ran from 1989 to 1998. The connection is that Harriette Winslow was a co-worker of Larry and Balki at the Chicago Chronicle. It is revealed in the third episode of Family Matters that they fired Harriette from the chronicle because they decided to go self-service. Linn-Baker appeared in one of the final episodes of the show playing a completely different character (as a mean boss); oddly enough, the character of Harriet was going to be replaced by a different actress a few episodes later. Cast of Family Matters. ... A spin-off (or spinoff) is a new organization or entity formed by a split from a larger one such as a new company formed from a university research group. ... Cast of Family Matters. ... 1989 (MCMLXXXIX) is a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... 1998 (MCMXCVIII) is a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar, and was designated the International Year of the Ocean. ...


External links

  • Perfect Strangers at The Internet Movie Database
  • A tribute page for Balki
  • Perfect Strangers: Ultimate fan site
  • Perfect Strangers: The Legacy Continues
  • TangmaN'z Perfect Strangers the TV show page
  • Perfect Strangers: The Webpage

  Results from FactBites:
 
Perfect Strangers - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (139 words)
Perfect Strangers (documentary), a dramatised account of a court case concerning a proposed abortion.
Perfect Strangers (BBC TV series), a (2001) British television drama.
Perfect Strangers (album), a 1984 album and also its title song, by Deep Purple.
Perfect Strangers: Information from Answers.com (2101 words)
Perfect Strangers was an American sitcom which ran for eight seasons from 1986 through 1993 on ABC.
By this point, the flavor of the series had changed completely; by some it is considered to have jumped the shark when Larry and Balki married their girlfriends, moved into a huge castle-like house, and were promoted to the top floor at the Chronicle.
On February 1, 1992, Perfect Strangers had moved from its traditional Friday night slot on ABC's TGIF to a new I Love Saturday Night lineup, along with Who's the Boss, Growing Pains and Capitol Critters.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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