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Encyclopedia > Thirtysomething

thirtysomething (19871991) was a ground-breaking and award-winning American evening television drama, of the type popularly labeled a soap opera when broadcast during the daytime. It premiered on ABC September 29, 1987. The last of its 85 episodes aired on May 28, 1991. 1987 (MCMLXXXVII) is a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... 1991 (MCMXCI) is a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The first TIME cover devoted to soap operas: Dated January 12, 1976, Bill Hayes and Susan Seaforth Hayes of Days of Our Lives are featured with the headline Soap Operas: Sex and suffering in the afternoon. A soap opera is an ongoing, episodic work of fiction, usually broadcast on television... The American Broadcasting Company (ABC) is a television and radio network in the United States. ... September 29 is the 272nd day of the year (273rd in leap years). ... 1987 (MCMLXXXVII) is a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... May 28 is the 148th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (149th in leap years). ... 1991 (MCMXCI) is a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


It was created by Marshall Herskovitz and Edward Zwick and reflected the angst felt by baby boomers and yuppies of the late 1980s. These issues were also reflected in other works of popular culture which appeared during the same year, Baby Boom, Fatal Attraction and Wall Street. This is also true of the popular 1986 television drama L.A. Law and the 1988 film Working Girl, thirtysomething became a cultural icon and was discussed in articles such as those listed in the reference section below. Marshall Herskovitz (-) is an American film director. ... Edward Zwick (born October 8, 1952 in Chicago, Illinois) is an American film director. ... A baby boom is defined as a period of increased birth rates relative to surrounding generations. ... Yuppie is short for Young Urban Professional. It is used to describe a demographic profile: people, usually between their late twenties and early thirties, generally with graduate degrees. ... The 1980s decade refers to the years from 1980 to 1989, inclusive. ... A baby boom is any period of greatly increased birth rate within temporal and usually geographical bounds. ... Fatal Attraction is a 1987 thriller about a married man who has an affair with a woman who refuses to allow it end and becomes obsessed with him. ... Wall Street has been the name of two movies, one released in 1929 and the other in 1987. ... 1986 (MCMLXXXVI) is a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The L.A. Law opening title featured a personalized license plate mounted on a Jaguar. ... 1988 (MCMLXXXVIII) was a leap year starting on a Friday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Working Girl is a 1988 American romantic comedy film which tells the story of a Staten Island secretary, Tess McGill, working in Manhattan whose ideas are stolen by her boss, Katharine Parker. ...

Contents


Cast

The Steadmans

  • Ken Olin — Michael Steadman
  • Mel Harris — Hope Murdoch Steadman
  • Brittany Craven — Janey Steadman
  • Lacey Craven — Janey Steadman
  • ?? — Adam Steadman
  • Melanie Mayron — Melissa Steadman

The Westons Ken Olin (born July 30, 1954 in Chicago, Illinois) is an American actor, director and producer. ... Mel Harris (b. ... Melanie Mayron (born October 20, 1952 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) is an American actress best known for playing photographer Melissa Steadman on the ABC drama thirtysomething, which ran from 1987 to 1991. ...

The Shepherds Timothy Busfield (born June 12, 1957) in East Lansing, Michigan, is an American actor. ... Patricia Wettig won three Emmy Awards for Best actress in a dramatic series for her work on ABCs thirtysomething. ...

Other characters Peter Horton (1953) is an American actor who is probably best known for his appearance on the TV series thirtysomething. ... Patricia Kalember is an American actress. ...

Polly Draper (born June 15, 1956 in Palo Alto, California) is an American actress. ... David Clennon (born May 10, 1943, Waukegan, Illinois) is an American actor perhaps best known for his portrayal of Miles Drentell in the ABC series thirtysomething. ... Faith Ford (born Alexis Ford on September 14, 1964 in Pineville, Louisiana) is an American television and film actress, best known for her role as Corky Sherwood on Murphy Brown. ... Rosalind Cash was an actress whose career endured and flourished on stage, screen, and television, despite her staunch refusal to portray stereotyped black roles. ... Peter Frechette is a television actor. ... Terry Kinney(b. ... Erich Anderson is an actor who has starred in film and on television. ... J.D. Souther, born John David Souther on November 3, 1946 in Detroit, Michigan and raised in Amarillo, Texas, is a singer-songwriter and country rock singer. ...

Story line

thirtysomething depicts the lives of a married couple, Michael and Hope Steadman, and their friends (Gary, Melissa, Ellyn, Elliot, and Nancy) all of whom are in their thirties (hence the title) and living in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Michael and Elliot work in the advertising business. Although the series began with them running their own agency, they eventually went to work for Miles Drentell, the head of DAA (a character who would reappear on the ABC show Once and Again). Hope, Michael's wife, is a writer who struggles with her desire to be at home with her daughter, Janey, and her need to work. Michael and Hope are also an interfaith couple, a fact which was referenced throughout the series. Nancy is Elliot's wife, an artist, and stay-at-home mother to Ethan and Brittany. She struggled with, and overcame, cancer during the last two seasons. Melissa is Michael's cousin and Gary's former girlfriend. She is a photographer whose career includes an album by Carly Simon and photos in the magazine Vanity Fair. Ellyn is Hope's childhood friend and works for the city government. Gary, a free-spirited professor of English literature, is Michael's college roommate, who marries Susannah, a social worker. He dies in a traffic accident in 1991 (in order to allow Horton to pursue his love of directing). Nickname: City of Brotherly Love Motto: N/A Official website: http://www. ... Once and Again is a TV drama that aired on ABC from 1999 to 2002. ... Carly Simons 2005 CD, Moonlight Serenade Carly Elisabeth Simon (born June 25, 1945 in New York City) is an American musician who emerged as one of the leading lights of the early 1970s singer-songwriter boom. ... American actress Demi Moore, on a typical Vanity Fair cover (August, 1991) Vanity Fair is a glossy American glamour magazine monthly that offers a mixture of articles based on sensational exaggerations, jet-set and entertainment-business personalities, politics, and lies. ... The term English literature refers to literature written in the English language, including literature composed in English by writers not necessarily from England; Joseph Conrad was Polish, Robert Burns was Scottish, James Joyce was Irish, Edgar Allan Poe was American, Salman Rushdie is Indian. ... 1991 (MCMXCI) is a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


Emmy Awards

Between the years of 1988-1991, thirtysomething was nominated for, and won, numerous Emmy Awards [1]: An Emmy Award. ...


1988 Winners:

  1. Emmy Award for Outstanding Drama Series
  2. Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series — Patricia Wettig
  3. Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing in a Drama Series — Paul Haggis and Marshall Herskovitz (episode: "Business as Usual")
  4. Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Performer in a Drama Series — Shirley Knight

It also received the following nominations in 1988: An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ... Patricia Wettig won three Emmy Awards for Best actress in a dramatic series for her work on ABCs thirtysomething. ... An Emmy Award. ... Paul Haggis (born March 10, 1953 in London, Ontario) is a Canadian screenwriter, film director, and a director/producer of television programs working in Hollywood. ... Marshall Herskovitz (-) is an American film director. ... An Emmy Award. ... Shirley Enola Knight, also known by her married name of Shirley Knight Hopkins, was born on July 5, 1936, to a wealthy family in Goessel, Kansas. ...

  1. Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series — Timothy Busfield
  2. Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series — Polly Draper
  3. Emmy Award for Outstanding Editing for a Series — Single Camera Production
  4. Emmy Award for Outstanding Achievement in Main Title Theme Music
  5. Emmy Award for Outstanding Achievement in Costuming for a Series

1989 Winners: An Emmy Award. ... Timothy Busfield (born June 12, 1957) in East Lansing, Michigan, is an American actor. ... An Emmy Award. ... Polly Draper (born June 15, 1956 in Palo Alto, California) is an American actress. ... An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ...

  1. Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series — Melanie Mayron
  2. Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing in a Drama Series — Joseph Dougherty (episode: "First Day/Last Day")
  3. Emmy Award for Outstanding Editing for a Series — Single Camera Production
  4. Emmy Award for Outstanding Achievement in Costuming for a Series

It also received the following nominations in 1989: An Emmy Award. ... Melanie Mayron (born October 20, 1952 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) is an American actress best known for playing photographer Melissa Steadman on the ABC drama thirtysomething, which ran from 1987 to 1991. ... An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ...

  1. Emmy Award for Outstanding Outstanding Drama Series
  2. Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series — Timothy Busfield
  3. Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series
  4. Emmy Award for Outstanding Directing in a Drama Series
  5. Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing in a Drama Series
  6. Emmy Award for Outstanding Art Direction for a Series
  7. Emmy Award for Outstanding Sound Mixing for a Drama Series
  8. Emmy Award for Outstanding Achievement in Special Visual Effects (episode: "Michael Writes a Story")
  9. Emmy Award for Outstanding Outstanding Achievement in Hairstyling for a Series

1990 Winners: An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ... Timothy Busfield (born June 12, 1957) in East Lansing, Michigan, is an American actor. ... An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ...

  1. Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series — Patricia Wettig
  2. Emmy Award for Outstanding Directing in a Drama Series (tied with Equal Justice).

It also received the following nominations in 1990: An Emmy Award. ... Patricia Wettig won three Emmy Awards for Best actress in a dramatic series for her work on ABCs thirtysomething. ... An Emmy Award. ...

  1. Emmy Award for Outstanding Outstanding Drama Series
  2. Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series — Timothy Busfield
  3. Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series — Melanie Mayron
  4. Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series
  5. Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series
  6. Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing in a Drama Series
  7. Emmy Award for Outstanding Art Direction for a Series
  8. Emmy Award for Outstanding Outstanding Achievement in Hairstyling for a Series
  9. Emmy Award for Outstanding Outstanding Achievement in Costuming for a Series

1991 Winners: An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ... Timothy Busfield (born June 12, 1957) in East Lansing, Michigan, is an American actor. ... An Emmy Award. ... Melanie Mayron (born October 20, 1952 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) is an American actress best known for playing photographer Melissa Steadman on the ABC drama thirtysomething, which ran from 1987 to 1991. ... An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ...

  1. Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series — Patricia Wettig
  2. Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series — Timothy Busfield
  3. Emmy Award for Outstanding Outstanding Achievement in Costuming for a Series

It also received the following nominations in 1991: An Emmy Award. ... Patricia Wettig won three Emmy Awards for Best actress in a dramatic series for her work on ABCs thirtysomething. ... An Emmy Award. ... Timothy Busfield (born June 12, 1957) in East Lansing, Michigan, is an American actor. ... An Emmy Award. ...

  1. Emmy Award for Outstanding Outstanding Drama Series
  2. Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series — Melanie Mayron
  3. Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series — David Clennon
  4. Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing in a Drama Series
  5. Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series

An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ... Melanie Mayron (born October 20, 1952 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) is an American actress best known for playing photographer Melissa Steadman on the ABC drama thirtysomething, which ran from 1987 to 1991. ... An Emmy Award. ... David Clennon (born May 10, 1943, Waukegan, Illinois) is an American actor perhaps best known for his portrayal of Miles Drentell in the ABC series thirtysomething. ... An Emmy Award. ... An Emmy Award. ...

Impact on popular culture

The style and form of thirtysomething set new standards for television drama and influenced virtually all of the shows which came after it. It was also responsible for the coinage of the word "twenty something" almost immediately upon its debut in 1987, since younger Americans of that era were seen as exhibiting a fundamentally different collective personality than the "thirty something" characters depicted in the story (four years later, Douglas Coupland's watershed novel Generation X: Tales For An Accelerated Culture was dedicated to "the generation born in the late 1950s and 1960s;" today this group is often referred to as the "Baby Busters"). A twenty-something is a person in the age group 20 to 29. ... 1987 (MCMLXXXVII) is a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... A thirty-something is a person in the age group 30 to 39 years old. ... Douglas Coupland (born December 30, 1961) is a Canadian author and cultural commentator, raised in Vancouver, British Columbia. ... Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated Culture, published in 1991, is the first novel by Douglas Coupland. ... // Events and trends This map shows two essential global spheres during the Cold War in 1959. ... The 1960s decade refers to the years from 1960 to 1969, inclusive. ... Baby Busters is a name for a demographic group born in the United States, and sometimes Canada, from 1958 through 1968. ...


Controversy

The show also made headlines with a 1989 episode in which two men (a gay friend of Melissa's and his partner) were shown in bed together, although not in a sexual context. Several major advertisers, fearing potential boycotts, pulled their commercials from the episode. 1989 (MCMLXXXIX) is a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... In modern society, gay is a word which can be used as either a noun or adjective. ... A boycott is a refusal to buy, sell, or otherwise trade with an individual or business who is generally believed by the participants in the boycott to be doing something morally wrong. ...


References

External links

  • Encyclopedia of Television
  • thirtysomething therapy: The hit TV show may be filled with "yuppie angst," but therapists are using it to help people.
  • Why We're Still Watching and Arguing About thirtysomething.
  • thirtysomething at The Internet Movie Database
  • Fansite.
  • Fansite.
  • thirtysomething at tv.com.

  Results from FactBites:
 
thirtysomething (1037 words)
Winner of an Emmy for best dramatic series in 1988, thirtysomething (ABC, 1987-1991) represented a new kind of hour-long drama, a series which focused on the domestic and professional lives of a group of young urban professionals-- a socio-economic category of increasing interest to the television industry.
Cover stories in Rolling Stone and Entertainment Weekly explored the parallels between the actors' and characters' lives, as well as the rapport generated with the audience, who were seen as sharing their inner conflicts.
Capra's political liberalism emerged in the series in the distaste for patriarchal and capitalist power (embodied in Miles, the ruthless CEO of the advertising company), while the film aesthetic carried over into the cinematography, intertextual references and ambitious story-lines, which occasionally incorporated flashback, daydream and fantasy sequences.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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