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Alice (TV Series 1976–1985) Poster

(1976–1985)

Trivia

The shot of the station wagon during the show's opening credits is from Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore (1974).
Diane Ladd, who played Flo in Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore (1974), joined the cast in the fourth season as Belle Dupree. The new character served as a replacement for Flo (Polly Holliday) who left for her own series Flo (1980).
The actual restaurant building, on which this show is based, is located in Phoenix, Arizona, at 1747 NW Grand Ave. It is currently called Pat's Family Restaurant. It was known as "Mel's Diner", from 1976 to 1985. Google Earth's ground view still shows the name as "Mel's Diner".
Allegedly, Linda Lavin had trouble getting along with her co-stars, which is why Polly Holiday and Diane Ladd left the show.
When Diane Ladd left the series, her absence was explained by having Belle finally sell one of her songs and moving away to become a professional songwriter.
The favorite dish at Mel's Diner was chili. Art Carney appeared in an episode, where Mel tries to market his chili commercially as "Chili con Carney".
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Henry's (Marvin Kaplan's) wife Chloe was talked about for years before she was finally seen. In her only appearance, she was played by Ruth Buzzi.
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Flo's favorite expression was "Kiss my grits!"
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Tommy was originally played by Alfred Lutter III, (who played the role in the film). He was later replaced by Philip McKeon, Nancy McKeon's older brother. Nancy and Philip McKeon acted together in two episodes of this show. Nancy is best known for her role of Jo Polniaczek, on The Facts of Life (1979).
Mel's nickname for Vera was "Dinghy".
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Mel's nickname for Jolene was "Blondie".
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Whenever any of the waitresses disagreed with Mel, he would often tell them to "Stow it".
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The shows theme song was sung by Linda Lavin.
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The show may have been loosely based on "Mel's Diner" on 1747 NW Grand Avenue in Phoenix, Arizona. However, nothing but the lighted sign with the coffee cup was used. Nothing about the set (staged and filmed in Burbank, California) is even close to the diner's actual interior layout. "Pat's Family Diner" was the original name, and since then, has been re-named, "Mel's Diner".
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Alice's husband was portrayed violent and abusive in Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore(1974). Flashbacks involving the husband, and Alice's conversations about the husband, referred to him being abusive. Any references to Alice's husband being abusive were erased from the television show, though, because it was decided that this would alienate the viewers, and detract from Alice's everywoman quality.
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There was an agreement among the writers of this show, that if they found themselves in a joke, out of which they couldn't get, they would just give one of the characters a funny costume or a funny hat.
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Nancy McKeon, who is Phillip McKeon's sister, made a guest appearance on this show, before going on to star in The Facts of Life (1979).
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Polly Holliday left the show, due to the fact that Linda Lavin didn't get along with her co-stars.
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During the opening credits to the last season, an outtake is shown, revealing Linda Lavin breaking character and laughing, while playing Mrs. Walden.
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In Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore (1974), the diner was in Tucson, Arizona. But for the series, it was re-located to Phoenix.
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This, and its sister show on CBS, One Day At a Time (1975), were considered by critics to be extremely important shows, both documenting, and promoting, Second Wave Feminism in the 1970s.
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When Tommy graduated from high school, he went on to Arizona State University, in Tempe, where he played for the basketball team.
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Mel's Diner is called "Mel and Ruby's Diner" in the first episode, which was the name of the diner in Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore (1974).
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Vic Tayback and Diane Ladd were the only series regulars that were in the movie. Alfred Lutter, who played Tommy in the movie, also appeared in the pilot, but then was replaced by Philip McKeon by the second episode. Diane Ladd, who played Flo in the movie, briefly played Belle in the series, and Mel was always played by Vic Tayback.
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Philip McKeon was actually the second person to play Tommy on the show. Alfred Lutter, who portrayed Tommy in Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore (1974), the original film, on which Alice the television series was based, reprised his role for the pilot episode of Alice. After that, he was quickly replaced by Philip McKeon.
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Linda Lavin won a Golden Globe for her performance on this show.
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Earl was Tommy's basketball coach in high school.
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Diane Ladd, who who joined the cast in 1980, playing the role of Belle Dupree, originally was Flo, in Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore (1974).
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Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore (1974) was supposed to be an Oscar vehicle for Ellen Burstyn, hot off her success from The Exorcist (1973). It worked: Burstyn won the Oscar, and the success of this movie fueled more women's movies and television shows, including the long running spin-off of this movie, Alice (1976).
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The title of the series finale of Family Ties (1982) is, "Alex Doesn't Live Here Anymore". A take on "Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore".
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See also

Goofs | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

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