Jessica Tate's sharp-tongued former butler, Benson DuBois, moves up in the world, becoming first the governor's "director of household affairs," then the state's budget director, then lieutenant governor and candidate for the executive mansion.

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Nominated for 4 Golden Globes. Another 3 wins & 18 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete series cast summary:
...
 Benson DuBois (159 episodes, 1979-1986)
...
 Governor Eugene Xavier Gatling (159 episodes, 1979-1986)
...
 Miss Gretchen Wilomena Kraus (159 episodes, 1979-1986)
...
 Katherine 'Katie' Olivia Gatling (158 episodes, 1979-1986)
...
 Clayton Runnymede Endicott III (135 episodes, 1980-1986)
...
 Peter 'Pete' John Downey / ... (96 episodes, 1980-1985)
...
 Denise Florence Stevens Downey (72 episodes, 1981-1985)
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Storyline

In this spinoff of "Soap", Benson DuBois is sent out West to serve as butler to widowed state governor Gene Gatling, an honest but bumbling servant of the people. Although he has his rivals in German maid Kraus and persnickety aides Clayton and Taylor, Benson, armed with an acerbic wit and plenty of smarts, becomes the Governor's close friend and helper, and eventually is elected Lieutenant Governor! Written by Marty McKee <mmckee@soltec.net>

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Comedy | Family

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Release Date:

13 September 1979 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

O Poderoso Benson  »

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4:3
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Two of the regular actors later went on to become regulars in two different Star Trek series. Rene Auberjonois played Odo in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and Ethan Phillips played Neelix in Star Trek: Voyager. See more »

Goofs

In the episode "Fools Gold" the blueprints Benson was hiding in his robe weren't visible in early shots (long or close-up) of the scene, but can be clearly seen sticking out of his robe right before he takes them out to show the Governor. See more »

Quotes

[Benson meets Kraus for the first time]
Gretchen: You are getting muddy footprints all over my clean floor and it is disgusting!
Benson DuBois: Fine, I'll walk on my hands.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Muppets (2011) See more »

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User Reviews

 
One of the best from the late 70's-early 80's
18 April 2001 | by (Chapel Hill,North Carolina) – See all my reviews

This was a show of all shows that was one of ABC-TV's brilliant Friday night lineup schedule back in the late 1970's and throughout the mid-1980's.The producers of this show(Paul Junger Witt and Terry Thomas) went on to create other successful series to follow like "It's A Living" and "The Golden Girls",and "Empty Nest",but "Benson" is one of their best works ever. This was actually a spin-off on a earlier show called "Soap" in which Robert Guillaume's character was changed from a household servant to Lt. Governor of a huge party of characters and so forth. The reason I watch this show was that of Robert Guillaume's character...He was witty,humorous and hilariously funny. The result made Robert Guillaume a household name not to mention putting this show at the top of the Nielsen ratings during it's run. His constant squabbles with Rene Auberjonois(Clayton Endicott) and Inga Swenson(one of Guillaume's fellow alumni from "Soap")not to mention Governor Gatling(James Noble) made that show was it was and it was the most funniest show on the air during its day. Over the course of the show's run,it was nominated for a total of 17 Emmys. It won two including Best Actor in a Comedy Series for Guillaume's second-to-last season portraying the title character,marking him second to The Jeffersons' Sherman Hemsley as the only African-American actor to win the award. The show lasted seven seasons on ABC-TV producing 158 episodes that aired from the debut episode on September 13,1979 and ending with the two-part series finale on April 19,1986. Most recently,the Antenna TV Channel has brought "Benson" back on the air after missing in action on television for merely a decade since it's original broadcast.


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