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Out of the Blue (TV Series 1979– ) Poster

(1979– )

Trivia

This show was an ill-fated attempt by ABC to further cash in on spin-offs of Happy Days (1974). At the time, both Laverne & Shirley (1976) and Mork & Mindy (1978) were huge successes, so the idea was to use the Mork motif to create a one-off, other-worldly character (Random) on Happy Days, then spin him off as the center of a new show. Robin Williams even guest-starred as Mork in the pilot, but it still wasn't enough to get the show jump-started.
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Thirteen episodes were filmed (including the two-part pilot, which aired as one hour-long episode) but the show was canceled after nine episodes aired.
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The pilot was not broadcast; it ran less than 20 minutes and was retooled as "Random's Arrival." In the original pilot, The Boss Angel was male and Aunt Marion wasn't included.
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Ratings were dismal, so they quickly began retooling the show, dumping characters and replacing cast members.
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With two adult characters in the house (Random & Gladys), Dixie Carter's Aunt Marion character had little to do, so she was let go - which infuriated costar Eileen Heckart. The gimmick for Heckart's Boss Angel character was that she sported a different hat each week, and she'd caused such a fuss over Carter's dismissal that the costumer presented her with a witch's hat to wear that week, which greatly amused Heckart.
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Eileen Heckart had a miserable working experience on the show on the show and was relieved when it was canceled. "One of my biggest fears is that ABC will run out of summer replacements sometime and air reruns of Out of the Blue," she mused in the book "Just Outside the Spotlight: Growing Up with Eileen Heckart."
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Most episodes included a laugh track, but near the end they began shooting in front of a live audience.
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Peter Scolari appeared as a bad angel in one of the final episodes, and the producers planned to retool the show once again, adding Scolari as the nemesis and renaming the show "Heaven Help Us." ABC passed and never even aired the episode.
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Star Jimmy Brogan discovered the show had been canceled by reading about it in The New York Times.
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See also

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

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