This series featured a group of waitresses (and a pianist, Sonny) who work at a fancy restaurant at the top of a skyscraper.
3,842 ( 308)




6   5   4   3   2   1  
1989   1988   1987   1986   1985   1982   … See all »


Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Too Close for Comfort (1980–1987)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Jackie and Sarah Rush are two grown sisters who live in half of a duplex. Their parents, Henry and Muriel, live in the other half. Though one might think this proximity may be fun, both ... See full summary »

Stars: Ted Knight, Nancy Dussault, Jim J. Bullock
The Ropers (1979–1980)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Stanley and Helen Roper have sold their apartment complex and moved into a new one. Their trademark quirks are intact as they deal with new neighbors and frequent visits from Helen's sister.

Stars: Norman Fell, Audra Lindley, Jeffrey Tambor
Gimme a Break! (1981–1987)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Carl Kanisky is chief of police in Glenlawn, California. After the death of his wife, Margaret, he asks her friend, Nell Harper, to come in to keep house and take care of his children, ... See full summary »

Stars: Nell Carter, Lara Jill Miller, Kari Michaelsen
My Sister Sam (1986–1988)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Comedy about a San Francisco photographer whose teenage sister comes to live with her from Oregon. Most of the action took place in the apartment where the older sister had her photography ... See full summary »

Stars: Pam Dawber, Jenny O'Hara, Joel Brooks
Alice (1976–1985)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A greasy-spoon diner in Phoenix, Arizona is the setting for this long-running series. The title character, Alice Hyatt, is an aspiring singer who arrives in Phoenix with her teenaged son, ... See full summary »

Stars: Linda Lavin, Beth Howland, Vic Tayback
Head of the Class (1986–1991)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A laidback teacher provides needed guidance about life for a special class of exceptional students.

Stars: William G. Schilling, Jeannetta Arnette, Dan Frischman
Dear John (1988–1992)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

After his wife leaves him for his best friend, John Lacey joins the One Two One Club, a support group for divorced and widowed people. The group consists of its fiery British leader Louise,... See full summary »

Stars: Judd Hirsch, Jere Burns, Jane Carr
Wings (1990–1997)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Brothers Brian and Joe Hackett attempt to run an airline on the New England island of Nantucket while surrounded by their various wacky friends and employees.

Stars: Tim Daly, Steven Weber, Crystal Bernard
Double Trouble (1984–1985)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Sitcom about the antics between two twins, Kate and Allison (played by real life twins Liz and Jean Segal). Allison was always the serious outgoing sister, while Kate was more fun and ... See full summary »

Stars: Jean Sagal, Liz Sagal, James Vallely
Newhart (1982–1990)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

The misadventures of an author turned innkeeper in rural Vermont and his friends.

Stars: Bob Newhart, Mary Frann, Tom Poston
WKRP in Cincinnati (1978–1982)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

The staff of a struggling radio station has a chance at success after the new programming director changes the format to rock music.

Stars: Gary Sandy, Gordon Jump, Loni Anderson
Rhoda (1974–1978)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

After spending several years in her young adult life in Minneapolis but with her brash Bronx Jewish upbringing in tow and with its associated sarcasm, artistically inclined Rhoda ... See full summary »

Stars: Valerie Harper, Julie Kavner, Lorenzo Music


Complete series cast summary:
Barrie Youngfellow ...
Richard Stahl ...
 Cassie Cranston 49 episodes, 1980-1986


This half-hour situation comedy centered on a small group of waitresses working at a first class restaurant. A stern female supervisor and a young male piano player are also added into the mix. Written by Phil Fernando

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis







Release Date:

30 October 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Making a Living  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show more on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Referenced in Battle of the Network Stars IX (1980) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

A good series the network didn't stick with
25 October 2006 | by See all my reviews

This was one of my favorite television shows as a teen.

It was different - in as much as it centered in on the lives of waitresses at the an upscale restaurant which I knew was the Bonneventure Hotel in Los Angeles. The ABC Network used this as a vehicle for actress Ann Jillian and casted around her red head actress Barrie Youngfellow, Gail Edwards Susan Sullivan and Wendy Schaal. Then after a season, Louise Lassiter came in and left. The program was allegedly plagued by low ratings, and went into the new medium of "first run syndication". First run syndication was the new idea that was to let folks know there was an audience for material but not as large as needed for Network TV. Network TV never thought it would last. This was one of the pioneer programs that set into motion that it could.

"It's A Living" on the ABC Network (I do remember Danny Devito from the show Taxi, as his scum bag character Louie DePama, promoting the series with platinum blonde Ann Jillian) turned into "Making a Living" for a season and then turned back into "It's A Living" for syndication to my memory.

Whether in syndication or on Network, the women came from all walks of life and wanted to become all sorts of things: actresses, artists, singers, dancers, teachers and to make money - they were waitresses.In it's syndication, the women were more career oriented and you understood that their waitressing was "just a living". The series followed them, their lives, their jobs at the "Above the Top" upscale restaurant. The waitress uniforms were designed interestingly - and they had several.

Under syndication, "It's a Living" came up with a new and younger cast with Barrie Youngfellow, Gail Edwards, Wendy Schall staying and adding what is now very familiar faces: lovely Crystal Bernard, and Sheryl Lee Ralph. In syndication, the scripts were more light hearted, funnier, a bit younger, and there was more interaction - a camaraderie lets say - between the waitresses and their lives. The Hostess, actress Marian Mercer, was a great constant between both series - she took the job very seriously and in the syndicated version was more of a "strict den mom" than in the ABC Network version more of the Hostess being a "snotty upper class twit" and letting long term waitress Barrie Youngfellow take over sometimes in the Hostess duties was nice to watch as well.

The additional comedy came from the piano player character, Sonny, who was a wonderful comic foil and gave the series its air of a "upscale restaurant" complete with live lounge-lizard singer.

I got a better understanding of being a waitress and what they go through by watching this series: waitressing didn't bring in the worst people in the world or wasn't the worst job in the world -- it's only a living.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 10 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page