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 »


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Nominated for 2 Golden Globes. Another 12 nominations. See more awards »
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Complete series cast summary:
 Nellie Ruth 'Nell' Harper (137 episodes, 1981-1987)
 Samantha 'Sam' Kanisky / ... (119 episodes, 1981-1987)
 Julie Kanisky / ... (114 episodes, 1981-1986)
Kari Michaelsen ...
 Katie Kanisky (111 episodes, 1981-1986)
Dolph Sweet ...
 Chief Carl Kanisky / ... (88 episodes, 1981-1985)
 Grandpa Stanley Kanisky / ... (82 episodes, 1982-1987)
 Joey Donovan (77 episodes, 1983-1987)
 Addy Wilson (68 episodes, 1983-1987)
Howard Morton ...
 Officer Ralph Simpson / ... (49 episodes, 1981-1986)


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, Katie, Julie, and Samantha, in short, be like a mother to them. Later, Carl's father, Stanley, moves in. Around the same time, Nell takes in young Joey Donovan as her foster son. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis







Release Date:

29 October 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Allo Nelly Bobo  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


(137 episodes)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Reportedly Nell's maternal instincts towards the girls and Joey on the show were quite real; she was a mother figure on the set. Lara Jill Miller in particular was quite close to her. See more »


In Season 1 Nell's mother's name is Emma Harper in later seasons her mother's name is Maybelle Harper. See more »


Katie: Dad, it's hard for Nell to stick to her diet when you're stuffing your face like that.
Chief: I'm not stuffing.
Nell: Right. He's eating for two in case he gets pregnant.
Chief: See what happens? You take away their trough and they get vicious?
Nell: It's no problem. I'm eating clean, lean, and healthy. After all, you are what you eat. Another helping of jackass, Chief?
See more »


Featured in NBC 75th Anniversary Special (2002) See more »


Sing A Song
Performed by Nell Carter
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User Reviews

reasonably funny
16 June 2006 | by (Richardson, TX) – See all my reviews

This was a reasonably funny comedy starring Nell Carter. A very young Joey Lawrence also appeared in it as a young street-hustler-turned-foster-kid-for-the-family. It was basic fare for a sitcom, featuring the cute kids, family values, and little lessons learned at the end of each episode. In the show, the chief of police's wife has just died, and he asks Nell (Nell Carter) to come in and work for him, helping him raise his three daughters in the process. Nell becomes sort of a mother figure for the girls, and everyone tries to learn from each other. There were some memorable episodes (such as when Samantha puts Joey in black face to get back at Nell, or when Nell undergoes hypnotherapy to remember where she had put something only to become helpless whenever someone knocked three times, or when the chief was on a stakeout with another officer and told him a horrible gay joke, only to learn that the other officer was gay), but the show was fairly standard. Nonetheless, I thought it was funny, and it managed to stand out due to its good cast and themes in its episodes and type of humor. It was sad when the actor who played the chief died. Jonathan Silverman was a good addition after that. I also love the grandfather character. He was funny, and changed as the show went on, from the senile old goat to a wise old man.

Unfortunately, the show went downhill after Nell and Addy moved to New York, and they changed the premise of the show. I didn't think it was as good after that, and I hardly watched it anymore.

Overall, anyone into '80s TV show might like this one. I used to enjoy watching it when I was younger. **1/2 out of ****

3 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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