Dolly Parton's second short-lived variety series.
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1988   1987  
Won 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Dolly (TV Series 1976)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Syndicated weekly country-variety series hosted by Dolly Parton.

Stars: Dolly Parton, Ralph Emery, Richard Dennison
Wild Texas Wind (TV Movie 1991)
Drama | Music | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Superstar singer-entertainer Dolly Parton stars in a dramatic role as a Texas Swing band singer caught in a violent, destructive relationship that leads to suspense and murder. Thiola ... See full summary »

Director: Joan Tewkesbury
Stars: Dolly Parton, Gary Busey, Ray Benson
A Smoky Mountain Christmas (TV Movie 1986)
Fantasy | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A country/western singer on a trip through the Tennessee mountains runs into a reclusive backwoodsman--and a witch.

Director: Henry Winkler
Stars: Dolly Parton, Lee Majors, Bo Hopkins
Concrete Cowboys (TV Series 1979)
Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  
Stars: Jerry Reed, Geoffrey Scott, Ray Stevens
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Subversive humor and childlike wonder based on both Reubens' original stage show, "The Pee-wee Herman Show," and the Emmy-winning Saturday morning TV show, "Pee-wee's Playhouse."

Director: Marty Callner
Stars: Paul Reubens, Lexy Fridell, Jesse Garcia
Pee-Wee Gets an iPad! (Video 2010)
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
Director: Eric Appel
Stars: Lori Alan, Artie Esposito, Josh Meyers
Comedy | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

Frankie and Annette, having grown up and put aside their beach-partying lifestyle, visit their daughter in Southern California and discover there's still some wild times left in them.

Director: Lyndall Hobbs
Stars: Frankie Avalon, Annette Funicello, Lori Loughlin
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A recovering substance-abusing country singer and his brother exact revenge on the singer's manager, who has cheated him out of a substantial amount of cash throughout the years.

Director: Jerry Reed
Stars: Jerry Reed, Bo Hopkins, Barry Corbin
Adventure | Comedy | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  

The crew of a large ship sail the high seas encountering other pirates from other ships. The boy from the ship end up having saves his girlfriend who is kidnapped by a bunch of other pirates.

Director: Ken Annakin
Stars: Kristy McNichol, Christopher Atkins, Ted Hamilton
Hot Stuff (1979)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Three cops try to set up a sting by establishing their own Fencing operation. They have less than complete support from above and as they begin mingling more and more with the underworld ... See full summary »

Director: Dom DeLuise
Stars: Dom DeLuise, Suzanne Pleshette, Jerry Reed
Straight Talk (1992)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A woman ditches her small town life for big city Chicago, where she becomes a sensation as a radio show host.

Director: Barnet Kellman
Stars: Dolly Parton, James Woods, Griffin Dunne
The Pee Wee Herman Show (TV Movie 1981)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

An adult-oriented version of what would eventually become an award-winning children's classic. This version of the show features Pee-wee's playhouse and many of the characters of the later ... See full summary »

Directors: Paul Reubens, Marty Callner
Stars: Paul Reubens, John Moody, John Paragon
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Cast

Complete series cast summary:
...
 Herself - Host (22 episodes, 1987-1988)
Ritch Brinkley ...
 Charlie Boil (16 episodes, 1987-1988)
...
 Bubba (15 episodes, 1987-1988)
...
 Carlos (15 episodes, 1987-1988)
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Storyline

Dolly Parton's second short-lived variety series.

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Genres:

Comedy | Music

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Release Date:

27 September 1987 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Dolly Parton Show  »

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

(22 episodes)

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Dolly Parton's second solo television variety series. See more »

Soundtracks

Closing theme song:
"I Will Always Love You"
Written and Performed by Dolly Parton
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User Reviews

The final hurrah of the variety show... with a star in top-form
13 April 2016 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The variety show had been a staple since the earliest days of television, but throughout the 80s the genre was on the verge of extinction. Enter Dolly Parton, a tiny country singer with a big voice, a big heart and even bigger physical attributes who'd made a meteoric rise from twangy country singer to pop star to movie star, becoming an international household name in the process. Dolly had gotten her big break appearing as a regular for 6 years on the "Porter Wagoner Show" and she hosted a short-lived syndicated show of her own in 1976, so when she approached them with the idea, ABC decided to take a chance and attempt to revive the variety format with this experienced lady who was now one of the biggest superstars in the world (and whom had recently undergone a flabbergasting surgical weight loss). Dolly was contracted for two seasons and paid a million dollars an episode... and as a savvy businesswoman with the new theme park Dollywood to look after, it was stipulated that she'd receive the $44 million whether or not the show was prematurely canceled. On top of her exorbitant salary, they spent an additional million per episode on production costs, often taping more material than they needed (scenes with Dolph Lundgren, Minnie Mouse and others never aired).

Making its big debut, "Dolly" was a real product of its time, filled with Dayglo colors, corny comedy, and a who's-who of '80s celebrities. As they were heading into production, the singer was focused on her over-synthesized new pop album "Rainbow," which was D.O.A. at record stores and her last major foray into pop music. As such, she let the producers develop much of the show's format, including a weekly skit that caused minor controversy called "Dolly's Date" in which a male celebrity (ranging from Bruce Willis to Pee Wee Herman to Jon Lovitz) would have a cheesy "date" with the long-time-wedded hostess. Other recurring skits included "Vanity Fair," in which Dolly portrayed a hairdresser named Velma, and "Dixie's Place," where (utilizing her real-life husband's last name) she was truck stop waitress Dixie Lee Dean. The latter was particularly interesting because the tone veered toward dramedy and there was a recurring cast with truckers Bubba (Walter Olkewicz) and Charlie (Ritch Brinkley), as well as chef Carlos (Sal Lopez).

Dolly was along for the ride at first but following a strong premiere, ratings began to plummet so she took a more hands-on approach. The glossy opening-theme re-recording of "Baby I'm Burning" was replaced by a live rendition of "Hoedown Showdown," she dropped all of the skits except "Dixie's Place," the TV celebrities got the boot in favor of popular country acts, her singing segments were expanded, and there were several themed episodes. For Thanksgiving, she shot an episode in her hometown, the Christmas show was a garish tinsel-fest filled with singing children, there were quasi-educational episodes in Hawaii and New Orleans, and she headed to Nashville, where she reunited with Porter Wagoner after a more than decade-long feud.

The show became something kind of special but despite her valiant efforts, ratings didn't improve, with most viewers opting to watch the movie-of-the-week that played opposite (or, for those who could pick up the station, watching Tracey Ullman's and Gary Shadling's shows on the new Fox network). When Dolly won a People's Choice Award for hosting the show, she quipped, "I don't think the same people who work the Neilsen boxes voted for this." At the end of the first season, the series was canceled, marking the final network attempt at a full-blown weekly variety show until Neil Patrick Harris's shorter-lived "Best Time Ever" in 2015.

Despite the lack-of-success, Parton was proud of the series and kept clips running on a loop at her Dollywood museum. Similarly, fans still seem to be gaga over it, with a variety of fan-uploaded You Tube videos racking up millions of hits. It's a shame that the show wasn't given a second year to blossom, and that it's never been issued on legal home media. Although there were some rocks, there were more of nuggets of gold, and the show's definitely essential for her fans to seek out.


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