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The person who posted a comment hit the nail on the head. The Thorns
was the best. It had a lot of potential. I believe that it wasn't that
it was too ahead of it's time but that the upper crust did not like
that other, "lower class", less influential people (those that make
less that $125,000 a quarter) should see that their lives are as
shallow as depicted, full of cracks or that they aren't as grand as
they want others to seem. I have met those sort of people. If they drop
something important and you pick it up for them and hand it to them and
say, "here, you dropped this," they either look at you like they can't
understand English, that anything you say is so beneath them or they
call security for disturbing them. But on the flip side I have met some
that were so cool, nice, etc. This show featured a very shallow side of
the rich life, which exists.
This show was WAY ahead of it's time.
The Chinese restaurant next door was so like the on going joke in Keeping Up Appearances, an English show that aired two years after this program.
In 1988, ABC aired this sitcom about social climbing New Yorkers, the Thorns, and their highly dysfunctional family. I taped all 7 aired episodes on one tape. The Thorns were way ahead of its time in 1988. They exposed seedy life of Upper East Side New Yorkers with wealth to buy their reputations. The Thorns had such guest stars like Christine Baranski before her Cybill fame, Maureen Stapleton,and the late William Roerick. Kelly and TOny were exquisite in their roles as parents and unfaithful spouses. It was well-written and directed but too intelligent for the audience then and probably now. The pilot plot featured around fundraising party at the Thorns Upper East Side townhouse. The Thorns put the family dog to sleep to avoid it disturbing the party. Their youngest son begins to act like a dog as a reaction to his death. Then their paternal grandmother arrives from Brooklyn, her apartment building burns down. Ginger Thorn replies "It's probably an improvement." The Thorns are forced to put Grandma THorn in the dog's room. Yes, the dog had his own room. Grandma THorn now deals with her youngest grandson's dilemma. She comes down in her nightgown during the party to fetch her grandson. This show had so much potential but not enough viewers at the time. Kelly Bishop and TOny Roberts headed this cast for 7 episodes until it became cancelled by network politics and not enough interest. Maybe the ABC network felt the show was too similar to their own lives and decided to shelve it to avoid criticism. The Thorns made New York City to be equally shallow and depth as a puddle on the street. Sorry it didn't last longer or nobody else picked it up at the time. It was well worth taping all of it.
My husband and I saw this when it was on in 1988 (we were newly weds in
our first cramped living quarters). We have talked about it and quoted
lines from this series ever since.
We especially loved the nasty French maid who always responded to requests with a cigarette dangling out of her mouth! How glamorous!
Why do they "can" efforts that are this sharp? And after only seven episodes? There should be some night on some channel that could spotlight these old series---not the TV Land thing where they feature the Bradies and the Mayberries that have huge followings -- but the series that have smaller followings and a sort of cult status.
It might bring some good writing back to light.
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