Widower Steve Douglas raises three sons with the help of his father-in-law, and is later aided by the boys' great-uncle. An adopted son, a stepdaughter, wives, and another generation of sons join the loving family in later seasons.
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Widower Steven Douglas is left to bring up three boys with the aid of his father-in-law, Michael "Bub" O'Casey, and later Bub's brother, "Uncle Charley." The series revolves around the trials and tribulations of life's experiences as a single parent family.Written by
Although officially leaving after the show's fifth season in 1964-1965, Tim Considine's last appearance as Mike, the eldest son, was actually in the first episode of season 6 (the series' first in color). The episode opened with a brief scene showing Mike and Sally's (Meredith MacRae) wedding. The episode also "launched" Barry Livingston ("Ernie") as the new son. The characters of Mike and Sally were mentioned in the next two episodes, which dealt with Ernie's adoption, and in a subsequent episode when Charley and the boys thought Steve was getting married. Mike was referred to by name one last time in the second 1966-1967 episode, when the gang visited Steve's hometown. After this they were never referred to by name again for the remainder of the series, although Mike was indirectly referred to as, "the first of you" by Steve a few years later. See more »
During William Frawley's time on the series, his name was inconsistent. His last name was always O'Casey, but he was sometimes introduced as Michael Francis O'Casey and, at other times, such as in "What's Cooking?", as William Francis O'Casey. See more »
"My Three Sons" was about an unconventional family, Mom was missing. Dad, Steve Douglas, was missing most of the time since he was busy as an engineer in the aerospace industry, a dream job for those times when the space-race was a hot topic – the show began 9-years before America put a man on the moon in 1969.
Bub, then later, Uncle Charlie kept the house and was there when the boys, Mike, Robbie, and Chip, and later Ernie (Chip's little brother in real life) came home from school. This was a quirky bachelor pad. The show's theme music fit; it was a little kookie, just like the family. And, that was all the music that counted. There was some old music played, like the music my mom and dad – 39 and 48-years older than me – listened to, which was how it was back then. Kids went to another room or outside with the transistor radio to hear their own music where it wouldn't bother the folks. By the later 60s we had an FM antenna on the roof to stay up and listen to jazz and the more psychedelic sounds and lyrics.
Every week, one of the kids would have some problem and would have it solved by the end of the show without anyone having gone on a shooting rampage. The military- industrial complex hadn't yet changed the definition of gun to denote a problem-solver that goes bang bang and makes America great.
TV in those days was not about reality, which we turned on the set to escape, but entertainment. The shows were not meant to literally reflect real families, but depicted families that were somewhere near to the screenwriter's ideal of what a family should be, showing how people are there for each other no matter what. And, the what was nowhere near as bizarre as the reality of today. Things that were funny, as an exception to the rule or the norm, are no longer funny since they've become a bad joke that is the rule or the norm.
And, what does that say about us as a society? I liked "All in the Family" when it began in the early 70s, but was and am dumbfounded by those who see Archie Bunker as the lifestyle guru who is here to save America instead of the "Meathead-of the household" that he portrayed.
I still don't care for reality TV, even with the years of exposure to it. I'd rather read a book of my liking or watch a rerun of some seemingly absurd show like "My Three Sons." It was good entertainment, which is what TV is meant to provide for one thing.
If you want reality, watch the news or, better still for reality, some very old reruns of the news. But, I give "My Three Sons" a 10.
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