A young tennis pro (Angela Goethals) must struggle with the challenges of life, along with her single mother (Judith Light), her bratty little sister (Ashley Johnson), her insecure brother (... See full summary »




1994   1993  
1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »


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Complete series cast summary:
Judith Light ...  Dianne Doolan 22 episodes, 1993-1994
Angela Goethals ...  Angela Doolan 22 episodes, 1993-1994
Ashley Johnson ...  Mary Margaret Doolan 22 episodes, 1993-1994
Todd Louiso ...  Brian Doolan 22 episodes, 1993-1994
Jennifer Lien ...  Roanne 22 episodes, 1993-1994
William Devane ...  Lou Del La Rosa / ... 21 episodes, 1993-1994
Sara Rue ...  Monica 14 episodes, 1993-1994


A young tennis pro (Angela Goethals) must struggle with the challenges of life, along with her single mother (Judith Light), her bratty little sister (Ashley Johnson), her insecure brother (Todd Louiso) and her overbearing coach (William Devane). Written by Jeremy Lunt <durlinlunt@acadia.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




Did You Know?


Because of billing disputes, William Devane's name didn't appear in the opening credits. See more »


Theme song
Composed and Sung by Carly Simon
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User Reviews

Making of a Phenom
6 December 2019 | by hellraiser7See all my reviews

Like any sports legends and stars, they all start out small before they become somebody or something. This show flew under the radar or should I say tennis net. I remember seeing this show when I was about eleven, at the time I was really into the sitcoms as they were one of the only things I could and was allowed to watch.

I did enjoy this show and it did earn points with most viewers, but unfortunately it was not enough as it got canceled as fast as a quick tennis match ends. It's kind of too bad because this show I felt has some potential to be a sitcom classic.

Really like the theme song by Carly Simon which is one of my honorable mentions in favorite TV themes, it's catchy and sort of goes with the theme of the show on the journey of a possible future sports star and anyone else aspiring to be great.

The cast and characters are pretty good some are familiar faces and surprising some of them after this show have gone on to do more.

Ashley Johnson I really like, this show was sort of this actresses debut, and I'll admit discovering this actress was in this show was a surprise to me and kind of cool as she's best known for her voice acting most notably the voice of Gwen Tennyson in "Ben 10 Alien Force/Ultimate Alien". I really like the energy of her character and the amount of spunk she has; she's got a lot of good scenes and lines.

Brian is my favorite character in the show, he's funny and loveable and he's played by underrated comedic actor Todd Louiso. This guy is one that is sort of down on his luck in some sense or another. His character in sort of on the shy introverted side but also childlike in a way as it seems like there are some things about the adulthood world he doesn't totally understand. This to me give his character a sort of innocence as you could almost at time emphasize with his difficulties as most to possibly all of us have been there. But one thing I really like about the guy is he's never boring he's a person that beats to a different drummer, he's always trying different things out, one favorite scene in an episode is when he tries on VR tech and he then run screaming in fright because it was all seemed too real. Yeah, that was a time when VR was a new concept.

Though my second favorite character is Lou Del La Rosa played well by William Devane. This is an actor I always see in a lot of serious roles, but this surprised me he for once is in a comedic role and he's capable of comedy. He's an overbearing tennis coach that despite the masculine front he is always trying to display, deep down the guy is insecure to the umph degree. But he's also a real softy as he really does care about Phenom and her family, he pretty much is the father figure Phenom and the family never had but very much need.

Though maybe the only one that hasn't really had much afterward is Phenom herself. Angela Goethals whom was one of the McCallister's in "Home Alone" the one that delivered the insult in French to Kevin; though I also remember her in a horror mockumentary film I really like "Behind the Mask". This show was suppose to be a launch point for the actress which sadly never took off or went very far, it's sort of the same case for Victoria Justice in the show "Victorious" if you don't know who that is my point exactly, though she has been here and there which is better than nothing.

She's a decent lead, as she does have a little charisma and plays the typical teen that is an aspiring Tennis player but also simply a person that is just trying to win at life just as she wins her games.

One of the things that make the show a bit unique is the fact that it's a bit of a Christian show, as the girls go to school in a private catholic school. But in some episodes and some places in the show is does pertain to certain Christian themes. But part of Christianity is about the journey, the struggle to go on and constantly become better morally and spiritually; which of course reflects Phenom's journey in making her Tennis dreams come true.

Though that to me is probably the show's only foul ball, is there isn't much development in the Tennis career aspect. We also never really see the character play tennis much, which almost makes the into you see a little misleading. It might have helped if we got to see Phenom engaged in some Tennis Tournaments, thought maybe that what the season was building up to where in the season finale we would see Phenom in a tournament that would change her life forever. I don't know but the lack of this, sort of makes the show seem like all build up but no pay off.

Another thing about the show is once again, this is a show with no DVD or Blu-Ray release, making this show another lost TV show gem. It would be cool if the Mill Creek Entertainment company thinks of releasing this show since they specialize in the release of some shows and movies that got lost in the cracks of time; it's a thought to consider anyway.

I doubt this show will ever be revived as the fan base and run was a little slim. I'd say if this was remade it would have to be a dramady, it would be one that would flip back and forth in the timeline. Where in the present Phenom is already a sports star but somewhere along the line fell from grace and now, she goes on her journey of redemption to bring herself back up again professionally but also mend her relationship with her family whom she has drifted away from. But we would then also flip back to the past where we would see how she built her carrier and ascended as well as her relationship and misadventures with her family when they were still a family. Yeah, this is a nice thought, but it won't happen.

Overall, this is a solid show, it's not phenomenal let alone a classic, but like any good tennis player to try out it's worth a match.

Rating: 3 stars

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Release Date:

14 September 1993 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Madame et ses filles See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


(22 episodes)

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

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