That's Life (TV Series 2000–2002) Poster


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Orsina1 February 2003
Of course I watched this show when it first came on because at that time, I too was a thirty-something Italian American chick from the Northeast who had recently gone back to school. I loved it -- total warm fuzzies for me. I was so happy that they'd gotten such amazing talent like Paul Sorvino and Ellen Burstyn. It was the perfect Saturday night show. Lydia had unpackaged pluck, which was nice for a change.

Then the network started playing around with programming, and the show disappeared for a while. Then it had an early season finale, and no one knew if it was coming back. Then, voila!, it showed up for a second season -- with a total makeover. The ex-fiancee was gone, the Italian song opener was gone, and a completely unrelated love interest materialized out of nowhere. Classic network "wow, this show is working great as it is, so let's CHANGE it!" tactic. But despite stretching the limits of reality as it was doing, the show was still good enough to keep watching, so I did. Then it disappeared after January 2002, and they never actually declared the show cancelled. It was gone as if it had never really existed. For a show that had existed for 1 1/2 seasons and had a fan base, that is inexcusable.
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Well-crafted program
melindajryen6 May 2001
I came to this website to see if I could find out what happened to this show...I haven't seen it in the listings for awhile and hope it has survived. I didn't watch the pilot, but tuned in a week or so later while channel surfing. I was impressed with what I saw. The characters are very real, and situations are quirky and interesting. The character interaction particularly interests me. In one episode, Lydia is having financial difficulties but doesn't want to ask her father for help, even though she knows he would give it to her. She's fighting to remain independent. Towards the end of the show she takes her laundry to her parents house, telling her mom not to do it...she'll take care of it.

Mom complains about all the money she's always finding in with Lydia's clothes. After Lydia goes upstairs w/her mom, dad sneaks into the laundry room and adds some bills to the clothes in the dryer. A simple thing, but made quite poignant in the way its acted out. There's alot said in this show that's "between the lines", but done in such a way that you can't miss it. Special show.
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Shame it had to end!
hs40717 July 2002
It was a really good show and I miss it. It's really too bad that good shows like this end up on the short end of the stick while crap remains on the air. I guess reality show will take over every channel and we will have to watch cable reruns to see good old sitcoms and dramas.
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No wonder TV sucks so much. They keep taking all the good shows off. (spoilers)
Pepper Anne5 December 2004
Warning: Spoilers
I highly recommend viewing this show for anyone who is able to find the reruns, bootlegs, and so forth. It was one of that last shows on television that I could actually stand to watch, and did so enthusiastically, thanks to a fantastic cast and writing that never tried to grab attention with extreme, unbelievable sensationalism (as most American TV shows do).

This was the story of the Delucca family, an Italian American family living in New Jersey. My favorites, Paul Sorvino and Ellen Burstyn headed up the cast as the parents of the DeLucca family, Frank and Dolly. They were a genuinely sweet pair, and really a pleasant performance to see. Initially, the show started out with Frank DeLucca working as a toll booth collector, then moved on to the DeLucca parents opening a successful restaurant in the city, then changed once more to Dolly winning the election as a city commissioner. Their grown children were Lydia (Heather Paige Kent) and Paulie (Kevin Dillon), though Lydia was initially the primary star of the show in that sort of 20-someting-narrative-of-my-kooky-family kind of way who got divorced and moved back home. Eventually however, the stories began to embrace all characters in more of an equal spot. Add to the mix, one cool Debi Mazar, playing the witty family friend, Jackie. And of course, more people moved into the show as it went along. It looked like the people on the show had a lot of fun working together, and that chemistry was really brought out on the show.

The stories were often funny and involved enough subplots to keep these moving along most of the time. The writers were even brave enough to address controversial, political issues once in a great while. Despite being a great show, those idiots at CBS could never help but to put them in poor time slots like Friday and Saturday nights, which isn't such a hot place to be if you're trying to find a niche at least among older audiences (especially late 20 and 30 old females) and you're still a relatively new show. Damn you CBS!
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Entertaining and Original
mitorres2 January 2001
Most of the so called "dramas" that the local television networks post on their new season are not the least bit interesting, in fact I find them dull. Though I admit I'm a T.V. addict the majority of the shows (such as the lame and unrealistic "Boston Public") don't catch my attention as I flip through channels during primetime any day of the week. However, the new and eye-catching series "That's life" proves to be different.

They don't use young models like in "Dawson's Creek" and isn't at all about young people. It is about a thirtysomething year old Italian woman who wants a college degree in...she doesn't even know yet. The hour is packed with colourful characters, situations and great performances (including some favourites such as Paul Sorvino, Kevin Dillon and the always wonderful Ellen Burstyn). Heather Kent is perfectly cast as Lydia DeLucca, whom the show is based on. The show is also a great piece of filmmaking as it looks like a movie shortend to an hour. A good show, in my opinion, should capture a viewers attention in just one single scene, especially if that show is on television. That's easier said that done, of course. I never usually catch a brand new show during the pilot run but rather about mid season--and that's if it's interesting enough to hook me. Not only is the show fun to watch but it focuses around a practical and possible situation in an entertaning and realistic way. Hopefully, the network won't can the show--like most outstanding shows like the late "Freaks and Geeks"--and will develop a faithful audience. I can't express the shows' originality and intelligence in just words--you have to tune in and see it for yourself. **** out of ****
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I'm going to try to watch it more often.
llihilloh26 December 2000
I saw the pilot for "That's Life" and one or two other episodes. This is one of the best new shows to come around in a long time. I am so tired of seeing shows that have pointless writing, talent-less actors, and ludicrous topics/problems. This show has the exact opposite of all of that. The only problem that I have with this program is that it airs on a Saturday night. In my opinion, this is the worst night for television. Whenever I'm home, I will definitely try to catch this wonderful show.
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This is probably the best new TV show of the Fall 2000 season
lupe6522 October 2000
"That's Life" (CBS Saturdays) is one of the best television shows I've seen for sometime. Heather Paige Kent is great as the lead actor "Lydia". She is also one of the prettiest women on primetime.

The working-class Italian-American characters portrayed on this show and the storylines are very believable. They grow on you, not in a corny endearing manner, but one where the viewer can immediately relate to all of the great characters and the storylines of this well written and well made show.

Ellen Burstyn and Paul Sorvino as Lydia's Mom and Dad do not look out of place on this show and they both play convincing roles.

"That's Life" will not leave you feeling like you've been pandered to the way some other new show about a genetically enhanced superwoman does. I think that show (Dark Angel) is just cheap thrills on TV. If you want that, go to a movie on Tuesday night.

"That's Life" is an excellent combination of both drama and comedy. The only thing working against it is that it is scheduled for Saturdays on CBS. So, it's worth the effort to program your machine if you have to go out next Saturday night.
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Excellent show with inspiration and heart.
jcferry10 February 2007
I felt this was an excellent show. It had a very strong cast who played a close knit Italian American family with, like all families, both good and bad qualities. This was the backdrop for the main story of their daughter, Lydia, who was trying to be her own person, and discovering just who that was by going to college. It was inspiring and empowering. It was entertaining and had heart. What more do people want? It was quite sad to see it go, especially Heather Paige Kent, who played the lead role of Lydia so well. There must be other great roles out there for her, hopefully soon. Kevin Dillan went on to do well in Entourage, but I liked his role as Lydia's annoying but endearing brother even more.
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shame it's been cut
butlerik10 June 2003
All day today I have phoned tv stations to find out what has happened to this wonderful,quirky show! Alas like all the good shows it has been cut. The talent in this show from Heather Paige Kent to Ellen Burstyn and Paul Sovrino is unreal. No wonder it was so good! But as usual who listens to the viewers!! I know it's 2003 but down here in Australia we have just seen the second series!
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can't get enough
yellowfeather3524 January 2002
This show brings back so many memories of my friends family. I guess Italian familys are the same everywhere you go.I loved Heather when she was in Stark raving mad. But she is fantastic in this. I hope that we get future season here in Australia.
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Great show for a Friday night!!!!
tkat21 December 2001
I think the show is fun!!!! It's great to watch a show that is "family and friends" oriented instead of all that other violent crap. We're bombarded with "sophisticated, tabloid, info, reality, blah blah blah" shows all the time. It's great to see a show that's sweet and down to earth! The cast is great! Bravo!!!!!
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