Ellen (1994–1998)
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The Puppy Episode 

Ellen senses a kindred spirit in herself when she meets an openly gay woman, named Susan, through Richard, an old boyfriend of hers, who enlightens Ellen to her own sexual identity. ... See full summary »


Gil Junger


Neal Marlens (created by), Carol Black (created by) | 6 more credits »

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Episode cast overview:
Ellen DeGeneres ... Ellen Morgan
Joely Fisher ... Paige Clark
David Anthony Higgins ... Joe Farrell
Clea Lewis ... Audrey Penney
Jeremy Piven ... Spence Kovak
Laura Dern ... Susan
Steven Eckholdt ... Richard
k.d. lang ... Janine
Oprah Winfrey ... Therapist
Patrick Bristow ... Peter Barnes
Patrick Harrigan Patrick Harrigan ... Waiter
Jack Plotnick ... Barrett


Ellen senses a kindred spirit in herself when she meets an openly gay woman, named Susan, through Richard, an old boyfriend of hers, who enlightens Ellen to her own sexual identity. Confused by this startling self-discovery, Ellen seeks the guidance of yet another therapist and braces herself for yet another moment of truth of her life. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Romance








Release Date:

30 April 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Puppy Episode: Part 2 See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The show became famous because the lead character came out as gay during the fourth season. The Puppy Edisode was the highest rated one the show ever aired and won an Emmy for writing. The episode had guest turns by Oprah Winfrey, k.d. lang, Billy Bob Thornton, Demi Moore, Melissa Etheridge but no puppy. See more »


Ellen doesn't have her jacket when she leaves Susan's room but in the next shot in the hall it's draped over her arm. See more »


Ellen Morgan: Do you think this is a bad idea? Telling people that I'm gay?
Peter Barnes: Believe me, Ellen. Telling people is always hard. I remember when I came out to my parents. It was one summer when I was younger. I sat them down on our couch and said to them: "Mom, Dad, I've struggled with this for a long time. But this is who I am. Now, I can only hope you can be happy for me." For the rest of the summer, they remained silent. But the following autumn when I entered kindergarten, they were 100% behind me.
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References Personal Best (1982) See more »

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User Reviews

Historic Episode is worth Celebrating
26 March 2017 | by Sober-FriendSee all my reviews

It has now been 20 years since "Ellen Morgan" and "Ellen Degeneres" came out of the closet and television and gay rights have never been the same.

It is hard to imagine that there were no regular leads in television shows where the lead character was gay. Most of the times gay characters were almost non existent. A gay man was always used as the "Comic relief" and lesbians were always shown as anything but human. That all changed when "Ellen" came out.

Ellen was pretty. She also well known. Her show was entering its fourth season when "Ellen Degneres" decided that "Ellen Morgan" would be coming out of the closet.

The show at the time had very small ratings. It wasn't a big hit for ABC but it did well enough. The show from the very beginning however was always in some sort turmoil.

Ellen Degeneres however was at the top of her game when she demanded that the ABC-Disney allow her to have "ellen" come-out. For months there was lots press being generated about this possible story-line. Finally after 9 months of headlines both "Ellen Degeneres" and "Ellen Morgan" came out and made history.

Now as for the episode that Ellen came out on it became an event. It was historic. The episode was the #1 rated show of the week and one of the most watched television episodes of the past 10 years! Now after 4 years on the air the show found its voice and direction however one year later the show was canceled. That's was sad. The last year the show was on the air was the shows best collections of episodes. It was focused and funny. ABC however failed to promote the show and let the show die. You can than Michael Eisner and Bob Iger for this.

Now after 20 years we can now look back at the show and see what a mess the shows first 3 seasons were but upon viewing these episodes now we can view them as the main character being on a closet and that makes those seasons funnier than when the originally aired when we had no idea of the characters sexuality. The shows however major growth was at the tail end of season 4 and continued until the show ended in season 5. "The Puppy Episode" went on to win "Ellen Degneres" and her show an Emmy for Best Writing. It also won a Peabody Award which is a rare accomplishment for a Network Television show.

For a few years Ellen career took a hit, However she made the biggest come back in when "Finding Nemo" became a major box office hit. Ellen supplied the voice of Dory! That same year she started her talk which continues to be a major success today. In 2016 Ellen struck gold again when "Finding Dory" became the highest grossing animated film of all time.

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