A free-spirited yoga instructor finds true love in a conservative lawyer and they get married on the first date. Though they are polar opposites, he fulfills her need of stability and she fulfills his need of optimism.
There could hardly be an odder match, but love knows no reason. Assistant D.A. Greg Montgomery, the son of successful businessman Edward and Kitty, the queen of socialite snob-ism, falls madly in love with the utterly unconventional free spirit Dharma Finkelstein, the daughter of hippie couple Abby O'Neil and Larry Finkelstein. The in-laws never agree on anything and stir up trouble as they're shocked by each other's lifestyles. Greg's lazy, incompetent colleague Pete Cavanaugh and Dharma's odd friend Jane likewise develop improbably chemistry as they observe their friends' relationship.Written by
Yes, there are parallels to "I Love Lucy," but with a degree of introspection which was impossible for TV in those days. I regard this show as one of the last of the US broadcast networks' "second golden age," which emerged at the end of the seventies.
The actors use their voices extremely well; their timing, phrasing and range of modulation are expertly refined and restrained, and amazingly accomplished for TV. There are very few essential sight gags; when replaying the (excellent quality) audio track alone, I am intrigued by how well it would have worked on radio.
I notice some don't seem to "get" the parents, seeing them as shallow stereotypes. But their roles were written and played with the winking insight that the characters have become quite well aware their lifestyles, values and belief systems were folly. With evident embarrassment, they pragmatically and self-consciously stick to their pretensions, as they provide the only structure they dare trust enough to hold their fragile self-identities and relationships together.
This is gently revealed in the dynamic between and among the folks. The kids may seem to be center stage, but having themselves already caught on, essentially play "straight man" together to the poignant unfolding of their parents' subdued realizations as they sail into the fading expectations of middle age.
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