Empty Nest (1988–1995)

TV Series   |  TV-PG   |    |  Comedy, Family


Episode Guide
Empty Nest (1988) Poster

"Empty Nest" is set in Miami and tells of the day to day misadventures of a widowed pediatrician, Harry Weston, and his two adult daughters, Barbara and Carol Weston, who have come back to ... See full summary »

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6.6/10
2,474

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  • Diana Muldaur and Richard Mulligan in Empty Nest (1988)
  • Nana Visitor in Empty Nest (1988)
  • Dinah Manoff, Kristy McNichol, and Richard Libertini in Empty Nest (1988)
  • Dinah Manoff, Kristy McNichol, and Richard Mulligan in Empty Nest (1988)
  • Dinah Manoff, Kristy McNichol, David Leisure, Richard Mulligan, and Park Overall in Empty Nest (1988)
  • Estelle Getty, Dinah Manoff, David Leisure, Richard Mulligan, Park Overall, and Marsha Warfield in Empty Nest (1988)

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19 September 2008 | Bolesroor
4
| Wonderfully Forgettable
Backstory: "Golden Girls" was a huge hit on Saturday nights for NBC and programmers wanted to expand on that success to create an entire night of comedy. (If you think "spin-off" is a dirty word you'll probably want to stop reading here.) The second season finale of GG features a married couple (Paul Dooley & Rita Moreno) who had never been on the show before dealing with the future of their marriage now that their children had grown up and moved out. Dooley & Moreno had zero chemistry and the idea of a show based on such a depressing mess must have scared producers sober, so they "re-tooled."

The next season "Empty Nest" premiered right after "Golden Girls" with lightweight goon Richard Mulligan as Harry, a widowed doctor with two adult daughters still living in his home. (NOTE: This is the only part of the series that bothered me: How can you call a show 'Empty Nest' in which both adult daughters live at home? I guess producers liked the premise but found the execution too depressing. The title "Full House" would have made just as much sense.)

Dinah Manoff was the semi-bangable neurotic and Kristy McNicol the semi-bangable tough cookie. Park Overall is Harry's nurse/receptionist with a Southern accent and husky voice. David Leisure plays neighbor Charlie, a variant on his smooth-talking, lying "Joe Isuzu" character. A Golden Girl stops by twice a season to borrow an egg and remind us they live right next door and life goes on...

"Empty Nest" had decent laughs, decent performances... it was a pleasant filler to pass the time. I long for the days when television could afford to be this gentle... today most shows begin with the discovery of a corpse and end with confessions of lurid sex. It's cheap, and common, and inspires less viewer loyalty than a goofy sitcom in which the dog's name appears in the credits. Farewell "Empty Nest"...

GRADE: B-

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