I'll start with the history since no one else did. Marilyn Kentz & Caryl Kristensen were two comediennes who performed together. Part of their routine on-stage was to do a piece called "The Mommies" in which they would portray two women folding clothes at a table and complaining about their husbands and children. Not my cup of tea but it was cute... clearly they were better writing jokes in a dialogue than in stand-up monologue style, and as two actual mothers they certainly drew from real-life experience. Enter Hollywood.
Let's turn "The Mommies" into a network sitcom! On stage it was funny to hear about the nuisance of invisible children and complaints about off-screen husbands... on a TV show you have to actually cast real people to play these roles. Suddenly Dad 'n the brats are human, sympathetic characters and the jokes about them become mean-spirited and the women become b- how do I say this nicely? Mean women.
They still did a segment every episode in which they folded laundry and traded one-liners... but now they were just miserable whining pigs. The jokes had become bitter complaints and their once-weary persona was now downright hostile. Clearly something was lost in development. The show started out nasty and never got on track. I remember comedians and friends at the time making jokes about "The Mommies," always with the implication that it was the type of show- and they the type of women- that would send men screaming in the opposite direction.
They weren't wrong.
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