Charles in Charge
Sure, you had your ‘high-brow’ TV shows in the 80s… Emmy-winners like Family Ties and critically-acclaimed gems like The Cosby Show. But for those of us who just enjoyed mindless, fun sitcoms full of silly jokes, was there ever a better one than Charles in Charge?
Starring Scott Baio as Charles, it told the story of a high-school-aged live-in babysitter—first for the Pembroke clan and then for the Powells. (The Powells are the family you probably remember… The Pembrokes were the original family during the lone year of CiC’s network run, in 1984-85. When it came back in syndication for four more seasons, Charles was working for the Powells.)
It was a classic sitcom in the true sense of the word. Puns abounded, from the episode titles (“Poppa, the Sailor Man” and “Judge Not Lest Ye Beheaded” were two of the best) to the scripts themselves. Of course it didn’t hurt that Charles’ best friend, Buddy Lembeck (remember William Aames?) was… well, let’s just say ‘dim bulb’ wouldn’t be too harsh.
Then there was the rest of the cast… along with super-cute Charles and goofy Buddy, there were the three kids—hot sister Jamie (Nicole Eggert), smart sister Sarah (Josie Davis), and little brother Adam (Alexander Polinsky). Yes, Charles in Charge was a cliché-ridden comedy-fest, and we loved it.
And, really, is there a more über-80s theme song and opening credits than these? C’mon everyone… sing along!
Yes, our man Charles really was in charge (in more ways than one—Baio actually directed the vast majority of the episodes), and, frankly, we thought more than once about what it would be like for him to be in charge of us. He was always there to save the day (remember the earthquake warning system he came up with?) teach a lesson (remember when the girls snuck out to a club, with disastrous results?), or be a shoulder to cry on (remember when his alcoholic sister visited and almost seriously injured the kids?).
Charles in Charge may not be the first thing you think of when it comes to great 80s TV shows, but that doesn’t mean it’s not worth remembering.
We ♥ Charles in Charge.
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