Quick show of hands:
How many of us wish we lived in a mansion with a dad who owned a toy company and was so rich that he had a full accompaniment of arcade video games in the living room?
Yeah, us too. But for young Ricky Stratton (Ricky Schroeder), that dream was a reality (at least at 8:30 on Saturday nights after Diff’rent Strokes on NBC.)
The story begins with young Ricky, fresh from military school, showing up on the (rather ornate) doorstep on the dad he never knew. Over the next five seasons (’82-’86), the show would tackle every thorny issue out there, from homelessness to bullying, and we’d also be treated to a veritable 80s who’s-who of guest stars, from Mr. T to Menudo, along with the adorable Jason Bateman as the smart-ass Derek Taylor, and Alfonso Ribiero as Ricky’s buddy, er… Alfonso.
Lest we forget, there was also the delightful Erin Gray as daddy’s fetching secretary (and later wife) Kate. Yes, she often had to step up and control the childlike behavior of Ricky and (even more so) Joel, but we loved her anyway. Maybe it how she rocked the preppy sweater and Tretorns. 80s fashion alert!
In the end, the show just couldn’t compete again the juggernaut that was (and still is) 60 Minutes. (Sound familiar Voyagers! fans? And, yes, we love that show, too.), but that doesn’t mean we love it any less.
Now, if you’ll excuse us, we need to go ride our model train through our dining room.
We ♥ Silver Spoons.