''Empty Nest'' was an Creator/{{NBC}} sitcom which ran from 1988 to 1995. The series began as a spin-off of ''Series/TheGoldenGirls'', and its pilot ran as an episode of that show (season 2, episode 26), although it was dramatically changed before becoming its own series. Nevertheless, the two households were established as neighbors and characters regularly crossed between the two. ''Empty Nest'' was one of the year's top 10 most-watched programs for its first three years.

The show centered around Dr. Harry Weston (Richard Mulligan), a Miami pediatrician. When Harry's wife passes away, his two adult daughters, neurotic divorcee Carol (Dinah Manoff) and tough party-girl policewoman Barbara (Kristy [=McNichol=]) move back in with Harry to help support him. A third daughter was mentioned as being away at college, but was not seen until 1992 - when [=McNichol=] left the series due to suffering from bipolar disorder, Emily (Lisa Rieffel) was introduced to the cast for one season. Rounding out the cast was the Westons' wacky, womanizing neighbor Charlie Dietz (David Leisure), Harry's tough Southern nurse Laverne Todd (Park Overall), and Dreyfuss the dog. Estelle Getty also reprised her role as Sophia Patrillo from ''The Golden Girls'' and ''Series/GoldenPalace'', including as a regular cast member in the final two seasons after ''Golden Palace'' ended. Another plot point that occurred around the time the final two seasons began was that Harry and Laverne left the hospital where they initially worked at to work for a struggling inner-city medical clinic run by the tough talking Dr. Maxine Douglas (Marsha Warfield).

Episodes generally centered around the relationship between Harry and his daughters, who were highly competitive for 'Daddy's' attention. Harry's career as a children's doctor was also a major focus. The series ran for seven seasons and spawned its own spin-off, ''Nurses'', which revolved around a group of nurses whom also worked at the hospital where Harry worked at. However, ratings declined after several cast changes and the loss of ''The Golden Girls'' as a lead-in, and the series ended in 1995.

!!This series contains examples of:

* ArtifactTitle
* BackForTheFinale: Barbara, albeit in only a single scene.
* BelligerentSexualTension: Given that they slept together and even attempted a relationship, a lot of Charlie and Carol's bickering can be attributed to this.
* BigFriendlyDog: Dreyfuss
* BigFun: [[{{Deconstruction}} Deconstructed]] in ''More to Love.'' Danny appears to be this, but is actually a StepfordSmiler.
-->'''Danny:''' I learned a long time ago that if you're fat and funny, people like having you around - you're a "great guy." But if you're not funny, then all you are is fat.
* TheCasanova: Charley
* CompositeCharacter[=/=]SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute: Emily had a lot of the character traits of Barb and Carol.
* CrouchingMoronHiddenBadass: Dumb, goofy Dreyfus instantly goes into attack mode when he senses a prowler outside the house--as does Charley.
* TheDeterminator: LaVerne refuses to take a sick day from work, even after getting a broken arm and 2 broken legs.
* DropInCharacter: Charley would frequently drop into Harry's kitchen just to raid his fridge and hit on his daughters.
* DroppedAfterThePilot: As a spin-off to ''Series/TheGoldenGirls'', almost everything about ''Series/EmptyNest'' was dropped after the pilot, including its premise. The pilot starred an older married couple dealing with the fact that their children had all left home; The series was about a widower whose two adult daughters still lived at home. The only things which carried through to the series were the main character's job as a doctor, and the wacky neighbor played by David Leisure (although that character also changed name and career).
* EstrangedSoapFamily: Aside from her one-season appearance, Emily missed many key events in her family's life--holidays, Carol's wedding in the series finale, etc.
* ExtraDigits: One season finale has Harry, Carol, and Barbara going to England for a family ceremony. Just before they leave, Barbara mentions Carol having been born with eleven toes. When they get to the castle, they meet a butler who also has eleven toes. Later, Harry gets lost in the dungeon and stumbles upon a skeleton who also has eleven toes.
* TheGhost: Youngest sister Emily, frequently referred to but never seen for the first few seasons. Only when Barbara was PutOnABus did she show up in order to fill the void.
* TheGloriousWarOfSisterlyRivalry: The smart but neurotic Carol and the strong and attractive (but not so bright) Barbara Weston compete for their father's affections.
* HollywoodHomely: In-universe. Carol is incredibly insecure about her looks, even though she's reasonably attractive.
* HollywoodPudgy: In-universe, Carol is also perpetually obsessed with either losing or maintaining her weight and considers herself a "pig" should she weigh more than 115 pounds. She's the only person who sees herself as this--note that for all their merciless teasing, neither Barbara nor Charlie ever taunts her about her weight.
* InkblotTest: Lothario Charley finds Carol's inkblots and asks why she has pictures of naked women.
* IronicName: The show's title refers to the phenomenon of married couples being left alone when their children move out to go college/graduate school/get married, but the premise of the show has Harry's adult daughters moving back in with him.
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: Charlie. For all his womanizing, there have been several women who he's genuinely liked, including Barbara and Carol, whom he's often taken on a protective attitude to as well.
* LaterInstallmentWeirdness: Halfway through the series, Barbara moved out and never-before-seen sister Emily moved in. Then Emily moved out again and Carol became a single mom. Meanwhile, Harry moved out of his posh pediatric office and into an inner-city clinic to practice adult medicine.
* PoorlyDisguisedPilot: The "Empty Nest" episode of ''Golden Girls'' is a textbook example.
* PutOnABus: Barbara moves to Tucson, Arizona in season 5 and Emily returns to school after her one-season stint.
* RashomonStyle: Harry and Laverne recall their first meeting at her job interview in a dispute over whether she ever promised to wear a nursing cap. In Harry's version, Laverne is a naive country bumpkin, in Laverne's she is competent and professional (perhaps overly so) and a weak and indecisive Harry defers to her.
** One Thanksgiving episode has most of the cast argue at the dinner table over who started a kitchen fire the previous Thanksgiving. Only Dreyfus had the valid explanation.
* RecurringDreams: One episode has Harry unable to sleep due to a recurring nightmare in which he's unable to escape from a tiger while wearing his wife's bathrobe. At the end of the episode, it's revealed that he's having the dream because he's due to appear at a medical conference at the hospital where she died.
* RequiredSpinoffCrossover: All four leads from ''Series/TheGoldenGirls'' appeared in various episodes (albeit not at the same time), and Sophia became a regular {{Transplant}} in season 6. Conversely, characters from this show made guest appearances on ''The Golden Girls'' as well as ''Nurses''.
* {{Spinoff}}: ''Nurses''. Unfortunately, however, ''Nurses'' did not have the same ratings success that ''Empty Nest'' had and thus suffered from tragic ExecutiveMeddling constantly throughout the run.
* ThematicThemeTune: "Life goes on, and so do we..."
* TomboyAndGirlyGirl: FairCop Barbara and the more feminine Carol.
* TheUnfavorite: Carol is convinced she's this to everyone in comparison to her two sisters. It doesn't help that her overwhelming neuroses--of which this is one of--''does'' make it harder for people to have a relationship with her.
* WeAreExperiencingTechnicalDifficulties: Womanizer Charlie Dietz becomes a meteorologist on the local news and compares the size of some hailstones to the anchorwoman's breasts. Cue the trope.
* YourCheatingHeart: Carol's husband cheated on her, prompting their divorce. In another episode, Harry suspects that Barbara's latest boyfriend is married and turns out to be right.