1989-1993 teen/family drama notable for having a major character with Down's syndrome (Corky), and one with AIDS (Jesse). The whole show was kind of one big Very Special Episode
. The main character, Becca, was Corky's sister and Jesse's girlfriend.
Not to be confused with Empty Nest
, which aired around the same time, with a theme song
entitled "Life Goes On".
- The Cast Showoff: Libby being played by Broadway singer Patti LuPone is a good example
- Darker and Edgier / Tone Shift: Over the course of the four seasons, the show shifted from being a reasonably light-hearted family drama focusing on Corky to a rather angsty romantic drama between Jesse and Becca. The peppy opening song remains the same, however, which is jarring particularly in the episodes with a dark or upsetting opening scene.
- Deadpan Snarker (Becca)
- Disabled Character, Disabled Actor: Chris Burke, who played Corky, actually had Down's Syndrome,as did the actress who played his girlfriend and eventual wife.
- Downer Ending
- Flash Forward: Done in the first ("Bec to the Future") and last episodes of the final season, with Becca serving as narrator.
- Forget To Feed The Dog: The opening titles feature the family all getting ready for the day, with no one remembering to feed the dog, who sits forlornly with his bowl in his mouth as everyone runs by. Viewers actually wrote letters to complain, and in the series finale, a bag of dog food falls out of a nearby cabinet and Arnold finally has breakfast.
- Hey, It's That Guy!: A handful of now-famous actors show up in small roles, notably Jack Black as a skinhead in "Incident on Main."
- Inspirationally Disadvantaged: Corky as well as his actor Chris Burke
- McLeaned: Tyler ends up killed off in a memorable car accident with Corky as a passenger
- Meganekko: Becca until Season 3
- Mistaken for Gay: A rather harsh version in "Incident on Main," when Jesse is beaten up after leaving the AIDS hospice center.
- The Other Darrin: Tracey Needham replacing Monique Lanier as Paige Thatcher after season 1.
- Someone to Remember Him By: Maybe.
- Real Song Theme Tune: The Beatles' "Ob-la-di, Ob-la-da".
- The Talk
- Vacation Episode: In the second season premiere, "Honeymoon From Hell," the family takes a trip to Hawaii. (LOST fans will recognize the Byodo-In Temple, where Sun and Jin were married.)