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Series / Hope & Faith

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Hope & Faith was an American sitcom that ran for three seasons (2003–06) on ABC, starring Faith Ford, Kelly Ripa, and Ted McGinley as well as a very young Megan Fox.

The show revolved around the two Fairfield sisters, Hope (Ford) and Faith (Ripa). Hope is a sensible married mother of three who has a nice calm life until Faith arrives on the scene. Faith is the complete opposite of her sister, an actress whose character on a soap opera has just been killed off and left her unemployed. She moves in with Hope and causes all kinds of disruptions in the family's life.


This sitcom provides examples of:

  • A-Cup Angst: Subverted. Hayley doesn't mind getting breasts, what she's terrified of is having to go shopping for bras with Hope after Sydney tells her about how embarrassing it was when she did it.
  • Actor Allusion: Faith and Handsome Hal get an audition for a morning talk show as an obvious nod to Regis & Kelly.
  • Affectionate Parody: Faith's soap opera The Sacred & The Sinful is one of American soaps in general, as well as The Bold & The Beautiful.
  • All Men Are Perverts: Hoo boy. Pretty much every single guy you see Sydney with in various episodes is going to act like an sex-drive with legs incapable of keeping it in his pants or staying faithful.
  • Black Comedy Rape: A mild example. Charlie doesn't know that Faith is staying in the house and assumes that it's Hope in their bed (Hope had only left a few minutes ago) and so he climbs in and spoons her. The fun starts when Hope and Hayley walk into the room.
    Faith: Come on, let's be honest. What family hasn't had this happen?
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  • Brainless Beauty: Faith and Sydney.
  • Brick Joke: One episode where Hayley is trying to prove she's the least favourite as the middle child has her saying that Justin and Sydney are in more pictures in the photo album than her. The epilogue has a scene where Hope and Charlie come into her room with a camera and say "we've got a lot of photos to take".
  • Brought Home the Wrong Kid: Faith takes care of a baby doll in one episode and brings it to the park one day, only to bring home a real baby. Being Faith, she assumes the doll came to life.
  • Can't Get Away with Nuthin': Justin steals a chocolate bar and returns it...only for the shopkeeper to call the police.
  • Cheek Copy: On "Hope Gets A Job" (Season 1, Episode 20), they both get jobs as newspaper columnists. As a prank, Hope photocopies one of her breasts and puts the picture in a manila envelope, which, of course, gets switched with the envelope containing the photo she wanted to use as her byline photo. When they are confronted about it, the printing press tears their dresses off.
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  • Child Prodigy: Hayley. She's 12 but actually gets skipped two grades to high school.
  • The Cobbler's Children Have No Shoes: A minor example as Faith's therapist alludes to her husband leaving her.
  • Control Freak: Hope, as discovered when she gets a job as a sous chef.
    Faith: In elementary school she was that weird little girl always wiping down the monkey bars.
  • Cool and Unusual Punishment: Sydney's guy of the week comes over to her house expecting to get it on with Faith and Hope ends up sending him home without his clothes.
  • Costume Porn: The episode where Faith and Sydney, and Hope and Hayley enter a mother-daughter fashion show.
  • Dawson Casting: Much like 8 Simple Rules there was a 16-year-old character played by a 26-year-old actress. In season 2 Nicole Paggi was replaced with Megan Fox making it 20 playing 17. Ironically Fox looked much older than Paggi.
    • In universe example when Faith impersonates a student at Sydney's school. She also alludes to having to shop in the Teen section to find clothes that fit.
  • Dumb Blonde: Faith. And her best friend Mandy.
  • Eskimos Aren't Real: Faith suggests paying for an expensive car by taking money out of the kids' college fun. "Come on, Justin isn't going to get to college! He thinks there's a place called New Mexico!"
  • Fallen Princess: Faith, in her own eyes. Former soap opera star now forced to live in the real world. She doesn't mature.
  • Finagle's Law: Ooh boy.
  • Gag Echo: One episode has Charlie and Hope go on about Faith's 'hurt face' when she gets annoyed. In The Stinger, when Wai-Lan calls Faith annoying, her subtitles read "oh, great, there's the 'hurt face'"
  • The Ghost: Ivy, a bully at Hayley's school.
  • Halloween Episode: Three. The first just has Halloween as the opener. The second has Faith and Hope get trapped in a house with a crazy neighbour. The third has Hope being forced to throw a Halloween party that Sydney tries to sneak out of.
  • Head-Tiltingly Kinky: Faith shows the Gooch a diagram of a sex position she wants to try. He turns the paper upside down and says "I don't think I bend that way".
    • Hayley and a friend have this reaction when Sydney decides to take her thong off in the living room, not knowing they're behind her.
  • Hollywood Pudgy: In-universe example as Faith considers Hope to be overweight but her personal trainer refers to Hope as attractive and thin.
  • I Want You to Meet an Old Friend of Mine: Faith goes to work for a car salesman called "Handsome" Hal, played by Regis Philbin. Both Regis and Kelly hosted their own talk show (Regis & Kelly). The Gooch (Faith's love interest) is also played by Kelly Ripa's real life husband Mark Consuelos.
  • Imagine Spot: In the penultimate season 1 episode, Faith has one of the soap opera cast welcoming her back with a musical number.
  • Incest Subtext: One episode has Faith pretend she and Hope are a lesbian couple. There's also another episode where Hope admits to giving Faith a personal spray-tan.
  • Ironic Echo Cut: In a flashback to when Hope was pregnant Faith's narration says "Your mother was as big as a house but I knew better than to tell her". Cue Hope and Faith meeting up and Faith saying "Hope, you're as big as a house".
  • Kids Shouldn't Watch Horror Films: Used by Justin when he's trying to get Hope to quit work.
    Justin: "I was up all night watching The Exorcist. I will never go to church or sleep again"
    Hope: "Charlie, how could you let him watch that? He still has nightmares from Elmo In Grouchland"
  • Latin Lover: The Gooch.
  • Long-Lost Relative: Hope and Faith discover they have a half-brother (who is not named Charity) Jay played by Johnny Galecki.
  • May–December Romance: Faith and Hope's father and Faith's best friend Mandy.
  • Middle Child Syndrome: Hayley.
  • Mighty Whitey and Mellow Yellow: In one episode, Faith suspects Charlie of having an affair and (through sheer coincidence) thinks it's with Wai-Lan, their visiting violinist from China.
  • Missing Mom: It's revealed in a Thanksgiving episode that Faith and Hope's mother died of a heart attack.
  • The Other Darrin: Nicole Paggi as season 1 Sydney, Megan Fox as seasons 2-3 Sydney. Also a different set of actors played Charlie's parents in two separate episodes in season 2 and season 3. The pilot also featured Jansen Panettiere as Justin (Paulie Litt played him in the series).
  • Plenty of Blondes: Faith, Hope, Hayley, Sydney (only in season 1).
  • Single Woman Seeks Good Man: In season 2 Sydney actually spends a while trying to attract a boy scout who is smart and kind.
  • Skewed Priorities: Faith says of joining the army...
    "Now I would give my life for my country, but my hair!?"
    • And when Hope ruins her dress in the fashion show and apologises, Faith ignores it and orders her to apologise for a "cottage cheese thighs" comment earlier.
  • The Talk: Hope has to give it at Sydney's school and resorts to using puppets such as Abby Abstinence and Peter Peer Pressure.
  • Theme Naming: The kids' names (Hayley, Justin, and Sydney) were clearly inspired by the soap opera genre.
  • There Are No Therapists: Played straight until season 3 when Faith is sent to see a therapist and does so regularly. It doesn't really seem to have much effect on her.
  • Tickle Torture: Faith seems to get it a decent amount of it.
    • In “Faith’s Husband”, Bob, Faith's separated husband played by Tom Arnold, picks Faith up to carry her to his RV but, in protest, she holds on to the door frame, begging Hope to help her. Hope, who is eager to get her sister out of the house, tickles Faith's underarms to keep her from holding onto the door, causing her to let go during her giggle fit.
      • Faith receives it again, this time as punishment courtesy of her nephew, Justin, in “Aru-Bah Humbug”. Justin admits to his mother that he knew his aunt, who is now stuck in the chimney, was playing Santa Claus and seems fairly alright with it. After Hope runs up to the roof to help pull her out, Justin rips off one of Faith’s boots. When asked what he’s doing, Justin retorts with “This is for impersonating Santa Claus!” and sadistically scribbles his fingers under Faith’s foot. Faith laughs hysterically and Justin only stops when she claims she has to pee.
  • Very Loosely Based on a True Story: Partly based on the life of actress Joanna Johnson, former cast member of The Bold & The Beautiful.
  • "Walk on the Wild Side" Episode: A variation where Hope and Charlie decide to sneak off to motels and other places during the week for alone time while lying to Faith about PTA meetings.
  • Wild Teen Party: In season 1 though Sydney and Hayley manage to clear the house before the parents get home.
  • Womanchild: Faith of course.
  • Women Are Wiser: Hope and Hayley are this in comparison to Charlie and Justin. Averted with Faith and Sydney who are even worse.

Example of: