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Series / Oliver Beene

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Oliver Beene is a 2003 American sitcom set in the early 1960s, and ran Sunday nights on FOX as a replacement for the then-cancelled Futurama. It is about the title character's struggle to survive his unpredictable family, consisting of his dentist dad Jerry, homemaker mom Charlotte, and womanizing older brother Ted. Oliver's friends Michael and Joyce, however, make things a lot more bearable.

This show ran for two seasons with 24 episodes in total, with only the last two episodes never airing in America.

This show contains examples of:

  • Aloof Big Brother: Ted is this to Oliver. He's the usual jock Big Brother Bully to Oliver, but despite all this, Ted does care for Oliver and even teaches him the art of Spin-the-bottle for his first kiss-party.
  • Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: Ted's attitude towards Jerry, especially in the episode where they discover Jerry throws the ball like a girl.
  • Anachronism Stew: Happens on occasion for comedic effect, such as when Jerry and Charlotte spying on other people at their apartment and referencing current TV shows as if they were watching television, such as Joe Millionaire and Queer Eye.
  • Broken Pedestal:
    • Subverted in one episode. After collecting many details, Jerry deduces Charlotte's younger sister Connie was having an affair with JFK and tries to stop Charlotte from arriving there to prevent this to happen. Nobody gets to know if it was actually true.
  • Bumbling Dad: Jerry. He even does wacky and embarrassing things for the sake of the family (when he found out the summer club wouldn't admit them not because of him, but because of Charlotte, Jerry mooned everyone at the pool, so it could be seen like he was responsible of they not getting the membership).
  • Camp Gay: Oliver's best friend Michael since 1) Those were early 60s, when almost nobody knew what meant being "gay", so it wasn't very obvious for the other characters, and 2) Flash Forwards show grown-up Michael as a costume designer and having adopted a Chinese baby with a male partner.
  • Can't Hold His Liquor: Jerry. One martini is enough to getting him drunk.
  • Cheaters Never Prosper: Played with and Averted in the episode where EVERYONE (even the teacher, who left the answers of the Geography-Bee contest in the open) encourage Oliver to cheat with the only purpose of beating Susan in the most humiliating way: Beaten by the worst student in geography.
  • Cool Teacher: Mr. Plotkin is considered this, since is the first teacher who attempts doing jokes on class.
  • Dumbass Teenage Son: Ted, whose only priorities in life seem to be playing sports and trying to bed hot teenage girls.
  • Hero-Worshipper: Future!Oliver tells Charlotte is a big JFK fan, so much that the family photo of the Kennedy's is displayed in the living room, and it's double size bigger than their actual family photo at the coffee table.
  • Insufferable Genius: Susan, to the point of correcting and humiliating Mr. Plotkin in front of the entire class.
  • Jerk With A Heart Of Jerk: Susan, to the point nobody, even her father, likes her. When Oliver tries to find something sympathetic about her, Susan again insults him, prompting Oliver to accept and cheat to beat her in the contest.
  • Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: Joyce isn't a Tomboy, but is more brutally honest and mature than both Michael and Oliver.
  • Mid Season Replacement: When Futurama got canned, this was put in its place.
  • Mistaken for Racist: Oliver, when he jumps a wall and accidentally lands on a black classmate (who was also the first black student to attend their school), gets accused of a hate crime.
    • Jerry as well, who happened to be wearing a shirt that stated "Keep 'Em White"note  the same day when he arrived to pick up Oliver.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Elke, a blonde Swedish Foreign Exchange Student who eventually enters a relationship with Ted.
  • The Nicknamer: The aptly-named "Nickname", whose nicknaming is so pervasive in the school that many kids are only known by them.
  • Not What It Looks Like: During a field trip, Oliver's thermos of chicken soup flies out the window as the bus hits a bump, with some of it spilling on his shirt. He then says that he "lost his lunch", which is slang for vomiting. The other kids continue to take this figuratively no matter how many times Oliver tells them otherwise.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Charlotte is good at sports, but has to pretend being not good at baseball because of the 60s old standards (a woman good at sports was like "being lesbian").
  • Retraux: Fox's Sunday night promos were done in a 1960s style when this aired.
  • Teacher's Pet: Averted. Oliver thought Mr. Plotkin would adore Susan, when in reality he hates Susan because she once humilliated him during one of his classes, to the point of plotting to make Oliver beat her.
  • Values Dissonance: Intentionally invoked by present day Oliver in many episodes. Much of the show's humor derived from a hindsight look at the cultural differences that existed in The '60s.
  • Vomit Discretion Shot: In the episode where Oliver and his dad spend some quality time together, when Oliver vomits, the scene cuts to a fountain statue spitting water.