Telecast: March 13, 2003
September 1966 - September 1969,
Monday 9:30-10:00 on CBS
September 1969 - September
1971, Thursday 7:30-8:00 on CBS
September 2002 - December
2002, Thursday 8:00-8:30 on WB
February 2003 - March
2003, Thursday 8:30-9:00 on WB
Davis..... Brian Keith
Davis..... Gary Cole
Patterson-Davis (age 6).....
Bert, the doorman.....
Bill Davis's carefree existence
as a swinging bachelor was just about perfect. A highly paid consulting
engineer, he maintained an elegant apartment off Fifth Avenue in Manhattan and
had his domestic needs cared for by a very English gentlemen's gentleman, Mr.
French. Into his life of independence came three young orphans, the 6-year-old
twins Buffy and Jody and 15-year-old Cissy. Their parents, Bill's brother and
sister-in-law, had died in an accident, and other relatives felt that Bill could
best provide for them. Despite initial misgivings,
Bill and French became very attached to the children and learned to adjust their
lifestyle to make room for the new members of the household. Mr. French, a
stickler for neatness and order, had the toughest adjustment to make - he was
with the children all the time while Bill was often out of town on assignments -
but he and the children managed to compromise and learn to live with each other.
For a period during the show's
first season, co-star Sebastian Cabot was taken ill and was replaced in nine
episodes by John Williams. In the story line, Giles French was called away to
special service for the Queen of England and his brother Nigel arrived at the
Davis residence to serve the family during his absence. Although not a full-time
member of the cast, Nancy Walker appeared in the continuing role of Mr. Davis's
part-time housekeeper, Emily, during the last season.
CBS aired reruns of Family
Affair on weekdays from
September 1970 to January 1973.
When the WB revived Family
Affair in 2002, nothing much had changed - the show even used the same
instrumental theme song, and Buffy was still attached to her beloved doll, Mrs.
Beasley. In the new version Bill was a high-powered corporate executive living
in a luxurious Manhattan apartment overlooking Central Park, whose sister,
Jenny, prevailed upon him to honor his promise to take his late brother's twins
after her own kids had grown up. The adorable tykes, brassy Buffy and
blunt Jody, arrived from the Midwest, and later the same day their older sister,
Sissy, who had been living with Bill's other sister, Lucy, showed up with a
backpack and moved in too. Bill spoiled them all rotten and French adjusted to
their presence - it wasn't always easy - but there was much love amidst the
consternation. French enrolled the twins in the Dovetail School, which had been
organized by local parents looking for an alternative to the stuffy private
schools in the neighborhood, while Sissy attended a performing-arts high school
where Chelsea was her best friend.