Show Type: Sitcom
First Telecast: March 15, 1977
Last Telecast: September 18, 1984
Theme Music: "Three's Company," by Don Nicholl and Joe Raposo; sung by Ray Charles and Julia Rinker
Jack Tripper..... John Ritter
Janet Wood..... Joyce DeWitt
Chrissy Snow (1977-1981)..... Suzanne Somers
Helen Roper (1977-1979)..... Audra Lindley
Stanley Roper (1977-1979)..... Norman Fell
Larry Dallas (1978-1984)..... Richard Kline
Ralph Furley (1979-1984)..... Don Knotts
Lana Shields (1979-1980)..... Ann Wedgeworth
Cindy Snow (1980-1982)..... Jenilee Harrison
Terri Alden (1981-1984)..... Priscilla Barnes
Frank Angelino (1981-1984)..... Jordan Charney
Mike, the Bartender (1981-1984)..... Brad Blaisdell
Based on the British series Man About The House, this show focused on two contemporary young single girls who found themselves in need of a roommate for their Santa Monica apartment. They decided to settle for the man they found sleeping in their bathtub - after a going-away party for their last roommate. Jack was harmless, but the problem was in convincing everybody else of that!
The girls parents objected and humorous misunderstandings abounded, but Jack stayed. In addition to his other virtues, he was the only one of the three roommates who could cook. In order to stay in the apartment, he had to pretend he was gay and uninterested in the two sexy girls he lived with - nothing ever did happen between themm. The landlady, Mrs. Roper, who lived downstairs and knew about Jack's real sexual preference, worried less about what was going on upstairs than about the fact that nothing was going on in her love life with her husband Stanley. Away from their confused home life, Jack was studying for - and eventually got - his chef's diploma. Janet, the brunette, worked in a flower shop and Chrissy, the dipsy blonde, was a typist.
Norman Fell and Audra Lindley left the show in 1979 for their own series, The Ropers, and were replaced by Don Knotts as new landlord, Ralph Furley. Then, in 1980, Suzanne Somers, who had become a media sensation as a result of the show, demanded a huge increase in salary plus a piece of the profits. The producers refused, and her role was reduced to an occasional brief scene in which she was seen phoning her roommates long distance (she was supposed to be in Fresno, California caring for her sick mom.) Soon afterwards, Chrissy Snow was written out of the show completely and Suzanne Somers' career hit the skids.
Jack and Janet promptly found a new roommate in Cindy, who was introduced as Chrissy's cute, clumsy cousin. She moved out of the apartment in 1981 in order to study veterinary medicine at UCLA, but she continued to visit for another season. Her replacement was a smart, vivacious nurse named Terri.
Meanwhile, Jack pursued his career as a chef, first at Angelino's Restaurant owned by Frank Angelino. In 1982, landlord Ralph Furley and Mr. Angelino put up the money to open Jack's own place - called Jack's Bistro, specializing in French cuisine. When not at the restaurant or the apartment, the bunch hung out at the Regal Beagle, a neighborhood bar.
When he lost his roommates - Janet got married and Terri moved to Hawaii - Jack moved in with his new girlfriend and a new series began in the fall of 1984, called Three's A Crowd.
After a short run in the spring of 1977, Three's Company was picked up as a regular show on ABC's fall schedule. The comedy was based on sexual double-standards, and religious leaders and critics found it almost as objectionable as Soap, which followed it on Tuesday nights. But viewers made it one of the major hits of the 1977-1978 season - especially after it was featured on the cover of Newsweek magazine in February, 1978. The cover photo was a staged shot of Chrissy with her undergarment seemingly falling off, and Jack leering over her shoulder - something that never happened on thee show.
ABC aired reruns on weekday mornings from June to September 1981.
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