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October 4, 2015

designing women

Four Funny Women Equals Comedy Gold, From 'Golden Girls' to 'Sex and the City'

by Allison Waldman, posted Jun 15th 2010 5:00PM
Jane Leeves, Valerie Bertinelli, Betty White, and Wendie Malick of 'Hot in Cleveland'Beginning this week -- Wednesday at 10PM ET on TV Land -- four women will pool their comic resources in a new television program called 'Hot in Cleveland.' Whether it takes off or not, one thing is undeniably true about the history of this formula -- four women in situation comedy -- it has been a big hit in the past.

Think about it, 'The Golden Girls,' 'Designing Women,' 'Sex & the City,' 'The Facts of Life' and even the dramedy of 'Desperate Housewives' have all mined TV gold by putting women together and letting the estrogen fly.

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Remembering Dixie Carter on 'Designing Women'

by David Hofstede, posted Apr 12th 2010 5:00PM
Not every situation comedy can get away with tackling serious issues, but 'Designing Women' was the exception. The series boldly confronted racism, homophobia and other hot-button topics while never forgetting that its first responsibility was to be funny.

Most of its overt political and social statements were written by series creator Linda Bloodworth-Thomason, and delivered by Dixie Carter as regal, feisty Julia Sugarbaker. For many fans, the most memorable and quotable moments from 'Designing Women' were those featuring Carter and her famous southern belle smackdowns, which earned the character the nickname 'the Terminator.'

To honor Carter, who passed away April 10 after a battle with cancer, we present three of her best 'Designing Women' moments.

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'Designing Women,' 'Desperate Housewives' Star Dixie Carter Dead at 70

by Bob Sassone, posted Apr 11th 2010 7:52AM
Dixie CarterJust last night I was watching a TV commercial featuring Dixie Carter, talking to the camera about a terrible disease whose name escapes me at the moment. And tonight comes the news that Carter has passed away at the age of 70. No further details have been released yet.

Carter is probably best known for her role as feisty, outspoken (well, all of the women were pretty feisty and outspoken on that show, weren't they?) Julia Sugarbaker on 'Designing Women,' which ran on CBS for eight years. But younger TV watchers might know her from her role on 'Desperate Housewives' as Gloria, the loopy mom of Orson (she was nominated for an Emmy for the role). But she actually starred in several other TV shows over the years, including 'Family Law,' 'Ladies Man,' 'Filthy Rich,' 'Out of the Blue,' and 'On Our Own,' not to mention numerous guest roles on many other shows. Her first TV role was in the soap 'The Doctors.'

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'Designing Women' Star Dixie Carter Dies

by AOL TV Staff, posted Apr 11th 2010 12:51AM
Dixie CarterTV star Dixie Carter died Saturday morning at age 70, the AP is reporting.

Carter's death was confirmed Saturday by publicist Steve Rohn, who represents Carter and her husband, Oscar-nominated actor Hal Holbrook. Further details, including the cause of death, were not disclosed.

"This has been a terrible blow to our family. We would appreciate everyone understanding that this is a private family tragedy," Holbrook said in a written statement.

Carter's career spanned multiple decades on television and on the stage. TV fans may remember her best for her portrayal of Julia Sugarbaker on the CBS sitcom 'Designing Women,' on which she appeared in over 160 episodes from 1986-1993. The role came just one year following a two-season gig on NBC's 'Diff'rent Strokes,' as aerobics instructor Maggie McKinney

For more on the career of Dixie Carter, visit PopEater.

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Delta Burke on 'Modern Family'? Make it Happen!

by Allison Waldman, posted Mar 13th 2010 1:20PM
delta_burke_fan_smilingThere's a rumor buzzing around the Internet that Delta Burke will guest on 'Modern Family' as Cameron's mother. TV Guide had something in the print edition, and it was also repeated here, but the real culprit behind the tale is actor Eric Stonestreet who plays Cam. He said he would love Delta Burke to play his mama ... and it's a great idea.

Listen to how Eric described his character's background in a November interview: "Cameron is from a rural area in Missouri, he grew up on a farm. We don't know quite how he came out of the closet yet. You're going to find out little tidbits in the next few episodes about how my parents knew I was gay, but I think the thing is my parents are very supportive, very passionate and funny people. I can't wait for America to meet Cameron's mom -- I think Cameron's mom probably has a lot to do with his vivaciousness."

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New TV on DVD for Mar. 2: 'Alice,' 'Designing Women' & More

by Scott Harris, posted Mar 2nd 2010 2:00PM
They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, and if that's the case, Tim Burton and the folks behind 'Alice in Wonderland' are about to be buried under an avalanche of flattery. Whether you think it's a cheap marketing ploy or a very, very smart marketing ploy, the release of top-line films such as 'Alice' usually coincide with other studios rolling out all the similarly themed product they can in order to ride coattails to success at the cash register. And while most of those releases come in the form of old adaptations and quickie knockoff films, there's a little something for everyone this week in the DVD market, even TV fans.

Case in point: SyFy Channel's 2009 miniseries 'Alice.' No, it wasn't conceived by the network as a way to get rich off of Johnny Depp's wacky hairstyle, but there's no question that the studio wisely decided to capitalize on the hype by picking this week to release the 'Alice' DVD set.

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New TV on DVD Releases This Week

by Bob Sassone, posted Mar 1st 2010 6:03PM
AliceHere are the new TV DVDs, in stores tomorrow.

I wonder how many people are going to go to pick up 'Alice,' hoping to settle in to some great 70s comedy featuring grumpy bosses and the kissing of grits, and then they put the DVD in and discover the other 'Alice.' Of course, that's not going to happen because people don't buy DVDs without looking at the cover (I hope), but I can imagine a few people looking at the listing below and thinking of the Linda Lavin show before the SyFy miniseries.

  • 'Alice' - Miniseries
  • 'Designing Women' - Season 3
  • 'Doctor Who' - Dalek War and Remembrance of the Daleks: Special Edition
  • 'Have Gun Will Travel' - Season 4, Vol. 1

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We Raise a Glass to Our Favorite New Year's Episodes

by David Hofstede, posted Dec 31st 2009 10:30AM

New Year's Eve episodes have never been as plentiful as those about Christmas. Television writers, it seems, figure most viewers would rather be out sipping champagne and kissing strangers on December 31 than watching TV.

But a few of these holiday-themed gems were made, and they're a great way to get ready for your midnight celebration. Here are some of the best.

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Two and a Half Men: Mmm, fish. Yum.

by Allison Waldman, posted Oct 6th 2009 9:26AM
jon_cryer_cbs(S07E03) So far this season, Two and a Half Men has been sailing along, continuing to provide plenty of laughs and just enough vulgarity to keep its crown as a raunchy pleasure. Tonight, however, they hit an iceberg. Too bad really, but half the show -- no pun intended -- was spot on. If only the other half had been as good.

For some reason, the writers have this idea that Alan as the object of affection to older women is funny. No, not really. It didn't work when Carol Kane guested as the mother of a girl Alan was dating and it didn't work tonight with Annie Potts as Judith's mother, Lenore.

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New TV on DVD releases this week

by Bob Sassone, posted Aug 10th 2009 6:27PM
Super Friends DVDHere are the new TV DVDs, in stores tomorrow.

I have to admit that I had no idea what The City was when I saw that season one was coming out on DVD this week (an Amazon exclusive). Is it the show Loving became in the late 90s? No, it's the spinoff of The Hills. Oh yes, let me run out and buy two copies of this. One to play until it wears out, and the other to have on my shelf when I can't play the first one anymore.

I have to pick up some of these Super Friends sets at some point. I really loved that show in the 70s. I think these "lost episodes" might be from the 80s.

  • 90210 - Season 1
  • Adam-12 - Season 3
  • Are You Being Served? - Complete Collection

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TV on DVD: Week of May 26

by Katy Kroll, posted May 26th 2009 6:00AM
Here's a taste of what's coming out on DVD this week:

'The Closer' (The Complete Fourth Season)

What the Season's About: As L.A.'s lead investigator, Brenda Leigh Johnson has a special gift when it comes to getting criminals talking. But the real drama comes as she grapples with preparing for married life with fiancé -- and FBI agent -- Fritz.

Special Features: There's a blooper reel, deleted scenes and an informative featurette with actor Corey Reynolds and a real-life L.A. police detective.

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New TV on DVD releases this week

by Bob Sassone, posted May 25th 2009 6:00PM
Sat Morning CartoonsHere are the new TV DVDs, in stores tomorrow.

I'm not usually a big fan of these DVD box sets that take one genre and give you a variety of various series episodes (such as the sets that have a bunch of TV westerns in them). But the Saturday Morning Cartoon sets look like fun. The 1960s set includes The Flintstones, The Jetsons, Top Cat, Secret Squirrel, Atom Ant, and Quick Draw McGraw, while the 1970s set includes Josie & The Pussycats, Speed Buggy, the Batman/Tarzan Adventure Hour, and Hong Kong Phooey. OK, the 60s set is much better than the 70s set. And the 70s set for some reason also includes The Jetsons, which is odd (it ran in 1962). Still, both sets look good.

  • The Closer - Season 4
  • Designing Women - Season 1
  • Gangland - Season 3
  • Gunsmoke - Season 3, Vol. 2
  • Jeeves & Wooster - Complete Series

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Why isn't Jan Hooks famous?

by Eliot Glazer, posted May 9th 2009 12:50PM
Radner. Louis-Dreyfus. Poehler. Fey. Shannon.

jan hooks snlSuffice it to say, the number of women who became famous on Saturday Night Live before graduating to solo success is few and far between. Sure, Gilda Radner can be considered a pioneer in the art of sketch comedy. And Julia Louis-Dreyfus undoubtedly honed her comedic skills before becoming a sitcom icon on Seinfeld. And, yes, Tina Fey can easily be considered a heroine to comedy nerds everywhere who have witnessed her climb from Weekend Update anchor to Mean Girls scribe to single-handedly decimating the vice presidential chances of one certain gun-wieldin', six-pack-totin' Alaskan governor.

But, sadly, the number of men who left Studio 8 for the superstardom of Planet Hollywood (not the theme restaurant) easily outnumbers the ladies. For every Amy Poehler, there's a Will Ferrell. And a Bill Murray. And a Mike Myers and Eddie Murphy and Adam Sandler (although, to be fair, there's also a David Gary Kroeger, A. Whitney Brown, and Charles Rocket for every Melanie Hutsell, too). (And for the record, no, you shouldn't recognize those names.)

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What are the best TV shows of the 1980s?

by Bob Sassone, posted Apr 14th 2009 5:01PM
Magnum, P.I.AOL has chosen the best TV shows of the 1980s, and it's not a bad list. But I'm sure everyone reading this will have their own thoughts.

Sure, there are shows that were my favorites I'd like to see on the list, but those would be personal choices. The only problem I have is where the shows place on the list. For example, is Fraggle Rock really a better show than Spenser: For Hire, Miami Vice, and Kate and Allie (even beyond the fact that it might be an odd show to compare to the other shows in the first place)? Is Facts of Life better than MacGyver?

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Best '80s TV Shows

by Kim Potts, posted Apr 13th 2009 6:00AM
Family TiesIt may have been the Me Decade.

But in TV land, the sisters were doin' it for themselves and finally getting respect as cops, war nurses and working moms; iconic shows like 'Hill Street Blues,' 'St. Elsewhere' and 'L.A. Law' would forever change (for the better) cop, medical and legal dramas; and no idea was too high concept to fill a primetime spot (time-travelling physicist? check; housewife-turned-CIA op? check; New York City beauty in love with a subterranean monster? check).

The bottom line: They all add up to 10 years of fine channel surfing -- and our awesome list of the 40 best series of the 1980s.

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