Starting as “Love and the Old Fashioned Father” on the popular series “Love, American Style”, Wait ‘Till Your Father Gets Home was a wildly popular cartoon that premiered on September 1, 1972 on CBS. It was the first cartoon featured in the primetime slot airing Thursdays at 8:30 pm. The show lasted forty nine episodes and ended on November 1, 1974. This animated sitcom was years ahead of cartoons like “The Simpsons”, who were only the second cartoon to be featured on primetime television history.
Photo credit: Hanna Barbera Studios
Wait ‘Till Your Father Gets Home began as an animated segment from “Love, American Style” in 1972. The show was highly rated and it was decided to create a series based on the characters. The pilot was picked up by NBC to fill the prime-time slot. Series creators Harvey Bullock and R.S. Allen built the show as a view into the real generation gap between parents and children in the 1970’s. The show focuses around Elm Street in the suburbs of Los Angeles, California.
The Boyle Family
The parents, Harry Boyle and his wife Erma try to understand their children, Chet, Alice, and Jamie and their changing society.
Harry Boyle (Tom Bosley)
Harry is your every man. He owns a restaurant supply company and is the sole provider for the family. He doesn’t understand the changes happening around him, but is willing to learn. HE is the true “Old fashioned father”.
Erma (Joan Gerber)
As with most women and mothers in that era, Erma is the stay-at-home mom that keeps things in order and keeps the peace in the house. Erma does show independence in spurts throughout the series.
Chet (David Hayward and later, Lenny Weinrib)
As a 22-year-old college dropout or college graduate, depending on which episode you are watching, is constantly “finding himself”. Chet likes sleeping and asking his dad for money to fix his motorcycle. He does hit it big a few episodes, but nothing ever pans out the way he’d like.
Alice (Kristina Holland)
Sixteen year old Alice is the heavy (weight, not slang for “deep or emotional”) daughter of Harry and Erma. She is constantly teacher her mother about the “independent woman” and how her mom needs to find her own identity. Alice is constantly on a diet, yet is always eating.
Jamie (Jackie Earl Haley and Willie Aames)
Jamie is the nine year old and the capitalist of the family. He is always earning money from each family member and people in their neighborhood. Harry says Jamie has more money than he does.