Living Dolls

Living Dolls is an American sitcom featured on the fall 1989 schedule of ABC. It was a spin-off created by a writer from Who's the Boss? and featuring characters introduced during an episode of that show. The show was the acting debut of Halle Berry.[1] Both Who's the Boss? and Living Dolls were produced by ELP Communications through Columbia Pictures Television and ABC.

Living Dolls
Living Dolls (1989).png
Created byRoss Brown
Written byRoss Brown
Eric Gilliland
Directed byJohn Sgueglia
StarringMichael Learned
Leah Remini
Deborah Tucker
Alison Elliott
Halle Berry
Theme music composerJohn Beasley
John Vester
Opening theme"Living Dolls"
ComposerJonathan Wolff
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons1
No. of episodes12
Executive producersRoss Brown
Martin Cohan
Phyllis Glick
Blake Hunter
ProducersR.J. Colleary
Martha Williamson
Running time22–24 minutes
Production companiesELP Communications
Columbia Pictures Television
DistributorSony Pictures Television
Original networkABC
Original releaseSeptember 26 (1989-09-26) –
December 30, 1989 (1989-12-30)
Related showsWho's the Boss?


The show featured Charlie Briscoe (Leah Remini), a friend of Samantha Micelli (the Who's the Boss? character played by Alyssa Milano). Samantha is dabbling in a modeling career and Charlie, a friend from Samantha's old Brooklyn neighborhood comes to visit. While doing some test shots for a dog food commercial, it is discovered that Charlie is very photogenic. Charlie is then befriended by the owner of a modeling agency for teenage girls, Trish Carlin (Michael Learned). Trish is also a friend of advertising executive Angela Bower, one of the main characters on Who's the Boss?. Trish becomes a mother figure to Charlie and the other models.


Living Dolls was universally panned by critics and received mostly negative reviews.[2] It was the only series to receive an "F" grade by People magazine in its 1989 fall preview issue.[3] ABC canceled the series after 12 episodes in December 1989.[4]


The series began as a back-door pilot on Who's the Boss?. In that episode, Vivica A. Fox played Emily instead of Halle Berry, and Jonathan Ward portrayed Rick, who came to be known as Eric when David Moscow took over the role for the series. Executives disliked the original cast and held auditions for recasting.[2] The Who's the Boss pilot first aired in March, but it was rerun directly before the Living Dolls premiere,[5] illustrating the reasons why Charlie moved in with Trish in the first place.



No. Title Directed by Written by Original air date
0"Living Dolls"John SguegliaRoss BrownMarch 29, 1989 (1989-03-29)
1"It's All Done with Mirrors"John SguegliaRoss BrownSeptember 26, 1989 (1989-09-26)
2"It's My Party"John SguegliaEric GillilandSeptember 30, 1989 (1989-09-30)
3"Martha Means Well"Lee BernhardiR.J. CollearyOctober 7, 1989 (1989-10-07)
4"Seeing Is Believing"Lee BernhardiMatt EmberOctober 21, 1989 (1989-10-21)
5"Guess Who's Not Coming to Dinner"Andy CadiffR.J. CollearyNovember 4, 1989 (1989-11-04)
6"Rick's Model Girlfriend"Lee BernhardiJames GatesNovember 11, 1989 (1989-11-11)
7"The Not So Sweet Smell of Success"Andy CadiffMark C. MillerNovember 18, 1989 (1989-11-18)
8"The Flash Is Always Greener"Jonathan WeissMartha WilliamsonNovember 25, 1989 (1989-11-25)
9"He's Ba-aack!"Valentine MayerEric Gilliland & Martha WilliamsonDecember 2, 1989 (1989-12-02)
10"'C' Is for Model"Lee BernhardiMartha WilliamsonDecember 9, 1989 (1989-12-09)
11"And I Thought Modeling Was Hard"James WiddoesRoss Brown & R.J. CollearyDecember 16, 1989 (1989-12-16)
12"Beauty and the Beat"James WiddoesSusan Sebastian & Diana AyersDecember 30, 1989 (1989-12-30)


  1. ^ "Halle Berry's Journey From Miss USA Runner-Up To Oscar Winner". Access Hollywood. June 16, 2011.
  2. ^ a b Ewey Johnson, Melissa (2009). Halle Berry: A Biography. ABC-CLIO. p. 21. ISBN 0-313-35834-6.
  3. ^ "Throwing a Curveball: Surprising Spin-Offs". Screenrush. Retrieved October 28, 2013.
  4. ^ "'Homeroom', 'Living Dolls' canceled by ABC". Sun Journal. 1989-12-06. p. 29. Retrieved 28 November 2012.
  5. ^ Dayton Daily News, September 26, 1989

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