Major Dad

Major Dad is an American sitcom television series created by Richard C. Okie and John G. Stephens, developed by Earl Pomerantz, that originally ran from September 17, 1989, to May 17, 1993 on CBS, starring Gerald McRaney as Major John D. MacGillis and Shanna Reed as his wife Polly. The cast also includes Beverly Archer, Matt Mulhern, Jon Cypher, Marisa Ryan, Nicole Dubuc, and Chelsea Hertford.

Major Dad
Major dad.jpg
The cast of Major Dad.
Created byJohn G. Stephens
Richard C. Okie
Developed byEarl Pomerantz
StarringGerald McRaney
Shanna Reed
Beverly Archer
Jon Cypher
Nicole Dubuc
Chelsea Hertford
Matt Mulhern
Marisa Ryan
ComposersRoger Steinman
Steve Dorff
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons4
No. of episodes96 (list of episodes)
Executive producersRick Hawkins
Gerald McRaney
Richard C. Okie
Earl Pomerantz
ProducersJim Evering
Barry Gold
Janet Leahy
Liz Sage
Todd Stephens
EditorsSkip Collector
John William Heath
Augie Hess
Camera setup35mm Multi-camera
Running time30 minutes
Production companiesS.B.B. Productions
Spanish Trail Productions
Universal Television
Original networkCBS
Original releaseSeptember 17, 1989 (1989-09-17) –
May 17, 1993 (1993-05-17)


The first season is set at the fictional Camp Singleton (meant to represent Camp Pendleton),[citation needed] where hard-charging United States Marine Corps Major John D. "Mac" MacGillis is commander of the infantry training school's acquisition division. MacGillis's life is changed when he falls in love with a liberal journalist, Polly Cooper. The show follows Mac in his work life, where he deals with Lt. Eugene Holowachuk (Matt Mulhern), Sgt. Byron James (Marlon Archey), and Merilee Gunderson (Whitney Kershaw), as well as his home life, as he learns to live with Polly's three daughters, Elizabeth, Robin, and Casey.

At the beginning of the second season, the MacGillis family moves to Camp Hollister (based on Marine Corps Base Quantico), where Mac must adapt to the role of staff secretary (or "staff weenie") and the crazy antics of Commanding (Brigadier) General Marcus C. Craig, Aide-de-Camp 1st Lt. Eugene Holowachuk (who transferred with Major MacGillis from Camp Singleton), and Gunnery Sgt. Alva "Gunny" Bricker, the General's secretary, a no-nonsense Marine, who despite her brusque nature and unprepossessing physical appearance, is the target of many enthusiastic (and unseen) suitors.

Character development increased during the second season, such as the revelation that MacGillis is a former member of the United States Marine Corps Silent Drill Platoon.


Episode guideEdit

SeasonEpisodesOriginally airedRankRating
First airedLast aired
126September 17, 1989 (1989-09-17)May 21, 1990 (1990-05-21)39 [1]13.2 [2]
224September 17, 1990 (1990-09-17)May 13, 1991 (1991-05-13)2114.9
(Tied with In the Heat of the Night)
324September 16, 1991 (1991-09-16)May 11, 1992 (1992-05-11)916.8
422September 25, 1992 (1992-09-25)May 17, 1993 (1993-05-17)69 [3]9.8 [4]

Awards and nominationsEdit

Year Award Result Category Recipient
1992 BMI Film & TV Award Won BMI TV Music Award Steve Dorff
1992 Emmy Award Nominated Outstanding Individual Achievement in Main Title Theme Music Steve Dorff
1990 Young Artist Awards Nominated Best Young Actress Starring in a Television Series Chelsea Hertford
Won Best New Television Series
1991 Nominated Best Young Actress Starring in a Television Series Marisa Ryan
Best Young Actress Starring in a Television Series Chelsea Hertford
Best Young Actress Starring in a Television Series Nicole Dubuc
Best Young Actor Supporting or Re-Occurring Role for a TV Series Chance Michael Corbitt
1992 Nominated Best Young Actress Starring in a Television Series Marisa Ryan
1993 Nominated Outstanding Actress Under Ten in a Television Series Chelsea Hertford


External linksEdit