The situation involved a young couple, Wally and Rita Stiller (John Meillon and Judi Farr), living in Balmain with Rita's father Dominic McGooley (Gordon Chater). Also in the regular cast were Stewart Ginn, Robert McDarra, and later Noeline Brown joined as Wally’s sister.
The comedy of the series came from the clash of two generations living under one roof, a situation possibly inspired by the success of the 1960s British comedies Steptoe and Son and Till Death Us Do Part. Although only in his forties when cast, Chater played a curmudgeonly senior citizen who enjoyed irritating his son-in-law and fishing with his mates in prohibited areas of Sydney Harbour.
Most episodes were written by creator-producer Ralph Peterson and directed by Ron Way. Location and filmed insert sequences were supplied by Artransa Park Studios. The flute and accordion duet composed for the theme tune was by Tommy Tycho.
When Chater left the show in 1968 the remaining cast was spun off into a new series titled Rita and Wally but it was found that the character of Dominic was integral to the comedy of the situation and the series ended a few months later.
The series had a three-season run of 88 episodes under the McGooley title. In the final episode the old McGooley house is demolished as the Stillers must move out. Rita and Wally ran for a single season of 23 episodes.
The program was made on videotape but, as was common at the time, the videotape masters were wiped and re-used. 16mm film copies of the complete series, created for affiliates that couldn't broadcast it alongside the rest of the network, as well as for sale to foreign countries, were donated to the National Film and Sound Archive.
The program was rated number 24 in 2005 television special 50 Years 50 Shows which counted-down Australia's greatest television programs.
- Moran, pp 306-7
- Moran, p 389