The Ted Knight Show (1978 TV series)

The Ted Knight Show is an American sitcom television series starring Ted Knight which centers on the owner of an escort service in New York City. The series aired on CBS from April 8, 1978 to May 13, 1978.[2][3]

The Ted Knight Show
The Ted Knight Show (1978) title card.JPG
Written byLowell Ganz
Mark Rothman
Susan Sisko
Richard Rosenstock[1]
Directed byJames Burrows
Jerry Paris
Joel Zwick[1]
StarringTed Knight[2]
Theme music composerMichael Leonard[1]
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons1
No. of episodes6 (and 1 pilot) (list of episodes)
Executive producer(s)Lowell Ganz
Mark Rothman[3]
Producer(s)Martin Cohan
David W. Duclon[3]
Production location(s)Paramount Studios
Hollywood, California
Running time30 minutes
Production company(s)Hayadou Productions
DistributorParamount Television[1]
CBS Television Distribution (current as of 2007)
Original networkCBS
Audio formatMonaural
Original releaseApril 8 (1978-04-08) –
May 13, 1978 (1978-05-13)

The series was a spin-off of Busting Loose and was one of two series Knight starred in that bore his name; in 1986 his sitcom Too Close for Comfort changed its name to The Ted Knight Show.



Suave, divorced, middle-aged Roger Dennis is the owner of Mr. Dennis Escort Service, a high-class escort service located in a fancy Manhattan apartment building in New York City. He hovers over the attractive young women – the air-headed Graziella; Honey, who has a "take-charge" personality; the timid Irma; Phil, who is the company's only African American escort; Cheryl, a floozy; and Joy – who serve as the escorts for his service. His brother Burt, a tyrannical, no-nonsense businessman, financed the company and is his business partner. Burt hired his wisecracking wife Dottie as the company's secretary; she answers the office telephone with "Mr. Dennis Escorts! Wherever you want to go, we want to go with you!" Roger's college-age son Winston is trying to break into the escort business, but is easily distracted and constantly makes passes at the women who work for Roger, and Roger feels that he lacks maturity and self-control. Hobart Nalven is the mailman who has a crush on Dottie.[1][2][3][4]


The Ted Knight Show was Ted Knight's first attempt at starring in a show of his own after his run from 1970 to 1977 as newsman Ted Baxter on The Mary Tyler Moore Show. After its pilot, "Mr. Dennis Steps Out, " was broadcast on October 26, 1977, as the fifth episode of the second season of the sitcom Busting Loose, The Ted Knight Show was spun off as its own series in the spring of 1978. A disappointment, The Ted Knight Show drew low ratings and was cancelled after six weeks on the air.[2][3][4][5] Episode director Joel Zwick later said that in his opinion CBS had thought that Knight's star power would carry the show, but that the premise of a situation comedy centering on an escort service was too strange for the show to succeed.[1] Knight, meanwhile, said that in retrospect it had been a mistake for him to star in a new show so soon after the conclusion of The Mary Tyler Moore Show.[1]

Lowell Ganz and Mark Rothman created the show,[3] which CBS broadcast on Saturday at 8:30 p.m. throughout its brief run.[2] It was filmed in color before a live studio audience at Paramount Studios in Hollywood, California.[1]


Pilot (1977)Edit

TitleOriginal air date
"Mr. Dennis Steps Out"October 26, 1977 (1977-10-26)
Melody Feebeck, an employee of Roger's escort service, believes that Roger is going to fire her.[6] Broadcast as the fifth episode of the second season of the sitcom Busting Loose,[1][4] with Busting Loose series regular Barbara Rhoades as Melody Feebeck.[7]

Season 1 (1978)Edit

No.TitleOriginal air date
1"Strike"April 8, 1978 (1978-04-08)
The women go on strike[8] after Roger refuses to pay them double for serving as escorts at a gathering of practical jokers.[9]
2"My Hero"April 15, 1978 (1978-04-15)
After Roger does not give Graziella a raise he promised her, she signs a 30-year contract to work for his sleazy competitor.[8][10]
3"Hop To It"April 22, 1978 (1978-04-22)
Roger must deal with a drunken Easter bunny and is appalled when Winston decides to work at a tacky clothing store that Burt runs.[8][11]
4"The Wedding"April 29, 1978 (1978-04-29)
Roger gets Honey to pose as his glamorous girlfriend at his ex-wife's wedding.[8][12]
5"Sweet Sixteen"May 6, 1978 (1978-05-06)
When a mature-looking young woman named Victoria Diamond approaches the Mr. Dennis Escort Service seeking an escort to a party, Roger thinks that escorting her will be a good chance for Winston to prove he can make it in the escort service business. But Victoria insists that Roger escort her, and when Roger arrives with her at the party, he discovers that she is only 16 years old, that it is her sweet sixteen party, and that she is using him to make her boyfriend Cliff jealous.[1][4][8]
6"The Honeymoon Game"May 13, 1978 (1978-05-13)
A woman hires Roger as her escort and cons him into pretending to be her husband on a television game show.[8]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Leszczak, Bob, Single-Season Sitcoms 1948-1979: A Complete Guide, Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Company, Inc, ISBN 978-0-7864-6812-6, pp. 180-181.
  2. ^ a b c d e Brooks, Tim, and Earle Marsh, The Complete Directory to Prime-Time Network and Cable TV Shows, 1946-Present, Sixth Edition, New York: Ballantine Books, 1995, ISBN 0-345-39736-3, p. 1019.
  3. ^ a b c d e f McNeil, Alex, Total Television: The Comprehensive Guide to Programming From 1948 to the Present, New York: Penguin Books, 1996, pp. 820-821.
  4. ^ a b c d "CTVA US Comedy - "The Ted Knight Show" (Paramount/CBS) (Spring1978)".
  5. ^ "CTVA US Comedy - "Busting Loose" (Paramount/CBS)(1977) Adam Arkin".
  6. ^ "The Ted Knight Show".
  7. ^ Brooks, Tim, and Earle Marsh, The Complete Directory to Prime-Time Network and Cable TV Shows, 1946-Present, Sixth Edition, New York: Ballantine Books, 1995, ISBN 0-345-39736-3, p. 147.
  8. ^ a b c d e f "The Ted Knight Show". CBS Interactive.
  9. ^ "The Ted Knight Show".
  10. ^ "The Ted Knight Show".
  11. ^ "The Ted Knight Show".
  12. ^ "The Ted Knight Show".

External linksEdit