Wednesday, January 16, 2008

“Gimme a Break!”

This comedy, starring Nell Carter and Dolph Sweet, ran from 1981 to 1987.

Carter played Nellie Ruth “Nell” Harper. Nell moves into the house of Carl Kanisky (played by Sweet_, a police chief whose wife had recently died. Nell, a friend of Carl’s wife, moves in to keep house and also help raise the Chief’s three girls: Katie (Kari Michaelson), Julie (Laurie Hendler), and Samantha, or “Sam” (Lara Jill Miller).

In later seasons, the Chief would also pass away (Sweet had died in real life), and Nell would care for a young boy named Joey Donovan (played by Joseph “Joey” Lawrence, who in later years would hit teen heartthrob status. Also joining the cast would be Jonathan Silverman as Julie Kinisky’s husband, Jonathan Maxwell. Telma Hopkins, once part of the group Tony Orlando & Dawn, would also make appearances on the show as Nell’s friend, Addy Wilson.

Here’s the “Gimme a Break” opening from Season 1, found on (I’m probably going to have the song in my head all day now …):

For more details on “Gimme a Break,” go to

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