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Out Of This World
USA, syndication/NBC (Bob Booker Productions/MCA), Sitcom, Colour, 1987
Starring: Donna Pescow, Maureen Flannigan, Doug McClure

Celebrating her 13th birthday, goody-two-shoes Californian gal Evie Garland makes three shattering discoveries: her father is not dead, as presumed; he is not human but an alien from the planet Anterias (he and Evie's mother had married and 'blended life forms' when he was on an extended interplanetary visit); and that, being half-alien, she has the power to perform humanly impossible deeds. These include freezing motionless people around her, simply by placing together her two index fingers, 'gleeping' - making things materialise by the power of thought - and teletransportation. From this point on, Evie's life is never the same again, and she and her mother Donna, who runs a school for gifted children of rich 'Californny' parents, have to adjust to the change as best they can. Meanwhile, Evie's alien father, Troy, communicates with his daughter by voice (belonging to none other than Burt Reynolds), his words issuing from a blue crystal on Evie's bedside cabinet. A gaggle of sitcom-style characters populated the remaining roles, one being the self-centred local mayor (and later the police chief), played by Doug McClure - Trampas in the western series The Virginian - a former TV actor who likes to think of himself as Clint Eastwood, not least because the town in which the series was set, Marlowe, is nearby Carmel, where Eastwood was indeed mayor.

Out Of This World was another of NBC's attempts to overturn the triumphant ratings winner Wheel Of Fortune by 'checkerboarding' a different low-budget sitcom each evening in the same slot (see Marblehead Manor for further details, and also She's The Sheriff). Inexplicably successful, and a real favourite among younger viewers, NBC extended the life of Out Of This World to four seasons, during which time the storylines became pretty well exhausted. In the final episode Troy returned to Earth, except that he was transparent; then, when a piece of equipment malfunctioned, he was stranded in California while Evie was sent back to Anterias.

The series was imported to Britain by ITV and, like all imports, was screened differently from region to region; in London and several other areas it was 'stripped', daily, Mondays to Fridays at 10am, when audience-participation talk-show The Time...The Place was off-air.

Researched and written by Mark Lewisohn.

Donna Pescow - Donna Garland
Maureen Flannigan - Evie Garland
Doug McClure - Kyle Applegate
Joe Alaskey - Uncle Beano Froelich (1987-90)
Christina Nigra - Lindsay Selkirk
Burt Reynolds - Troy (voice only)
Buzz Belmondo - Buzz

John Boni - Creator
Bob Booker - Creator (based on a format by D L Wood)
Bob Booker - Executive Producer
John Boni - Executive Producer
Barbara Booker - Executive Producer
John Boni - Producer
Barbara Booker - Producer
Transmission Details
Number of episodes: 96 Length: 30 mins
US dates: 17 Sep 1987-26 May 1991
UK dates: 9 Apr 1990-24 Apr 1992 (96 episodes) ITV weekdays 10am

The information in the Guide to Comedy is complied from 'The Radio Times Guide to Television Comedy' by Mark Lewisohn, published by BBC Books. More information about the book is available from the BBC Shop.
(The BBC is not responsible for the content of external links.)

Reviews supplied by Radio Times © 2003 BBC Worldwide - used under licence from BBC Worldwide.

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