Sunday, October 17, 2021

What Might've Been: Aloha Paradise (1981)

 Remember how Reese's peanut butter cups were marketed as "two great tastes that go great together"? Well, Aaron Spelling thought he could take elements of his two Saturday night series for ABC, The Love Boat & Fantasy Island, mix them up, subtract the darker elements from Fantasy, and the result was Aloha Paradise, which lasted two months as a mid-season replacement in 1981 for ABC.

The show was built around its island setting and its staff, fronted by Debbie Reynolds, who hadn't had her own series since a self-titled sitcom for NBC a dozen or so years earlier. The staff included Bill Daily (ex-The Bob Newhart Show, I Dream of Jeannie), Stephen Shortridge (ex-Welcome Back, Kotter), Pat Klous (ex-Flying High), and Charles Fleischer (ex-Welcome Back, Kotter, Wacko!).

The problem? NBC owned the 8 pm (ET) hour with Diff'rent Strokes & The Facts of Life. Thanks for coming. Reportedly, Reynolds was not a happy camper, as the network's promotion for the series didn't put enough emphasis on her. The network's idea was this was a beached version of Love Boat.

Gilmore Box offers the intro to the opener:

No rating. My folks were either into movies on the cable, or if there was a Bruins game on WSBK, my dad would be watching that instead.

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