Sep. 24, 1977
60 min.
ABC TV Network

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The Love Boat tv show photo

The Love Boat

The Love Boat is an American television series set on a cruise ship, which aired on the ABC Television Network from 1977 until 1986. It was part of ABC's Saturday night one-two punch along with Fantasy Island until that show ended in 1984. The original made-for-TV movie on which the show was based was itself based on a book, The Love Boats by Jeraldine Saunders, a real-life cruise director.

Trivia Facts | Top Quotes | Goofs/Mistakes
  • Two Princess cruise line ships were used in the series: The Island Princess and The Pacific Princess. Pacific Princess is now M.S. Pacific (jointly operated by Brazilian CVC and Spanish Quail Cruises), Island Princess is now M.S. Discovery (for England-based Voyages of Discovery).
  • Other ships used (especially for the 2-hr-episodes) were Stella Solaris (scrapped in 2003), Pearl of Scandinavia (now used for Casino cruises out of Hong Kong and called Golden Princess and not to be confused with DFDS's Pearl of Scandinavia), Royal Viking Sky (now Fred.Olsen's Boudicca) and Royal Princess (now M.S. Artemis for P&O Cruises).
  • This series was based upon Jeraldine Saunders novel titled, "The Love Boats". She wrote the book from her personal observations while serving as a hostess on a cruise ship.
  • At the shows height, Bernie Kopell earned $39,500.00 per episode.
  • Aaron Spelling approached Dick Van Patten for his first choice to play that role of Capt. Merrill Stubing, when he was already doing "Eight Is Enough" (1977) at the time, hence, Van Patten was unavailable. The role was ultimately given to Gavin MacLeod.
  • Gavin MacLeod, Bernie Kopell, Ted Lange are the only actors to appear in every episode of the series.
  • After a highly publicized battle of cocaine addiction, Lauren Tewes was fired from the show, at the end of the seventh season.
  • Lauren Tewes was chosen over 100 actresses for the role of Julie McCoy.
  • The former Pacific Princess is to be scrapped in 2013 at a Turkish ship-recycling yard on the Aegean coast. She is 42 years old, and was decommissioned in 2008. The Izmir Ship Recycling Co. acquired the former cruise ship for 2.5 million euros ($3.3 million).
  • Gopher's real name is Burl Smith.
  • Both Ted Lange (Junior) and Teddy Wilson (Earl) were in the TV series "That's My Mama". They also played the Love Boat character Isaac, the bartender. Wilson in the movie and Lange on the series.
  • Dick Van Patten played the doctor (O'Neil) in the Love Boat TV Movie and was up for the role of the Captain in the series, but was already involved in "Eight is Enough" and wasn't available. So the role went to Gavin MacLeod.
  • This film has very similar parallels to the much earlier British film "Carry on Cruising". Set on a Cruise Ship, with Product Placement from a real Cruise Line, P&O, which in a further coincidence later merged with Princess Cruises. Shot on a Soundstage replica of the Ship, with stock shot inserts of the location, with stories following the main crew, and some love based sub plots. It's possible that "Carry on Cruising" partly inspired elements of developing "The Love Boat", from the book it was originally based upon. "Carry on Cruising" does play like an early prototype of "The Love Boat".
  • One of only four television shows that were an hour and had a laugh track. "The Lucy Desi Comedy Hour" was one, "Love American Style" was another, and "Eight is Enough" was another. Ironically, critics called this "Love American Style" on a boat.
  • Lauren Tewes claimed the rest of the cast shunned her after her termination due to issues related to cocaine addiction. She also says the media continues to stigmatize her and label her a cocaine addict even though she kicked the habit 35 years ago.
  • Laugh tracks became very unpopular and uncool in Hollywood in the 70s and 80s, so much so that shows like "All in the Family" and "Cheers" would announce that they did not have a laugh track and filmed before a live studio audience. "The Love Boat" bucked this trend when it first set sail in 1977, being the first show in years that was filming not in front of a studio audience and still had a laugh track; when it was canceled in 1987 it was the last show of its type to have this kind of laugh track.
  • After several succesful "Love Boat" and other Aaron Spelling Productions appearances, Debbie Reynolds starred in a show that was a marriage of Spelling's "Love Boat" and "Fantasy Island" : "Aloha Paradise". It took place in Hawaii and had guests come to have their romantic fantasies fulfilled. She has said it was one of the worst experiences of her life.
  • The Ship's surgeon on Cunard's QE2 ocean liner was a consultant for the role of Doc Adam Bricker on this series. Like his counterpart, he too was divorced.
  • This episode was a case of life imitating art. One of the stories involves a woman (played by Meredith Baxter) who had posed nude years before when she was young and desperate and was now trying to hide the fact. As it would later come out Suzanne Somers had posed for Playboy under the same circumstances back in 1970. After she became a household name from the success of "Three's Company" (1976), Playboy published the photos, despite her attempts to prevent it.
  • Kristy McNichol and Richard Mulligan would later co-star in Empty Nest.
  • The segment title is based upon Henny Youngman's signature joke, "Now take my wife. Please!"
  • Final acting credit for Bob Crane. Six months later he appeared as himself on a celebrity cooking show and then passed away a week later.
  • Two guest stars have fathers that were actors... Stephanie Zimbalist - Efrem Zimbalist Jr. and Desi Arnaz Jr. - Desi Arnaz. One guest star has a son that is an actor... Fernando Lamas - Lorenzo Lamas. Also, Desi Arnaz Jr.'s mother is Lucille Ball.
  • First acting credit (where she plays a scripted character) for Shelley Long. Interestingly, she plays a bookish intellectual who is mismatched with a vain narcissist (named Sam) who can't appreciate her for who she is. The same situation would later make her famous fours years later on the TV show Cheers.
  • Did you notice that when the Doc is yelling at dawn his new nurse, he mistakenly calls her Elaine, which is the actress real name (Elaine Joyce) and it was not edited out of the show.
  • Doc does not call the nurse 'Elaine', he calls her 'Delaney', which is the character's last name.
  • The multi-talented singer, songwriter, and actor Paul Williams, who played Nelson Hoag in this episode, also wrote the lyrics for the Love Boat's iconic theme song.
  • The John Donne poem Crothers recites to Mrs. Worth is the opening stanza of "The Bait."
  • Ellen Travolta, playing Jimmy Baio's Mother, she would later portray his cousin Scott Baio's Mother on Happy Days.
  • Actresses Marla Adams and Melissa Gilbert appear in this 1978 episode as mother and daughter, respectively. Seventeen years earlier, Adams had appeared in Splendor in the Grass. A remake of this film, Splendor in the Grass (1981) (TV), featured Gilbert in a starring role.

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