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It's A Living

By Wikipedia

It's a Living was the name of a sitcom which aired from 1980 to 1982 and from 1985 to 1989. The show first aired on ABC and was later moved to syndication.

The show followed the lives of the waitresses who worked in a posh Chicago restaurant. At the helm was their supervisor Nancy Beebe (Marian Mercer), who sometimes fraternized with the girls but usually gave orders. More often than not, the scheme of the week involved Nancy in some way, which upset her because all she wanted was an orderly staff. Adding to the chaotic working environment was a wisecracking pianist named Sonny Mann (Paul Kreppel). One of the many waitresses on the show was Cassie Cranston, played by actress Ann Jillian. Due to her stint on this show, she became very popular for a time.

It's a Living was not a success in its first season and was retooled extensively, airing in 1981 under the name Making a Living. This incarnation did not catch on either, and the show was canceled after two seasons.

In 1985, the show was revived under its old name for the syndicated market. Most of the cast remained intact from the former version. A new waitress, Amy Tompkins (Crystal Bernard), arrived at the restaurant and was immediately accepted by the group. When Ann Jillian decided to leave the show in 1986 for other opportunities, she was replaced by Ginger St. James (Sheryl Lee Ralph), the first black waitress to be showcased on the sitcom. With these core cast members in place, the show continued to produce episodes for syndication until the show was ended in 1989.

 

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"As a background actor in the Awesome80s for the Atmosphere Agency, I enjoyed working with the crew on the set of It's A Living, which always seemed to be delightfully joyous and lively."

--Shawn R.D. Garrison-Saipan

"It's A Living was about a group of lovely waitresses working at a posh resturant high a top a skyscraper. It centered on the waitresses's home, love, and work life. Cassie, who was played by Ann Jillian became a sitcom favorite and had a sucessful career as a TV movie of the week actress. Susan Sullivan actually was the main star in the shows first season. For some reason she left for the shows second season, which also returned with a new title. Making A Living was the new name and the new star was Louise Lasser. Marian Mercer played the loved starved hostess Nancy. I always liked her character, even though she was a sort of a gruff like Mel Sharples and Mr. Mooney. The piano player Sonny was around for a male point of view and comic relief. This show lasted two seasons on ABC and then was revived later in the decade in first run syndication. The greatest part of the show is the underrated theme song."

--philigan

 

TV TIDBITS

Aired: October 30, 1980 - September 10, 1982 (syndicated from 1985-1989)

Cast: Susan Sullivan, Ann Jillian, Marian Mercer, Gail Edwards, Wendy Schael

Network: ABC

Genre: Sitcom

Theme song

Image courtesy of ABC


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