In the 1980s, two women made it their mission to have fun and survive together after divorce in the sitcom Kate & Allie.
Starring Susan Saint James as Kate and Jane Curtin as Allie, the CBS show was a mid-season replacement in 1984 that garnered high ratings and got the green light for a full flight of episodes. Created by Sherry Coben, the series was focused on the changing roles of women.
Kate is the fun-loving spontaneous travel agent, while Allie was the more conservative at-home Mom who takes care of the household as well as helps parent Kate’s daughter Emma as well her own two kids Chip and Jennie. As the new family gets used to the new rules of living together, it mirrored the reality of the new definition of family.
For a series that had a simple premise, it stayed in the top 20 for its six seasons, and garnered Jane Curtin two Emmy Awards for Best Actress in a Comedy Series, while Susan Saint James was nominated three times in the same category.
During this decade, this show depicted real life for many women – divorced, considering remarrying, taking care of children and pursuing a career. I watched this show off and on, liking the comedic turn of real life as well as seeing the reality among many of my friends who were dealing with their parents divorce and remarriages.
A show that showed life, as it was now mirroring 1980s society.