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home / In Depth Case Studies / Season 2 Episode 0201

Brother, Can You Spare a Blonde?

Date Originally Aired: Sept. 24,1985
Written By: Glenn Gordon Caron
Directed By: Peter Werner
Title Reference: Song from the depression era musical Brother, Can You Spare A Dime?

Our Rating: (1-10 with 10 being the highest) 7

Cast Members:

    Cybill Shepherd
    Bruce Willis
    Allyce Beasley

Recurring Guest Stars:

    Charles Rocket as Richard "Richie" Addison

Guest Stars:

    Ed O'Ross as Navarone
    Jonathan Stark as undercover cop


    The Thin and Rich Story performed by Charles Rocket (derived from "Rappin' Duke" by Shawn Brown)
    For the Love of Money by The O'Jays
    If Only You Knew by Patti LaBelle

Plot Summary:

    An unexpected visit from David's fun-loving and newly wealthy brother, Richard, creates several problems for David and Maddie. A thug has followed Richard to Los Angeles intending to reclaim the money and meanwhile Richard and Maddie seem to have a more than passing interest in each other, much to David's chagrin.

Naughty Lines:




    Maddie and David welcome the viwers back to the new season and tell them that they are a few minutes short and have been asked to fill time. They then argue about that in their famed overlapping dialogue. This prologue was only shown on ABC the first time this episode aired, and was usually edited out of most future airings. Sofus, a fan from Denmark has put this clip online to share and can be accessed HERE (this will require downloading the DiVX codec at, if the clip won't play on your computer.)

Fourth Wall:

    Maddie and David break the fourth wall for the first time on the series in the prologue when they talk to the audience. Additionally the prologue clip contains another layer of self-reflexiveness, when at the end of the clip, the actors are addressed by their names and told the prior clip was also too short. The two actors react in much the same way that Maddie and David reacted as they too argue with each other in overlapping dialogue over who's at fault.

The Case:

    Not really a case. Richie finds $100,000, and is threatened by the “owner”, a criminal. Richie comes to LA to impress David and to get out of Philadelphia and away from the thug, but the thug follows him to L.A.

Chase Scene:

    Occurs in a shopping mall where Richie, David and Maddie have gone to return all the stuff Richie had bought to get refunds. Mr. Navarone has followed them there and threatens them with a gun. He wants them to come with him, but they manage to get away and are pursued through the various floors of the mall, using an escalator in one scene to get away.

Fights Between Maddie & David:

    Maddie and David fight very little in this episode, but David has scenes of conflict with nearly everyone else--his brother, Agnes, Mr. Navarone, a telephone operator. One area of disagreement Maddie and David have is over David's brother as Maddie seems to like Richie very much and David warns that Richie is a con-man and not at all what he seems.

Where the relationship is going:

    We get to watch David react to Maddie's interest in his brother. Clearly in this episode we get a sense of how David feels as his interest in Maddie appears very unrequited. David unselfishly makes a huge sacrifice here for Maddie, humbling himself with his brother to try to help her out financially. Maddie is very touched by David's gesture and shows some sensitivity toward him in the situation with his brother.

Special Features:

Other Memorable Lines:

    Coming soon.

Funniest Part:

    The opening scene showing Richie doing his Rich and Thin demo is very funny.

    The two brother wrestling around like children on Maddie's living room floor is amusing as well.

Most Romantic:

    When Maddie is dancing with Richie and appears to be very much interested in him, David stands on the sidelines and silently suffers. The music selection of "If Only You Knew" by Patti Labelle heightens the audience's symphathy with David.

Most Dramatic:

    The scenes with Mr. Navarone threatening David and then later chasing David, Maddie and Richie through the mall.



Photo Gallery:

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