Heart of the City

Jim 1980s

Aired: 1986-87 ABC

DAD: Detective Wes Kennedy (Robert Desiderio) / Widower

DAD’S JOB: Police Detective

KIDS: Kevin (16) (Jonathan Ward), Robin (15) (Christina Applegate)

WHERE’S MOM?: Brutally murdered

STAND-IN "MOM": Older brother Kevin, the "Rock" of the family.

Wes Kennedy winds up being a single dad after his wife gets snuffed by your typical wild-eyed TV maniac killer. Of course the very neurotic daughter (played by the pre-Married With Children Christina Applegate) blames Detective Daddy for Mom’s death, and Wes has to deal with that animosity. Oh, and juggle the duties of rounding up the other TV maniac killers while dealing with his kids’ wacky hijinks. The tensions of work vs. home created bazillions of story opportunities. Unfortunately, the ratings didn’t support the continuation of this show, and, poof, it was gone after one season. Just in time for Robin Kennedy to become Kelly Bundy. See? There’s plusses and minuses in every show cancellation.

Here’s a wacky tie-in: Robert Desiderio, who played the dad on this show, is married (in real life) to Judith Light, who is, of course, the stand-in mom on Who’s The Boss?, another TV Single Dad show. Small world, huh?

A huge toss of the Porter Ricks Memorial Florsheims to Suzanne (slanoue@llano.net) for pointing out this forgotten show.

…and a wave of the Tony Danza Memorial Feather Duster at Ben Llewellyn for filling in the details on the Stand-In Mom. Thanks very much, Ben!