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Out of Practice: Would Henry Winkler and Stockard Channing Have Reunited?

Out of PracticeHenry Winkler will forever be remembered for his role on Happy Days as the Fonz. The series ran for 11 seasons, his leather jacket can be seen at the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C., and there’s now a bronze statue of the character in Milwaukee. Winkler later had a recurring role on FOX’s Arrested Development and most recently returned to weekly television in CBS’ Out of Practice.

Out of Practice debuted on September 19, 2005 and only 22 episodes were produced. The series centers around a marriage counselor named Ben Barnes (Christopher Gorman). Though his wife dumps him in the first episode, Ben seems like a success career-wise – to everyone but his own immediate family. They include Ben’s divorced parents, gastroenterologist Stewart Barnes (Winkler) and cardiologist Lydia Barnes (Stockard Channing); his brother Oliver Barnes (Ty Burrell), a womanizing, plastic surgeon; and their sister, Regina Barnes (Paula Marshall), a lesbian E.R. doctor. All in the family are physicians, with the exception of Ben, and they have a way of looking down on him because of it – despite the fact that’s he’s the most normal of the bunch. Others in the sitcom include Jennifer Tilly, Carson Elrod, and Kelly Fennell.

The sitcom lasted one season before being cancelled by the network. Only 14 episodes aired, leaving eight stranded on the network’s shelf. To date, the entire series hasn’t been aired in the United States.

One of the downsides of such a short run is that one doesn’t get to see the characters fully develop or evolve. One of the more interesting dynamics on Practice was between Winkler and Channing. Though they had divorced and obviously had some serious animosity for one another, there also seemed to be some underlying sexual tension as well. We asked Winkler about what the future might have held for the characters. Stay tuned! TV Series Finale home page

 

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

The Class Rox April 22, 2009 at 3:17 pm

Wow, great post buddy. To have The Class and OOP on at the same time? Would have been the best!
Too many shows are given one season to show what they can do, and then cancelled without a chance at season two, which would be a great season for opportunity to build the characters even more and give it a chance to build ratings with an actual audience who has the excitement of season one to go from!

With America’s short attention span and desire for a lot of crappy reality shows, one season for a sitcom is just not enough to see if you have a winning show or not.

Millions of americans are blurting out the wrong answers to “Are you smarter than a 5th grader” each time it’s on.

People claim that they “really get that dude/chap/chick/cat” on another boring season of Survivor.

People yell and scream based on picking random cases -total chance! – and listen to a Mr. Clean-esque host have to keep explaining how the game works.

And ballroom dancing lessons are at an all time high, mostly because the host of H2 and a lifeless female co-host convince us that Lawrence Taylor, Warren Sapp, Kenny Mayne, Rich Hamilton, Jerry Springer, that one guy from that one show, and that one lady who sings, are actually worth watching on a dance floor filled with cranky judges and bad jokes.

Let’s hope for a proper DVD release of the full season (including the eight unaired eps) of Out of Practice!! Such a great show – can’t belive it didn’t make it. I like HIMYM but even that isn’t way above the level of show that OOP was.

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Celia December 30, 2008 at 12:30 pm

I loved Out of Practice! I hope CBS releases it on DVD someday.

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buddy December 26, 2008 at 7:20 pm

I liked this show. Too bad CBS never gave it a chance. This show and The Class would have done better if CBS had some patience and gave each show a second season. I think these two sitcoms would still be on the air today.

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