Gapers Block has ceased publication.

Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
 Thank you for your readership and contributions. 


Saturday, January 28

Gapers Block

Gapers Block on Facebook Gapers Block on Flickr Gapers Block on Twitter The Gapers Block Tumblr

« Briefing Room: Interview with Pitchfork Fest and Brilliant Corners of Popular Amusements Producer Mike Reed Interview: Brian Posehn »

Television Fri Sep 09 2011

Sitcom Cast Change Countdown #7: The Hogan Family

Okay, this is a weird one.

Do you remember The Hogan Family? These days, the late-'80s sitcom is notable primarily as the first starring role for a teenage Jason Bateman (he played the oldest brother, David). You might also remember that it was set in Oak Park. But today we're focusing on another highly notable facet of the program: one historic casting change.

Hogans.pngWhen launched in 1986, its title was Valerie, and it was intended as a vehicle for its star, Valerie Harper. What's that you say? Valerie Harper wasn't on The Hogan Family? Well, you're right, sort of. Valerie was fired from the show just two seasons in, after sternly objecting to plans to shift the show's tone and focus. Matriarch and prior focal point Valerie was "killed off" in a car accident, and the show was now about the rest of her family-- her three sons, her pilot husband, and now her husband's sister. Sandy Duncan was brought in as Aunt Sandy, and the show went on, awkwardly at first, as Valerie's Family: The Hogans (logical enough: the old show was about Valerie, now this new show was about her family). Aunt Sandy and the gang would carry the show through 1991, accounting for four of the show's six seasons.

Meanwhile, Harper was suing producers for breach of contract, a case she eventually won, and before long those same producers decided "Valerie" should be eradicated from the title, too. In 1988, it became The Hogan Family we know and love. Or at least know. Unless this is the first you've heard of it. In which case, tune in next time for a more familiar #6 in our Sitcom Cast change Countdown.

Check out #8: A Death in the Family, #9: The One With the Magical Morphing Baby, and #10: Saved By the Bell

GB store
GB store

Architecture Tue Nov 03 2015

Paul Goldberger Describes the "Pragmatism and Poetry" of Frank Gehry's Architecture in His New Book

By Nancy Bishop

Architecture critic Paul Goldberger talks about Frank Gehry's life and work in a new book.
Read this feature »

Steve at the Movies Fri Jan 01 2016

Best Feature Films & Documentaries of 2015

By Steve Prokopy

Read this column »


An Angry White Guy
AREA Chicago
ArchitectureChicago Plus
Arts Engagement Exchange
The Art Letter
Art or Idiocy?
Art Slant Chicago
Art Talk Chicago
Bad at Sports
Bite and Smile
Brian Dickie of COT
Bridgeport International
Carrie Secrist Gallery
Chainsaw Calligraphy
Chicago Art Blog
Chicago Art Department
Chicago Art Examiner
Chicago Art Journal
Chicago Artists Resource
Chicago Art Map
Chicago Art Review
Chicago Classical Music
Chicago Comedy Examiner
Chicago Cultural Center
Chicago Daily Views
Chicago Film Examiner
Chicago Film Archives
Chicago Gallery News
Chicago Uncommon
Contemporary Art Space
Co-op Image Group
Co-Prosperity Sphere
Chicago Urban Art Society
Creative Control
Devening Projects
DIY Film
The Exhibition Agency
The Flatiron Project
F newsmagazine
The Gallery Crawl...
Galerie F
The Gaudy God
Happy Dog Gallery
Homeroom Chicago
I, Homunculus
Hyde Park Artcenter Blog
Joyce Owens: Artist on Art
Julius Caesar
Kasia Kay Gallery
Kavi Gupta Gallery
Rob Kozlowski
Lookingglass Theatre Blog
Lumpen Blog
Mess Hall
Neoteric Art
Not If But When
Noun and Verb
On Film
On the Make
Peanut Gallery
Peregrine Program
The Poor Choices Show
Pop Up Art Loop
The Post Family
The Recycled Film
Reversible Eye
Rhona Hoffman Gallery
Roots & Culture Gallery
The Seen
Sisterman Vintage
Site of Big Shoulders
Sixty Inches From Center
Soleil's To-Do's
Sometimes Store
Stop Go Stop
Storefront Rebellion
TOC Blog
Theater for the Future
Theatre in Chicago
The Franklin
The Mission
The Theater Loop
Thomas Robertello Gallery
Time Tells Tony Wight Gallery
Uncommon Photographers
The Unscene Chicago
The Visualist
Western Exhibitions
What's Going On?
What to Wear During an Orange Alert?
You, Me, Them, Everybody
Zg Gallery

GB store



A/C on Flickr

Join the A/C Flickr Pool.

About A/C

A/C is the arts and culture section of Gapers Block, covering the many forms of expression on display in Chicago. More...
Please see our submission guidelines.

Editor: Nancy Bishop,
A/C staff inbox:



A/C Flickr Pool
 Subscribe in a reader.

GB store

GB Store

GB Buttons $1.50

GB T-Shirt $12

I ✶ Chi T-Shirts $15