The Gidget TV show was a 30 minute comedy series on ABC about a teenaged girl who lived in southern California with her widowed father who was a college professor. Gidget spent as much time as possible at the beach, surfing, or just with her friends. Every week she would get herself into some teenage jam and then spend the rest of the show finding a way out.
Sally Field .... Francine Elizabeth "Gidget" Lawrence
Don Porter .... Professor Russell Lawrence
Betty Conner .... Anne Cooper
Pete Duel .... John Cooper
Michael Nader .... Peter Stone
Steven Miles .... Jeff "Moon Doggie" Matthews
Beverly Adams .... Treasure
Lynette Winter .... Larue
Jimmy Hawkins .... Paul
A cute aspect of the Gidget TV Show was that Sally Field (as Gidget) would turn to the camera and tell the audience what she thought about things as they occurred on the episode!
The Gidget TV show was based on a 1959 movie, also titled Gidget. It starred Sandra Dee in the title role, James Darren as "Moon Doggie", Arthur O'Connell as Professor Russel Lawrance, and a teenaged Cliff Robertson as The Big Kahuna. There were also other movies including "Gidget Goes Hawaiian" & "Gidget Goes To Rome". The movies made Sandra Dee, James Darren & Cliff Robertson famous. There was also another TV series in 1986 called, "The New Gidget" which lasted two seasons and 44 episodes.
Gidget had a hard time attracting an audience. For the first 17 episodes, it was up against "The Beverly Hillbillies" which was very popular with teens. For the final 15 episodes, it had to compete with "Gilligan's Island" and the same effect kept Gidget's audience small. When the episodes ran in reruns, however, the audience really grew! But by then, it was too late ... Gidget had been canceled. The popularity of the show in reruns may have had something to do with Sally Field getting her another series the very next year though. Remember "The Flying Nun"?
Sally Field grew up well-acquainted with show business. Her mother was a very popular "B" movie actress named Margaret Field with more than 80 acting credits. Her step-father from a very young age was Jock Mahoney who has more than 90 acting credits and more than 60 credits as a stunt-double! Sally's name is mentioned in the theme song for the series, "The Fall Guy".
Written By: "Howard Greenfield and Jack Keller"
Performed By: "Johnny Tillotson"
If you're in doubt about angels being real.
I can arrange to change any doubts you feel.
Wait'll you see my Gidget!
You'll want her for your Valentine.
You're gonna say she's all that you adore
But stay away, Gidet is spoken for
You're gonna find that Gidget is mine!
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