The Help (TV series)
Keri Lynn Pratt
Antonio Sabato Jr.
|Opening theme||"Jump in the Line" by Harry Belafonte|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||1|
|No. of episodes||7|
|Running time||23 minutes|
Warner Bros. Television
|Original channel||The WB|
|Original release||March 5 – April 16, 2004|
The Help is an American situation comedy television series which premiered on The WB on March 5, 2004. The show was a raunchy comedy that focused on the hard-luck life of a beauty school dropout who must work for the wealthy, spoiled Ridgeway family. The rest of the hired help are also quirky. The WB only aired seven episodes, the show ending on April 16, 2004, and canceled it in May 2004.
Maria is studying to be a beautician when she has to come home to nurse her sick mother. After her mother's death, Maria is forced to take her place as the wealthy Ridgeway family's maid. She soon discovers not only a class struggle between the Ridgeways and the help, but also an all-out war among the servants.
- Camille Guaty as Maria, the maid
- Al Santos as Ollie, the chauffeur
- Brenda Strong as Arlene Ridgeway, the rich lady
- Keri Lynn Pratt as Veronica Ridgeway, the pop-star daughter
- Megan Fox as Cassandra Ridgeway, the spoiled daughter
- Mindy Cohn as Maggie, the cook
- Marika Dominczyk as Anna, the nanny
- Graham Murdoch as Douglas Ridgeway, the "baby"
- Antonio Sabato Jr. as Dwayne, the trainer
- Tori Spelling as Molly, the dog walker
- Esther Scott as Doris, the older nanny
- Jack Axelrod as Grandpa Eddie
- David Faustino as Adam Ridgeway, the oldest son
|#||Title||Director||Writer(s)||Original air date|| U.S. viewers|
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The premiere of The Help was the most watched program in the Friday 9:30–10:00 time slot on The WB in the 2003–04 season. The premiere was more popular among women than men aged 12–34 (2.0/8 versus 1.3/5).
Despite the premiere being the best performance in the time slot of the season on The WB the critics have nothing positive to say. Virginia Heffernan of The New York Times said the show "comes off like a school play, clumsily blocked, loudly acted and nearly shouted down by obligatory laughter and applause". Robert Bianco of USA Today pointed out that "this is the kind of show that opens with a doggie-doo joke and still finds a way to go downhill". Perhaps the harshest was Matthew Gilbert of The Boston Globe: "The WB's claim that 'The Help' is a 'biting satire' is only half true. No, it's not a satire, but yes, it does indeed bite. And it will be biting the dust before long, unless it can find a new cast, new writers, new producers, a new set, and an entirely new premise." In her review of the 2003–04 season Kay McFadden, television critic for The Seattle Times, classified The Help as "Never should have aired".
- Heffernan, Virginia (March 5, 2004). "Television Review; Upstairs, Downstairs in the Crass Class War". The New York Times. Retrieved 8 March 2010.
- ""THE HELP" HELPS THE WB TO ITS MOST-WATCHED FRIDAY OF THE SEASON" (Press release). The WB. March 8, 2004. Archived from the original on March 13, 2004. Retrieved February 12, 2011.
- Bianco, Robert (March 4, 2004). "WB's 'The Help' is the worst". USA Today. Retrieved February 12, 2011.
- Gilbert, Matthew (March 5, 2004). "An abysmal farce, `Help' is not on its way". The Boston Globe. Retrieved February 12, 2011.
- McFadden, Kay (August 29, 2004). "Canceled shows: The dearly, or merely, departed". The Seattle Times. Retrieved February 12, 2011.