Poster: Mr. Television
(see this users gallery)
Meego aired from September until October 1997 on CBS.
In this almost sickly sweet fantasy Meego( Bronson Pinchot) was a goofy 9,000 year old alien from the planet Marmazon 4.0 whose spaceship crashed in the backyard of Edward Parker( Ed Begley Jr), a widowed surgeon raising his 3 children. Originally intending to stay for only 2 days to repair his ship, Meego got attached to the kids, Trip ( played by Erik von Detton in the pilot and Will Estes in the series) age 15; Maggie ( Michelle Trachtenberg) age 11; and Alex ( Jonathan Lipnicki) age 6. He particularly liked wide-eyed young Alex , who laughed at all his jokes, and so he decided to stay on as their caretaker .He had all sorts of neat powers-he could change his shape into almost any living thing, was telekinetic ( handy for doing the cleaning), could speed up or slow down the passage of time, could instantaneously move from one place to another, and could talk to Barkley, Alex's little dog. The kids knew he was an alien, but Dad at least during the 6 weeks the show lasted , never found out.
An Article From TeeVee.org
Eye on Bronson
by Peter Ko May 27, 1997
The eye blinked. I saw it. It happened while CBS Entertainment President Les Moonves was announcing his network's new fall schedule. Moonves had just declared that the Friday 8:30 p.m. slot would be filled by Meego, a sitcom starring Bronson Pinchot as an alien who crashes his spaceship and takes up with Joe America. Boom! Just like that, the parachute-sized CBS eye hanging on the wall did an open and shut. Even inanimate objects can't believe Bronson Pinchot has a TV show again.
Poor dumb Les Moonves. CBS announced its fall 1997 primetime schedule Thursday, and when all the free butter rolls were gone, one question stuck in everyone's mind: "Did I hear right? Judd Hirsch is returning as Delvecchio?" Alas, no. America's favorite Jew is returning, all right, but with Bob Newhart in a sitcom titled George & Leo; Danny Aiello assumes the role of Delvecchio, though this time around, they're calling him Dellaventura. Sadly, the news about Bronson Pinchot was not similarly confused.
Here, for those of you with more important useless information to retain, is a brief recap of the whole, ugly Pinchot rap sheet: The future Pepsi pitchman first appeared in "Risky Business" (or as others call it, "The High Point of My Career: The Rebecca DeMornay Story") as Barry, Tom Cruise's useless codpiece of a friend. Shortly thereafter, The Man Called Bronson made a small splash in "Beverly Hills Cop" as Serge, the espresso-fetching manservant with the thick accent. Thus began a career built around kooky voices. Next, he of the jarring proboscis starred in Perfect Strangers, a sitcom that not only marked the first of many successful sorties for the evil Miller-Boyett production group, but also the source from which Family Matters would eventually spin off. Yes, that's right: we have Bronson Pinchot to thank for eight, going on nine, years of that confounded Urkel. Bronnie then followed Perfect Strangers with the utterly forgettable "Beverly Hills Cop 3," a turn in "True Romance" as a coke-sniffing movie lackey, and the short-lived sitcom The Trouble With Larry. You remember Larry: Pinchot played a fun-loving layabout thought to be dead who moves in with his one-time fiance and her new beau. CBS aired three episodes before blasting all traces of the production into outer space so future generations would have no idea what we had done. Then last year, some turkey exhumed Pinchot's rotting career, plunked him in the insipid Step By Step as yet another eightball with a goofy accent, and now we have Meego to look forward to. People have died for fewer crimes.
I know what you're thinking: aren't I being just a wee bit harsh on poor Balki Bartokomous and his little sitcom? How bad can it be?
You tell me.
From the same creative cysts who brought us Full House, Family Matters, and Step By Step, Meego co-stars bespectacled, spiky-haired urchin Jonathan Lipnicki of "Jerry Maguire" fame as Pinchot's comedic foil (did we learn nothing from the Macauley Caulkin experiment?); and Mr. Planet himself, Ed Begley Jr., as the single father-slash-voice of reason. And here's CBS's pitch: "Intending to stay only until his spaceship can be repaired, Meego becomes emotionally attached to the kids, moves in and reveals an out-of-this-world knack for child-rearing on the Planet Earth." Maybe it's me, but this show seems to take "alien nanny" to a whole new level.
Still, in all fairness, not all is wrong in the land of air conditioners. To its credit, CBS's 1997 schedule includes two intriguing new entries--which, for those of you keeping score at home, is two more than the three other major networks managed to muster, combined. Brooklyn South, from producer Steven Bochco, zeroes in on the lives of Brooklyn patrol cops. The show breaks no new ground (it's Hill Street Blues with a city or NYPD Blue: Downstairs), but the fact is, when the cops ain't singing, nobody knows the police drama better than Steven Bochco. True, Bochco's last two efforts, the moronic Public Morals and the tedious Murder One, spun horribly out of control. But this time he's crawling back to the gals who brung him. NYPD Blue executive producer David Milch also produces here, and the cast includes NYPD Blue alums Michael DeLuise, Titus Welliver, and Yancy Butler; Hill Street Blues alum James B. Sikking; and Jon Tenney, whom Teri Hatcher stalkers know as her lesser half. Bochco's taunting the gods by including a "Congo" link (Dylan Walsh), but all in all, this is TV's best bet for next season's breakthrough hit.
The second interesting new entry also comes with an NYPD Blue tie. David Caruso stars in Michael Hayes as an "idealistic" ex-cop turned federal prosecutor. Caruso has a lot to make up for (among other things, "Jade" which violated three different U.N. agreements), but he's still the best thing NYPD Blue had going for it, and--provided we don't have to see his pasty, white ass--he's a delight to watch. Even more interesting is the production team. It includes Caruso and Nicholas Pileggi, the author behind "Goodfellas" and "Casino."
But if you're looking for fun and games, that's where the party ends. The past few years have left CBS a lot to atone for (need I dredge up Central Park West? Can't Hurry Love? Bless This House?), and frankly, Les and the Kids aren't much in the way of grovelers. Oh sure, CBS is the number two network, and despite Warren Littlefield's communiques to the contrary, it's making a serious run at number one. But what does that mean? Take a look around. NBC, which last year still funded The John Larroquette Show, just renewed all four of this year's horrific new Thursday night shows and, in a Foxworthy-esque bit of programming savvy, now plans to place them all on the same night to boot. Last Monday, ABC purchased a sitcom starring Kevin Nealon, the stiff who single-handedly almost brought down a 20-year programming empire. And Fox -- Fox has a show starring Chachi! Finishing first among TV networks is like Motley Crue selling more records than Winger.
Where, pray tell, has CBS gone wrong? Start with the precocious moppets. Not since curly-haired popsicle Ashley Johnson went from Growing Pains to Phenom to All-American Girl to the Marie Osmond revival project Maybe This Time has TV seen such an invasion of whippersnappers. First there's Lipnicki. Then there's the lagging Cosby, which plans to increase its cast by one. Apparently the theory is, if an unbearably cute tyke with a hyphenated name (Raven-Symone) can juice the ratings once, then, damn it, an unbearably cute tyke oughta be able to juice 'em again. No word on who will play the five-year- old yin to Bill Cosby's yang, but may I suggest that devilish "Smart Guy"? Last we have The Gregory Hines Show, airing Fridays at 9 p.m. Hines is Ben Stevenson, a widower raising a 12-year old son on his own while trying "to resume a social life." Remarkably, Hines finds that he has as much to learn about women as his son . . . . Aw hell, I don't have the energy. Plug in your own cliches and figure it out. Family Matters and Step By Step, both hijacked from ABC's TGIF roster, round out the new Friday lineup, before CBS closes with that child-oriented hootenanny, Nash Bridges.
Or how about some bizarre scheduling maneuvers? Suppose you're a programming executive (I know, I know, you don't have the ties; play along anyway). Against all odds, you have a hit show called The Nanny that leads off Wednesday nights and a new newsmagazine starring a journalist, Bryant Gumbel, whom you just paid obscene amounts of money to lure to your network. You also have two other shows--Murphy Brown, Chicago Hope--that, as we speak, are wheezing towards the finish line, dehydrated, blistered, delusional (Hope is so loony that it thinks repeated, snide references to ER are cute). Do you (a) keep the first two shows far away from the second two, to avoid dragging the entire night into a sticky bog; (b) schedule all four together and, as a bonus, contemplate tossing in a laugh-out-loud storyline where Candice Bergin's Murphy Brown deals with... breast cancer! Whoo hoo! What a kneeslapper!; or (c) resign, since anybody who renews Murphy Brown and Chicago Hope should be selling shoes, not programming networks? The correct answer is (c), but we'll accept (a). If you answered (b), well... Hi, Les!
Or maybe you just like to be confused. If so, you've come to the right place. With George & Leo, CBS has perhaps the single-most convoluted sitcom premise in the history of time. See if you can follow along (there will be a test at the end): Judd Hirsch is Leo, "small-time hoodlum." Recently Leo "fled Vegas with some of the mob's money." Big mistake. Bob Newhart is George, just plain George. He has a son (no name) who's about to marry Leo's daughter (also no name). George's son wants to do something nice for Leo's daughter, so he brings long-lost Leo (that's Hirsch) back into the family. Of course, with Leo on the lam from organized crime, "it's a major problem for the future wife." And how. Somehow it's "a problem for George, too," with the result that, out of this mess, George (Newhart) and Leo (Hirsch) become George & Leo, "an incredibly mismatched pair of in-laws." Now here's the test: who plays Lou?
The return of TV's Delvecchio should not be confused with the debut of TV's Dellaventura. In the former, Judd Hirsch (George... er, Leo) played LAPD Detective Dominick Delvecchio, a stubborn, dogged investigator who fought crime with the help of his able assistant, Shonski. Delvecchio has nothing to do with Dellaventura, in which big Italian lug Danny Aiello plays Anthony Dellaventura, veteran police detective turned private investigator. Like the decidedly non-Italian Ice-T in NBC's Players, Aiello's Dellaventura -- "aided by his team of renegade former cops and con artists" -- takes "the kinds of cases the police can't or won't handle." (In the legal biz, these are known as "cases that have no merit.") CBS refused comment on why it revived The Equalizer as an Italian, but according to rumor, it has something to do with Mario Puzo's "The Last Don."
Then again, maybe it has something to do with Bronson Pinchot. Frankly, I think the Pinchot fiasco threw the entire network for a loop. After that, the suits were just scrambling to keep up, plugging every open timeslot with whatever was available before someone like Willie Aames ended up on the fall schedule. Does it matter? Probably not. Good TV shows are few and far between, and every year only a couple new shows, at most, make the grade. The rest are just claptrap designed to suck in what viewers they can. If you're smart, you know how to sidestep these land mines. Me, I once stepped on Walker, Texas Ranger. Ouch, what pain.
A Review from Variety
(Fri. (19), 8:30 - 9 p.m., CBS)
By TODD EVERETT
Taped in Hollywood by Miller-Boyett-Warren Prods. in association with Warner Bros. Television. Executive producers, Thomas L. Miller, Robert L. Boyett, Michael Warren, Ross Brown; producer, Karen K. Miller; supervising producer, Kelly Sandefur; associate producer, John Barney; director, Joel Zwick; script, Brown
Bronson Pinchot, Ed Begley Jr., Michelle Trachtenberg, Erik Von Detten, Jonathan Lipnicki, Marianne Muellerleile, Michael Milhoan, Debra Mooney, Lance Nichols, Paige Peterson.
Meego (Bronson Pinchot), a space alien, lands on Earth while he repairs his ship, is discovered by a couple of kids and persuaded to stay on as the nanny in their single-parent home. If viewers are attracted by familiarity, this Saturday morning-style series in a Friday-night slot could become a big hit.
The show's prime audience demographic may already be in bed by 8:30; anybody over 10 years old will have fun (during the first episode, at least) tracing the show's borrowed elements back to, say, "Mork and Mindy," "E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial," "Alf," "My Favorite Martian," "The Coneheads" (the boys tell their father Meego is from Canada) and any sitcom in which a father tries to raise his family.
Not that the father here (Ed Begley Jr.) gets much screen time in the series pilot. A doctor, he spends little time at home and is on the verge of hiring (get this!) authoritarian Teutonic nanny (Marianne Muellerleile); character's name, Ilsa Scrotenborer, may be the show's best joke.
Meego (from planet Marmazon 4.0) is initially discovered by moppet Alex Parker (Jonathan Lipnicki), soon joined by his teenage brother (Erik Von Detten, just fine, but replaced by Will Estes in subsequent episodes). Boys decide not to tell their teenage sister, Maggie (Michelle Trachtenberg), because "she's a snitch --- she'll sell your Marmazonian butt to 'Hard Copy' for 10 bucks." Likewise, dad doesn't catch on --- he may be a doctor, but he's clearly no brain surgeon.
Cast are all fine, considering what they're working with. Pinchot mercifully underplays, the one obvious prototype missing here is his own Balki character from "Perfect Strangers." Producers' hopes clearly stand on appeal of Lipnicki, the bad-haired scene-stealer from "The Jeff Foxworthy Show" and "Jerry Maguire." If director Joel Zwick missed a single opportunity for a close-up reaction shot, miscue must be on the cutting-room floor.
Special effects make maximum use of blue screen and wires; they're credited to Beyt Labs and Laser Pacific. Episode includes three lessons: It's OK to show people your tender side; it's really OK to cry; and you've got to learn teamwork.
A Review From The New York Times
TELEVISION REVIEW/NEW SEASON; A Male Poppins From Another Planet (but Will It Fly?)
By ANITA GATES
Published: September 19, 1997
A lot of people are going to misunderstand ''Meego,'' the new series about a nanny from outer space. They'll see Bronson Pinchot as Meego doing the housework ''Bewitched''-style (but while disco dancing to ''She Works Hard for the Money'') or answering ''How come you speak English?'' with ''Well, it's not like I'm from Mars,'' and they'll judge the show by adult standards.
Mistake. ''Meego'' is from Thomas L. Miller and Robert L. Boyett, the team that created ''Full House,'' and Michael Warren and Ross Brown. ''Meego'' is for children; therefore so are the humor and the plots.
You're supposed to think it's stupid.
The father (Ed Begley Jr.) is classic: a nice-guy single parent, not around much (he's a busy heart surgeon) and easily fooled. When Meego mentions that his Aunt Juno is ''the big 8-0: 80,000 years old,'' Dad smiles and says, ''I've got an aunt just like that.''
The children are the focus. Alex, the youngest, is played by Jonathan Lipnicki, adorable even without the clever dialogue of ''Jerry Maguire,'' his hit movie. Maggie (Michelle Trachtenberg), the middle child, whose idea of a comforting word is ''Get over it,'' may be destined to be the heavy. The older son, Trip (Erik Von Detten), may be destined to be the teen-age idol.
In the first episode. Meego uses virtual reality to teach Trip a lesson about teamwork. Meego also helps Alex overcome his fear that his dog, Barkley, will run away; he speaks directly with the dog and reports back (''Barkley's got some privacy issues''). And Meego can fly, Superman-style, holding onto Alex, who looks every bit as thrilled as Lois Lane ever did.
The children get to be teachers, too. On Meego's planet, which must be somewhere near Vulcan, crying or otherwise showing emotion is forbidden. So when Alex puts his arms around his nanny, he explains, ''It's called a hug.''
Not that life is all hugs and takeoffs. When Trip says, ''Beam me up, Scotty,'' Meego gets tough. ''You're young,'' he says. ''Walk.''
CBS, tonight at 8:30
(Channel 2 in New York)
Produced by Miller-Boyett-Warren Productions, in association with Warner Brothers Television. Thomas L. Miller, Robert L. Boyett, Michael Warren and Ross Brown executive producers. The premiere episode was written by Ross Brown and directed by Joel Zwick.
WITH: Bronson Pinchot (Meego), Ed Begley Jr. (Dr. Edward Parker), Jonathan Lipnicki (Alex), Michelle Trachtenberg (Maggie) and Erik Von Detten (Trip).
A Review from the Washington Post
'MEEGO': A CUTE ABOVE
By Tom Shales September 19, 1997
Meego is an elfin alien from outer space. He crash-lands on Earth and agrees to serve as the nanny for three motherless children, one of them an adorable tyke who is followed around the house by just about the cutest little doggy-woggy in the whole wide world.
Do you feel a touch of nausea coming on? Well get over it. Because "Meego," all about the alien nanny of the same name, is not as icky as it sounds. It's shameless, yes, but it's also utterly irresistible.
Forgive me, oh tireless advocates of serious and relevant television fare, but I just love this show.
Obviously it's a wholesome family comedy, part of a new two-hour block of sitcoms CBS has assembled to challenge ABC's "TGIF" lineup on Fridays. CBS even swiped two of ABC's shows outright, "Family Matters" (that wacky Urkel must be about 40 by now) and "Step by Step" with Suzanne Somers. They air at 8 and 9:30, and "Meego" at 8:30, tonight on Channel 9. The new "Gregory Hines" show, uninspired but also inoffensive, airs at 9.
"Meego's" obvious resemblances to "Mork and Mindy" are only superficial. Bronson Pinchot plays Meego fairly smooth and straight without lots of bells and whistles, literally or figuratively. He doesn't sit on his head or say "shazbot," either. Indeed, Pinchot seems to realize that he's sharing the screen with someone who can out-cute him at 10 paces or a hundred: Jonathan Lipnicki, the great hot tot from "Jerry Maguire." As 6-year-old Alex, he takes to Meego like the Von Trapp children took to Maria the nun. But instantly.
Nothing is as enjoyable about the show as the relationship between Meego and Alex, kindred spirits who communicate splendidly. Complications include a teenage older brother who uses tired lingo like "dude, that's totally awesome," and older sister Maggie, who, we learn, is "a snitch" and so cannot be trusted with the secret that Meego is from another planet.
She can't be around when Meego does such matter-of-fact magic as making the teenage boy fly from his second-floor window to the ground, or causing all the cleaning gadgets in the house to operate themselves in a wild ballet for mop, dustpan and rubber gloves.
Ed Begley Jr. plays ever-distracted Dad. In the opening scene he interviews a stern German nanny who loves the word "discipline" and tells him, "You want warm and fuzzy -- hire Mary Poppins." The other kids wish for a nanny who is "really cool" and their wish comes cheerfully true. Why the German woman disappears even after being hired is never fully explained.
Meego isn't a laissez-faire nanny. He takes his job seriously and teaches lessons like "It's okay to show people your tender side." He also develops immediate rapport with Barkley the dog, previously featured in the Jim Carrey movie "The Mask." Barkley is a joy. Fearful of being separated from him, Alex carries him to school in his backpack. A scene in which he opens the backpack and Barkley obediently runs into it is wonderful.
The show is from the team of Miller, Boyett and Warren, who can be forgiven their aging "Family Matters" and its shrillness when they can also come up with a show as sweet and swell as this. "Meego" is worth its weight in M&M's. The Visitor'
Dean Devlin, co-producer of Fox's new drama series "The Visitor," says something very encouraging during an interview in the current issue of Cinefantastique, the movie magazine:
"There's been this whole tendency lately in television to try to be darker, more shocking, more ugly . . . and we thought, That's not what we want to watch.' We wanted to do a show that makes you feel good about being a human, a show that explores human potential."
By "we," Devlin means himself and his partner Roland Emmerich, who last year produced the wild-ride motion picture "Independence Day." But "The Visitor," premiering tonight at 8 on Channel 5, isn't about booming doom. It's more like "Starman," or "The Day the Earth Stood Still." Although its hero isn't really from outer space, he has spent time there. Fifty years, actually.
John Corbett, formerly a friendly face on "Northern Exposure," plays Adam MacArthur, an Air Force pilot whose plane was reported missing in the Bermuda Triangle on July 4, 1947. He was never seen again -- not on this planet, anyway -- until 1997, when he arrives in what is presumably a spaceship stolen from the aliens who abducted him. From all appearances, he's exactly the same age as when he left.
While in alien captivity, Adam picked up a few neat tricks, like curing awful wounds and making flowers grow. The pilot suggests the series will resemble Michael Landon's "Highway to Heaven" in that Adam will journey from town to town solving little problems for selected townsfolk as he searches for some mysterious secret that will explain everything.
"I have to interfere before it's too late," he says evasively, implying something awful will happen in human history unless he can stop it.
In the pilot, he helps straighten out a surly adolescent named Tyler who lives with his single mom and sulks around the house when he isn't shoplifting CD players. Adam impresses him with his super speed-reading and his ability to break into a Department of Defense computer. Adam also unloads such rather hokey homilies as "If you start from the heart, there's nothing you can't do" and "Your mind is an amazing adventure just waiting to happen."
Say, he sounds a little like Meego. Only not funny.
Nevertheless, the hour holds one's attention, and Corbett brings to his role just the right degree of cheering eeriness. Unfortunately, regular Fox viewers who are fans of dark and creepy shows like "The X-Files" and "Millennium" will probably find "Visitor" too soft and squishy, and one fears it won't be all that long before poor Adam MacArthur vanishes again. CAPTION: Bronson Pinchot and Jonathan Lipnicki as an extraterrestrial nanny and his charge in "Meego." CAPTION: Welcome aliens: John Corbett as the "Visitor"; Bronson Pinchot plays otherworldly nanny to Jonathan Lipnicki in "Meego."
To watch some clips from Meego go to https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=meego+tv+series+
For an episode guide go to https://web.archive.org/web/20000517025105/http://www.fortunecity.com/lavendar/pulpfiction/99/meego.html
For more on Bronson Pinchot and Meego go to http://www.littlereview.com/getcritical/interviews/pinchot.htm
For more info on a crossover between Family Matters and Mego go to http://www.poobala.com/familyandmeego.html
For a Website dedicated to Bronson Pinchot go to http://www.bronsonpinchot.20m.com/
For a Website dedicated to Ed Beley Jr go to http://www.edbegley.com/
For a Will Estes Website go to http://www.willestes.com/
To watch the opening credits go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pl0yyUFOyOU
� Date: Sat May 5, 2012 � Filesize: 79.2kb � Dimensions: 507 x 648 �
Keywords: Meego Cast ( Large Photo) (Links Updated 7/31/18)