Set in the year before the Revolutionary War begins, show features Jeremy Proctor (Ryan O’Neal), who runs Philadelphia’s Cock and Hound Inn with his wife, Annabelle (Lesley-Anne Down), and three teenage daughters– bookish Maude (Sarah Koskoff), social butterfly Eliza (Judith Jones) and young idealist Abby (Danielle Harris). A bellman with a brogue, Bert (Gregory Sporleder), also helps at the Inn.
In the pilot, directed by David Trainer and written by exec producers Martin Rips and Joseph Staretski, Jeremy needs to borrow money for an upcoming ball so that he can pay for the tickets and dress his daughters appropriately.
It all will lead, he and his wife hope, to a young man falling in love with oldest daughter Maude so that she’ll get married.
Middle daughter Eliza, who sees her youth slipping away, wants to get married but can’t until Maude does. The youngest daughter, the idealist with revolutionary values, simply wants a horse.
The daughters find their father none too hip, so they keep him in line with such lines as “Dad, these are the ’70s” and comments such as “Dad’s about to have a hissy fit.”
Meanwhile, Dad is unable to borrow money from his brother-in-law, George Washington (Adam West, who looks as fit in a longhaired wig as he did in a bat costume), made into a nincompoop. Jeremy gives up, only to find that his wife has procured the needed lucre from her rich sister, Martha Washington.
Jeremy discovers that Maude is not worried about spinsterhood and will marry only for love. That’s OK with Dad. Dad and Mom then rekindle passion and hurry for the bedroom.
O’Neal and company offer double takes and supposedly witty retorts, trying for the look of the best sitcoms, but here it’s painful to watch–more so than in O’Neal’s last sitcom effort, the short-lived “Good Sports,” with Farrah Fawcett. Maybe someone will have a good comedy for O’Neal yet.
CBS, thankfully, is not ordering more episodes. With “1775,” Rips and Staretski–who were also the supervising producers on the wonderfully strange “Doctor, Doctor”–have given new stress to the “off” in “offbeat.”