Sunday, June 17, 2012

Brother Ernie

My Three Sons was ahead of the game when it came to portraying alternatives to the nuclear family: single parent families, all male households, blended families, male homemakers (stay-at-home-uncles) and adoption provided weighty and fruitful material for the 60s sitcom. The patriarch "Steve Douglas" played by the dashing Fred MacMurray was a soft spoken but wise, loving and at times bumbling father. MacMurray's chemistry with all of his TV sons was touching but perhaps none more so than with Barry Livingstone who played his youngest child Ernie. Watch Brother Ernie, episode 3 of season 6 (circa 1965) below—it's the episode where Steve finalizes his adoption of little Ernie. The episode provides some lovely moments between father and son. The scenes with Uncle Charlie, played by William Demarest will get you too.

Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there!

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