Tag Archives: Parenthood movie

What’s in a name?

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I have devoted many a blog post to the all-too-short-lived series Parenthood on NBC.

You may have noticed.

But this weekend, an unrelated article in the Sunday New York Times has brought forth yet another question:

Why did the family name change from Buckman — in the 1989 origin film — to Braverman in the TV series?

I’ve done some research, and apparently I’m not the first to ask this question, but for decidedly different reasons.

Many viewers pointed out that “Braverman” is a surname of Jewish origin, but the Parenthood family is decidedly not so. Others surmised that “Buckman” sounded a bit too Midwestern — where the movie was located — and the name change was necessary to reflect the California setting.

Or was it a bit of an inside joke?

The Sunday New York Times article discussed the evolution of Doc Johnson Enterprises, the ‘first family of pleasure products.’ The family surname? Oh, it’s not Johnson; it’s Braverman. And it got me thinking…

Could one of television’s great family dramas have added this little Easter egg…just for giggles and grins?

Or maybe one of the creators is simply related to a Braverman, or it tested well…neither of which is as fun for me.

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Why not take…

I think we can all agree — Steve Martin movies usually rock.

Consider this sample:

The Jerk
The Man With Two Brains
Three Amigos

Little Shop of Horrors
Roxanne
Planes, Trains & Automobiles
Dirty Rotten Scoundrels
Parenthood
LA Story
Father of the Bride
Grand Canyon
Housesitter
The Spanish Prisoner
Bowfinger
Shopgirl
It’s Complicated

I’ve seen most of them multiple times.

But one of my favorites has been nearly impossible to find, on basic cable or premium channels, until this week.

All of Me was released in theaters when I was still in college (translation: a long, long time ago).  It tells the story of Edwina Cutwater, portrayed by Lily Tomlin, a millionaire who has been sickly her entire life.

As she faces an untimely death, Edwina enlists the help of a Tibetan master to transfer her soul into the body of a healthy, younger woman.  Martin plays Edwina’s lawyer, who accidentally gets in the way and suddenly finds her soul in his body, each of them in control of one side.

It is physical comedy at its hilarious best, with Martin and Tomlin playing off of one another perfectly.

This week Ovation Channel brings All of Me back to cable.  It airs tonight at 9:00pm ET (and probably lots more times to come).  Just wanted to get the word out.  I’m recording it, of course, so I will have a copy for keeps.

Time to wear out this Martin classic, too.