“Some walk by night”: Moonlighting is coming to streaming finally!
Hulu has announced that the hit series Moonlighting is coming to the platform on October 10, 2023.
The show, which ran from 1985 to 1989, is known for many reasons. It launched Bruce Willis‘ career (yes, Virginia – he was known for comedy before appearing in the Die Hard franchise); having a format that regularly broke the fourth wall (Fourth wall? What fourth wall?); and even being the origin of what was known as The Moonlighting Curse (I was there, Gandalf!): which, to quote Urban Dictionary, “When the will-they-won’t-they couple on a TV show finally gets together… and it ruins the show.”
The series starred Cybill Shepherd as Maddie Hayes, owner of the Blue Moon Detective Agency. Due to Plot Reasons (TM), she decides to take on a more active role and comes across the current main detective, David Addison (Willis). It was really one of the first major drameties on television. It was nominated for 40 Emmys (of which it won 6) over its 5 seasons. The show was well known for its music, using a number of Motown tunes and had Shepherd and Willis sing a bunch of times.
While each episode was a standalone mystery that the two would solve, the overall story of the agency (with fellow staff members Allyce Beasley as their receptionist Agnes and Curtis Armstrong as fellow employee Herbert) did actually progress characters, with the ‘will-they-or-won’t-they’ chemistry between the two leads fueling the show.
The influences of the series were obvious: a nod to detective romance shows Hart to Hart and Remington Steele both made the show, and the dialogue was very much in the style of 40s comedies such as His Girl Friday. It was highly creative, doing several themed episodes (they do a version of Taming of the Shrew, for instance, in full Shakespearean garb). It also had several guest stars, from Orson Welles to the Temptations.
Moonlighting is one of those shows that I loved when it first came out, but I knew very little about the behind-the-scenes. It wasn’t until years later that I started hearing about how the show’s demise was helped by the 1988 Writer’s Strike. Additionally, despite their onscreen chemistry, Shepherd and Willis did not get along at all for a variety of reasons. Shepherd also got pregnant during the series and the show handled it badly both on and off-screen.
The show was never syndicated (according to Wikipedia, it didn’t have enough episodes to qualify), but it got a limited DVD release. However, it has been absent on streaming due to the high cost of the music rights.
The latest Hulu announcement indicated all 67 episodes would be available, and the main track theme song will be included. The episodes have been remastered in HD. While it’s likely coming to streaming due to the current writer’s strike, I audibly gasped when I saw the release in my email.
I look forward to cuddling up to the cozy mystery series soon.
(via Press Release)
Author: Angie Fiedler Sutton
Angie Fiedler Sutton is a writer, podcaster, and all-round fangirl geek. She has been published in Den of Geek, Stage Directions, LA Weekly, The Mary Sue, and others.
She also produces her own podcast, Contents May Vary, where she interviews geeky people about geeky things. You can see all her work (and social media channels) at angiefsutton.com.
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