Moonlighting

1985

Action / Comedy / Drama / Mystery / Romance

2
IMDb Rating 7.6 10 15544

Synopsis


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Director

Cast

Pierce Brosnan as Himself
Bruce Willis as David Addison Jr.
Jennifer Tilly as Nurse Saundra
Demi Moore as Woman in Elevator

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by calvinnme 6 / 10

A great show that imploded faster than "Welcome Back Kotter"

It's hard to rate this show. The first pseudo-season and second full season were fantastic. Cybil Shepherd as Madelyn Hayes, an ex model whose accountant runs off with all of her money, leaving her only her house and a detective agency full of goofy employees, and Bruce Willis as David Addison, the head goofball employee, come from completely different places and viewpoints. Addison does get Maddie to try and make a go of the detective agency rather than sell it, and the games begin. And yes, you can blame this show for unleashing Bruce Willis on the world.

So for a year and a half the sexual tension is so thick you can cut it with a knife as Maddie tries to enforce some discipline on the organization while Addison tries to get Maddie to loosen up. There are all kinds of weird cases worthy of the 80s, plus a couple of well done episodes including a version of "Taming of the Shrew" and a 40s Film Noir that actually allow David and Maddie to get horizontal without involving the actual characters. Plus there is a great 60s soundtrack to draw in the, at that time, 30 something baby boomers.

And then things began to unravel in the 1986-1987 season. The egos on the set - specifically the two stars - do not get along, and then Cybil Shepherd got pregnant. The show dealt with it in the worst possible way - after Maddie's long time astronaut boyfriend blows town, Maddie and David have one night of carnal bliss, then Maddie leaves town for the safety of her childhood home. For almost an entire season Addison is at the agency, and Maddie is in Chicago, until she returns to L.A. to add insult to injury to David, whom she obviously just does not think is good enough for her. And yes, the pregnancy was written into the script.

Too late to make a long story short, the viewers were jerked around by dead end story lines so much in 1987-1988, that like a disillusioned lover, when things returned to a semblance of normalcy in the 1988-1989 season, viewers just didn't care anymore. The show even had one particular prologue where they urged viewers to come back. They didn't. End of story.

My rating? I'd say that the first (very short) season and the second full season were 8/10, maybe a bit obvious but fun and different. The third season was 6/10 with the first half being pretty good and the last half being mediocre. The fourth season was a 4/10 - lots of waiting but nothing really happening. The fifth season pulled back up to a 6/10, no higher, because you just can't forget the backstory as easily as David and Maddie seem to have done.

Kudos go out to Allyce Beasley as admin Agnes DiPesto, a woman of plain looks but daring fashion, Curtis Armstrong of "Revenge of the Nerds" fame who is also no looker but commands your attention as employee, confidante of David, and at first reluctant heartthrob of Agnes. Eva Marie Saint and Robert Webber have continuing guest roles as Maddie's parents, and Maddie has to do some growing up when it comes to one aspect of her parents' marriage that she finds hard to swallow. Maddie is a woman that has a hard time forgiving human weakness in others - in fact that is HER biggest weakness, it seems.

I'd recommend it, but if you find yourself losing patience with it at the end of season three, you are not alone.

Reviewed by SnoopyStyle 8 / 10

great fun for a couple of seasons

Maddie Hayes (Cybill Shepherd) is a former model best known for being the Blue Moon Shampoo girl. She wakes up one morning to find all her money stolen by her crooked accountant Ron Sawyer. All she has left are various money-losing businesses used as tax losses. One of them is City of Angels Detective Agency run by smart alack David Addison (Bruce Willis). She closes him down. He is trying to convince her to keep the agency open when a dangerous murder case literally falls into her lap. She relents as he renames it, the Blue Moon Detective Agency. She is desperate to make her business profitable but he is more concerned about gaining media notoriety. Agnes DiPesto (Allyce Beasley) is the wacky rhyming receptionist. Temp worker Herbert Quentin Viola (Curtis Armstrong) joins the team in the third season.

The banter between Maddie and David is electric rapid-fire. She would call it "conversational harikari". It is irreverent. They have segments breaking down the 4th wall. They often reference themselves as a real TV show. It is tongue in cheek. Breakout star Bruce Willis is at his Bruno best. Cybill and Bruce have the perfect rom-com banter. The will-they-won't-they is a lot of fun. I laughed harder in the second season than almost anything else ever on TV. It is the best until late in the third season.

The consummation of their relationship is often blamed for the show's decline. It's rather simplistic. The problems go much deeper. The show gets darker and their relationship gets more melodramatic. The fourth season starts with Maddie running home to Chicago and revealing her pregnancy. The humor is lost especially since the two are separated. It's an attempt to work around a couple of things; Cybill Shepherd's real life pregnancy, and Bruce Willis' fledgling movie career. As great as the first two plus years, the fourth year is notable for its missteps. It's a warning for TV writers everywhere. The show nosedived and never recovered. Compounding the problem are two additional moves in an attempt to return the show back to its first position. Maddie's quickie marriage and their baby's death are the last straws. This show climbed quickly and plummeted catastrophically. While it was good, it was an audience favorite.

Reviewed by fubared1 2 / 10

One of the WORST!!

I had no interest in this when it was on, and now, after seeing the first season, I'm glad I never did. This has to rank as one of worst shows of its type ever made. Give me Diana Rigg and The Avengers any day over this garbage. First, the two leads have zero in the way of acting ability and Willis is one of the most unattractive men in the history of cinema or TV. I'm speaking in terms of the whole package. He is not only physically repellent but he has all the charm and personality of a trained monkey...and that's an insult to all monkeys. And Cybil should have stuck to modeling, as that is her only (questionable) 'talent'. I don't know if she ever learned how to act, I see she's still working in TV, but here she has zero like her co- star. The attempts at humorous repartee are pathetic. I literally wanted to punch Willis' lights out every time he opened his mouth, and I'm not a violent person. As to the stories, they are limp, pathetic, and totally uninteresting. A TOTAL WASTE OF TIME!!!

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