Alice: The Complete First Season [3 Discs] [DVD]

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The long-running CBS sitcom Alice launches its first season with the pilot episode, in which Alice Hyatt (Linda Lavin), recently widowed when her trucker husband was killed in an accident, packs herself and her son Tommy (Philip McKeon) and heads westward, hoping to find success as a professional singer in California. But when her car breaks down outside of Phoenix, Arizona, the stone-broke Alice takes a job as a waitress at the roadside diner run by the short-tempered but basically likable Mel Sharples (Vic Tayback). She also befriends her fellow waitress, the brassy, outspoken Flo (Polly Holliday) and the shy, scatterbrained Vera (Beth Howland). (Trivia note: In the pilot, Alice's place of business was called "Mel and Ruby's Diner", in honor of Mel's late wife. In later episodes it is simply "Mel's Diner", and the boss' previous marital status is seldom if ever mentioned again!) Among those regular customers who show up to savor Mel's delicious home-made chili and to trade quips with the help is Pat Cranshaw as Andy. This season's guest stars include Victor Buono as a celebrated food critic who has the bad taste to drop dead after eating at Mel's Diner; Eileen Heckart as Alice's insufferable mother-in-law Rose; Tom Poston as an amorous mortician who proposes to Vera, even though he's already married; Bernie Kopell as an inept holdup man; and Kay Ballard as a self-proclaimed gypsy who places a curse on the diner and its staff. ~ Hal Erickson

Cast & Crew

  • Linda Lavin - Alice Hyatt
  • Vic Tayback - Mel Sharples
  • Beth Howland - Vera Louise Gorman
  • Philip McKeon - Tommy Hyatt
  • Polly Holliday - Florence Jean `Flo' Castleberry
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