Gimme a Break! (TV Series 1981–1987) - Plot Summary Poster



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  • Carl Kanisky is chief of police in Glenlawn, California. After the death of his wife, Margaret, he asks her friend, Nell Harper, to come in to keep house and take care of his children, Katie, Julie, and Samantha, in short, be like a mother to them. Later, Carl's father, Stanley, moves in. Around the same time, Nell takes in young Joey Donovan as her foster son.

  • In Joey's Train, the entire family mourns the Chief's death. Jonathan wants him & Jullie to move into the Chief's room which angers everybody. Later Joey puts his electric train in the Chief's room & he is in hot water not only with Nell, but he is also in hot water with Katie & Samantha, who both get angry at Joey.

  • Nell Harper is the black housekeeper of the Kanisky family which consists of Carl, the father who is also the Chief of Police, and his three daughters, Julie, Katie, and Samantha. Now Nell sometimes has to act as a surrogate mother to the daughters cause their mother has passed away, and as a buffer between the girls and their father, cause Carl is not exactly in touch with his feminine side. Later, Carl's father, Stanley, would move in with them after his wife died. And the family would also take in a boy, Joey. There were a few changes in the show's fifth season: Carl had passed away and Katie got married to Jonathan. And during the show's fifth season the show was overhauled, Nell, Joey, Samantha, and her friend, Addy moved to New York and Joey learned that he has a brother, Matthew, who moved in with him and Nell.


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