I really loved the Emmy award winning “ThirtySomething” which was on the air for only a few years from 1987 to 1991.
I remember thinking man those people are so old but now I don’t think that way anymore. Great stories and wonderful characters. Everyone remembers the theme music to the show I’m sure.
My favorite episode was the one where Gary dies tragically (the long haired dude). I still think of that one from time to time. It was such an emotional experience if you were a fan of the show. The acting was superb and the message was so powerful. Here’s this person, Nancy, struggling for her life against cancer and everyone’s celebrating her remission then out of the blue a healthy vibrant friend is killed. Her reaction was utter disbelief and denial. “It’s not right! I’m the one that’s supposed to die! Not Gary!”
The acting performance by Michael as he receives the news of his friend’s death is chilling. Up until that moment I always thought he was kind of wooden kind of actor but he shined like never before in this episode. It’s one of the best acting performances on TV or film that I’ve ever witnessed.
Another fantastic job was turned in by Melanie Mayron whose character had an on again off again romantic thing with Gary. She took the news the hardest of all because they were actually not speaking due to some trivial spat. Another eye-opening life lesson about forgiveness and how painful it can be if you don’t make peace with those you love should they pass away unexpectedly.
The ending of that episode was especially memorable as Nancy reads a passage from the Alice in Wonderland book he gave her before his untimely demise. They showed images of a laughing happy Gary riding his bike as they faded to black.
Here’s the extended version of the theme
The cast of Thirtysomething reflects on the show years later on NPR