The New Adventures of Old Christine
GenreSitcom
Created byKari Lizer
Directed byAndy Ackerman
Starring
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons5
No. of episodes88 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producers
  • Andy Ackerman
  • Ellen Kreamer
  • Jack Burditt
  • Jeff Astrof
  • Kari Lizer
  • Sherry Bilsing-Graham
Producers
Camera setupMulti-camera
Running time22–24 minutes
(excluding commercials)
Production companies
DistributorWarner Bros. Television Distribution
Release
Original networkCBS
Picture formatHDTV 1080i
Original releaseMarch 13, 2006 (2006-03-13) –
May 12, 2010 (2010-05-12)
External links
Website

The New Adventures of Old Christine (often shortened to simply Old Christine) is an American sitcom television series starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus as Christine Campbell, a divorced mother doing her best to keep pace with those around her. Clark Gregg co-starred as her ex-husband Richard, with whom Christine maintains a close relationship despite their divorce, as well as Hamish Linklater as her brother Matthew and Wanda Sykes as her best friend, Barb. It ran on CBS from March 13, 2006 to May 12, 2010.

The New Adventures of Old Christine was created and produced by Kari Lizer as well as Andy Ackerman (who directed all 88 episodes of the series), and distributed by Warner Bros. Television. The series received generally positive reviews from television critics and was nominated for nine Primetime Emmy Awards, winning one for Louis-Dreyfus' performance in the first season.[1] On May 18, 2010, CBS canceled the series after five seasons.[2]

Background

Christine Campbell (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) is a neurotic mother and owner of a women's gym who is in a constant struggle to keep pace with those around her. A fixture in her life is her ex-husband Richard (Clark Gregg), whose new girlfriend (Emily Rutherfurd) is also named Christine, hence the nickname "Old Christine".

Christine lives with her son Ritchie (Trevor Gagnon) and her brother Matthew (Hamish Linklater), while best friend and business partner Barb (Wanda Sykes) is constantly a shoulder for Christine to lean on. Christine also struggles with her inferiority complex with the "meanie-moms," Marly Ehrhardt (Tricia O'Kelley) and Lindsay (Alex Kapp Horner), at her son's private school.

There are guest appearances from actors including Blair Underwood, Dave Foley, Eric McCormack, Jason Alexander, Jennifer Grey, Jeffrey Tambor, Megan Mullally, Scott Bakula, Ed Begley Jr., Kristen Johnston, Molly Shannon, Andy Richter, Amy Sedaris, Lee Tergesen, and Jane Lynch.

History

Synopsis

Trevor Gagnon and Julia Louis-Dreyfus in Season 1; Episode 3 "Open Water".
Trevor Gagnon and Julia Louis-Dreyfus in Season 1; Episode 3 "Open Water".

The first season consists of 13 episodes and premiered on March 13, 2006. In this season Christine has only just enrolled her son, Ritchie, at a new posh private school, where she is constantly being humiliated by Marly and Lindsay, some non-working mothers at the school. On top of all this, she has just discovered her ex-husband, Richard, has started dating a much younger woman who is also named Christine. Christine has a brief fling with Burton Schaefer, her on-and-off romantic interest, but they soon break up due to Christine not being able to commit to the relationship. In the season finale, Christine kisses Richard, causing him to tell New Christine, who promptly breaks up with him.

The second season consists of 22 episodes and premiered on September 18, 2006. Due to Richard and Christine spending more time together after his breakup with New Christine, Ritchie believes that his parents have gotten back together, much to his parents' dismay. Christine starts dating an older man, who she later discovers is New Christine's father. Richard and New Christine rekindle their romance once again. Barb decides to start working at the gym with Christine, while Christine falls hard for Ritchie's new teacher, Mr. Harris. The season finale included Richard sleeping with Christine after breaking up with New Christine yet again. This causes a pregnancy scare for Christine, which is soon avoided. Eventually, New Christine takes Richard back and Mr. Harris takes a new teaching job at another school, allowing him and Christine to start dating.

The third season was scheduled as a midseason replacement on CBS with 13 episodes scheduled. Due to the 2007 writer's strike, the third season consists of only 10 episodes. The third season premiered on February 4, 2008. Christine and Mr. Harris have a good relationship, until Christine's schedule becomes too hectic midway through the season; so they eventually break up. Meanwhile, Richard and New Christine buy a house together, which coincidentally is Christine's dream house, leaving her feeling jealous and confused. Barb leaves her husband and she has a short-lived fling with Matthew, much to Christine's horror.

The fourth season, consisting of 22 episodes, premiered on September 24, 2008. As she is Bahamian, Barb faces deportation from the U.S. after her divorce, so Christine decides to marry her in a sham lesbian marriage in order to keep her best friend in the country. Richard and New Christine become engaged while Matthew finds love with one of his clients. Christine has a brief relationship with a man named Patrick, while Christine and Barb decide to turn their gym into a spa which they later discover has turned into a brothel. On the day of Richard and New Christine's wedding, Christine briefly gets back together with New Christine's father, but is later left heartbroken when she discovers that he is engaged. This causes Richard to rush to Christine's side, provoking the jealous New Christine to leave him at the altar. Meanwhile, Barb and Christine's sham marriage is discovered by Dave, an INS officer, leaving Barb imprisoned.

The fifth and final season, consisting of 21 episodes, premiered on September 23, 2009. Barb is released from custody and marries Richard so that she can stay in the country. She also starts dating the immigration officer Dave. While Richard tries to win New Christine back, he temporarily moves into a new apartment with Matthew. Christine begins going to therapy, but she is attracted to her therapist, Max. They eventually abandon Christine's therapy and strike up a relationship instead. New Christine announces that she is pregnant, causing Richard to rekindle his relationship with her. New Christine eventually gives birth to a baby girl. Meanwhile, Barb becomes engaged to a reluctant Dave. At the conclusion of the season, Christine also becomes engaged to Max, but she feels intimidated by his very educated friends, and also in an effort to improve herself and reach her potential, she decides to return to college.

Cancellation

In May 2010, CBS canceled The New Adventures of Old Christine.[2][3] Afterward, series creator Kari Lizer slammed the network, suggesting the decision to cancel the series was sexist.[4][5] In an interview with TV Guide, Lizer stated: "As far as what happened at CBS, we’ve suffered from a serious lack of support from them since the beginning. I hate to say it, but I’m afraid they don’t care much for the female-of-a-certain-age point of view over there. How else do you explain them squandering the talents of Julia [Louis-Dreyfus] and Wanda [Sykes]?"[4] With support from Lizer, Warner Bros. Television began negotiations to continue the series on ABC, but a deal could not be made reportedly due to a high licensing fee to keep the series going.[6]

Cast and characters

Main cast

Recurring cast

Episodes

Main article: List of The New Adventures of Old Christine episodes

SeasonEpisodesOriginally aired
First airedLast aired
113March 13, 2006 (2006-03-13)May 22, 2006 (2006-05-22)
222September 18, 2006 (2006-09-18)May 7, 2007 (2007-05-07)
310February 4, 2008 (2008-02-04)March 31, 2008 (2008-03-31)
422September 24, 2008 (2008-09-24)May 20, 2009 (2009-05-20)
521September 23, 2009 (2009-09-23)May 12, 2010 (2010-05-12)

Reception

Critical reception

This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (October 2011)

"While it occasionally runs to the absurd – a blind date who won't eat food other people have touched and brings his own chicken to a restaurant – it stays for the most part within the realm of recognizable human relations, and lets you feel something for its characters. This was not a luxury Seinfeld ever afforded anyone, and it's nice to see the star getting to play something less cerebrally conceived, less obsessive-compulsive and more ordinarily well-rounded."

The New Adventures of Old Christine crew about the series

The review website Metacritic.com, which tabulates critics' reviews, gave it a 64—equating to their summary of "generally positive reviews", with 16 out of 26 critics reviews deemed as positive.[7] A Los Angeles Times review notes that "Louis-Dreyfus makes Christine feel fresh and real" and the show has a "dry charm and a nice tone of affectionate irony."[8]

Nielsen ratings and broadcast history

The show's initial ratings success was the first example of a show breaking the "Seinfeld curse" (after the failures of The Michael Richards Show, Bob Patterson, Listen Up!, and Louis-Dreyfus' own Watching Ellie).[9] The series premiere reached 15.1 million viewers. Old Christines time slot was changed mid-way through the second season, with a decline in ratings after losing its Two and a Half Men lead-in.

On May 16, 2007, it was announced that, despite the decline in ratings, CBS would renew the show for a third season 2007–2008 as a mid-season replacement.[10] On November 6, 2007, CBS said that production of Old Christine had been halted because of a strike by the Writers Guild of America.[11] On December 13, 2007 CBS announced that the series would return for its third season, which premiered on February 4, 2008, replacing Rules of Engagement.[12] However, only 10 episodes of the original 13-episode order were produced and aired for the third season because of the WGA strike.[13]

On May 14, 2008, CBS gave the sitcom a 22-episode order for the 2008–2009 season, where it aired on Wednesdays, opening up a second comedy night for the network.[14] Only 6.7 million viewers tuned in to the premiere. The following week, despite not having to go up against ratings success Dancing with the Stars, ratings tip-toed up, as it added a few hundred thousand. By the third episode, the show was over 7.5 million and had added more than one million to the premiere audience. Since then, the fourth season Old Christine had ratings close to 8 million viewers, and came first in its time slot multiple times.

The early ratings for the fifth season had been lower than previous seasons, but the 14th episode of the season reached 8.3 million viewers, the highest viewership the show had received in the Wednesday night timeslot. CBS cancelled The New Adventures of Old Christine after five seasons in May 2010.[2]

Season Time slot (ET) Premiered Ended TV season Rank Viewers
(million)
1 Monday 9:30 (Episodes 2-4, 6-11, 13)
Monday 8:30 (Episodes 1, 5, 12)
March 13, 2006 May 22, 2006 2005–2006 #29 12.57
2 Monday 9:30 (Episodes 1-14)
Monday 8:00 (Episode 15)
Monday 8:30 (Episodes 16-22)
September 18, 2006 May 7, 2007 2006–2007 #39 11.77
3 Monday 9:30 (Episodes 1-5, 7-10)
Monday 8:30 (Episode 6)
February 4, 2008 March 31, 2008 2007–2008 #42 10.41
4 Wednesday 8:00 September 24, 2008 May 20, 2009 2008–2009 #77 7.25
5 Wednesday 8:00 September 23, 2009 May 12, 2010 2009–2010 #66 6.74

Awards and nominations

Year Award Title Recipient Result
2006 Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series Julia Louis-Dreyfus Won
Outstanding Cinematography for a Multi-Camera Series Gregg Heschong Nominated
Satellite Awards Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy Julia Louis-Dreyfus Nominated
2007 Art Directors Guild Award Best Production Design for a Multi-Camera Series Cabot McMullen Nominated
Gold Derby Awards Best Actress in a Comedy Series Julia Louis-Dreyfus Nominated
Golden Globe Awards Best Actress in a TV Series – Musical or Comedy Julia Louis-Dreyfus Nominated
Humanitas Prize 30 Minute Category Jennifer Crittenden Won
Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series Julia Louis-Dreyfus Nominated
Satellite Awards Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy Julia Louis-Dreyfus Nominated
Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series Julia Louis-Dreyfus Nominated
2008 Gold Derby Awards Best Actress in a Comedy Series Julia Louis-Dreyfus Nominated
NAACP Image Awards Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series Blair Underwood Nominated
Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series Julia Louis-Dreyfus Nominated
Outstanding Art Direction for a Multi-Camera Series Cabot McMullen, Amy Feldman Nominated
Satellite Awards Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy Julia Louis-Dreyfus Nominated
Women's Image Network Awards Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series Julia Louis-Dreyfus Won
Outstanding Comedy Series Kari Lizer Won
Young Artist Awards Best Performance in a TV Series - Young Actor Age Ten or Younger Trevor Gagnon Nominated
2009 GLAAD Media Awards Outstanding Individual Episode Frank Pines Won
Gold Derby Awards Best Actress in a Comedy Series Julia Louis-Dreyfus Nominated
NAACP Image Awards Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series Blair Underwood Nominated
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series Wanda Sykes Nominated
Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series Julia Louis-Dreyfus Nominated
Outstanding Art Direction for a Multi-Camera Series Cabot McMullen, Amy Feldman Nominated
2010 Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series Julia Louis-Dreyfus Nominated
Outstanding Art Direction for a Multi-Camera Series Cabot McMullen, Amy Feldman Nominated
Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series Julia Louis-Dreyfus Nominated

Adaptation

The New Adventures of Old Christine was adapted in Germany in 2013. The series is named Christine. Perfekt war gestern! and was canceled after its first season.

Home media

DVD Name Episodes Discs Release dates
Region 1 Region 2 Region 4
The Complete First Season 13 2 January 15, 2008 July 23, 2008 March 13, 2018
The Complete Second Season 22 4 June 24, 2008 October 21, 2008 TBA
The Complete Third Season 10 2 July 27, 2010 [15] September 15, 2010 TBA
The Complete Fourth Season 22 5 December 7, 2010[16] February 10, 2011 TBA
The Complete Fifth and Final Season 21 3 February 21, 2012 February 28, 2012 TBA

Notes

  1. ^ Last name established in the season two episode "Crash".

References

  1. ^ The New Adventures of Old Christine at IMDb
  2. ^ a b c O'Neal, Sean (18 May 2010). "CBS cleans house, cancels Ghost Whisperer and The New Adventures Of Old Christine". avclub.com. The A.V. Club. The Onion, Inc. Retrieved 17 November 2016.
  3. ^ "'GHOST WHISPERER' AND 'OLD CHRISTINE' CANCELLED". hollywoodoutbreak.com. Hollywood Outbreak. 18 May 2010. Retrieved 17 November 2016.
  4. ^ a b Wightman, Catriona (20 May 2010). "'Old Christine' creator slams show axe". digitalspy.com. Digital Spy. Retrieved 17 January 2016.
  5. ^ Kimbell, Trevor (30 May 2010). "The New Adventures of Old Christine: Cancelled Because of Sexism?". tvseriesfinale.com. TVSeriesFinale. Retrieved 17 January 2016.
  6. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (2 June 2010). "It's The End For 'Christine': No Deal At ABC". deadline.com. Deadline. Retrieved 17 January 2016.
  7. ^ "New Adventures Of Old Christine, The". Metacritic.com. Metacritic. 13 March 2006. Retrieved 17 November 2016.
  8. ^ Lloyd, Robert (20 March 2006). "'Christine' creates a life beyond Elaine". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 17 November 2016.
  9. ^ Vasquez, Diego (21 March 2006). "Sweet bump for CBS's 'Old Christine'". medialifemagazine.com. Media Life. Archived from the original on 14 July 2011. Retrieved 17 November 2016.
  10. ^ "Breaking News – CBS ANNOUNCES 2007–2008 PRIMETIME SCHEDULE". TheFutonCritic.com. The Futon Critic. 16 May 2007. Retrieved 17 November 2016.
  11. ^ Horn, John (6 November 2007). "Writers work picket lines as TV shows shut down". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 17 November 2016.
  12. ^ "Premieres of 'Welcome to the Captain' and 'The New Adventures of Old Christine'". TheFutonCritic.com. The Futon Critic. 13 December 2007. Retrieved 17 November 2016.
  13. ^ Hooley, Danny (February 19, 2008). "He Has Work to Do". The News & Observer. Archived from the original on May 26, 2008. Retrieved March 11, 2008.
  14. ^ Surette, Tim (14 May 2008). "CBS yuks up new schedule". TV.com. Archived from the original on 28 June 2011. Retrieved 17 November 2016.
  15. ^ "The New Adventures of Old Christine DVD news: Press Release for The New Adventures of Old Christine – The Complete 3rd Season". TVShowsOnDVD.com. Archived from the original on July 26, 2010. Retrieved November 5, 2010.
  16. ^ "Twitter / 700+ Films & TV: @losingstreak12 – Look for". Twitter.com. Retrieved November 5, 2010.