Here’s to Forty-Four Years of “Making Our Dreams Come True”
It was 44 years ago on January 27 that Laverne & Shirley premiered on ABC with Penny Marshall as Laverne and Cindy Williams as Shirley. The series was a spin-off of Happy Days, another hugely popular ABC series. Laverne and Shirley were initially introduced on Happy Days as acquaintances of Arthur "The Fonz" Fonzarelli. Therefore, Laverne & Shirley was set in the same city and time period of Happy Days which was late-50's, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
The series followed the daily lives of Laverne DeFazio and Shirley Feeney, two roommates who worked at the Shotz Brewery in Milwaukee. The show centered on the two girls and their families and friends. Supporting characters included Carmine Ragusa(affectionately known as "The Big Ragoo", played by Eddie Mekka), landlady Edna Babish(Betty Garrett),and Laverne's dad, Frank(Phil Foster).
The biggest supporting characters however were Lenny Kosnowski(Michael McKean) and Andrew "Squiggy" Squiggman(David Lander), neighbors of Laverne and Shirley, who were always getting into some sort of trouble due to one crazy scheme or another.
Laverne & Shirley proved to very popular with viewers and by its third season became the most watched American television program. The show ran for eight seasons and was even nominated for some Golden Globe awards and even a Primetime Emmy.
Happy Anniversary, Laverne and Shirley!! We celebrate you by singing your theme song by Cyndi Grecco which became a hit in 1976. Everybody now:
"Schlemiel! Schlimazel! Hasenpfeffer Incorporated!"...