was set in the 1950s in Milwaukee, the heart of middle-class America, and told the story of the Cunningham family. Mr. Cunningham (Tom Bosley) ran the local hardware store and Mrs. Cunningham (Marion Ross), like all good TV Moms, spent her time in the kitchen. Their son, Richie (Ron Howard), hung out at Arnold's Drive-In with his pals Ralph Malph (Donny Most) and Potsie (Anson Williams), trying to be as cool as the coolest greaser in town, the Fonz (Henry Winkler). Richie's sister, Joanie (Erin Moran), tagged along whenever she wasn't at her friend Jenny Piccolo's house. The Cunninghams also had an older son, Chuck, but he mysteriously disappeared after the first season.
Happy Days: The Complete Second Season
finds Garry Marshalls immortal, 1970s sitcom hitting its stride with 23 episodes that continue to be built around Milwaukee native Richie Cunningham (Ron Howard) and his family and friends. But theres also a clear strengthening of one of the shows eventual, major elements: the close, if unlikely, friendship between Richie and Arthur "Fonzie" Fonzarelli (Henry Winkler). As always, Richie is angling for a way to grow up faster, often getting in over his head. In "Richie Moves Out," the red-haired teen tires of trying to kiss his girlfriend in the goldfish bowl of his house, so he agrees to live with his older brother while finishing high school and holding down a job. The result: theres no time for making out when one is that busy. A similar scheme backfires in "Richies Car," when the Fonz converts a racing vehicle into a family-friendly, second car for the Cunninghams, only to find after the fact that its probably stolen. "Fonzie Joins the Band" sees Richie having to stand up to, and disappoint, his greaser pal when non-musical Fonzie presumes to join Richies band in exchange for outfitting them in slick tuxedoes. Fonzie looks surprisingly downhearted, too, in "Richies Flip Side," in which straight-arrow, young Cunningham gets a job as a disc jockey and develops an unbearable ego. In "Goin to Chicago," Richie, Potsie (Anson Williams) and Ralph (Don Most) go on an overnight field trip to the Windy City and discover that stepping into the adult world (they visit a nightclub and end up with a whoppping check they cant pay) takes some preparation and experience they dont yet have. Tom Bosley and Marion Ross still look, in retrospect, as wonderful in the roles of Richies parents as they did in the early 70s. --Tom Keogh