Family Ties: Season 7
DVD | Box Set
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Steve and Elyse Keaton (Michael Gross and Meredith Baxter-Birney), once 1960s radicals, now find themselves in Reagan-Era American trying to raise a traditional suburban family. Son Alex P. Keaton (Michael J. Fox) is an ambitious Young Republican and his sister Mallory (Justine Bateman) is a shallow victim of the corporate culture, obsessed with music, clothes and boys. Their only normal kid is young Jennifer (Tina Yothers), a bit of a tomboy.
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Having waited and waited to buy the sixth and seventh seasons of Family Ties, I was finally able to get Season 6 in April and Season 7 in August. Of course, I watched all the episodes of Season 7 in rapid succession, and I enjoyed most of them very much. I think that Gary Goldberg realized in Season 7 what he didn't quite get in Season 6...that the members of this family are all older now and that their concerns can't be the same as they were when the show started years before. Of course, the humor and the irrepressible Alex P. Keaton are essential, but the shows deal with serious themes as well. Steven's heart attack is a three-episode event that doesn't leave much room for humor, and the theme of racism is tackled when Steven's black co-worker and his family move into the Keatons' neighborhood. In the final episodes, Alex is off to his dream job in NYC, and the other Keaton children aren't far behind in leaving the nest (with the exception of Andy), and so Family Ties comes to a very natural and appropriate end when Alex bids his family farewell to leave for the Big Apple. Season 7 is very satisfying and a great improvement over some of the rather silly and inane episodes in Season 6.