Diane Haithman contributes to Deadline’s TV coverage.
One of the first questions at today’s TCA panel on the new ABC comedy How To Live With Your Parents (For The Rest Of Your Life) was: Why is the title so long? Not exactly Twitter-friendly, according to the questioner. Is there a line between long, and too long?
“This. This is the line”, joked writer/executive producer Claudia Lonow, who appeared on the panel with series stars Brad Garrett, Elizabeth Perkins, Sarah Chalke and executive producer Francie Calfo (executive producer Brian Grazer did not attend). Added Lonow: “I’m sorry, I like it. Do you like it”?
The questioner didn’t like it. But Lonow likes it because the show is the story of her life. Just like the lead character Polly (Chalke), Lonow moved back in with her parents after a divorce with a young daughter in tow. Her daughter is now a young woman of college age, but Lonow is still living with her parents and in fact bought a house with them when her daughter was old enough for school.
Like Polly in the first episode, Lonow said she really did show up on her parents’ doorstep with her child and say: “Is hope this isn’t a bad time for you because it’s a really bad time for me”. In hindsight, Lonow said, it was a great decision because it was a good arrangement for her daughter, but admitted that it sometimes made dating difficult: “Being a divorced woman with a child who lives with her parents is not a selling point”, she quipped.
Before turning writer-producer, Lonow was an actress with a role on Knots Landing. Because there is now a new TNT Dallas series featuring some of the former stars, she was asked if she’s up for a Knots reunion. “No, my days in front of the camera are behind me, though I have a loyal following of about 20 followers on Twitter”.