ALF, 1986

Hugely popular here in the UK.  ALF was the US sitcom that ran for 99 episodes over four series, between 1986 and 1990.  However 3 episodes ran for 60 minutes but were divided into two parts for broadcast taking the episode count to 102.

The series was created by Paul Fusco who also the puppeteer behind the title character.  The title character is Gordon Shumway, a friendly extraterrestrial nicknamed ALF (an acronym for Alien Life Form), who crash lands in the garage of the suburban middle-class Tanner family.

It was the first television series to be presented in Dolby Surround, how technology moves on.

Whilst we have tried to get some UK transmission dates there seems to be little record.  We do know it was broadcast on ITV and we think that it ran through the same time period as in the USA, probably a few months behind.  The show usually went out on ITV’s Saturday teatime slot.


Meet ALF an alien from the planet Melmac who whilst following a ham radio signal to Earth manages to crash-land into the garage of the Tanners.

The Tanners are a suburban middle-class family in the San Fernando Valley area of California. The family consists of social worker Willie (Max Wright), his wife Kate (Anne Schedeen), their teenage daughter Lynn (Andrea Elson), younger son Brian (Benji Gregory), and their cat Lucky.

Each episode dealt with ALF learning about Earth and making new friends both within and outside of the Tanner family, through the episodes comedy comes from the clash of cultures, general boredom, despair, and loneliness that frequently cause difficulty for the Tanners.







Paul Fusco – ALF (puppeteer, voice)
Lisa Buckley – ALF (assistant puppeteer)
Bob Fappiano – ALF (assistant puppeteer)
Max Wright – Willie Tanner
Anne Schedeen – Kate Tanner
Andrea Elson – Lynn Tanner
Benji Gregory – Brian Tanner


Channel: NBC (USA), ITV(UK)
Created By: Paul Fusco and Tom Patchett
Original Transmission Dates: September 22nd, 1986 – March 24th, 1990 (USA)

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