The Days and Nights of Molly Dodd (TV Series 1987–1991) Poster

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The Blair Brown Show...
eskovan121 January 2004
An endless list of reviews have called The Days & Nights of Molly Dodd an 80s version of either Mary Tyler Moore or Ally McBeal, in that the show centered on a single, quirky, professional woman living alone. A key difference however is Blair Brown.

No disrespect towards MTM or Calista Flockhart, but Blair Brown brought a very unique difference to her character. Mary always seemed to be on the edge of total embarrassment and Ally on the edge of total emotional meltdown. Molly Dodd on the other hand, while often not knowing what she really wanted, was always able to handle whatever life threw at her. She wasn't socially awkward like Mary Richards nor was she emotionally bipolar like Ally McBeal.

Consequently Molly Dodd was someone you'd not just want to go out with, but would want to be friends with. Blair Brown made Molly not only attractive, but fun, lovable and most of all, trustworthy. Not to be too sexist, but she made Molly 'one of the guys'. So never played relationship mind games, and instantly saw (and laughed) when someone did. She valued people totally on their character & personality.

If you woke up next to Mary Richards you'd see her silently & guiltily sneaking out of bed. Ally McBeal would either be planning your wedding or putting a knife in your back. But Molly Dodd would just be there.

And again, while MTM is (or was) attractive enough, she had a very standoff-ish, patrician, repressed kind of look. And Calista Flockhart is just, well, very cute. But Blair Brown, on the one hand she blends unnoticeably into a crowd, but on the other she is a gorgeous, drop-dead classic beauty.
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How do we get Molly Dodd on DVD?
suzanne-4014 September 2003
Every time I look up a Molly Dodd listing, I see requests for this incredible series to be produced on DVD. Who can we let know there is a market for this and it should be out on DVD? It's one of the best series ever, yet it seems to have dropped off the face of the earth (except for a run on GoodLife, which many cable affiliates don't seem to offer).

What needs to be done to get Days and Nights of Molly Dodd released on DVD???
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An "Ally McBeal" of the 1980's
hillari11 December 2000
The show started on NBC, which foolishly cancelled it, then the Lifetime cable network picked it up. Molly Dodd was similar to Ally McBeal, but she was not as neurotic. She was just a single woman trying to make it out in the world, and helped (and sometimes hindered) by the quirky characters surrounding her. My favorite was her doorman, who apparently had lived quite a life before he took the job in her building. My other favorite character was her crazy boss at the publishing company she worked at right before the series ended for good. There have been very few good shows with good women characters, and this is one of the best.
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Blair Brown and Days and Nights: Charming and Under-rated
sts-269 December 2008
Blair Brown has had a great deal of success, and Days and Nights was acknowledged, but both Brown and her prime-time show were still under-rated. The series - at its peak - was as good as, if not better than, Seinfeld, and its excellence was largely down to Brown. And Molly Dodd became the template for certain type of 90s "gal" - smart, sophisticated but artless. Dodd was like every other young woman one met in the big city. We did not see enough of this type on TV or in the movies, and, unfortunately, the template now - for both real life and in the media - is the shallow, self-centered and completely self-involved flibbertigibbet portrayed in everything from Sex and the City to The Hills.
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ROSEMCCA18 January 2004
This series was a wacky satire of a female's life in New York City. Some would find it slightly surreal, but not a true New Yorker. Much more true-to-life than "Sex in the City", this was a real woman, real apartment, real doorman, etc. True, the apt was too large for her means, but maybe it was "rent-controlled/stabilized". Her doorman was very intelligent and witty, but I know some who are!

My favorite celebrity spotting was Nathan Lane who appeared in an early episode playing a putative employer and who, at the time, was so hilarious and appealed to me so much I said "He is going places!" How right I was. I also adored David Straithorn as her very shy bookstore-owner boyfriend.

I loved this show & would buy it on DVD or watch it in syndication!
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compellingly offbeat
thedbdawg13 June 2003
charming. quirky. surreal. trippy. sweet. sad. disappointing. rewarding. alluring. intellectual. musical. ENTRANCING!

This show finally nabbed me when I was at someone else's house, and Molly was reporting on an undercover police investigation. This was a chick show, and I'd have been damned if anyone caught me enjoying a chick show. But the quirky comedy was just my style. I was hooked. Obviously influential on the self-satisfied Ally McBeal, Molly Dodd is in serious need or some new time in syndication.

Molly's middle-of-the-night chats with her dearly departed dad.

Marion Ross playing the role of her overly-concerned mother.

Her all-knowing doorman.

Perpetually unlucky in love.

Bizarre fantasy sequences.

Her neighbors (Ron [who later turned up in 'Mad About You'] reading the paper, and the back page headline shouting "Ron Wants Out" when their marriage was crumbling.)

Gut-wrenching loss (anaphylactic shock.)

Hope from despairing loss.

David Strathairn.

New York.

Lordy, I miss this show!
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Deserved to be a Hit!
Sylviastel14 April 2008
I remember this show fondly because it was filmed in New York City on location without a laugh track or studio audience which was quite a departure for a sitcom about a single woman in the thirties played by the wonderful Blair Brown as Molly Dodd. She must deal with her mother played by the equally wonderful Allyn Ann McLerie. I don't remember ever seeing Molly's brother and sister twins, Mamie and Dwight Dodds who lived in the suburbs. Molly's single life is far from the Sex in the City girls. It was more realistic and believable about Molly trying to find the right man and job. I remember it first on network later on lifetime before it ceased completely from television. The cast and crew were first rate and the writing was simply wonderful just like Molly's life.
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Great Show with a Soul!
lumbaka-224 January 2000
I watched this show religiously in the late 80s when I moved to Boston. It was a show with great feelings. The first year or so on NBC was so-so; I didn't see those shows till after it left there. But on Lifetime the show was fantastic. It seems to have gone into oblivion now unfortunately. Maybe someday it'll be rebroadcast on cable... A great show with a soul.
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An exceptional show!
sreed9934226 August 2002
This show turned me into a lifelong Blair Brown fan. It was sophisticated yet quirky, and I enjoyed its urban flavor at a time when I was living in a small town and longing for the big city. It tried to be challenging in its depiction of characters and relationships, and in that sense was probably ahead of its time. (Those of you who are Blair Brown fans -- particularly if you're from Florida -- should try to get hold of "A Flash of Green," which unfortunately is not an easy movie to find.)
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Writing Scribble That's Drifted Off The Page
dataconflossmoor17 October 2007
Molly's life was a collage of bits and pieces that never really made any sense!! She perennially engages in a personal synopses vindication analysis every time she wants to switch brands of coffee!! She will spend her last $300.00 on a dress at MACY*S, but,if she wants to tell a friend of hers off, she will call them collect!! This show thrived on the unconventional! Moving to cable after being on NBC for two years, and having a largely female audience, it was anything but estrogen laden sap!! Molly Dodd's priorities dictated that, on a caprice, she should be more concerned about what happened to her when she was 12 years old, than she should be about constructing her precarious future! Molly Dodd was impervious with regards to matters such as her career and/or her relationships, or, shall I say, lack of them!! A potpourri of emotional misconfiguration is what gave this show its identity!! NBC's attempt at dialog driven programing for the esoteric, in the late 1980's, did not catch on the way they wanted it to!! Nevertheless, "The Days and Nights of Molly Dodd" was a definite cut above your average run of the mill television show!!
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A little more on this
Denise_Harrison11 April 2002
Molly Dodd was NBC's attempt to recreate the success of Mary Tyler Moore. That attempt has been made over and over and over again but usually with little success. Ally McBeal is Fox's attempt and it's working. It takes a single career woman and a cool ensemble cast, add the quirks that MTM actually brushed on at times (and Molly Dodd totally did in a not unsimilar way) and you have the modern day MTM.

Molly Dodd was on the air I believe two years on NBC before Lifetime picked it up. It was in the first years of Lifetime becoming a women's network so getting ratings had to be tough.

In the NBC years of Molly Dodd, it was just awesome. I will never forget David Strathairn giving her his shoe as a present when he came back from Alaska or somewhere.... very nuts. The show had a lot of quirk.

And let me tell you something. Don't let the camera fool you regarding Blair Brown. I've met her and she is one of the most beautiful women you can imagine. Cameras sometimes do odd things to facial features... believe me, she's not hurting. :)
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A fond remembrance of "The Days and Nights of Molly Dodd"
dhuxford28 December 2005
My only question- Why did this show have to end? I could identify with this woman-the situations she found herself in, I could so easily see myself in. I understood her thoughts and feelings and it made me feel that I was not the only woman on the planet who felt this way about life in general. Molly embodied some worthy qualities- fairness to all people, understanding of peoples' differences and acceptance of them and a kind-hearted approach to life in general. There was no foul language, violence or inferred nastiness in her dealings with folks. Why can't people be more like she is in their daily lives, and why can't we have her back?
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This show was ahead of it's time in using an interracial storyline.
joneslcg4 March 2001
Among Mollys' many suiters was a handsome Black man, who turned out to be the father of her baby. Their whole relationship and resulting pregnancy was done with such sensitivity and class and humor, not by focusing on their differences, but by simply examining how anyone deals with the perils of dating and the difficulties of single parenthood. This show, eventhough short-lived, was simply one of the best in terms of the writing and acting. For a series featuring a female character, I think "Molly Dodd" is right up there among the classics.
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Here's The Heir Apparent To Mary Richards, And Precursor To Ally McBeal.
DeanNYC8 February 2007
People who watch the sociological trends in television often cite important series that are milestones and landmarks for various factions. When discussing "independent female" roles, programs from the 1960s such as Diahann Carroll's "Julia" and Marlo Thomas' "That Girl" are frequently pointed out as important, and certainly in the 1970s, a big boost was given by "Maude" and "Mary Tyler Moore." I offer up the next important series in that chain: Blair Brown in "The Days and Nights of Molly Dodd."

Ten years and two months after Mary Richards exited WJM-TV, Jay Tarses (who happened to be in the MTM stable as a frequent writing contributor to "The Bob Newhart Show" back in the day) created this next logical evolutionary step for "The Television Woman."

Molly Dodd was an attractive, 30something, single Manhattan woman who was, basically, a mess. There was nothing together or even mildly prepared about this woman, either in her work, her home life or her romantic relationships. She had been married to, then divorced from a modestly successful saxophonist who somehow wasn't quite out of her life and whose only worthwhile contribution to her was his surname. Her door/elevator man was an amateur philosopher. Her mom was a reflection of herself, and not in a good way. Her career was stuck in dead-end jobs. And when relationships did come along, there were always bizarre complications attached: such as her relationship with an NYPD undercover detective named Nathaniel Hawthorne, or when it devolved into a love triangle with a bookseller named Moss. Or when it got even more complicated, and then tragic.

Somehow, Molly managed to take everything that happened to her in stride, at least in many cases, and that approach helped make her situations bearable, at least for the audience! The other charming and wonderful thing about the lead character was in her imperfections, and her willingness to be OK with them. She rarely had the answer, and even when she did, she often didn't know it! Yet, even as her world was spinning out of control, she kept her equilibrium, and continued on her way, in a sprightly manner. If she could make it there (with all of the people in her life *attempting* to help), she just might make it after all.

Clearly, Molly owed some things to Mary Richards, and definitely paved the way for a character like Ally McBeal, who also had many of the quirky traits that Ms. Dodd had, albeit Ally was a successful lawyer. The "Dramedy" genre that Ms. McBeal dwelled in was first presented here, and that makes this series a very important link in the "History of Women on TV" chain.

As such an important part of television history, the series should be available on DVD for everyone to see! There were only 65 episodes, so this shouldn't be that difficult.
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Such great writing and acting
joanna_h25 August 2019
This show was my favorite comedy for a long time. The writing was superb, the characters realistic yet quirky. And New York City was a character in the show. Why isn't this on ANY streaming service?
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Watched the show religiously during the original run
Dan_Harkless18 September 1999
I was 15 when I started watching this show, so I can't say whether I'd feel the same way about it today as I did then, but "back in the day" I watched it religiously.

"Ally McBeal" owes a lot to this now mostly forgotten show -- not in terms of the courtroom drama, though there are many other progenitors in that area -- but in terms of the character and drama surrounding the female main characters. Both are professional 30s-ish women who aren't really sure what they want, and aren't all that lucky in love. I dunno, maybe the comparison's a little facile since there aren't that many TV dramas with female lead characters, but I'd be kind of surprised if none of the principals involved in "Ally" had ever seen "Molly Dodd".

To salvage some of my masculinity after admitting to watching all these chick shows, I'll say that I thought Blair Brown was really attractive on this show. Unfortunately I just caught her on a 1996 TV Movie, "The Ultimate Lie" (on, er... Lifetime), and except when she's smiling, she looks like she's aged, well, a lifetime. (Sorry, Blair!)
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The Real Molly Dodd?
richard.fuller12 October 2004
I guess the most peculiar thing about this show is that there was indeed a real Molly Dodd (1921-1981) who made numerous television appearances all throughout the sixties and seventies, I guess she is most notable today on reruns of the Brady Bunch.

She made two appearances, one as a store clerk, but her other appearance is as the bigoted neighbor Mrs. Payne in the episode "Kelly's Kids" with Ken Berry, Brooke Bundy, Billy Allton and Todd Lookinland, the real life younger brother of Mike Lookinland (Bobby Brady); this was the episode with the 3 Musketeers boys, each of a different race.

Molly Dodd also appears in the movie Harper Valley PTA with Barbara Eden and Fannie Flagg. She was the snooty gambler who had the horse manure dumped on her at the end.

Now what part this woman's name could have in this Blair Brown TV show, I wouldn't know. She certainly didn't look like Blair Brown.

But Molly Dodd isn't an incredibly common name.

Or is it?
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Great series
vizfam26 August 2006
Nothing crude about this show, nice stories and nice characters. Blair Brown was the most beautiful woman on TV at that time. This was a simpler time for sitcoms. I suspect that the generation today would find them provincial and quaint. Not enough sexual content for the young taste buds. I have some of these shows on VHS and occasionally I will put them on and get lost in Molly's smile. I just wish that this series would become available on DVD. I understand that the show is being aired on one of the cable stations "Goodtime" or something like that, anyway I don't get it, so hopefully it will be broadcast again on Lifetime.
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