season one: attack of the killer parents
101 - Premiere 103 - Housewarming

Episode 102--"parents are coming"

a.k.a. "attack of the killer parents"


Marshall Herskovitz and Edward Zwick
Edward Zwick
Air Dates
10/6/87, 12/29/87
Guest Stars
Hope's parents
Old screen capture from a VHS tape
Hope's parents
New screen capture from DVD
Sound wavs from this episode
Shirley Knight as Ruth Murdoch; George Coe as Ted Murdoch; Shiri Appleby as Little Hope; Maura Soden as Shelly; Mallory Jones Danaher as Saleslady
Hope's parents come to visit and she has a yuppie seizure.
Hope's parents come to Philadelphia from Arizona on a visit and she plays the martyr, misinterpreting everything her mother says and being tight-lipped and furious when her father mildly blinks at her mother's annoying little habits. Meanwhile Michael and Gary go through friendship adjustments in the aftermath of Michael's new commitments.
Notes Goofs Quotes
"You're a dead man, Shepherd!" --Hope in the shower, screeching
  • This too was a pretty bad episode. Hope went into hystrionics at the slightest provocation, Michael came across as weak, and her parents were a caricature. OK, so I have a terrific relationship with my parents and it's hard for me to identify with someone who has this kind of a combative, passive/aggressive setup with their folks.
  • Sound wavs from this episode - All sound names starting with "02"

    July 20, 2015 - I haven't made any updates to this site in years, but today I saw in the news that George Coe had passed away at the age of 86. That's him and Shirley Knight in the photos at the top of this page. He played Hope's father in this episode and a couple of others, and he kept busy on a lot of other TV shows. I learned some interesting things from the articles about his passing:
    Coe’s career in television included appearances on Star Trek: The Next Generation, Max Headroom, Murder, She Wrote, Bones, Columbo, The Golden Girls, The West Wing, and more. Coe has voiced Woodhouse on FX’s animated comedy Archer (which I really enjoy, and had no idea Coe voiced Woodhouse), and provided the voice of Wheeljack in Transformers: Dark of the Moon. He served more than a dozen years on the SAG national board of directors, having the vice president title for two years and creating the template for what became SAG’s first low-budget production contract. Coe was born in Jamaica, Queens. His Broadway theater career began in 1957 and included performing as M. Lindsey Woolsey opposite Angela Lansbury in the original cast of Jerry Herman’s “Mame” and as Owen O’Malley in “On The Twentieth Century.” Coe was also an original member of “Not Ready For Prime Time Players,” the original cast of “Saturday Night Live,” and was credited as a cast member for the first show in October, 1975. He portrayed the head of an ad agency in “Kramer vs. Kramer” (interesting, since thirtysomething involves ad agencies throughout its four seasons) and was nominated for an Academy Award for the 1968 comedy short film “The Dove,” a parody of Ingmar Bergman’s films, which he co-directed as well as starred in.