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THE NEIGHBORHOOD ARCHIVE - All Things Mister Rogers

Family Ties

On the episode "D is for Date" from Family Ties' fifth season (1986), Mallory's boyfriend Nick is in danger of serving jail time after neglecting to pay his income taxes for the past five years.

The Keatons offer their help and Nick gladly provides them with his financial records -- a box containing the "past five years in alphabetical order." Elyse is quite surprised by the first document she pulls from the box.

Elyse: "Mister Rogers Fan Club? 'This card certifies that Nick is a neighbor.'"

Alex: "Don't leave home without it, Nick."


In another episode of Family Ties from 1982 ("Give Uncle Arthur a Kiss"), Steven is confronting Arthur, and old family friend, after Arthur has made inappropriate advances towards Steven's teenage daughter, Mallory.

Arthur attempts to defend himself by providing evidence of his strong character and work ethic as an employee of the PBS station where he and Steven work:

"I had it once. Remember, Steve? I was the guy who said, 'Sesame Street, let's go with it.' First time I saw Big Bird I said, 'That bird's a star!' I never liked Mister Rogers though. Why can't he change his shoes before the show?!?"


In the show's final season (1989), an episode titled All in the Neighborhood (Part 2) featured a storyline about the Keaton's friends moving into the neighborhood and being harrassed because of their race. The second episode of this two-parter opens with the following exchange in the Keaton's kitchen:

Elyse: That is the worst neighborhood meeting I have ever been to.

Steven: I think so, too. Why can't we live in a neighborhood full of nice, thoughtful people who care more about others than they do about themselves? One where people say, "Hi, neighbor. How you doing there, neighbor? Glad to see you here, neighbor.

Alex: In other words, Dad, you want to live in Mister Rogers' Neighborhood.

Steven: Well, you've got to admit, Alex, it's a real nice place. (singing) It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood, a beautiful day for a neighbor...

Alex: It's a beautiful day at the funny farm, too, Dad.

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