Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Inspired by the essays of humorist W. Bruce Cameron, this ABC sitcom went through a number of title changes before settling on its unwieldy but all-encompassing cognomen. The basic gag here was that John Ritter and Katey Sagal, respectively the randy Jack Tripper on Three's Company and the slatternly Peg Bundy on Married With Children, were now cast against type as the intensely over-protective parents of three teenagers, two girls and a boy. When Cate Hennessy (Sagal) re-entered the workplace, her newspaper columnist husband Paul Hennessy (John Ritter) suddenly found himself in more or less full charge of his daughters, the man-hungry (and barely clothed) Bridget (Kaley Cuoco) and the wise-lipped Kerry (Amy Davidson, who was eerily reminiscent of Roseanne's Sara Gilbert). Agonizing over the girls' choice in beaux and their outrageous outfits (thong and bra jokes abounded on this series), the long-suffering Paul often found himself turning to his (comparatively) level-headed son Rory (Martin Spanjers) for advice (the kids on the series were named after the real-life children of series creator Tracy Gamble). And just for the record, those titular eight rules were as follows: "1: Use your hands on my daughter and you'll lose them after. 2: You make her cry, I make you cry. 3: Safe sex is a myth. Anything you try will be hazardous to your health. 4: Bring her home late, there's no next date. 5: Only delivery men honk. Dates ring the doorbell. Once. 6: No complaining while you're waiting for her. If you're bored, change my oil. 7: If your pants hang off your hips, I'll gladly secure them with my staple gun. 8: Dates must be in crowded public place. You want romance? Read a book." The series began its highly-publicized run on September 17, 2002.