When “The Facts of Life” premiered, I was 14 years old, just about the right age to dream about being carted off to an all-girls boarding school and hang out with Natalie and Tootie (I don’t think I would’ve liked Blair and Jo) along with enjoying he comforting guidance of Edna Garrett. In fact, however, the original original cast included a plethora of girls including Molly Ringwald whose character talked without any pauses between sentences, a trait I tried to emulate at school thinking I was being funny. No one else did. Same with the show which struggled in the ratings at first.
Eventually, they pared down the number of girls and hit ratings gold. It was immensely popular, we forget. It would have gone into its 10th season except that some of the actors didn’t want to go on. They did get back together for a reunion movie in 2001 called imaginatively enough “The Facts of Life Reunion”. However, Nancy McKeon did not participate. I was personally offended, of course. Was she too good for us?
However, the news is that Nancy along with the other girls, er women, will reunite in a new Lifetime Christmas movie premiering December 1st called “You Light Up My Christmas”. They’re not playing the same characters, however. And unfortunately, Charlotte Rae passed away last year, so no Mrs. Garrett. But it will be wonderful to see her wards – all four of them – together once again.
If they could just Molly Ringwald back, then the facts of life would be complete.