August 17, 2010 – The Sitcom Melissa & Joey Premieres on ABC Family
“No we don’t. The urge to set things on fire – we repress.”
On August 17, 2010, the sitcom Melissa & Joey premiered on ABC Family. The story is about Mel Burke, a former wild child turned local politician, who has to take care of her niece and nephew after her brother-in-law and sister are thrown in federal prison. Mel reluctantly hires Joe, a former commodities trader, to become the live-in nanny. The show has received great ratings in its timeslot, and as of this date, has been renewed for a fourth season. The series was created by David Kendall and Bob Young. It stars Melissa Joan Hart as Mel Burke, Joey Lawrence as Joe Longo, Taylor Spreitler as Lennox, and Nick Robinson as Ryder.
The episode begins with Councilperson Mel Burke preparing for a night on the town while watching an earlier press conference. Someone in the conference starts demanding their money back from her brother-in-law, but she coolly shuts him down, with her assistant Rhonda telling her that she “smelled of authority.” Their celebration is cut short when Mel’s niece Lennox asks why angry white men are throwing trash on their lawn. Mel is trying to reach out to her niece, but Lennox is rather reluctant, as is Lennox’s brother Ryder, who expresses his anger in not-so-healthy ways. On Mel’s way out, she and Rhonda get phone calls about Lennox, with Lennox getting suspended. Mel goes to confront Lennox, and Lennox acts rather flippant about the entire thing. Suddenly, the doorbell rings, and Mel runs to meet her date, but meets the man from the press conference instead. He apologizes for interrupting her press conference, but once again asks where her brother-in-law is. Her date arrives, and she pushes the guy away. She then tells her date that, with everything going on, she just can’t go.
The next day, Mel gets ready for work, when the guy shows back once again. He’s gone through the entire budget and has figured out how to get money for the smaller class sizes and garbage pick-up, and introduces himself as Joe Longo. She is surprised to find out who he is, as he was a commodities trader that helped make her brother-in-law millions, before he lost his job thanks to her brother-in-law’s schemes. He asks for a job, but she says there’s a hiring freeze in the government. He spies her request for a nanny, and asks for the job. He ends up weaseling his way into the job regardless of Mel’s protests, and she rushes off to the job. When she gets home, she finds Joe doing the laundry, and Ryder home working on his homework. Lennox is also missing, even though she should be heading to school to apologize to the principal. Joe finds Lennox on the roof after she posts something on social media, and talks to her. She admits that she’s tired of life being unfair, and he convinces her to at least trust her aunt.
Mel heads down to Lennox’s school, and the principal accuses Mel of being an unfit parent. Lennox interrupts her and apologizes for being late, and then apologizes for her actions. At home that night, Joe helps Ryder with his free throws while waiting for Mel to come home. Mel is still uncertain about Joe being the nanny, as he has several interesting methods of getting to her niece and nephew. After talking with him, she is starting to be convinced that he is the right person for the job, although he is rather hurt when he finds that she’s already hired another nanny, as he thinks that she didn’t believe in him. Mel decides to hire him full-time, taking a chance on him after everything that happened that day.