Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
- This article is about the TV show "ALF"; for other uses see ALF.
The title character is Gordon Shumway, a little alien nicknamed A.L.F. (Alien Life Form). He was born 229 years ago on October 28, 1756 on the Lower East side of the planet Melmac. The planet Melmac was located six parsecs past the Hydra Centaurus Supercluster and had a green sky and blue grass.
Shumway's body is covered with orange fur. He has a rippled snout, eight stomachs and likes to eat cats. He attended high school for 122 years and was captain of a Bouillabaisseball team (which is played on ice using shellfish as a ball).
Following a ham radio signal, he crash-landed into the garage of the Tanners, a suburban middle class family including the social worker Willie (Max Wright), his wife Kate (Anne Schedeen), their children Lynn (Andrea Elson), Brian (Benji Gregory) and Lucky (a cat).
Unsure what to do, the Tanners take Shumway into their home and hide him from NASA, the military, and their nosy neighbors until he could repair his spacecraft. He generally hid in the kitchen. It was eventually revealed that Melmac was destroyed in a nuclear war, and that Shumway was not only homeless, but also, to the best of his knowledge, the last survivor of both his civilization and his species. He became a permanent member of the family, although his culture shock, survivor's guilt, and general boredom, despair, and loneliness frequently caused difficulty for the Tanners.
The original series spans over four seasons and 102 episodes, at the end of which he is about to be rescued by other survivors of his home planet, but is instead captured by the American military. The name of every episode is also a name of a song that is relevant to the episode's plot.
In the summer of 2004 the first season of the show was released on DVD, but loyal fans were very disappointed that the DVD release featured the syndicated version of the episodes which have several minutes cut from each of them. This prompted an increase in the sale of bootleg tapes of the entire show from various websites. There is currently no word as to whether a rerelease of the uncut original broadcast episodes will be issued.
- Max Wright - Willie Tanner
- Anne Schedeen - Kate Tanner
- Andrea Elson - Lynn Tanner
- Benji Gregory - Brian Tanner
- John LaMotta - Trevor Ochmonek
- Liz Sheridan - Raquel Ochmonek
Two spinoff animated series arose. Alf: The Animated Series, set on ALF's home planet of Melmac, ran on Saturday daytime from 1987 to 1988. A later second series AlfTales, which took Gordon and his familiar cohorts on Melmac and placed them as characters in classic (Earthly) fairy tales, ran alongside the older cartoon and outlived it by one season before itself being cancelled in 1989.
At the time that the original TV series was popular, some ALF-related merchandise was sold, including a 1988 calendar with Melmac's planetary holidays (such as Shout at a Shrub Day) prominently marked.
Recently, ALF has been appearing in one of the numerous long-distance dialing plan commercials on American television. Alf has made many appearances on Hollywood Squares.
The contents of this article is licensed from www.wikipedia.org under the GNU Free Documentation License. Click here to see the transparent copy and copyright details