Who’s The Upper Hand Boss?

It’s rare for a British network to remake a US sitcom, and even rarer still for that remake to be any kind of success. But in 1990 Central Television began broadcasting The Upper Hand. Produced by Columbia/TriStar, it was a remake of the ABC show Who’s The Boss, which starred Tony Danza and Judith Light. The roles were recast with Joe McGann and Diana Weston, with Honor Blackman taking the place of Katherine Helmond.

The scripts for the British version were almost all just adapted from the US version, with just the cultural references changed. Which provides for an amazing side by side comparison. This is fascinating.

They even use the same typeface for the end credits.

The only real differences are the title – apparently the UK version was originally going to be called Man-Maid* – and the opening music. For some reason, the ITV show opted to use the music from Knot’s Landing.

*Mark Lewisohn, The Radio Times Guide To TV Comedy

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