Wonderfully entertaining, clever 90s sitcom.
S. Spears | Florence, MA | 12/30/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I'm a tail-end Baby Boomer-meaning that I was born between 1954, and 1964. My segment of the Boomers, were always over-shadowed in the media, by both our older Boomer brethren, and Gen-Xers. So, it was great to finally find a sitcom like "Wings", with tail-end Boomers as the main focus of the show. I could identify with these guys, since we hailed from the same generational zeitgeist, so-to-speak.
The series revolved around two very different brothers, named Joe and Brian Hackett. Joe was the elder, responsible, and straight-arrow one. Brian was his younger, much more free-spirited sibling (Brian could be a real screw-up, but somehow always came out okay in the end). Because of their radically different approach to life, their conflicts were the main source of laughs for the show.
The Hackett brothers ran a tiny, one-plane commuter airline, on the island of Nantucket. They were surrounded by a menagerie of other colorful characters on the show. Their lifelong friend, Helen, ran the lunch-counter at their little airline. Roy Bigguns was their ever-egocentric competitor. Roy always loved to crow that his airline, Aeromass, was bigger and better than the Hacketts' puny operation. Lowell was their ding-bat mechanic. And Faye was their receptionist/flight announcer, who was always hilariously cheerful.
In later seasons of the show, Lowell left. Then Antonio, the sad-sack airport cabdriver, joined the cast. The Antonio character was only mildly funny to me. I thought Lowell was much funnier. On occasion, actress Farrah Fork appeared on the show, as Brian's no-nonsense, military pilot girlfriend, Alex. She could never tame Brian's free-spirited ways, no matter how hard she tried (and it was always fun to watch her keep trying). Helen's klutzy sister, Casey, became a regular cast member late in the series. These extra characters added their own comedic dash to the overall ensemble of the show.
"Wings" was never one of NBC's main comedy attractions, like "Seinfeld", or "Cheers" were. But for 10 seasons, it managed to generate a loyal viewer-ship. In my opinion, I think this was due to the fact that many viewers (myself included), liked to watch the Hackett brothers live-out their dreams. After all, they owned their own business, doing what they loved (flying). They had comfortable, solidly middle-class life-styles, even owning their own gorgeous house. They lived on a scenic island, far from any crime-ridden, major urban areas. All-in-all, the Hackett brothers were tail-end Boomers, who also managed to win the proverbial game-of-life. Many of us other tail-end Boomers could be inspired in our own lives, by watching the Hacketts every week on TV!