In the early on years of the 1980s, the sitcom was really much considered a genre that had actually run its food on element time television, through the audience having actually tuned out and also critics dismissing pretty lot every collection that struggle the air. But then, and also proving that the fall-off just maybe had something to do with the high quality of programming gift shown, The Cosby display premiered in the fall of 1984 and also turned whatever around. Provided the audience’s an answer to that present (proven by the ratings), unexpectedly everyone wanted sitcoms. One of them, as it turned out, was ABC’s Growing Pains (currently airing ~ above Antenna TV).

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Debuting in 1985 and also running until 1992, the present focused top top interactions with the Seaver family in the type of Alan Thicke together psychiatrist Dr. Jason Seaver, who works the end of a residence office; Joanna Kerns as his wife, Maggie Seaver, a reporter who has now gone back to work; and their three kids, Kirk Cameron’s Mike (and it wouldn’t be long prior to Kirk, it must be noted, would certainly suddenly discover himself a teenager heartthrob and also on the sheathe of magazines everywhere), Tracey Gold’s Carol and also Jeremy Miller’s Ben, later to be joined by Ashley Johnson’s Chrissy and also Leonardo DiCaprio (yes, that Leonardo DiCaprio) in one of his early on roles together the homeless Luke Brower.


One that the civilization who dismissed the comparisons to The Cosby display was Alan Thicke, that told The Sacramento punishment in 1986, “How about Ozzie and Harriet and Father to know Best? We’re not really choose Cosby. We’re much more story-oriented than ensemble. Cosby’s display is a platform because that him. Castle don’t address stories, they address relationships. Cosby elevated it come an arts form. There really isn’t noþeles new. He’d done family members foibles in his act because that years. He’s the parenting mark Twain of our time.”

He likewise pointed the end that there to be romantic, sensual overtones between Joanna Kerns and also him. “And,” he said, “if girlfriend looked in ~ our script, or Cosby’s or Miami Vice, you wouldn’t say, ‘Wow, revolutionary.’ that the mix of cast and also execution that renders it different.”

For much much more on the cast of Growing Pains, you re welcome scroll down.


Alan Thicke (Dr. Jason Seaver)

Before us say an additional thing around the actor, fans of standard TV should know that, as a composer, this male wrote the theme songs for a number of popular TV series, consisting of the sitcoms Diff’rent Strokes and The facts of Life as fine as game shows The wizard of Odds, The Joker’s Wild, Celebrity Sweepstakes, The Diamond Head Game, animal Crack-Ups, blank Check, Stumpers!, Whew! And Wheel the Fortune’s initial theme.

He was born Alan Willis Jeffrey (eventually acquisition his stepfather’s critical name) on march 1, 1947 in Kirkland Lake, Ontario, Canada. When attending the college of west Ontario (studying English and psychology) he worked as a radio key jockey. In the 1960s he wrote for Canadian television and was a regular on the 1969 series It’s ours Stuff. But this was just the begin of what to be truly a pretty varied career. On game shows, he served as the hold (in the late 1970s) of the Canadian series First Impressions, and also did the exact same in the so late 1980s on Animal Crack-Ups followed by the TV adaptation that Pictionary (1997 come 1998) and, for the Game present Network, Three’s a group (1999, not to be confused with the man Ritter Three’s firm spin-off).

And then there were speak shows, very first of the spoofy type as he offered as producer and head writer the Norman Lear’s late-night spinoff of Mary Hartman, mar Hartman, Fernwood 2 Night (1977), generally guest organized on The Alan Hamel Show, i beg your pardon aired on daytime tv in Canada; and also his very own The Alan Thicke display (1980 to 1982) the was a part of Canada’s daytime programming together well. The show persuaded some people that he could take on climate reigning American late night organize Johnny Carson and also The this evening Show. Thicke of the Night arrived in 1983 and was gone in 1984. “They say that type of fail is a character builder,” Alan mused with The Sacramento punishment in 1985. “I say, who demands it? it hurts’ it’s really embarrassing. I need to think, ‘Gee, i didn’t require to construct that much character.’”

As a writer and/or producer he functioned on quite a number of variety specials or series, consisting of The Bobby Darrin display (1973), specials special Sandy Duncan, flip Wilson, Barry Manilow, Richard Pryor, Mac Davis, Olivia Newton-John and also Paul Lynde. On episodic television, he composed scripts for such mirrors as Married … v Children, Freaks and Geeks, Scrubs, Chappelle’s Show, The large Bang Theory, just how I Met her Mother, The Goldbergs and also Family Guy.

Prior to Growing Pains, he performed together an actor on the huge screen in The Point! (1971), Copper hill (1983) and also Calendar Girl killing (1984). After it had concluded that is run, he might be checked out in together movies as Demolition High (1996), Hollywood north (2003), Raising Helen (2004), Alpha Dog (2006), RoboDoc (2009) and also It’s no My Fault and I Don’t treatment Anyway (2017).

He counts among his guest star appearances before Growing ache the mirrors Masquerade and The Love Boat, and, after, Murder, She Wrote; Burke’s Law, Just shooting Me!, Joey, Scream majesties and Fuller House. He had actually recurring roles on Son that the Beach, The Bold and also the Beautiful, How ns Met your Mother, i’m in the Band and The L.A. Complex. He to be a collection regular top top Hope & Gloria (1995) and also Jpod (2008). He had his own reality show, Unusually Thicke (2014) and also was a contestant on the Food Channel collection Chopped (2017), his last television collection appearance. On top of every one of that, in between 1986 (Perry Mason: The case of the shooting Star) and also 2017 (Loves last Resort), he starred in 29 TV movies, consisting of The farming Pains Movie (2000) and also Growing Pains: Return that the Seavers (2004).

In his an individual life, Alan was married to singer and actress Gloria Loring native 1970 to 1984; in 1987, as soon as he was 40, Alan began dating 17-year-old Kristy Swanson, that played the title character in the 1992 film version of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. His 2nd wife was design Gina Tolleson, the two of them with each other from 1994 come 1999. And then there to be actress and also model Tanya Callau, native 2005 until his death. V Gloria he had sons Brennan and also Robin (the last of whom, the course, has actually gone on come a very successful to sing career) and also with Gina, son Carter wilhelm Thicke.

On December 13, 2016, at the age of 69, Alan died of one aortic dissection, the very same thing that eliminated actor man Ritter. In the aftermath of his passing, Growing pains “son” Kirk Cameron approve a statement that read, “I invested Monday through Friday for seven vital years through Alan Thicke together my TV dad. Ns shocked and also truly heartbroken this particular day at the news the his death. Alan was a generous, kind and also loving man. I am for this reason blessed to have grown up v him.” added Leonardo DiCaprio, that joined the display later in its run, “Alan Thicke knew exactly how to harness the strength of the entertainment market to it is in a positive affect in so countless lives, consisting of mine. I will be forever thankful for the possibility I had actually to job-related with Alan at an early stage in my career. I’ve seen him a number of times end the years and when Alan Thicke go in the room, quite frankly, no one was cooler.”

Joanna Kerns (Maggie Seaver)

When deciding to come to be an actress, Joanna Kerns uncovered her impetus close to home. Actually, in her home and also in the type of she sister Donna DeVarona, who won 2 gold medals in the swimming competition in ~ the 1964 Olympics. “I was propelled by her success,” she told the new York Daily News in 1986. “Donna traveled about the world, swam because that the emperor that Japan — I want all that attention.”

She was born Joanna Crussie DeVarona February 12, 1953 in san Francisco. Among four kids born to her insurance certified dealer father and also clothing store manager mother, Joanna an initial tried swimming, switched come gymnastics and also then dancing former to becoming an actress. In fact, she had won a dance scholarship at UCLA, yet that was derailed when she heard the actor/dancer Gene Kelly was involved with the Broadway-bound Clown Around, for which she auditioned, was cast in and also dropped the end of school for (much to she parents’ outrage). Unfortunately, the present never make it come Broadway and she discovered herself there is no a task or an education.

“I wound up dancing at Disneyland,” she said in the interview, “doing some commercials and also some television before I went to an open contact for Joe Papp’s Two Gentlemen of Verona. I gained the part and finally finished up in brand-new York. Ns waitressed and also did cattle calls, and also sometimes I’d get parts and also most of the moment I didn’t. I became one that those performers who operated all the time, however not in major roles. I learned to become an actress.”

In the days before Growing pains she appeared on shows choose Starsky and also Hutch, Charlie’s Angels, Quincy, Three’s company and Magnum, P.I.. There were numerous TV movie (including play Doris Marshall in 1982’s A Wedding ~ above Walton’s mountain and Mother’s job on Waltons Mountain) and also miniseries (1983’s V). During the present she starred in 14 TV movies, native 1984’s The Return that Marcus Welby, M.D. to 1992’s Desperate Choices: To conserve My Child.

Although she would proceed acting sporadically over the years, the huge shift for Joanna after Growing pains was right into the directing arena, which is something she’d always been interested in. The development is interesting, having directed a single episode of Growing ache and then, v the remainder of the ‘90s, taking on one or 2 episodes the a number of different series, consisting of Clueless and Love Boat: The following Wave. She’s functioned consistently ever before since, many recently helming illustration of Life as a Feather, the reboot of Mad around You, High college Musical: The music — The Series, The Baker and also the beauty, beauty and the reboot that Roswell, brand-new Mexico.

On the personal side the things, Joanna had met Richard Kerns, a producer, on the set of a advertisement in 1974, marrying him 2 years later and having a daughter named Ashley Cooper. They divorced in 1985 (right before she was cast on Growing Pains) and in 1994 she married architect Marc Appleton, though it to be announced on respectable 9, 2019 that they would be getting divorced.

Kirk Cameron (Mike Seaver)

Easily the many polarizing figure in the Growing pains cast is Kirk Cameron, who ended up being the show’s breakout star and, in ~ the elevation of his fame and the show’s popularity, go from being an atheist come a born-again Christian, which had a vast ripple effect on the series and his partnership with fellow actors members.

Born Kirk thomas Cameron top top October 12, 1970 in Panorama City, California (and brothers to sister Bridgette, Melissa and also Candace Cameron Bure, the last star the Full residence and its extension Fuller House). Quite than attend a regular school, he was educated on the collection of Growing Pains. In ~ the exact same time, that did graduate v the course of 1988 at Chatsworth High school — with honors. His career began when he showed up in a breakfast grain advertisement, which consequently would bring about work in prior of the camera.

Early TV credits encompass the series Bret Maverick, Herbie the Love pest and Lou Grant, and the TV movie Goliath Awaits (1981), Beyond Witch mountain (1982), Starflight: The plane That couldn’t Land (1983), More 보다 Murder and Children in the Crossfire (both 1984). During the operation of Growing Pains, the guested top top Full residence and starred in several much more TV movies. In that exact same time, huge screen appearances were The ideal of times (1986), Like Father prefer Sun (1987) and Listen come Me (1989).

Kirk’s conversion to protestant Christianity took location when he to be 17, and with the he began demanding alters in the scripts because that Growing ache to relocate them far from anything he felt was inappropriate. There room some who believe that that pressured the producer to allow actress Julie McCullough, who played Mike’s girlfriend Julie Costello in seasons four and also five, go because of the reality she had appeared nude in Playboy magazine — to it is in fair, though, others have actually said there was a restricted shelf life for that relationship anyway.

After Growing ache concluded its initial run — and before the cast reunited because that a pair the TV movie — Kirk pretty lot shut everybody from the present out that his life, come the point where he no invite any type of of them to his wedding come Chelsea Noble, who had played Mike’s girl friend on the show. In a 2000 interview with The Los Angeles Times, that reflected, “I absolutely kind of make an about-face, walking toward another aspect of my life. Ns shifted my emphasis to 100% ~ above my brand-new life and also left 0% on the show. Also the friendships the were a part of that show. If I can go back, i think I can make decisions that were much less inadvertently hurtful to the cast, choose talking and also explaining to them why I simply wanted to have actually my household at mine wedding.”

 For the most part, Kirk’s exhilaration has remained in Christian-based projects, among them The bear of Jesus (1998), Left: Behind: The Movie (2001), Left Behind II: Tribulation force (2002), Left Behind: world at war (2005), Fireproof (2008), Saving Christmas (2014) and Connect (2018).

Tracey yellow (Carol ann Seaver)

She was born Tracey Claire Fisher on may 16, 1969 in brand-new York City. Tracey and her sister Missy Gold both pursued the idea of acting at a young age (Missy would uncover herself actors on Benson from 1979 to 1984). At the age of 4 she showed up in a Pepsi print ad and discovered herself actors in the Shirley Jones sitcom Shirley (1979) and Bill Bixby’s Goodnight, Beantown (1983). In 1980 she was cast as the young Norma Jean in the TV movie Marilyn: The Untold Story, and also in 1982 she played one of the four daughters of personalities played through Albert Finney and Diane Keaton in Shoot the Moon.

Although she had actually auditioned for the function of Carol Seaver on Growing Pains, the producers actually went v Elizabeth Ward, however given lackluster responses from check audiences, she to be dropped indigenous the show and Tracey was hired. In between 1993’s Labor that Love: The Arlette Schweitzer Story and 2016’s I know Where Lizzie Is, she starred in 2 dozen TV movies and also made guest appearances ~ above Diagnosis: Murder, touch by an Angel, Promised Land, Twice in a Lifetime, Stephen king’s Dead Zone, and Melissa & Joey.

For a period of she life, Tracey waged a very serious (and public) fight with anorexia that nearly killed her. The took countless years, but she regulated to gain regulate over the instance — make more challenging when, prior to they became mindful of the situation, producers put fat hoax in the script when the actress did manage to acquire some weight.

In her an individual life, she met Roby Marshall v TV mommy Joanna Kerns, the two of lock marrying top top October 8, 1994 and having four children.

Jeremy miller (Ben Seaver)

He was born Jeremy James müller on October 21, 1976 in Covina, California. In the beforehand 1980s he uncovered himself actors in part TV commercials, climate scored a guest starring duty on the sitcom Punky Brewster and the 1985 TV movie Deceptions before he to be hired because that Growing Pains. ~ the show, that voiced the personality of Linus valve Pelt in The Charlie Brown and Snoopy display (1985), Happy new Year, Charlie Brown! (1986), the TV movie Snoopy!!! The musical and This is America, Charlie Brown (both 1988).

He is married come Joanie Miller and has 3 stepsons.

Ashley Johnson (Chrissy Seaver)

In the last two seasons of Growing Pains, Ashley made her acting debut as the youngest Seaver child, Chrissy. She was born respectable 9, 1983 in Camarillo, California. After the show she appeared in a couple of dozen function films, varying from 1995’s Nine month to 2012’s The Avengers (she’s a waitress rescued by Chris Evans’ Captain America) and also 2018’s Juveniles.

Besides countless guest star appearances (including a truly threatening one as DJ’s girlfriend on Roseanne), she was a series regular — either in former of the camera or v her voice — top top Phenom (1993 come 1994), All-American Girl (1994), Maybe This Time (1995 come 1996, and also co-starring v Marie Osmond and Betty White), Jumanji (1995 come 1996), Recess (1997 come 2001), Kelly Kelly (1998), Ben 10: Alien force (2008 come 2010), Ben 10: Ultimate extraterrestrial (2010 to 2012), Ben 10: Omniverse (2012 come 2014), and Blindspot (which started in 2015).

She’s remained in a partnership with writer, poet and also singer Brian W. Foster since 2012.

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Leonardo DiCaprio (Luke Brower)

Titanic, Gangs of brand-new York, The wolf of wall Street, as soon as Upon a Time in Hollywood … c’mon, you understand the guy! What may have been forget in the mix is that in the final season that Growing ache he played the homeless Luke Brower that is eventually taken in by the Seavers. The expect from producer was the a brand-new cute teenager would rise the show’s ratings, however it didn’t and also Leonardo took turn off for greener pastures ~ above the large screen.