Hart To Hart and Moonlighting

Hart To Hart (1979-1984)
Moonlighting (1985-1989)
Type: Crossover

   Sometimes writing these crossovers up I get line calls. Instances where maybe two shows are part of the same world or maybe they totally aren't. This is the damnedest line call I have ever come across though. A total freak case of a 50/50 draw as to which way it should go. It is the one in a zillion instance of flipping a coin and having it land on the edge, never definable ever as heads or tails. The real kicker here is that the only thing that can possibly break the tie is a question so personal and individual that everyone has to call this one on there own. Whether this is a legit crossover or not, believe it or not, depends on your answer to this question: Do you believe in God? No fooling.

   Moonlighting was a surprise hit show for ABC: a romantic comedy/detective series focusing on the adventures of and sexual tension between private investigators Maddie Hayes and David Addison. The setup of the show was this: Maddie Hayes, played by Cybill Shepherd, was a rich and successful former model. Well she was until her accountant ran off with all her cash. All he left her were a handful of investments. One of them was a small detective firm called City Of Angels Investigations. The head of the agency David Addison was played by Bruce Willis and was the role that made him "Bruce Willis". Maddie found the agency less than a glowing success. David was happy as a clam goofing off and pulling down a paycheck while not really working hard as a P.I. With the owner of the agency threatening to sell it or to dismantle it though David got very motivated. He proved to Maddie he was worth giving a shot. She in turn decided she would move in and take an active hand in running the agency, renaming it The Blue Moon Detective Agency. Their relationship became a balance of love/hate, lust/hate, driven worker/goofball, tight ass/plain ass and the show became a huge surprise hit for ABC.

   Eventually the show did an episode that was a cross between "It's A Wonderful Life" and "A Christmas Carol" (every show on long enough does one or both of these plots). In it, Maddie is working the gang at the office hard at Christmas time. Scrooge Maddie is actually forcing her employees to work through the holidays! Needless to say, they don't exactly throw loads of holiday cheer at her. Heavy presents capable of inflicting damage, maybe.

   Not exactly filled with the Christmas spirit herself and thinking hateful things of her employees, Maddie wishes she hadn't kept the agency going. And just like Jimmy Stewart, her guardian angel, Albert, appears to grant her request. She is shown how things would be had she sold the agency.

   To her surprise, her friend's lives seemed to have turned out well but with.... unexpected changes. Miss Dipesto their receptionist who always spoke in rhymes was a successful greeting card executive. She was also the callous unfeeling opposite of who she had been. David was about to marry Cheryl Tiegs! It also turned out that based on what he had known of Maddie in this reality he had liked and cared for her. To him she wasn't just someone to goof on. Maybe they could have worked as a couple if she hadn't wished for these "fixes". But then she hadn't seen how her life had turned out, Maybe she was much much better off... but before we get to how her life turned out, I have to turn to the actual crossover part and leave you at a cliffhanger for now.

   What about the agency? Hmm? Seems that Blue Moon was now owned by The Hart Detective Agency - as in Jonathan and Jennifer Hart, the crime solving millionaires of ABC's previous hit romance/detective series Hart To Hart. Their faithful manservant Max was on hand overseeing things for the Harts.

   But what about Maddie herself? Her counterpart in this reality was in the worst shape of all - poor in every sense of the world: alone, broke and bitter. The real Maddie found herself trapped in a speeding car with this time line's suicidal version of herself racing towards a literal cliffhanger which would kill both of her... as it were. But of course having seen the light, Maddie changed her mind about things, got her guardian angel to put things back to normal and awoke to find that the whole thing was actually just a dream... or was it? She quickly sets to sharing the Christmas spirit she was missing before with her friends.

   So you see, if you believe in God, angels and that the episode was real... well then that makes it a legit crossover. Even though they never ended up meeting in the real timeline, the Harts and Max do exist in the Moonlighting world. If you don't believe in God... well then the entire thing has to be written off as a dream in which case Max and the Harts were there because Maddie watched a little too much Hart To Hart and incorporated its cast into her dreams (Oh how many nights have I prayed that I could get those kids from Fame out of my dreams... singing dancing... SHUT UP I'M TRYING TO SLEEP HERE!).

   So, your choice: God or no God, true crossover or just a dream. When did crossovers dovetail into such theological dilemmas?

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Buy these shows on Amazon.com and support this site at the same time! Check out Hart To Hart and Moonlighting on DVD! The crossover episode discussed on this page - It's A Wondeful Job - can be found in the Moonlighting Third Season DVD set.

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