Country of origin United States
First episode date 17 September 1962
Number of episodes 19
Number of seasons 1
Original language(s) English
Final episode date 28 January 1963
|Created by Peter Tewksbury
Starring Glenn Corbett Michael Burns Ted Bessell Randy Boone
Composer(s) Earle Hagen Jack Marshall Herbert W. Spencer
Cast Glenn Corbett, Ted Bessell, Randy Boone, Michael Burns
Similar He's the Mayor, The $198 Beauty Show, Paul Dixon Show, Occasional Wife, The Young Marrieds
It's a Man's World is an American comedy-drama television series which aired on NBC from September 17, 1962, to January 28, 1963.
The series centers on four young men who live in a houseboat called The Elephant, which is moored at an Ohio River town named Cordella in Ohio. Cordella is loosely based on the city of Marietta, Ohio, and some of the establishing shots in the series were shot there.
The main characters are pre-law college student Wes Macauley, portrayed by Glenn Corbett and his younger brother Howie, recently orphaned by an automobile accident, played by Michael Burns, also a cast member on Wagon Train. Ted Bessell played Tom-Tom DeWitt, a college student who came from a wealthy Chicago family. Randy Boone played free spirit Vern Hodges, a talented guitarist from Boone's native North Carolina.
In the story line, Wes is working his way through college at Stott's Service Station, owned by Houghton Stott, played by Harry Harvey, Sr. Jan Norris appears as Wes's fiancee, college student Irene Hoff. Other characters, Iona and Virgil Dobson, are portrayed by Kate Murtagh and Scott White, friends of Stott and the four houseboat males. Their daughter, Alma Jean (played by Jeanine Cashell), is interested in Vern. Nora Fitzgerald (played by Ann Schuyler) is interested in Tom-Tom. There is also a dog named Shadrack.
Among the series guest stars were Med Flory, Hope Summers, Joan Tewkesbury, and Dawn Wells
It's a Man's World was "ahead of its time": it depicted the restlessness, idealism, and increasing iconoclasm that began to emerge among American youth during the early 1960s. Broadcast at the family hour, It's a Man's World did not shy from the themes of premarital sex, feminism, and the gulf between adults and adolescents, which began to be known as the generation gap. The program coincided with the Cuban Missile Crisis, civil rights disputes, and the emergence of protest singer Bob Dylan. It attracted a minor cult following on college campuses, but it failed to attract mass audiences.
It's a Man's World faced relatively weak competition at 7:30 Eastern on Mondays from the last season of Clint Walker's western Cheyenne on ABC and the two long-running CBS quiz programs, To Tell the Truth with Bud Collyer and I've Got a Secret with Garry Moore.
NBC cancelled It's a Man's World midway through its only season, on the grounds of low Nielsen ratings. They ignored viewers who wrote letters of protests, the kind which resurfaced four years later in 1967, when CBS axed Gunsmoke but then reversed itself and gave the long-running western another eight years of production.
After the show was cancelled as of mid-January 1963, Corbett found work almost immediately on the already-airing show Route 66. Route 66 was thematically similar to It's A Man's World, exploring many of the same issues of American life, particularly the issues of restlessness and idealism. Corbett began his co-starring role as Lincoln Case on Route 66 in March, 1963.
In 1977, ABC revisited the premise of It's a Man's World with The San Pedro Beach Bums, a 60-minute situation comedy about five young men living together on a houseboat in San Pedro, California. It also was unsuccessful, lasting only ten episodes.