Maniac Mansion was a Canadian sitcom created by Eugene Levy, which aired concurrently on YTV in Canada and The Family Channel in the United States for three seasons from September 17, 1990 to April 4, 1993. The series is very loosely based on the popular 1987 LucasArts video game of the same name. While LucasFilm served as co-producers on the series, the show thematically shares little in common with its source material. The series followed the adventures of the Edison family, who lived in a large mansion in an upper-class suburban neighborhood. Fred, the father of the family, was an eccentric scientist, and many of the plots revolved around his wacky experiments. One of these experiments caused his toddler son, Turner, to transform into a large adult man and his brother-in-law, Harry, to be turned into a fly with a human head! They both remained this way for the entire run of the series.
Best Episodes of Maniac Mansion
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Worst Episodes of Maniac Mansion
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Maniac Mansion Episode Guide
The 10th Anniversary Special
17th Sep 1990
Fred falls asleep in the lab and dreams that his family is starring in a sitcom celebrating its 10th anniversary. Plans for an anniversary dinner at the Taiwan On go awry because they're spraying for medflies in the area, so they watch home movies and flash back to Turner and Harry's accident and to the time Casey first had Fred's parents over for dinner. Turner runs up to his room, crying, because he thinks the family is laughing at him rather than with him. Fred talks to Turner and convinces him to rejoin the family in the living room. The show ends with Casey waking Fred up.
24th Sep 1990
Fred is experimenting with a giant chicken to try to get Harry back to normal size. Meanwhile Idella is jealous because Harry is spending a lot of time with a female fly. Idella flashes back to when Harry and her were young lovers and Harry was leaving for Vietnam. Idella is about to murder the fly when it flies into a window and dies. Idella and Harry make up at the end of the show and Fred disposes of the dead fly.
Trapped Like Rats
1st Oct 1990
Tina has a big date and wants to borrow Ike's leather jacket. He refuses but she persists. They're arguing in the andromeda chamber when Turner locks them in. The experiment starts and they motion to Fred to get Turner, who is asleep and dreaming of bunnies and ice cream. Turner can't remember the numbers he pushed to lock Ike and Tina in, but Tina realizes that they were the numbers from his favourite song. They get out in time for Tina to go on her date.
Love Thy Neighbour
8th Oct 1990
The Pratts, the Edisons' yuppie neighbours, stay at the mansion when they get their house renovated and make themselves a pain in the behind. Casey has hostile feelings towards them and dreams of experimenting on them, but Fred and Casey and too scared to kick them out. So Harry takes it into his own hands and scares them out of the house, but only Ike and Turner know what he did. Throughout the show Harry is carrying out conversations with ants.
15th Oct 1990
Fred is spending so much time with his guiney pig Fats that he neglects Casey. Casey finally gets over her inhibitions and tells Fred exactly how she feels about it. Fred is really distraught and goes to his barber for advice. Tony suggests finding the one thing that will make Casey feel special, so Fred buys a home dance kit and sings Casey an ear-splitting rendition of ""When a Man Loves a Woman"". They end the show in each other's arms.
The Sandman Cometh
22nd Oct 1990
The show starts with Tina politely telling her date that she doesn't really like him. Turner's tooth is loose, and Fred is out buying popcorn for the big movie ""Tara, Tara, Tara"", a TV remake of ""Gone with the Wind"". Fred misses most of the movie because he's putting Turner to sleep, but it turns out to be no great loss. Turner dreams that he's visited by the Sandman (a boring comedian), the tooth fairy (an Englishwoman) and Mr. Coffee (who is in the middle of a messy divorce). The show ends with a monologue by Uncle Harry.
Good On Ya
29th Oct 1990
Fred is playing around in the living room when Lenny Orca, Harry's long-lost boxing twin brother from Canada, comes to the door. Lenny tells the family that the reason he's taken so long to visit is that he's come home to die. He's OK with it, and the kids are too, but Fred, Casey and Idella are very concerned about it and decide not to tell him about Harry because it might kill him. He finds out anyway, but the doctor phones and tells him that he's not going to die. He promises to visit again at Christmas, gives the kids loonies, and makes up with Harry for an incident at the orphanage.
Bring Me Harry Orca
5th Nov 1990
A gangster boss just got out of prison so he sends his two stoolies to look for the guy who ratted on him, Harry Orca. Turner lets them into the house by mistake, and they hold the family hostage and almost kill Harry. Richard comes over to complain about an illegaly-parked car but he leaves without realizing that the family is in danger. When the gangsters can't bring themselves to kill Fred, Idella takes the matter into her own hands and chases them out of the mansion right into the arms of Richard Pratt and two policemen.
Dad's Bummed Out
12th Nov 1990
When Fred's experiment fails he gets very depressed and flashes back to his graduation when Casey gave him Success and Failure stamps. The rest of the family is singing the Edison Family song. Richard comes over and tries to convince Fred to move to Tacoma. The real-estate agent comes during dinner, and the family is shocked that Fred wants to move. Fred passes out and Casey chases the agent out of the house. To comfort Fred, Casey brings down a letter he wrote her 16 years ago. The show ends with everyone, including Fred, singing the Edison Family song.
Webs, The Really Tangled Kind
19th Nov 1990
Ike wants to see a scary movie that his family won't let him see, so he goes with Turner. Turner is scared out of his mind. During the night, Harry gets caught in a spider's web and Turner is the only person there to get him out. But he's scared to touch the spider since there were giant spiders in the movie Ike took him to see. He finally gets over his fear and picks up the spider just in time to save Harry. On Tina's suggestion, Ike's punishment is having to take Turner to every Saturday matinee for the next six months.
National Security Risk
26th Nov 1990
Tina wins an essay contest and the vice-president plans to visit the mansion to celebrate. The guy that Tina invites to dinner is an environmental activist who wants to spraypaint the VP green. Tina dreams that she's on America's Most Wanted after they spraypaint the VP. A Secret Service agent comes over, however, and tells the family that he's sorry but the VP won't be able to make it to the mansion after all. Tina tells Ryan that spraypainting someone to make a statement is stupid and she wouldn't have done it anyways.
A Little Old Time Jazz
3rd Dec 1990
For Fred and Casey's 16th anniversary, Fred goes to the mall and gets her two tickets to see her old band-mate Jaz Pope. The family watches a video of Casey and Jaz to see what she was like. After Jaz' performance, which really stunk, Casey is debating whether or not to tell Jaz the truth about how bad her music is. Casey decides not to, and Fred, who Jaz thinks is Casey's old boyfriend Snake, doesn't help either. Jaz comes over to the mansion and she and Casey give a concert to the family.
17th Dec 1990
The family is making plans for a trip to Hawaii, but Ike is told by his teacher that if his next essay isn't good enough, he will fail Social Studies and have to go to summer school, which would make the trip impossible. But he can't bring himself to tell his family. After a nightmare he finally tells. The family is mad at him, but support his essay, which he thinks is good enough to pull off a passing grade. The show ends with the family lying in the sand relaxing and listening to the sounds of the ocean... on the back porch.
Good Cheer On Ya
24th Dec 1990
The family is worried whether Uncle Lenny will make it to the mansion for Christmas because of a big storm that's predicted. Kiefer tells Turner that Santa Claus doesn't exist. Meanwhile Lenny's dogsled gets snowed in, he hitches a ride on a plane, falls off it and collapses in the snow. Turner goes to sleep asking Santa to forget about all the presents for him and to help his Uncle instead. Santa comes to Turner (in a dream?) and takes him to where Lenny is lying in the snow and they bring him home for Christmas.
29th Jan 1991
The parents of Dexter, a guy in Tina's class, convince him that he must defeat her academically, so he comes over and plants a virus in her computer. Her computer is hooked up to the computer in the lab, so when Fred tries an experiment on Buck it turns him into a mutant monster. Dexter, who is torn between his crush on Tina and his parents' hard line, goes to the mansion to confess what he's done. He has an argument with his parents through the closed door, and finally his family agrees to stop pushing him so much. Dexter fixes the virus he put in the computer so Buck is turned back to normal.
Little Big Fly
12th Feb 1991
Idella tells Harry that she misses their old relationship. He is distressed and asks Fred to turn him into a giant fly to save his marriage. Idella is delighted, but every time someone comes over to the mansion Harry has to hide since he still has giant wings. He's sick of all this hiding, and confesses how he feels. Idella finally accepts that Harry was happier as a fly, and they decide that Harry will be shrunk back. The show ends with Idella deciding to share the cooking for the family.
19th Feb 1991
Fred goes to the a meeting of the L.L. Edison Corporation, the company that his grandfather founded which he has to go to once a year to sign a bunch of forms. The new board member Totterton is forgetting the Edison values and only working for money. Idella suggests that Fred call his father, but Fred wants to solve this problem on his own. Idella comes to a meeting and gets Fred to sign all his shares to her, then denounces Totterton. Her and Fred convince the board to return to the company's old values. To celebrate the family orders from the Taiwan On and Fred's father comes over and tells Fred he's proud of him.
Turner: The Boss
26th Feb 1991
Ike is being mean to Turner and Casey yells at him when he puts his man in the toaster so he goes up to his room to play with his dollhouse. Casey comes up to talk to him and they make up but Tina bursts in and yells at him about her tape. Idella reads a letter from Lenny to Casey. Turner is really upset and dreams about him being the boss. All his kids are bothering him so he learns how tough it is to be a parent. He apologizes to the family, and at the end of the show he is made King of the House for 44 minutes.
The Case of the Broken Record
5th Mar 1991
For Tina's '60s dance Fred is going to teach her the twist, but the record is broken in two. Fred and Casey automatically blame the kids, and try to find out which one did it. Someone comes down during the night and replaces the record with a new one. The adults lecture the kids about the record, and trick Tina into confessing to replacing the record, but not to breaking it. Then Turner says he broke the record but he really didn't. It turns out the record was broken by an explosion from the lab, so Fred and Casey owe the kids and apology.
The Live Show
12th Mar 1991
This episode is done live, in front of an audience in Toronto. Fred's too sick to go to the zoo but the family doesn't seem to mind. He gets depressed about this, collapses and dies and spends the rest of the show observing how the family responds to his death. The lights switch back and forth between Fred and the family and weird things keep happening. Then all the lights go out and the family comes back to find Fred lying on the floor. His death was just a dream. Needless to say, the cast is not happy with how the show turned out and Fred blames the whole thing on the producer.
Tina's Excellent Adventure
19th Mar 1991
Idella is telling Tina about the romance in Europe because of Tina's class trip that she's going to take. Tina is in the closet and overhears Casey telling Fred that because of a hair disaster their collaboration on experiments is over; Tina thinks that they're talking about their marriage being over. She dreams of a long Spanish Flamenco dance scene with her, Fred and Casey. Then she's a Gondolier taking Fred and Casey to a bridge of love. Then the family starts singing opera. Tina wakes up, sees Fred and Casey make up and says she's never felt better in her whole life.
26th Mar 1991
Fred and Tina finally discover a way to get Harry and Turner back to normal. Turner doesn't really want to be small, Casey doesn't really want it either because Harry and Idella are going to move out. Turner and Harry are put in the chamber for the final time, but, as Ike points out, they forgot the ball. When the experiment is finished, the family takes one look at Turner and Harry and scream their guts out. The director yells ""cut"", the season ends, and the party starts. Everyone is different at the party: Idella talks with a Caribbean accent, Fred is a pompous baboon, Lenny is a boor, Turner is going to the desert with a biker gang, Harry is planning to do a fishing show, Casey is a total ditz who's going to do a show in Venezuela, Ike's voice is changing and Tina is overeating. Fred is thinking of leaving the show, but gets up to give a speech and breaks down. He decides never to leave because Maniac Mansion is his family. Everyone starts clapping, then Fred wakes up, and