Small Wonder was a popular American sit-com that ran from 1985 to 1989. So immensely infectious was the show that it achieved cult status over the years, especially in the 90s and early 2000 when the show was aired to other parts of the world. The show is about a robotics engineer who secretly devises a robot, models it after a human girl and passes it off as their adopted daughter. The girl called Vicki with the justifably scientific acronym VICI (Voice Input Child Identicant) is a 10 year old Android girl created by Ted Lawson. He builds it with the intention of being a teaching aid to assisted-children. He brings the robot to his home, so that it can absorb, mime and display human behavior, while interacting with the family members.
The Lawsons have a tough time keeping Vicki’s reality a secret from their pesky neighbors, the Brindles. The next-door girl Harriet is the daughter of Brandon Brindle, Ted’s colleague. Small Wonder’s humor stemmed out of Vicki proving to be good to be true and learning things at an astonishing speed. Many a times, the robot understands things in the literal sense, thereby putting the family in a bit of a quandary. Then there is another big challenge in the Lawson going great lengths to keep the robot’s identity a secret from their neighbors.
As the lead star who played the robot in the show, Tiffany Brisette grew up; the producers upgraded the functionality of VICI in the third season. The robot could eat food and consume liquids, the food could pass through her naturally and the drink was used as a coolant for her processor.
Where is the cast of Small Wonder Now?
Tiffany Brisette – Born December 6, 1974, she became the face of Small Wonder. She went on do ‘Equal Justice’, a TV series in 1990-1991, after which she lost interest in acting. She graduated from Westmont College, Santa Barbara, in 1996. She works as a registered nurse in Boulder (Colorado). Brisette prefers to be away from public eye and enjoys her private life.
Jerry Supiran – He played the character of ‘Jamie Lawson’, the only son of Ted and Joan. Born on March 21, 1973, he became popular for the show ‘Small Wonder’ although he also did mini roles in shows like Highway to Heaven and Mr. Belvedere. Supiran fell in for hard times financially due to his overspending habit. In 2012, it was reported that he was leading a homeless existence, living in a refuge place he rallies for, and at times; even under a bridge. He blamed his financial woes on a stripped who duped him, when he was in his late teens. Supiran adds that a former consultant stole half a million dollars from him. He worked as a waiter in Henderson, Nevada, before he was asked to leave in 2010, due to recession.
Dick Christie – Born October 21, 1948, Christie who played Ted Lawson, the father of the kids has a few successful TV shows to his credit including ‘Who’s the Boss’, Hunter, Mama’s Family, The Ropers etc. He wrote the 1998 movie Molly. He has also written a few episodes of Small Wonder. Mr. Christie plays the role of Charles Webber in the recurring popular soap ‘The Bold and the Beautiful’.
Marla Pennington – The actress who played Joan Lawson, mother to the kids in Small Wonder, leads a zealously private existence. In fact, her last role was in Small Wonder itself. She appeared briefly for the reunion of Small Wonder on January 14, 2009 for the show ‘The Morning Show with Mike and Juliet’.
Emily Hope Schulman – Like everyone in the show, Emily is also best remembered for ‘Small Wonder’. She played the role of ‘Harriet’, the cute and pesky neighbor of the Lawsons. Schulman faced camera from the age of 2, she appeared in commercials for McDonalds, Pepsi, KFC, Mattel Toys and Quaker Oats. She went on to play the character of Ruby Mae Morrison in ‘Christy’ in the mid-90s, both in the movie and the TV serial version. In 2008, Schulman bade goodbye to acting to become the head of a talent company called ‘Acme Talent & Literary’s Commercial Division’. She also teaches acting to professional aspirants. Her husband’s name is Derek Webster, they have four kids – Lasarina, Lochla, Maev and Colm.