"Every time I turn around, I see the girl who turns my world around..."
Seven-year-old Punky Brewster certainly turned Henry Warnimont's world around. Henry was a grouchy old man who was set in his ways, until Punky came along and changed him in a way that was not thought possible...Henry became a happy man, determined to be the best parent he could be.
According to reports from when this series was announced, there was a real Punky Brewster, but not quite like the one in the show. When NBC's programming head Brandon Tartikoff was a kid, he had a crush on a tomboyish older girl by that name. Years later, Tartikoff's first child was nicknamed Punky. He also thought it would be a great name for a series. NBC's attorneys tracked down the real Punky, who was married to an attorney in Connecticut, and got permission to use her name. The real "Punky", Peyton B. Rutledge, even appeared in the Season Two episode "The Search", as a teacher at Punky's school. The show's premise was as follows:
After 7-year-old Penelope "Punky" Brewster and her beloved dog Brandon are abandoned at a shopping center by Punky's mother, Susan Brewster, Punky is taken in by Chicago photographer and apartment building manager Henry Warnimont, who lives on the apartment building's second floor. Henry's friend, Betty Johnson, lives upstairs from Henry. Betty is a registered nurse who has had custody of her granddaughter, Cherie, ever since Cherie's parents died in a car accident.
When the show first started, it was aired on Sunday nights after the weekly televised NFL football game, which would sometimes run overtime into Punky Brewster's 7:30 PM time slot. Instead of cancelling the show because of this, they would make 15 minute episodes to air whenever the football game ran into the show's time slot. Six of these 15 minute episodes were made. Whenever the show is in syndicated reruns, these six 15 minute episodes are aired in three 30 minute packages of two 15 minute episodes each. After Punky Brewster's first two seasons, the show went into first-run syndication for its last two seasons.
Theme Song Lyrics
"Every Time I Turn Around"
Written By: Judy Hart Angelo & Gary Portnoy
Maybe the world is blind,
Or just a little unkind.
Seems you can't be sure
Of anything anymore.
You maybe lonely and then,
One day you're smiling again.
Every time I turn around,
I see the girl that turns my world around.
Standing there ...