ADAM GOLDBERG & JEFF GARLIN, creator of and star of ABC's The Goldbergs, take me behind the scenes.
There are few writers, regardless of the medium, who are as prolific as Adam Goldberg. His favorite topic is his family. While he says his actual childhood was far darker than what comes across in his comedy show THE GOLDBERGS on ABC, his affection for his suburban Jewish childhood in the 1980’s is palpable.
Adam sold Disney, which owns ABC, on the concept by showing clips from home videos he'd filmed as a kid in Jenkins, Pennsylvania. As a viewer, you get to see clips in each episode, and some fans may try to thread together fact from fiction. Goldberg even uses the actual names of folks, sports teams, and schools from his hometow, which is right outside Philadelphia. (He sent out a note to folks on Facebook to see if it was kosher to use their names, and everyone, on their own accord, said yes.)
When I spoke with affable, self effacing, writer, it’s easy to see why the people he grew up with, but may not have seen for decades, trusted him. Despite the headaches of working around the clock, negotiating deadlines, and managing a staff, it’s clear he’s having a ball. Adam’s office looks like a hip toy store.
In the midst of trying to knock out a script, Adam sat down with me at his office on the Sony Lot, although we were quickly interrupted by comedian Jeff Garlin who stars in the show, as well as an adult male who had urgent questions about Cabbage Patch Kids. Obviously, there are a zillion components involved in churning out a network comedy each week. Of course, it’s not all stressful. Jeff Garlin disclosed not only what it’s like to work for Adam, but what style underwear he wears at home- boxers or briefs.
At the beginning of almost each episode, the comedian Patton Oswalt, and show's narrator, informs the audience about what was going on with the Goldbergs in the 1980's. For some viewers, the show may offer a window into a historic time, and to viewers, like myself, it may not seem like that long ago. Most of the audience, however, are there to watch a close-knit, fraught, often absurd, family- one Adam lovingly created.