Alan Thicke

Alan Thicke
Alan Thicke 2010.jpg
Thicke in March 2010
Born Alan Willis Jeffrey
(1947-03-01)March 1, 1947
Kirkland Lake, Ontario, Canada
Died December 13, 2016(2016-12-13) (aged 69)
Burbank, California, United States
Occupation Actor, composer, television host
Years active 1969–2016
Children 3, including Robin
Relatives Todd Thicke (half-brother)

Alan Willis Thicke (né Jeffrey; March 1, 1947 – December 13, 2016) was a Canadian actor, songwriter, and game and talk show host. He was best known for his role as Jason Seaver, the father on the ABC television series Growing Pains, which ran for 7 seasons. His son is the singer Robin Thicke. In 2013, Thicke was inducted into Canada's Walk of Fame.


Early life

Thicke was born Alan Willis Jeffrey on March 1, 1947 in Kirkland Lake, Ontario, the son of Shirley "Joan" Isobel Marie (née Greer), a nurse, and William Jeffrey, a stockbroker.[1][2] They divorced in 1953. His mother remarried to Brian Thicke, a physician, and they moved to Elliot Lake.[3] Thicke graduated from Elliot Lake Secondary School in 1965,[4] and was elected homecoming king.[5] He went on to attend the University of Western Ontario, where he joined the Delta Upsilon fraternity.[6]



Game shows

Thicke hosted a Canadian game show on CFCF-TV in Montreal called First Impressions in the late 1970s[7] and the Saturday morning celebrity game show Animal Crack-Ups in the late 1980s.[8] In 1997, he hosted a television version of the board game Pictionary.[1] In the early 2000s, he hosted the All New 3's a Crowd on the Game Show Network.[1]

Talk shows

Norman Lear hired Thicke to produce and head the writing staff of Fernwood 2-Night, a tongue-in-cheek talk show based on characters from Lear's earlier show, Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman.[9] In the late 1970s, he was a frequent guest host of The Alan Hamel Show, a popular daytime talk show on Canadian TV, usually hosted by Alan Hamel.[citation needed] Thicke went on to host his own popular talk show in Canada during the early 1980s, called The Alan Thicke Show. The show at one point spawned a prime-time spinoff, Prime Cuts, which consisted of edited highlights from the talk show. Thicke was later signed to do an American syndicated late-night talk show, Thicke of the Night.[9]

Other hosting

In 2014 and 2015 Thicke hosted a traveling dance show called Dancing Pros Live, which toured the United States.[10]

Producing and composing

Thicke had a successful career as a TV theme song composer, often collaborating with his then-wife Gloria Loring on these projects, which included the themes to the popular sitcoms Diff'rent Strokes and The Facts of Life.[11] He also wrote a number of TV game show themes, including The Wizard of Odds (for which he also sang the vocal introduction),[12] The Joker's Wild, Celebrity Sweepstakes, The Diamond Head Game, Animal Crack-Ups (which he co-wrote with his brother Todd Thicke and Gary Pickus), Blank Check, Stumpers!, Whew!,[13] and the original theme to Wheel of Fortune.[14] Thicke was a popular songwriter. He co-wrote "Sara", a solo hit for Bill Champlin and included on the latter's Runaway album (1981).[15]

Thicke produced a variety of television shows, including Anne Murray Christmas specials for the CBC, beginning in the late 1970s.[16]

Growing Pains

Thicke played Jason Seaver, a psychiatrist and father, on the family sitcom Growing Pains.[17] When the show began, Jason was moving his psychiatry practice into the home to be closer to the family's children while the family matriarch Maggie, played by Joanna Kerns, resumed her career as a reporter.[18] Growing Pains debuted on ABC in 1985 and ran until 1992.[17][19]

Two TV movies, The Growing Pains Movie (2000)[20] and Growing Pains: Return of the Seavers (2004), followed.[21]

Television and film appearances


Thicke in the 2000s

Thicke co-hosted the Walt Disney World Very Merry Christmas Parade (now the Disney Parks Christmas Day Parade) with Joan Lunden from 1983 to 1990, when he was succeeded by Regis Philbin.[22]

In 1988, he hosted the Miss USA Pageant in El Paso, Texas, replacing Bob Barker (who quit over fur being involved in the pageants).[23] He replaced Barker again as host of the 1988 Miss Universe Pageant (along with Tracy Scoggins) in Taipei, Taiwan.[24] Thicke was replaced by Dick Clark as host of the 1989 Miss USA Pageant in Mobile, Alabama[25] and by John Forsythe as host of the 1989 Miss Universe Pageant in Cancun, Mexico.[26]

Thicke continued hosting a wide range of variety TV events. In 1989 he co-hosted with SCTV alumnus Andrea Martin the TV special Opening of SkyDome in Toronto, which aired across Canada on the CBC.[27][28] In 2004, he hosted the Miss Universe Canada Pageant in Ontario. Apart from Growing Pains, Thicke also appeared on the American television series Hope & Gloria, which ran for 35 episodes.[29] He played a lead role in the Not Quite Human trilogy of made-for-TV movies.[citation needed] In April 2006, he hosted Celebrity Cooking Showdown on NBC, in which celebrities were teamed with famous chefs in a cooking competition.[30] In August 2006 and 2007, Thicke made a few appearances as talk show host Rich Ginger on The Bold and the Beautiful.[31] Thicke also had a cameo appearance in the 2007 movie Alpha Dog as the father of the lead character's girlfriend.[citation needed]

In 2008, Thicke appeared in a major supporting role as Jim Jarlewski in the television series adaptation of Douglas Coupland's jPod.[32] That same year, he had a cameo appearance in the How I Met Your Mother episode "Sandcastles in the Sand" as the dad in Robin Scherbatsky's second "Robin Sparkles" music video.[33] He guest starred as himself in the episode "The Rough Patch". He appeared on a website made specifically for the show,, featured in the episode "Old King Clancy".[34]

In February 2009, Thicke made a guest appearance on Adult Swim's Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job. In the same month, he made a guest appearance on the web series Star-ving.[35] He also had a role in the 2009 film, The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard.[citation needed] On July 10, 2009, Thicke appeared on the 1000th episode of Attack of the Show!, and sang a song with Kevin Pereira and Olivia Munn, at the end kissing Munn.[36]

Thicke appeared in the season six finale of Just Shoot Me, "The Boys in the Band."[37] He made a guest appearance on a few episodes of Canada's Worst Handyman 5.[38] In 2010, Thicke appeared on the television program, Tosh.0.[39] In October 2010, he appeared as a celebrity contestant on Don't Forget the Lyrics, where he played for the charities and the Alan Thicke Center for diabetes research.[40]

In March 2013, he participated on ABC's Celebrity Wife Swap. He swapped wives with comedian Gilbert Gottfried.[41]


In the 1990s, Thicke was the spokesman for the Canadian division of Woolco department stores until its demise in 1994.[42] In 2009, Thicke began appearing in TV ads endorsing CCS Medical, a distributor of home-delivered diabetes supplies.[43][44][45][46] In 2014, Thicke began appearing in ad spots for Optima Tax Relief.[47]

Personal life

Thicke was married three times: His first marriage, to Days of Our Lives actress Gloria Loring, lasted from 1970 until around 1984; they had two sons, Brennan and Robin.[1] He started dating actress Kristy Swanson when she was 17 years old in 1986 and got engaged to her two years later when he was 42.[48] He married his second wife, Miss World 1990 Gina Tolleson, on August 13, 1994, and had a son, Carter William Thicke, before their divorce was finalized on September 29, 1999.[1] In 1999, he met Tanya Callau in Miami, where he was a celebrity host and she was a model.[49] They were married from 2005 until his death.[50]


On December 13, 2016, Thicke suffered a heart attack while playing hockey with his son Carter, and subsequently died at the Providence Saint Joseph Medical Center in Burbank, California, at the age of 69.[51]



Thicke at a Canadian Film Centre & Variety-hosted reception for the Telefilm Canada Features Comedy Lab, March 2012


Year Title Role
1971 The Point! Narrator/Father (voice; third telecast)
1983 Copper Mountain Jackson Reach
1984 Calendar Girl Murders Alan Conti
1987 Not Quite Human Dr. Jonas Carson
1991 And You Thought Your Parents Were Weird Matthew Carson / Newman (voice)
1993 Betrayal of the Dove Jack West
Stepmonster George Dougherty
1995 Open Season Xanex
1996 Demolition High Slater
1998 Anarchy TV Reverend Wright
2000 Bear with Me  
2001 Xin shi zi jie tou Steve
2003 Hollywood North Peter Casey
Carolina Chuck McBride – Perfect Date Host
2004 Raising Helen Hockey Cantor
Childstar J.R.
2006 The Surfer King Pipeman
Alpha Dog Douglas Holden
2009 The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard Stu Harding
RoboDoc Dr. Roskin
2010 Making a Scene The Producer
2015 It's Not My Fault and I Don't Care Anyway Patrick Spencer



Year Title Role Notes
1969 It's Our Stuff   Regular
1974 Jack: A Flash Fantasy Jack of Diamonds  
1978 America 2-Night Doug Episode: "I Am Democracy"
1980–82 The Alan Thicke Show Himself/Host Also writer and producer
1983–84 Thicke of the Night Himself/Host Also writer and executive producer
1984 Masquerade   Episode: "Sleeper"
The Love Boat Alan Price / Robert McBride / Senator Bob Townsend 3 episodes
1985 Scene of the Crime Craig Spears Episode: "A Vote for Murder"
1985-1992 Growing Pains Jason Seaver  
1990 The Hitchhiker Mickey Black Episode: "Tough Guys Don't Whine"
1992 Travelquest Host  
1993 Murder, She Wrote Harrison M. Kane Episode: "The Phantom Killer"
1994 Burke's Law   Episode: "Who Killed the Beauty Queen?"
1995 Minor Adjustments Roger Episode: "The Ex-Files"
Hope & Gloria Dennis Dupree  
1996/97 Married... with Children Bruce / Henry 3 episodes
1997 The Outer Limits Donald Rivers Episode: "A Special Edition"
1999 Arliss Doctor Episode: "Rules of the Game"
2000 Beggars and Choosers   Episode: "The Woodhouse Conundrum"
Son of the Beach Captain 'Buck' Enteneille / Captain Buck Enteneille 3 episodes
2001 7th Heaven Ed Palmer Episode: "Parents"
2003 EGG, the Arts Show Alan Scott Episode: "Broadway Workshop"
2004 My Wife and Kids Magician Episode: "Fantasy Camp: Part 2"
2005 Yes, Dear Joel Episode: "The New Neighbors"
Half & Half Gavin Storm Episode: "The Big Mothers for Others Episode"
Joey Himself Episode: "Joey and the Poker"
2006–09 The Bold and the Beautiful Rich Ginger 7 episodes
2007 Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide Hal E. Burton Episode: "Spring Fever & the School Newspaper"
2008 About a Girl Dude's Dad Episode: "About a Homecoming"
JPod Jim Jarlewski 13 episodes
How I Met Your Mother Himself 5 episodes
2010 Canada's Worst Handyman 5 Himself  
Tosh.0 Himself Episode: "Crystal Light Dancers (Reunion)"
2011 I'm in the Band Simon Craig 5 episodes
This Hour Has 22 Minutes Himself  
2012 The L.A. Complex Donald Gallagher 4 episodes
2013 Celebrity Wife Swap Himself Season 2, episode 3
2014 Unusually Thicke Himself Reality show; 14 episodes
American Dad! Himself Episode: "Permanent Record Wrecker"
2015 Scream Queens Tad Radwell Episode: "Thanksgiving"
The Jack and Triumph Show Himself Episode: 7
2016 This is Us Himself Episode: "Pilot"
The Eric Andre Show Himself Season 4, Episode 9
Fuller House Mike Episode: "Mom Interference"

Television movies

Year Title Role
1986 Perry Mason: The Case of the Shooting Star[52] Steve Carr
1987 Hitting Home Conrad Vaughan
Not Quite Human Dr. Jonas Carson
1988 14 Going on 30 The real Forndexter
Dance 'til Dawn Jack Lefcourt
1989 Not Quite Human II Dr. Jonas Carson
1990 Jury Duty: The Comedy[53] Phil Beckman
1992 The Trial of Red Riding Hood The Wolf
Still Not Quite Human Dr. Jonas Carson/Bonus Carson
1993 Rubdown[54] Raymond Holliman
1994 Lamb Chop and the Haunted Studio Alan
1995 Lamb Chop's Special Chanukah[55] Alan
1996 Windsor Protocol Senator Joplin Hardy
Shari's Passover Surprise Alan
The Secret She Carried Reed Epperson (uncredited)
1997 Shadow of the Bear William Andrich
Any Place But Home August Danforth
1998 Thunder Point Joplin Hardy
Casper Meets Wendy Baseball Announcer
1999 Two of Hearts Hank Powers
2000 Ice Angel Coach Parker
The Growing Pains Movie Jason Seaver
2004 Growing Pains: Return of the Seavers Jason Seaver
2013 Camp Sunshine Ken Handcourt
Bad Management Tobias Sr.
Let It Snow Ted Beck


  • Thicke, Alan (May 1999). How Men Have Babies: The Pregnant Father's Survival Guide. Contemporary Books. ISBN 978-0-8092-2806-5. 
  • Thicke, Alan (April 27, 2006). How To Raise Kids Who Won't Hate You. iUniverse Star. ISBN 978-0-595-84288-9. 



  1. ^ Jump up to: a b c d e "Alan Thicke Biography". Film Reference Library. Toronto. Retrieved March 13, 2009. 
  2. Jump up ^ Barton, Chris (2016-12-13). "Alan Thicke, actor and dad on '80s sitcom 'Growing Pains,' dies at 69". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2016-12-14. 
  3. Jump up ^ Ouzounian, Richard (September 21, 2012). "Alan Thicke stars in Queen for a Day". Toronto Star. Toronto: Star Media Group. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  4. Jump up ^ Winders, Jason (2011). "Could Alan Thicke be world's favourite TV Dad?". Western Alumni Gazette. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  5. Jump up ^ Brunt, Stephen (2009). Gretzky's Tears: Hockey, America and the Day Everything Changed. Chicago: Triumph Books. ISBN 978-1600783043. 
  6. Jump up ^ Sennhauser, Morgan (February 22, 2016). "What Happened to Alan Thicke - What He's Doing Now - The Gazette Review". The Gazette Review. Minneapolis. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  7. Jump up ^ Holloway, Daniel (December 14, 2016). "Alan Thicke, 'Growing Pains' Dad, Dies at 69". Variety. United Staes: Penske Media Corporation. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  8. Jump up ^ "Growing Pains star Alan Thicke dies at 69". Digital Spy. United Kingdom: Hearst Magazines UK. December 14, 2016. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  9. ^ Jump up to: a b "Alan Thicke Appreciation: He Was Always Welcome In Our Homes". Yahoo! TV. Sunnyvale, California: Yahoo!. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  10. Jump up ^ BWW News Desk (September 17, 2014). "Karina Smirnoff, Chelsie Hightower & More Set for DANCING PROS: LIVE Tour". Retrieved April 12, 2015. 
  11. Jump up ^ Lincoln, Ross A. (December 14, 2016). "Alan Thicke Dies: 'Growing Pains' Star & TV Theme Composer Was 69". United States: Penske Media Corporation. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  12. Jump up ^ "The Wizard of Odds". San Francisco: CBS Interactive. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  13. Jump up ^ "Whew! Credits". Television Production Music Museum. United States. 2010. Retrieved August 7, 2010. Alan Thicke: Did not save a master reel. He didn't even remember doing the show. After much discussion, he gave the museum a written release so we can acquire anything the US Copyright office has regarding WHEW! [dead link]
  14. Jump up ^ Muller, Marissa G. "Alan Thicke, Beloved Growing Pains Father, Is Dead at 69". Vanity Fair. United States: Condé Nast. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  15. Jump up ^ "R.I.P. Alan Thicke, actor and dad on Growing Pains has died at 69". Consequence of Sound. Chicago. December 14, 2016. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  16. Jump up ^ Toushek, Gary (10 December 1988). "Anne Murray staying home for the holidays". The Globe and Mail. p. 9. 
  17. ^ Jump up to: a b Hal Erickson, Rovi. "Alan Thicke". The New York Times. New York City: The New York Times Company. Retrieved September 6, 2015. 
  18. Jump up ^ Margulies, Lee (October 9, 1985). "He's Never Too Thicke To Endure 'Growing Pains'". Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles: Tronc Inc. Retrieved September 6, 2015. 
  19. Jump up ^ Slate, Libby (April 25, 1992). "A Night of Long Goodbys at ABC: Television: The last episodes of 'Growing Pains,' 'Who's the Boss?' and 'MacGyver' are expected to lure faithful viewers one more time.". Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles: Tronc Inc. Retrieved September 6, 2015. 
  20. Jump up ^ Keck, William (December 13, 2016). "Alan Thicke and the cast of 'Growing Pains' had to overcome internal turmoil for 2000 reunion special". Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles: Tronc Inc. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  21. Jump up ^ "Alan Thicke, 'Growing Pains' Dad, Dies at 69". TheWrap. Santa Monica, California: The Wrap News Inc. December 13, 2016. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  22. Jump up ^ LINAN, STEVEN (December 25, 1989). "'Merry Christmas' Starts Early With Disney Parades". Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles: Tronc Inc. ISSN 0458-3035. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  23. Jump up ^ "Texas Domination Of Miss USA Pageant Raises New Controversy". Associated Press. New York City. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  24. Jump up ^ "Thai beauty is Miss Universe 1988". United Press International. Washington, D.C.: News World Communications. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  25. Jump up ^ "1989 Miss USA Pageant, The (1989) - Overview". Turner Classic Movies. Atalanta: Turner Broadcasting System (Time Warner). Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  26. Jump up ^ "1989 Miss Universe Pageant, The (1989) - Overview". Turner Classic Movies. Atalanta: Turner Broadcasting System (Time Warner). Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  27. Jump up ^ Retrontario (May 9, 2010), "CBC Skydome Opening June 3, 1989", YouTube, San Bruno, California: Alphabet Inc., retrieved December 14, 2016 
  28. Jump up ^ "That time when the SkyDome landed in Toronto". blogTO. Toronto: Blogger. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  29. Jump up ^ Winslow, Harriet (March 17, 1996). "IN THE THICKE OF IT WITH HOPE & GLORIA'". The Washington Post. Washington, D.C.: Nash Holdings LLC. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  30. Jump up ^ "NBC changes plans, 'Celebrity Cooking Showdown' to air Saturday". Reality TV World. United States. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  31. Jump up ^ "Alan Thicke, 'The Bold and the Beautiful' - LA Times". Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles: Tronc Inc. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  32. Jump up ^ "Alan Thicke, Growing Pains Star, Dies at 69". People. United States: Time Inc. December 14, 2016. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  33. Jump up ^ "Sandcastles In The Sand". How I Met Your Mother. Season 3. Episode 16. April 21, 2008. CBS. 
  34. Jump up ^ "Did How I Met Your Mother Create An Actual Canadian Sex Acts Website?". Entertainment Legends Revealed!. United States. March 2, 2016. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  35. Jump up ^ "News and Updates". United States: Retrieved February 24, 2009. 
  36. Jump up ^ "Feud Alert! Alan Thicke Annoyed With Olivia Munn After TV Makeout Diss". Us Weekly. United States: Wenner Media LLC. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  37. Jump up ^ "Just Shoot Me". TV Guide. United States: NTVB Media (magazine) CBS Interactive (CBS Corporation) (digital assets). Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  38. Jump up ^ Harris, Bill. "No denying Handyman appeal". Canada: Postmedia Network and Quebecor Media. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  39. Jump up ^ "Web Reunion: The Crystal Light Dancers". United States: Blogger. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  40. Jump up ^ "Don't Forget the Lyrics!". Santa Monica, California. October 20, 2010. Retrieved August 15, 2011. 
  41. Jump up ^ Itzkoff, Dave (March 11, 2013). "Vulgarity's Abrasive Master, but Not at Home". The New York Times. New York City: the New York Times Company. p. C1. Retrieved August 27, 2013. 
  42. Jump up ^ Don't get me started!: reflections ... – Susan Mackie Smith – Google Books. Retrieved November 20, 2011 – via Google Books. 
  43. Jump up ^ Weather & Time. "Does Alan Thicke have diabetes?". ChaCha. Retrieved November 20, 2011. 
  44. Jump up ^ juliana (April 25, 2007). "Alan Thicke Hawking Las Vegas Time Shares". HotelChatter. Retrieved November 20, 2011. 
  45. Jump up ^ Walters, Chris (June 24, 2009). "Alan Thicke Can't Save Tahiti Village Timeshare Company From Going Under". The Consumerist. Retrieved November 20, 2011. 
  46. Jump up ^ "Hire Alan Thicke - Celebrity Speaker Bureau – Booking Agent". Celebrity Speakers Bureau. Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  47. Jump up ^ "Optima Tax Relief TV Commercial, 'IRS' Featuring Alan Thicke". Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  48. Jump up ^ "Alan Thicke". San Francisco: CBS Interactive. Retrieved March 29, 2016. 
  49. Jump up ^ Goodwin, Jess. "How Did 'Unusually Thicke' Couple Alan and Tanya Thicke Meet? The Story's Not So Sweet". Retrieved December 14, 2016. 
  50. Jump up ^ "Growing Pains' Alan Thicke Ties the Knot". People. United States: Time Inc. May 11, 2005. Retrieved August 27, 2013. 
  51. Jump up ^ Skinner, Curtis (December 13, 2016). "Actor Alan Thicke, dad on Growing Pains, dead at 69". San Francisco: Reuters. Retrieved December 13, 2016. 
  52. Jump up ^ Knutzen, Eirik (8 November 1986). "Hale and hearty". The Toronto Star. p. 14-15. 
  53. Jump up ^ Zerbisas, Antonia (12 January 1990). "TV movie's jury should be hung". The Toronto Star. p. D18. 
  54. Jump up ^ "Available this week". The Toronto Star, Starweek. 29 Jan 1994. p. M10. 
  55. Jump up ^ Bawden, Jim (16 December 1995). "TV Christmas specials". The Toronto Star. 
  56. Jump up ^ "Alan Thicke". Canada's Walk of Fame. Archived from the original on September 30, 2013. Retrieved June 25, 2013. 

External links

Preceded by Miss World America Host
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Bob Barker
Miss USA Host
Succeeded by
Dick Clark
Preceded by
Bob Barker
Miss Universe Host
Succeeded by
John Forsythe
Preceded by
Brian Robbins
Host, Pictionary
Succeeded by
Preceded by Miss Universe Canada Host
Succeeded by
Dominique Dufour