Lou Grant: Season 5
Lou Grant was a spinoff from "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" and premiered on CBS in September 1977. The series was a radical departure from its predecessor as it was a drama. It was the first successful one-hour show from MTM Enterprises. As the series began, Lou Grant had just been fired from his job at WJM-TV, and had moved to Los Angeles to work for a newspaper.
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Billie gets a marriage proposal from Baseball scout Ted McCovney. Lou meets up with his youngest daughter Janie, who feels he's always neglected her for work.
Kitty Larsen, a young woman on death row picks Rossi to tell her story. Although hesitant at first, he soon begins to like her. But Lou has personal feelings against her because she killed a reporter from the Trib'.
Lou is arrested for driving under the influence. His sentence includes attending a group meeting which culminates in a drunk driving test. Charlie sets up a 'Private Eye' hot-line at the Tribune for people to phone in crimes. Rossi is asked to write a success story about the initiative even though he is very skeptical about it's accuracy.
When Lou goes back to his elderly home to settle his aunt's estate, he meets an old flame and gets his first story assignment in years from Charlie.
Sharon McNeil gets a story about child pornography by promising not to reveal the names of her source. A promise her superiors at the Trib' and the L.A. police department soon want her to break. Art goes out on a helicopter jump with some volunteer rescuers and young reporter Lance has big dreams involving dating Billie and becoming the first newsman in space.
Billie suspects the gold cross found in a time capsule has been switched for a fake. Her investigations unearth the reasons behind an old family feud between the extremely rich side and the less rich side of the Matheson family.
Charlie's nephew Scott comes to stay with him, and turns out to have a mental condition. But the young man refuses to take his medication. The staff is busy tracking an escaped zoo bear called Ziggy.
When his lawyer friend Burton Cary becomes a political candidate, Rossi finds learns he's not as clean-cut as he thought. Meanwhile the entire staff becomes a bit suspicious of Art after an argument with Jerry Hollister leads to the latter suing Art as well as the Tribune.
Rossi runs into a bass player that used to be in the famous Sonny Goodwin Quartet and sets about reuniting the four of them. Tribute reporters Crosley and Banks split up when Banks retires and Crosley soon falls behind on his assignment. This leads Lou to team him up with Billie.
Billie investigates the death of a woman in a house that is said to be haunted. This leads her to attend a séance and search out the owners of a Ouija board.
A stick-up at a Mr. Ginty's fast-food restaurant turns into a hostage situation with a group of birthday party kids. The possible trauma caused by this becomes a big part of the subsequent trial. Billie thinks one mother in particular is telling her son how to react and feel, but when she writes it down Lou finds her story too soft and rewrites it.
Charlie becomes a member of a news council and finds one member who seems to have a grudge against him and the Tribune. Mrs. Pynchon asks Billie to help her write an autobiographical piece but refuses to talk about one important subject: her taking over from her late husbands at the newspaper.
The Tribune hires an old acquaintance of Animal's from 'Nam: photographer Lee Van Tam. But Tam's domestic troubles interfere with his work. Lou tries to get out of meeting visiting relatives.
Rossi makes a bet with that he can get a story from anyone on the street. And the person he chooses is a woman who goes through the garbage who gets used by still viable food. He learns that she's a nun who runs a soup kitchen and feeds indigents. But he shifts the focus of the story to how people in a Third World country are starving which doesn't make the editors happy. And Mrs. Pynchon is instructing the staff to be less wasteful which makes them crazy.
Rossi pursues a story about land claims by Japanese-Americans who sold cheaply prior to their forced internment during World War II, but Lou and Charlie try to stop him from following through with a key source. Billie traces a scam to a politician.
At the last minute, Billie is pulled from a plane that crashes. She writes the obituaries of four Tribune staffers killed. Animal has to face the dilemma of reporting the impending extinction of a moth without tipping bug collectors to its location.
When one of the paper reporters' father comes to town to perform. It seems he was a folk singer in the 50's and he was blacklisted during the Communists Witch Hunts. They learn that one of the paper's reporters may have been involved with his blacklist.
The proliferation of litigation on various fronts is pursued: Billie's story on a political recall movement leads to people she named in her story being sued by the target of the recall; Lou hires Animal's brother to represent him in legal action against a crooked plumber; meanwhile, the Tribune considers switching law firms.
Billie covers a story about a fireworks bill from the Tribune's Sacramento bureau where she encounters her ex-husband, who is now an aggressive lobbyist on behalf of the fireworks industry. Meanwhile, Lou raises ethical questions about the sponsor of an award for which the Tribune is nominated.
As the Tribune covers the fate of a girl being treated in a burn unit, the possibility arises that a confrontation in the Middle East will lead to a nuclear war between the U.S. and the Soviet Union, and the burn unit is mobilized.
A rookie reporter gets in over his head when covering the death of an environmental agitator that might not have been accidental; meanwhile, Lou dates an unfaithful woman.
The Tribune is blamed for inflaming rivalries between surfer gangs. Billie and Ted differ on the place of a group home in their neighborhood.
Lou is shot in an armed robbery in a parking lot, and the robber is soon killed by a police officer who has trouble dealing with his actions.
A bad day for Charlie involves firing misfits and dealing with static from reporters over their assignments; meanwhile, Donovan suspects his girlfriend is pregnant.
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