tough time

So Little Time

So Little Time was a sitcom starring Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen that aired on ABC Family Channel. The first half of the series aired from June 2, 2001 to August 15, 2001. The series then went on a four-month hiatus, due to network management changes. By December 2001, Fox Family had become ABC Family, and the remaining episodes aired until May 4, 2002.


Life is anything but boring for the Carlson twins, Riley (Mary-Kate Olsen) and Chloe (Ashley Olsen), whose parents have amicably separated, but still live "within a stone’s throw" from each other in Malibu.

Their mother and father previously ran a highly-successful fashion label together for years until Jake underwent a mid-life crisis. In the spirit of finding himself, he moved to a trailer, overlooking his former Malibu beach-front home.

Being teenagers, Riley and Chloe are not immune to the trials and tribulations that come with school; family; friends; and boys. Another complex factor in the girls' lives is their parents keeping everyone on their toes, wondering whether they’ll get back together or not. For the most part, it seems like they'll remain amiable friends, who live to drive each other just a little crazy.


It was announced that Canadian broadcaster The Family Channel began airing reruns of the series. They aired weekdays at 6:00pm, but stopped on June 28, 2007, and were replaced by Zoey 101. In the U.K., the show aired on BBC One, and on the Children's Channel CBBC. Some episodes had a shorter running time than others because of the removal of the "behind-the-scenes" featurettes.

Later in the series, the show starts with the crew wandering around the set, with the camera following them. They talk about current events, such as the birthday of an actor on the set. Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen appear in this segment mostly.

A short "behind-the-scenes" featurette was sometimes included at the end of an episode as well. Although retained on the Warner Brothers DVD releases, these were always edited out of the U.K. terrestrial transmissions.

Episode list

Only twenty-six episodes of the show were created, and they never received high Nielsen ratings. The show was criticized for having an odd plot, an occasional laugh track, and unoriginal humor. Mary-Kate and Ashley were offered a second season of the show, but declined.

Episode # Title Airdate Sypnosis
1 "A Dog Day Afternoon" June 2, 2001 Chloe comes up with a weird theory that boys are no different than dogs. She then tests this theory in real-life.
2 "Siblings and the City" June 2, 2001 Chloe decides to write a dating column for the newspaper, using her family as a source of inspiration. Maybe not a great place to start.
3 "The Color of the Money" June 9, 2001 While the girls raise money for school by selling clothes, Larry purchases tickets for a concert the girls really want to attend by taking the money from the school charity fund without telling them.
4 "There's Something About Riley" June 16, 2001 Riley finds herself unknowingly in a romantic tug-of-war between Larry and Tony.
5 "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" June 23, 2001 Riley reluctantly agrees to give history notes to the 'baddest' girl in school in exchange for her and Chloe being invited to a late-night party.
6 "You've Got Mail" June 30, 2001 Chloe attempts to make friends with a grumpy senior citizen, while Riley kisses Larry, and then spends the rest of that day denying it. Macy and her ex-boyfriend from high school plan to meet, and once Jake learns the news, he attempts to interrupt them during their get-together.
7 "Manuelo in the Middle, Part 1" July 7, 2001 When the girls' male nanny, Manuelo, is not included in the family photo, he quits. Riley and Chloe try to come up with a plan to lure him back.
8 "Manuelo in the Middle, Part 2" July 14, 2001 Riley and Chloe continue their plan to try to get Manuelo back.
9 "True Lies" July 21, 2001 Rather than admit they're having a tough time, the twins try to cheat their way through classes, only to have it backfire.
10 "Tedi's Burnout" July 28, 2001 Rather than being honest, Riley tries to avoid getting into a fight with Chloe. Meanwhile, Tedi decides to "take a break" from modeling.
11 "Teachers Pet""''' August 15, 2001 The girls are shocked when their father starts dating their teacher.
12 "Rules of Engagement" August 15, 2001 The girls try to live their own separate lives, but they start driving everyone around them crazy.
13 "Outbreak" December 1, 2001 A lie becomes reality when Chloe covers for Riley's fake sickness, then gets sick herself, and infects the family.
14 "The Breakfast Club" December 15, 2001 Chloe tries desperately to get detention for herself, so she can spend time with a student named Travis. This causes all of her schoolmates to get detention when her teachers do not believe that Chloe would be so bad.
15 "The New Guy" January 5, 2002 Chloe meets a new guy named Lennon, who tends to make her everyday routine something of a mess. Meanwhile, Riley hurts Larry's feelings by forgetting his birthday.
16 "The Massage" January 12, 2002 Riley becomes addicted to massage therapy, while Chloe tries to work up the nerve to ask Lennon out on a date.
17 "Riley's New Guy" January 19, 2002 While Riley has to fight off rumors about a recent date with a musician, Chloe finally lets Lennon know that she likes him.
18 "The Wheelchair" January 26, 2002 When Riley goofs around in a wheelchair, a genuine wheelchair-bound student named Rob thinks she is really handicapped. Riley continues her charade, not thinking of the truth's eventual impact on Rob.
19 "The Job" February 2, 2002 To save money for a car, the girls get jobs as waitresses, but they quickly discover that it is not their ideal job.
20 "The Flat Tire" February 9, 2002 During a driving lesson with a family friend, Riley and Chloe end up stranded on the side of the road when the car gets a flat tire. A passing motorist very kindly offers them some help, but the twins' gratitude is short-lived when the guy turns out to be a car thief, who later steals the car.
21 "The Volunteer" March 2, 2002 Riley and Chloe must cope with the death of an elderly woman named Louise, whom Riley "adopts".
22 "Trading Places" March 9, 2002 Things go disastrously when Riley, Chloe, and Larry collaborate on a science project.
23 "Larrypalooza" March 16, 2002 Chloe, Riley, and Larry decide to create a band to participate in the school's "War of the Bands". Meanwhile, Larry catches the eye of a popular girl named Tanya, which makes Riley jealous.
24 "Look Who's Talking" March 23, 2002 When the Carlsons' cable is turned off, they all have to find a way to get along without television.
25 "Waiting for Gibson" March 30, 2002 A case of mistaken identity leads to Chloe losing the affection of her secret admirer.
26 "Sweet 16" May 4, 2002 Misunderstanding what they overheard, Riley and Chloe show up for their surprise 16th birthday party on the wrong night.


There are 5 DVDs of So Little Time available. Every DVD includes 6 episodes except the complete series which includes all 26 episodes (including 2 episodes for the 1st time on DVD).

  • So Little Time: School's Cool (Aug.13, 2002)
  • So Little Time: Boy Crazy (Aug.13, 2002)
  • So Little Time: About A Family (June 3, 2003)
  • So Little Time: Hangin Out (June 3, 2003)
  • So Little Time: The Complete Series (Sept.6, 2005)


Several episodes of So Little Time were novelised and published in book form by HarperCollins Entertainment. The series also featured new original stories based on the show, which were written by the same authors. As of the spring of 2008, 17 So Little Time books have been released.

  1. How to Train a Boy
  2. Instant Boyfriend
  3. Too Good To Be True
  4. Just Between Us
  5. Tell Me About It
  6. Secret Crush
  7. Girl Talk
  8. The Love Factor
  9. Dating Game
  10. A Girl's Guide to Guys
  11. Boy Crazy
  12. Best Friends Forever
  13. Love Is In The Air
  14. Spring Breakup
  15. Get Real
  16. Surf Holiday
  17. The Makeover Experiment

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