In one of his early roles, a 16-year-old Rob Lowe played a teen who got his summer camp girlfriend pregnant in a 1980 episode of ABC Afterschool Specials.
In the episode, “Schoolboy Father,” Lowe played Charles Elderberry, who finds out via a newspaper announcement that a girl he hung out with at Camp Weejan the summer before had given birth to a baby boy.
As his mom passes judgment about the “Miss” in Daisy Dallenger’s birth announcement and comments on how terrible it is that the newspaper would run an announcement of a baby born out of wedlock, Charles reminisces back to Camp Weejan, where he worked as a counselor, and his first time meeting Daisy.
Quickly doing the math on his fingers, Charles contemplates the possibility that the baby is his and as we find out from a subsequent conversation he has with a friend and eventually with Daisy, he’s pretty clueless when it comes to pregnancy and birth control. His shouts of “how did this happen” and “I thought it was the girl’s responsibility” when he finally gets to talk to Daisy (the late Dana Plato of Diff’rent Strokes fame) are awkward but intentionally and didactically forced. It’s an after school special, after all.
The flashbacks to camp are short, unfortunately revealing next to nothing about Camp Weejan and the show is a dated treatment on teen pregnancy that’s an altogether different kind of campy (Daisy doesn’t want the baby or anything to do with Charles so he attempts to raise the baby on his own but realizes after a trial run that he can’t hack it). It is fun to see Lowe at such a young age though – his only previous credits were as Tony Flanagan in the sitcom A New Kind of Family – and see many of the same traits that make him still relevant 34 years later.