Thursday, March 20, 2014

What was on TV March 19th through 25th, 1983

It's 1983 and we're entering TV Guide: The Fat Years.  I didn't have cable until I got married in the 90's, so all of these extra channel listings were just mocking annoyances to me growing up.  They also make for hard scanning, so please excuse the skewing. 

Nancy Reagan on "Diff'rent Strokes".  Get ready for another very special episode.

I was a fan of Newhart and liked Mary Frann's role as the supportive wife Joanna to Bob Newhart's Dick Louden.  Sadly, she passed away in 1998 from a heart attack at the age of 55.

Apparently, the guy in the middle isn't wearing Sure.  Or maybe his team just lost.

We're starting to get into unfamiliar Saturday morning territory here.  Video-game themed shows have started to infiltrate the regulars like Bugs Bunny and Superfriends.  And wait, there was a Dukes of Hazzard cartoon???

I had given up on Saturday morning for the most part by this time in favor of sleep.  Although, I'm sure I was still watching Filmation's "Flash Gordon".  Filmed using rotoscope techniques, the animation though repetitive was superior to other Saturday morning fare and the storyline was true to the original comic strip.

Having grown up watching the original "Leave It to Beaver" series (still one of my favorites, by the way), I was excited by this reunion movie.  Not so much after I saw it.  Beaver was divorced, Larry Mondello was a Moonie, Wally had erectile dysfunction (I'm not kidding!), and Ward was dead. Well, I guess I can't blame them for that last one; Hugh Beaumont really had passed away by then. But it seemed they missed the point of a reunion show and intentionally wanted to put off fans of the show.  After being passed up as a series by the big 3 networks, Disney Channel picked it up in 1984 with "The New Leave It To Beaver".  Later, TBS extended its run until 1989.  And yes, that's Corey Feldman playing Beaver's oldest son.

With the introduction of additional cable channels, TV Guide realized the grid approach would be easiser for planning out your nightly schedule.

The night this aired, my aunt called me in a panic.  I calmed her down and explained it was only a TV movie. I thought it was funny that she didn't wonder why no other channels were covering the end of the world.

That lady doesn't look healthy at all.  The dieting fad had reached manic heights by this time.  It's no coincidence Karen Carpenter passed away due to complications from anorexia nervosa the month before this issue.

Anyone know what relation these microwave antenna's had to television broadcasts?  This isn't a quiz. I really want to know. These aren't those gigantic dishes you see rusting in rural backyards these days.  These only measure up to 28" in diameter.  

Charlie Brown enters his stalker phase.
I don't recall "Small & Frye", but it looks really bad.

Tim Conway never could get a break after his stint on "The Carol Burnett Show".  "Ace Crawford" lasted 5 episodes.

Uh, it might more effective if you held the gun the proper way.

Sheena Easton.  My early '80's celebrity crush.

"On the Mississippi" was Ralph Waite's post Waltons show.  It actually lasted 2 seasons.  Ralph Waite passed away last month at the age of 85.

My mom was an avid "Days of Our Lives" fan (still is actually).  I recognized "Doug" and "Julie" immediately.  And I can still hear that music.  It was written by Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart of Monkees' writing fame.

I don't recall his time on CHiPs.  Tragically, and not without a bit of cruel irony,  his 21-year-old son Connor was killed by a drunk driver on a Los Angeles freeway in 2012. 

More TV Jibes

Yeah, call the UK and interrupt their tea and crumpet. That's all those bloody blighters do!

We now return you to 2014, already in progress.


  1. I remember lots of those Saturday morning shows. Was about 12 at this time. What is up with Ponch's new partner on CHiPs, though? Going to have to look this up, don't remember Jon leaving the show!

    1. I remember him leaving the show, but I don't recall the details. Apparently, Bruce Penhall was actually the replacement for Jon's first replacement.

  2. Wow, a St. Louis edition. Nice memories, as I'm from St. Louis. Boy, some of those shows were awful, weren't they?

    1. Welcome aboard, Maxx. Most of the TV Guides you'll find on my blog are St. Louis editions, being a St. Louisan (Louisian?) myself. I don't like to say the shows were awful, just gloriously bad.

  3. An issue I'd LOVE to have in my own collection, as would a friend who's big into CBS. At that time CBS was the owner of KMOX-TV (they would have to sell the station a couple of years later as part of several cost-cutting moves), but St. Louis was so lucky to have a CBS owned-and-operated channel (which the network bought in 1958) and not a mere affiliate during the network's golden period of ratings dominance.

    It was at KMOX-TV in the spring of 1983 that CBS' longtime guiding force, William S. Paley, announced his retirement as company chairman.
    CBS was much more than TV/radio broadcasting: the early-to-mid 80s saw them involved with records/tapes, musical instruments, toys/games, book/magazine publishing, computer/video game software, movies, home-video partnerships with MGM and then 20th Century-Fox, and a short-lived cultural cable network.

    If you ever decide to part with your TV Guide library, although I doubt it, consider me interested. My name is David Sudbury.

    1. Thanks for some insight, David. I remember when KMOX became KMOV. As a kid, it didn't really make sense to me and frankly was kind of annoying getting used to the new call letters (I never did like change).
      I do enjoy the TV Guide collection, but I'm sure at some point, I'll have to part with some. I'll keep you in mind.

  4. David again. Question is: when that day comes, how do we reach each other in terms of a sale?

    Besides KMOX, CBS' other O&O TV outlets were their New York City flagship (WCBS), Los Angeles (KNXT/KCBS), Chicago (WBBM) and Philadelphia (WCAU). Full network coverage with rare pre-emptions were assured on these stations.
    And, I'm sure you know about the great Jack Buck's TV and radio work for CBS on both baseball and football.

    KMOX-TV became KMOV after Viacom bought the station; FCC rules prohibited maintaining call letters if more than one owner is involved. The new KMOV was now free to delete any CBS programming that didn't fit their schedule, whereas KMOX-TV had to run CBS' complete lineup. In 1985 CBS, Inc. was being pursued by the likes of Jesse Helms and Ted Turner, until Laurence Tisch eventually took control a year later. The company borrowed a ton of money to buy back most of its stock in an attempt to keep Turner out; as a consequence, CBS phased out making feature films (for a second time), sold their part interest in Tri-Star Pictures, and ended up letting go of KMOX-TV as well to cover some of the goliath debt.
    It was change out of necessity, but it eventually hurt CBS and especially their cash-cow television network in the long run.

    1. Thanks for the additional info. As for getting in contact, currently you're posting as unknown, but if you have a Google account, you could post as that and I could get ahold of you. Or you post your email address. Or if all else fails, send me an email at and I'll hang onto your email address.

    2. Thanks. By the way, are you familiar with a retail chain known as Pacific Stereo? CBS owned them too.

    3. They sound vaguely familiar, but nothing beyond that. I might have shopped at one back in the day.

  5. I love looking through these guides. I don't read the new ones. I was wondering if you could post some of the fall preview issues, Those are the ones I miss the most.

  6. I remember the new guy on Chips but I didn't think it was still on TV then.

    I also remember Voyagers.


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