Sunday, November 17, 2013

What was on TV November 15th through 21st, 1980

It was Fall of 1980 and the World wanted to know who shot  J.R.  Except for me.  I never watched the show and couldn't care less.  I was probably watching "The Joker's Wild."  I still don't know who shot J.R.

Some interesting and timely Q&A regarding the legality of unscrambling cable signals and increased cable content.

Christmas is approaching, and Sears and Kmart come to your rescue with the latest model appliances.  I always love looking in the refrigerators in these ads.  Who keeps an exposed turkey next to a cherry pie?  That's guaranteed flavor crossover.

Meet The Dips!

I included "The Screening Room" because it has a synopsis of one my favorite WKRP episodes when the Herb Tarlek family is featured on the show within a show "Real Families".  My favorite scene from that episode is when Herb drives his family around the neighborhood on a Sunday morning in an effort to convince the producers of the show they were church goers, only to end up tugging on the doors of a synagogue, convinced they'd missed services.  Edie McClurg as Herb's wife Lucille: "It's a synagogue, Herb!  It's a synagogue!"

Another all-star episode of The Love Boat.

After reading my last TV Guide post, a friend of mine commented that Skip Stephenson had the most punchable face of 70's TV.  Well, this one's for him.  Punch away, my friend, punch away.

It looks like James Caan is giving this guy the noogie of his life.

When I first saw this ad, I thought it was for Bosom Buddies and Elliott Gould was Tom Hanks in drag.  ***UPDATE*** OMG!OMG!OMG! That's not Elliott Gould, it's Gilbert Godfried!

I'm pretty sure I sat through this entire Sunday line-up.  Poseidon Adventure, King Kong and a pre-Happy Days Fonz.  Oh, I wasted my childhood...

Those Amazing Animals was part of the rash of reality shows that broke out in the early 1980's (rash, broke out, get it?  Oy....) that included That's Incredible and Real People.  Hosted by Burgess Meredith, Priscilla Presley and Jim Stafford, you could almost always guarantee an appearance of that water-skiing squirrel.

Next to bringing in a baby or kid, the second most-used plot device designed to prop sagging ratings was to bring in a sassy, black woman.

The Jeffersons headed things off by having a sassy, black woman right from the start.

Lose 5 pounds in 5 minutes -- and every ounce of dignity in 5 seconds.

I wanted to like Too Close for Comfort.  I didn't like Too Close for Comfort.

Meet People Who Have Died and hosts whose careers have died. 

"Things are looking up for Suzy Gilstrap".  I can't believe they said that...

Suzy Gilstrap was a teenage actress who was called upon for any role requiring a paraplegic.  The twist was, she really was a paraplegic.  While on a school field trip to an arboretum , a tree branch fell on her, severing her spinal cord and paralyzing her from the waist down.  Apparently, she was at the height of her career this week in November, based on her appearances in both a made-for-tv-movie and Little House on the Prarie not to mention a dedicated article in TV Guide.

I vaguely recall this episode.  I'm sure something horrific happened to Albert.  Something horrific always happened to Albert.

Is that The Ghost of Christmas Future or a Jawa?

If Fonzie hadn't jumped the shark, the expression would have been "Became a Teacher".   When The Fonz, a high school dropout no less, became a teacher, it was over.  The same could be said for when Laverne and Shirley moved to Hollywood.  Come to think of it, "Left for Hollywood" isn't a bad expression either.

If becoming a teacher wasn't bad enough, Fonzie became animated, travelling through time with cartoon Richie, Ralph Malph and his dog Mr. Cool(???).  Amazingly, the actual Happy Days gang provided the voices.

A standard Saturday line up for local channel KPLR 11.

"Gary Coleman Comes to Campus -- And the Girls Go to Jail."  Somehow, for all the potential that synopsis has, I don't think the episode lived up to it.

The Waltons had "Left for Hollywood" by this point.

Daffy Duck's Thanks-for-Giving was yet another compilation of Warner Bros of shorts with poorly animated filler to complete a framing story.  No idea about "Bigpaw".

Kenny Rogers' America?  Is that what the Founding Fathers envisioned?  I THINK NOT!
Just this past summer, Karl Wallenda's Great-Grandson Nik walked a tightrope across a section of the Grand Canyon in the heavily hyped television event Skywire Live on Discovery Channel.  In 1980, Karl's Grandson walked between two skyscrapers on an NBC special called "Daredevils".  Also, coming in on the heels of the CB radio phenomenon, Convoy finally makes it to broadcast television.

All mocking aside, the interview with Billy Crystal here is actually pretty good.  I recently read his autobiography "700 Sundays" which tells the stories of his extended family while growing up with a father who could only spend Sundays with him.

Well, that's all for this week.  Stay tuned for more.


  1. how could you not like Too Close For Comfort? ted knight plays a cartoonist! plus, it's ted knight!

  2. I know, that's why I wanted to like it. The writing was awful.

  3. I still love these. Such a time travel trip for me. I need to get some of these old issues to just sit and look through. That night of Incredible Hulk, Dukes and Dallas? Wow. Just great. And yeah, heading to Hollywood was the worst for L&S. Show was downhill from there.


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