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    The Brady Bunch

    The Brady Bunch

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    ABC (ended 1974)
    The Brady Bunch was first seen in September 1969, Friday nights on ABC. The series was created by Sherwood Schwartz the same person who had created Gilligan's Island, 5 years earlier. In this series, Michael Paul Brady marries Carol Ann Tyler Martin and they combine their families. Mike had three sons from a previous marriage and Carol had three daughters also from a previous marriage. Mike's previous wife had died and the fate of Carol's previous husband was never explained. However, creator Sherwood Schwartz, originally intended Carol to have been divorced, but ABC balked at that idea. So thus we have two parents (Mike and Carol),six kids (Greg, Marcia, Peter, Jan, Bobby & Cindy), one housekeeper (Alice), and the family dog (Tiger), all living under one roof. Thus setting the scene for one of the most popular family sitcoms of all-time. The first season revolved mainly around the family adjusting to living together. The following seasons then revolved mainly around the six kids growing up and going through puberty and childhood adolescents. Other notable characters included, Sam Franklin, who was Alice's steady boyfriend, appeared several times throughout the 5-year run. In the final season, the character of Oliver, Carol's nephew was introduced mainly to add some of the cuteness back into the show since Cindy and Bobby had outgrown that stage. The series ended it's run in 1974, but the Brady family was far from gone. Two years prior, a animated cartoon, The Brady Kids had been created and aired Saturday mornings. In 1977, a variety show, The Brady Bunch Hour was created but lasted after only a handful of episodes. In 1981, NBC decided to break apart the reunion movie, The Brady Girls Get Married into a weekly series called, The Brady Brides. That too failed. Then the Brady Bunch was revived yet again in 1988, with the CBS TV-movie, A Very Brady Christmas. The movie was the highest rated TV movie of the year and forever cemented The Brady Bunch's immortality in pop culture. To date, the last spin-off aired in 1990 as a weekly hour-long drama called, The Bradys. In 1989, most of the cast returned to their roles on an episode of the short lived, series, Day by Day. The episode was called A Very Brady Episode. Interesting enough, Christopher Daniel Barnes starred in the series and would later portray Greg in the 1995 feature film, The Brady Bunch Movie and a year later in A Very Brady Sequel. Spin-offs: The Brady Kids, The Brady Bunch Hour, The Brady Brides and The Bradys ABC Broadcast History September 1969-September 1970----Fridays----8:00 p.m. September 1970-September 1971----Fridays----7:30 p.m. September 1971-August 1974----Fridays----8:00 p.m. Nielsen Ratings: (Top 30 or Better) Never hit the top 30 First Telecast: September 26, 1969 Last Telecast: August 31, 1974 Episodes: 117 Color Episodes Theme Song: "The Brady Bunch" Written by: Frank DeVol and Sherwood Schwartz Sung by: The Peppermint Trolley Company (Season 1) and The Brady Kids (Seasons 2-5) Here's a story of a lovely lady, Who was bringing up three very lovely girls. All of them had hair of gold, like their mother, The youngest one in curls. It's a story, of a man named Brady, Who was busy with three boys of his own. They were four men, living all together, Yet they were all alone. 'Till the one day when the lady met this fellow, And they knew they we're much more than a hunch. That this group must somehow form a family. That's the way (we)* all became the Brady Bunch. The Brady Bunch, The Brady Bunch. That's the way (we)* became the Brady Bunch. *they instead of we during Season 1 only.moreless
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    The Flintstones

    The Flintstones

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    ABC (ended 2001)
    The Flintstones was a parody on modern suburban life, set in the Stone Age. The characters in the cartoon series all behaved and spoke in a contemporary manner, though they lived in the prehistoric city of Bedrock. Fred worked as operator of a dinosaur-powered crane at Rock Hard & Quarry Cave Construction Co. (slogan: "Own Your Own Cave and Be Secure"). Around their split-level cave the Flintstones enjoyed such conveniences as Wilma's Stoneway piano, a hi-fi on which Fred could play his "rock" music (it consisted of a turntable and a bird with a long beak to serve as a needle), a vacuum cleaner (a baby elephant with a long trunk), and an automatic garbage disposal unit (a famished buzzard stashed under the sink). Their car, which sported tail fins, also came equipped with steamroller wheels--to smooth out the rocky road. Then one day in 1963 they were blessed with a baby daughter, whom they named Pebbles. Not to be outdone, their neighbors the Rubbles adopted an orphan boy named Bamm Bamm. (The two kids later had a Saturday morning cartoon series of their own, Pebbles and Bamm Bamm.) The Flintstones was always as much adult satire as children's fun. In many respects it resembled Jackie Gleason's popular Honeymooners, especially in the relationships of the principals. A wide range of caricatures passed through the stories: Lollobrickida, a pretty cook; Ann-Margrock, whose voice was supplied by Ann-Margret; attorney Perry Masonry (he never lost a case); Ed Sullystone, a TV host; Eppy Brianstone, a teenage impresario; and Weirdly and Creepella Gruesome, the strange couple who with their son Goblin moved into a cave nearby (this was a parody on The Addams Family and The Munsters, then popular). The Gruesomes thought that they were normal, and everyone else in Bedrock was odd. The Flintstones and its spin-offs had a highly successful run on Saturday mornings--on NBC from January 1967-September 1970, on CBS from September 1972-January 1974, back on NBC from February 1979-September 1984, and on ABC with The Flintstone Kids from September 1986-September 1989. This series has also many movies and specials (about 10 specials). Some of them are:"A Flintstones Christmas Carol", a flintstones version of the famous Charles Dickens book, "A Flintstones Christmas" where Fred replaces Santa Claus (Pebbles and Bamm Bamm are speaking now), "I Yabba Dabba Do" where Pebbles and Bamm Bamm are grown up and get married, and "Holly-Rock-a-bye Baby" where Pebbles gives birth.moreless
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    McHale's Navy

    McHale's Navy

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    ABC (ended 1966)
    A Lively, Light-Hearted Romp Through The Pacific Theater Of Operations –

    An experienced South Pacific sea dog, by the name of Quinton McHale, was commissioned as a Lieutenant Commander into the U.S. Navy Reserve, at the start of World War II, and made the Skipper of the Torpedo Patrol (PT) Boat #73, stationed at the U.S. Naval Installation on the island of Taratupa, in the Southwest Pacific. Assigned to his command were 6 free-spirited, good-hearted Swabbies who loved to have fun, but who – Though they usually ignored Navy regulations – Did their jobs, and did them well, when duty called. The 73 'Family' included, among others, a con man and amateur Magician, a womanizing hunk, a dedicated Family man, a guitar-picking, moonshine-making Tennessee good ol' boy, and even a deserter from the Japanese Navy, who was an excellent cook. Second in command, was Ensign Charles Parker, a young spit-and-polish, by-the-book Officer from Chagrin Falls Ohio, who was somewhat of a klutz, but who always managed to come out on top of a situation, usually with the help of McHale and The Crew.

    McHale and his men were under the command of Base Commander Captain Wallace B. Binghamton (Known as 'Old Leadbottom' to McHale and his men), in whose side, McHale and his Crew were a constant thorn. Most episodes centered around Binghamton's trying to find way to get rid of McHale and his rule-bending 'Pirates' (One would be hard-pressed to see an episode of this series without the military term 'Court Martial' being mentioned, at least once), with McHale and his fun-loving 'Eightballs' scheming to keep Binghamton from doing so, their exemplary performance in battle, more times than not, getting them out troublesome situations.

    McHale's Navy was first presented a straight action drama, on ABC's Alcoa Premiere anthology series, in April of 1962. The pilot episode – Entitled Seven Against The Sea – Found enough of an audience that it was converted to a comedy series, which premiered on the ABC Television Network on the evening of Thursday, October 11th 1962, at 9:30 p.m. EST. It got off to somewhat of a slow start, opposite NBC's popular Hazel, but held it's own, and gained a small following. It cracked the top 25 in it's 2nd season ('63/'64), on Tuesday nights, in the 8:30 time-slot, with a strong lead-in from ABC's Combat, landing at #23, with a Nielsen rating of 22.8. But, from that point on, it was all uphill for McHale. In it's 3rd ('64/'65) & 4th ('65/'66) seasons, in a losing battle with CBS's powerhouse Red Skelton Hour, it was soon on it's way out. An attempt to boost it's sagging ratings, by moving McHale, his Crew, and Captain Binghamton to a base in Italy, in it's 4th and final season, proved to do more harm than good, and resulted in the cancellation of the series, in 1966.

    The series was popular enough with the public to prompt the production of two full-length theatrical-release motion pictures, during it's run. McHale's Navy, released by Universal Pictures in June of 1964, featured all the regular cast members from the series, and McHale's Navy Joins The Air Force, in July of '65, this one sans Borgnine. Both were 90-minute extended episodes of the series, and mildly popular, at best. A 1997 big-budget movie, based on the series, and with Tom Arnold as McHale, was a total flop. All three are available on VHS or DVD.

    Lately, it's been tough to catch McHale's Navy on TV. Programming Managers don't seem to realize just how many loyal fans the show still has, and just how many new fans the show would doubtless make, were more people allowed to experience it. However – McHale fans, rejoice! – Shout! Factory came to the rescue, and began releasing McHale's Navy, on DVD, in boxed sets, beginning on March 20th, 2007, with Season 1. Season 2 was released on September 11th, 2007, Season 3, on March 18th, 2008, and Season 4, on November 18th, '08.

    With a highly talented cast including Academy Award® winner Ernest Borgnine, comic genius Tim Conway, the one-of-a-kind comic talent of Joe Flynn, and a solid supporting cast, McHale's Navy was – And is – TV comedy at it's very finest.moreless
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    Leave It to Beaver

    Leave It to Beaver

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    ABC (ended 1963)
    Leave It to Beaver portrayed the iconic postwar American family: June the perfect housewife, Ward the dad (what did he do for a living, anyway? And why did he always wear a suit to dinner?), big brother Wally, and of course Theodore ("The Beaver"), the good-hearted kid whose adventures propelled the show. Leave It to Beaver debuted in October of 1957 on CBS. In the fall of 1958, CBS dropped the series. ABC picked it up and ran it for an additional 5 years. Few people know that Leave it to Beaver was the first American television show broadcast behind the Iron Curtain -- perhaps part of the reason for so many references to God, Sunday School, Breaking Bread, etc. In several episodes, there are subtle references to the Soviet Union. In episode #31 ( New doctor ): Wally, has a model plane. Look close, it,s a Russian bomber. With, the red star decals. In episode #119 ( Beaver's House Guest ), the two boys are wearing their camp sweatshirts. With the name Camp Chekov on it. Propaganda? Maybe. What the average American family was like in the 1950's? I don't think so. What ever, I guess it worked. The series focuses on Theodore Cleaver (Beaver). Beaver (who was 7 when the series began) is your basic everyday little boy who had a knack of getting himself into trouble at every turn. His older brother Wally, is just entering his teen years and often wonders out loud how Beaver could be so dumb to get himself into stupid situations. (Examples: getting himself locked in the principals office, letting the bathtub overflow, letting the washing machine overflow, getting his head stuck in a fence at the park, constantly losing things (cats, change, etc.) His parents are your everyday 1950's parents, June and Ward Cleaver, who do their best to understand and support Beaver and Wally as they grew up. Other characters were mostly friends of Wally and Beaver. Wally's friends included Lumpy Rutherford and the two-faced Eddie Haskell. Eddie was courteous to June and Ward but when the grown ups weren't around he was a bully to Beaver and his friends. Beaver's friends include Whitey Whitney, Gilbert Gates/Bates/Harrison (inconsistent last name), Larry Mondello and Richard Rickover. Beaver's teachers, Miss Canfield and later Miss Landers were seen frequently as well as Lumpy's father, played by Richard Deacon known for his role on The Dick Van Dyke Show. While most people lump in Leave it to Beaver with other family sitcoms, such as Father Knows Best, and The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet, this series was truly an original, and very much ahead of its time. It showed the world through the eyes of a young boy, and sometimes dealt with rather controversial subjects. One episode ("Beaver and Andy") dealt frankly with the subject of alcoholism. Another episode ("Beaver's House Guest") showed how divorce can affect a child. In 1985, Leave It to Beaver was in a full blown revival after a 1983 reunion movie, Still the Beaver, when a spin-off series, with the title of the reunion movie, was proposed. It later begin airing in syndication under the title, The New Leave It to Beaver and starred all of the original cast members except Hugh Beaumont who died on May 14, 1982. First Telecast: October 4, 1957 Last Telecast: September 12, 1963 Episodes: 234 B&W Episodes +1 Unaired B&W Pilot Theme Song: "The Toy Parade" Written by: Melvyn Leonard, Mort Greene & Dave Kahn Spin-offs: The New Leave It to Beaver NOTE: All air dates have now been verified through TV Guide. CBS Broadcast History October 1957-March 1958----Fridays----7:30 p.m. March-September 1958----Wednesdays----8:00 p.m. ABC Broadcast History October 1958-June 1959----Thursdays----7:30 p.m. July-September 1959----Thursdays----9:00 p.m. October 1959-September 1962----Saturdays----8:30 p.m. September 1962-September 1963----Thursdays----8:30 p.m. Nielsen Ratings: (Top 30 or Better) Never hit the top 30moreless
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    My Three Sons

    My Three Sons

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    ABC (ended 1972)
    "MY THREE SONS" is the story of a Mid-West Aeronautical Engineer who watches his family grow up. This seemingly innocuous and simple, but effective sitcom, was a huge hit and a cornerstone of television's 'family programming' era in the 1960s. Second next to "The Adventures Of Ozzie & Harriet" as television's longest running family sitcom, "My Three Sons" was created by former "Leave It To Beaver" alumnus George Tibbles (1913-87). Executive Producer Don Fedderson (1913-94) campaigned the series as a probable vehicle for movie veteran Fred MacMurray (1908-91), who was reluctant to star in it at all. He spoke to Robert Young, of "Father Knows Best" fame and his suspicions were confirmed. He'd be working seven days a week and would barely see his real life family. Finally he gave in after the Producers guaranteed that they could have enough scripts available ahead of time to warrant filming the show within a set sixty five day period. He agreed to this, and so for example, all the scenes set in the kitchen of many different episodes were all shot together in one day, all out of sequence, which were then later edited into each episode in order. Co-star William Frawley (1887-1966), used to years of filming "I Love Lucy" in sequence before a captive studio audience and performed like a play, never got used to this schizophrenic method of filming. And thus this technique was dubbed 'The MacMurray Method' and was also used by Brian Keith on the "Family Affair" series, coincidentally also a Don Fedderson Production. Of course, the "MacMurray Method" isn't particularly novel in its creation (it is, after all, how most feature films are shot, and a method probably most comfortable and familiar to the film actor MacMurray), but its introduction to TV production methods was certainly innovative at the time.

    HISTORICAL OVERVIEW: When the series began in 1960, the boys were aged 18 (Mike), 14 (Robbie) and 8 (Chip). They were played by Tim Considine, Don Grady and Stanley Livingston, respectively. At the beginning of the series, storylines centred on the family's adventures in suburbia, and was perhaps the hybrid of what was to become the era of the Dom-Com (Domestic Sitcom). Steve Douglas also spent a good deal of time fending off attractive women who wanted to marry him and take over that loveable ready made family. The 'woman' in their lives was Bub O'Casey, Steve's maternal father in law, who did all the cooking, cleaning and chores. Other regulars in the early years were Peter Brooks as Robbie's best friend Hank Ferguson, and Ricky Allen as Sudsy Pfeiffer, Chip's best friend. The first of the show's format changes began at the start of the 1963-64 season. Meredith MacRae (1944-2000) was introduced as Sally Morrison, the girlfriend to eldest son Mike. They would become engaged and eventually marry. Meanwhile, Chip's new pal Ernie Thompson (co-star Stanley Livingston's real-life brother, Barry) was introduced and he would ultimately become a permanent part of the Douglas household. During the 1964-65 season, Frawley left the show for health reasons and Bub was written out of the show and replaced with his cantankerous younger brother Charley, a retired sailor played by William Demarest (1892-1983), whose crusty disposition masked a soft heart. At the start of the 1965-66 season, when the show moved from ABC to CBS, Mike and Sally got married in the very first Color episode, and moved back East so that Mike could accept a job teaching psychology on the college level. (Actor Tim Considine had at 24, outgrown the role and wanted out of the series to pursue a Directing career, which ultimately never eventuated). To re-establish the 'three sons', Steve subsequently adopted orphan child Ernie, who was not permitted to accompany his foster parents in their move to the orient. Things went along much the same for the next two seasons, although now the sons were Robbie, Chip and Ernie. Mike would never be referred to again after a few episodes.
    In a dramatic production move, the series, which for the first seven seasons was filmed mainly on Stage 11 at Desilu Studios in Hollywood, had to up anchor and begin filming at the former Republic Studios site, now rechristened the CBS Studio Center in Studio City, California. This necessitated moves behind and in front of the cameras. Lucille Ball, who by 1962 had bought out her ex-husband Desi Arnaz to take total control of Desilu, was, in February, 1967 talked into a deal by chief executive Charles Bludhorn of the giant Gulf and Western conglomerate, into selling Desilu. As G&W now owned Paramount Studios, Desilu was absorbed into this operation. To facilitate the placement of schedules for various TV series that lensed their shows at Desilu, all were forced to find other burgeoning accommodations. "My Three Sons" complimented the move to the CBS Studio Center (the Columbia Broadcasting System now owning the show) by introducing a new storyline at the start of the 1967-68 season, where Steve Douglas transfers to California, and the family moves to North Hollywood. (Thus, a new house, and new studio facilities). Although the adjustment was not too pleasant many of the Douglas's new acquaintances were not too friendly at first, there were good sides to the move. Robbie fell in love with college student Kathleen Miller (Tina Cole), and their romance blossomed into marriage. At the beginning of the following season 1968-69, the newly weds discovered that Katie was pregnant, and during the season she gave birth to triplets; three sons of course. Season 1969-70 brought new love to father Steve Douglas in the form of Barbara Harper (Beverly Garland), Ernie's English teacher. They were eventually married and Barbara's five year old daughter Dodie (Dawn Lyn), whom Steve subsequently adopted, also joined the family.

    Even original youngest son Chip (who was by now 18) got into the act, eloping with fellow college student Pauline ('Polly') Williams (Ronne Troup) in the 1970-71 season. Adopted brother Ernie was the only one of the sons not to get married on the show. As if the sprawling family had not gotten big enough already, the start of the final season (1971-72) saw a four part related episode that was sort of a continuation of a storyline that began in the 1963-64 season. Steve's Scottish nobleman cousin Fergus McBain Douglas (enacted by Fred MacMurray; voiced by Alan Caillou) came to the United States in search of a wife to take back to Scotland. In its later years, as the of the Douglas family grew on "My Three Sons" and separated into individual households, episodes could very rarely include the entire group. More and more often, they dealt with the specific problems of a large cast of regulars, with different members taking the spotlight from episode to episode. These multi-story elements were the brainchild of the show's creator and head writer for its twelve seasons, George Tibbles, who penned a massive 95 scripts of the series during this period. 16 of these were as a co-writer, in addition to him overseeing the work of the contributing staff writers during his tenure as Story Editor/Supervisor.

    "My Three Sons" never changed much in only in structure, its format changes having been discussed with the writing staff which increased the show's longevity with natural progressions for each character. For its time and of its type, the show was extremely well written and the writing of the series doesn't get enough credit to this day. As the series only filmed several months out of the year, the same Director was usually employed, which gave the show the behind the scenes continuity it probably needed. When the show was finally cancelled it had been running for twelve years and in reruns has run many, many more. By today's standards it appears wholesome, tame and perhaps slightly dated, but it's a slice of life that all of us can appreciate and learn from. One thing is certain. For all of its detractors, the series remains a favourite all over the world. The show's huge catalogue of 380 half hour episodes is a lasting legacy for Fred MacMurray and his TV family that will never be forgotten. While never a top ten hit during its original run, thanks to syndication the show remains extremely popular and continues to win new fans, young and old for its effective way of depicting an all-male family that did all-male things, even in its simplicity and its naiveté. The original Black and White episodes, considered by most fans as the show's best, were held back from syndication until the 1980s and enjoyed a new lease of life on Cable Television until the late 90s. The Color episodes are in constant syndication and are the only ones being distributed across the U.S. as of this writing (Jan. 2002). As long as TV stations are in need of quality programming the series will hopefully be played regularly to a whole new generation of audience.

    WHERE ARE THEY NOW? Fred MacMurray (b. August 30, 1908 in Kankakee, Illinois) died on November 5, 1991 aged 83, of pneumonia as a result of contracting chronic lymphocytic leukemia. MacMurray's off-screen role in the series was purely financial. A deal with Executive Producer Don Fedderson named MacMurray a silent partner, in effect giving him a 50% ownership stake in the series. In his 70s after he had all but retired from the business as one of Hollywood's wealthiest citizens, thanks to shrewd property investment deals among other business ventures, Fred suffered for a while with throat cancer. Sadly missed by all of us. The plaque in his mausoleum crypt at Holy Cross cemetery in Culver City, California says "Forever in the hearts of your family" (indeed!) which was arranged by his second wife, actress June Haver, to whom he was married for 37 years until his death. (June passed away aged 79 in 2005 and is now interred with him). He is survived by four children; two were adopted during his first marriage to the late actress Lillian LaMont, (Robert and Susan), and then in 1956 he and June adopted twin baby girls Katie and Laurie. Known as a devoted husband and father, no one ever talks of Fred as ever being a great actor, but when you think of it he never really gave a bad performance, and for the sheer number of movies and television shows he made, that's a pretty good epitaph for anybody in show business.

    William Frawley (b. February 26, 1887 in Burlington, Iowa) died on March 3, 1966 a week after his 79th Birthday from a massive coronary, while strolling down Hollywood Boulevard after seeing a movie. His constant companion, a male nurse, carried him into the nearby Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel but he was pronounced dead on arrival at Hollywood Receiving Hospital. His funeral was held at the Church of the Blessed Sacrament in Los Angeles and he is buried in the San Fernando Mission Cemetery in Mission Hills, California. Tracing his show business roots back to vaudeville, he was also a prolific character actor who appeared in more than 150 feature films from as early as 1916 and usually but not always was featured in comedic roles. Bill is best remembered for his long running role on "I Love Lucy" (1951-57) as the irascible Fred Mertz. Perhaps appropriately, his last performance was a cameo on an episode of "The Lucy Show" which aired in late 1965.

    William Demarest (b. February 27, 1892 in St. Paul, Minnesota) died on December 27, 1983 aged 91, from a heart attack, after a long battle with prostate cancer. One of the true stalwarts of the entertainment industry, he is one of the few performers who can lay claim to being there from the very beginning; he appeared uncredited alongside Al Jolson in Warner Bros. first ever talking motion picture, "The Jazz Singer" in 1927. He was a welcome face in many vintage movies where he usually played in support of the leads, and was instantly recognizable to audiences even if people didn't know his name. His career started when he was a headliner in vaudeville in the days before World War I and his last appearance was in a 1978 telemovie which capped off a remarkable 73-year career in show business. He was retired and living in Palm Springs, California at the time of his death, and he is buried at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, California.

    Meredith MacRae (b. May 30, 1944 in Houston, Texas) died on July 14, 2000 aged 56, of complications from surgery for brain cancer. The daughter of the late actor Gordon MacRae, Meredith had her own talk show in the 1980s called "Mid-Morning L.A." and she won an Emmy for her work on the show in 1986. Married three times, her only child Allison was born in 1975 during her second marriage (1969-87) to actor Greg Mullavey. She became a successful producer and garnered many awards during her long career. She did a series of acclaimed lectures to major companies and organizations, taught a in film and TV production at Chapman University, and recorded over a dozen best-selling books on tape. Former L.A. mayor Tom Bradley called her one of that city's most outstanding businesswomen. As per her wishes and because her hobbies had included water skiing and scuba diving she was cremated and her ashes were scattered into the Pacific Ocean.
    Beverly Garland
    (b. October 17, 1926 in Santa Cruz, California) died on December 5, 2008 aged 82 after a short illness. Beverly was the widow of land developer Fillmore Crank to whom she was married for 39 years until his death in 1999. She ran with the help of three of four of her grown children, the Beverly Garland Holiday Inn, located in North Hollywood which is a few blocks from Universal Studios. Until her death she was still occasionally active in show business, and was bestowed the honor of of being inducted into the Pacific Pioneer Broadcasters Hall of Fame, and celebrated the beginning of her "second" fifty years in show business in 2001. In recent years she had a recurring role on the series "Seventh Heaven". Garland's hotel is also the Los Angeles site of the famed annual celebrity autograph & collector's conventions.

    Don Grady
    (b. June 8, 1944 in San Diego, California) died on June 27, 2012 aged 68 after a long battle with cancer. Don began his career in show business and started where so many others have, at Disney. Don was one of the original Mousketeers, before landing his long-running role on "My Three Sons". During the series he was able to parlay his interest in music into a second career and left the show to become a reputable composer of film and television, although it took him almost ten years to finally make a living from it. His most recent credits include music for theme park attractions at Universal Studios as well as productions on the Lifetime and Discovery Channels. Married for the second time to Ginny, he is the father of two children, Joey and Tessa. Born Don Agrati, he is the son of a former talent agent and was the older brother of the late actress Lani O'Grady (1954-2001) who played Mary Bradford on the TV series "Eight Is Enough" (1977-81). In a recent TV Guide interview, Don said he still got mail from people who remembered the show and are thankful for its family values. He also said he grew extremely proud of the show over the years. Be sure to stop by www.dongrady.com - now his tribute site, to check out all about Don's musical career. 2008 also marked Don's 50th Anniversary in show business!

    Tim Considine (b. December 31, 1940 in Los Angeles, California): Tim, is now a well known sports photographer and writer involved in auto racing, which takes him all over the country. His most recent book, "American Grand Prix Racing: A Century of Drivers & Cars" - is an award winning definitive account of U.S. drivers in Grand Prix events, and was published in 1997. Divorced from actress Charlotte Stewart, he is now re-married to Willett Hunt and has a 29 year old son named Chris. Now basically retired from acting, Tim isn't afraid to go back to his roots however; he appeared in the reunion movie "The New Adventures Of Spin and Marty" in 2000 reprising the role of the original Spin Evans, the character he portrayed on the old Walt Disney series of shorts from 1955-58, which began as "The Adventures of Spin and Marty", a segment of "The Mickey Mouse Club". Recently as 2003 Tim also appeared as a supporting actor in the family TV movie, "The Monster Makers".

    Stanley Livingston (b. November 24, 1950 in Los Angeles, California): Stan is now the founder and Chief Executive Officer of "Kids In Show Biz, Inc". He has written feature films and directed commercials. Through his production company Premier Entertainment Group, he produced a feature film called "Checkers" in 2000 and the following year directed all 20 Episodes of a new children's TV Series for PBS. He was married to a dancer named Sandra at age 18 and the union which lasted six years, produced a daughter named Samantha, born in 1970. In recent years he has created stained glass artwork for celebrity clients including Tom Hanks and Lorenzo Lamas. He often sold his items through e-bay, but these days is all about showing actors and parents of actors the pitfalls of the industry and what to do to combat that. Check out his informative website at www.theactorsjourney.com

    Barry Livingston (b. December 17, 1953 in Los Angeles, California): Barry has had the most active post-series career. Married to Karen, with two children named Hailey and Spencer, Barry continued acting with roles in a host of made for TV movies of the week. This was followed by summer acting workshops and off-Broadway productions in New York. In the 90s, had a semi-recurring role on "Lois and Clark: The Adventures of Superman". Like his older brother Stanley, Barry has dabbled in directing and writing, but he's mainly a character actor. His most recent credits include guest star appearances on the popular television shows "Ally McBeal", "The West Wing", "Will and Grace", "Boston Public" and "Roswell". In 2011, he released his autobiography, aptly titled 'The Importance of Being Ernie'.
    Tina Cole
    (b. August 4, 1943 in Hollywood, California): Tina, the daughter of Yvonne King and the late Buddy Cole (of "The King Family" singers fame) is divorced from her second husband, Fillmore Crank Jr., stepson of her "My Three Sons" co-star Beverly Garland. In the last decade, she has worked with a "looping group" doing voice-over work for national television series and movies. With a teenaged son and a six month old baby boy (from her first marriage to producer Volney Howard III) Tina moved to Sacramento in 1982, and she has been the resident director of the Junior League of that city's Children's Theater for some years. By 1985 two daughters completed her family. Although divorced in 1995, her life still centers around her four children. Now remarried, a mom and a mother-in-law, apart from a recent local morning television talk show in 1999, her latest theatrical credits include the musical "I Do, I Do" and a starring role in the play "Six Women with Brain Death" in 2001. Tina also taught acting at a prominent local drama school for a few years but is now retired. Still stunningly beautiful, it's hard to believe that Tina is now in her late 60s!

    Dawn Lyn (b. January 11, 1963 in Hollywood, California): Dawn found it difficult to make the transition from child star to young adult. While she managed to appear in a few guest star roles during her teens like "Barnaby Jones", "The Streets of San Francisco" and "Wonder Woman", in effect, her career was stymied by her small stature and youthful appearance. The younger sister of former pop idol Leif Garrett, Dawn left the entertainment industry to pursue other interests. She married an architect named Michael Whitby in 1990, but it ended in divorce after nine years. Today, Dawn is happy and living her life out of the spotlight. She has a great time being involved with the local community theater and civic/volunteer activities, is still in contact with her co-stars and loves them like family. Dawn remarried in 2006 to John Reese, and as a result of her husband's career, she relocated in September 2007 to Germany to be with him. They lived there for nearly five years and have now returned to California as of late 2012. Like her co-stars, she was deeply saddened to hear that her TV mother Beverly Garland (with whom she had always kept in touch) passed away at the end of 2008. Ronne Troup (b. June 10, 1945): Ronne, who is now in her late 60s has kept a low profile with guest appearances but still occasionally acts and does commercials. The daughter of the late Bobby Troup and stepdaughter of the late Julie London, she had a recurring role on the night-time soap "Knots Landing" in the 80s and has appeared recently on programs like "The Practice", "E.R." and "The West Wing". Ronne is the younger sister of Cynnie, who was a script editor on their father's series "Emergency" in the early 70s. She has been maried twice and has been very happy in her own life, and is blessed to have two daughters, Bridget and Jamie Lawrence, and a wonderful husband, Bob Bayles. In spite of a career in acting, she has always enjoyed writing, since her days at UCLA when she imagined being a writer. I believe that in recent years, apart from the odd guest appearance on shows like "Coldcase" she has been teaching elementary school in the Los Angeles area.

    The Todd Triplets (Joseph, Michael & Daniel) (b. August 5, 1967): After being contacted by the boys' mother Lynn and their stepfather David, I can let you know (at the time of this writing) that Joe, his wife and two kids are living in Colorado Springs. Joe has now retired from active service. He was an 'E7' in the medical unit. Mike is also in the army, and is based in Washington. He too is an 'E7' and will retire in two years. He is now divorced and has two daughters in Hawaii where he spent four years on active duty before going to Washington. Danny is married and lives in Houston. He spent five years in the Army and settled in Houston where he is the owner of a company that installs yard water and lighting systems. The boys have spent many years overseas and all speak several languages. According to their Mom, they are happy and haven't done any TV work since they were 16 years old.

    First Telecast: September 29, 1960 on ABC. Last Telecast: August 24, 1972 on CBS. Number of Episodes: 380 (x half-hours). (184 Black and White, 196 Color). A Don Fedderson Production, Distributed Worldwide by CBS Television Distribution International Ltd. Original Broadcast History: ABC Sept. 1960-Sept.1963 Thurs. 9:00-9:30pm Sept. 1963-Sept.1965 Thurs. 8:30-9:00pm CBS Sept. 1965-Aug. 1967 Thurs. 8:30-9:00pm Sept. 1967-Sept.1971 Sat. 8:30-9:00pm Sept. 1971-Dec. 1971 Mon. 10:00-10:30pm Jan. 1972-Aug. 1972 Thurs. 8:30-9:00pmmoreless
  • 6
    Batman

    Batman

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    ABC (ended 1968)
  • 7
    Maverick

    Maverick

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    ABC (ended 1962)
    Maverick told the story of the Maverick brothers, Bret and Bart, card sharps who lived during the Old West era. The show was originally a straightforward adventure tale, but it evolved when the writers began adding comedy to the scripts. Bret quickly became the television western's first quasi-mercenary, a character who would help the forces of justice but usually only if he stood to profit from doing so. When he resorted to gunfire, he wasn't the West's finest marksman. In fact, he was much more likely to outsmart his opponent or slip out the back door once trouble began. The writers also added a foil for Bret - his brother Bart. Bart was more conservative than the devilish Bret, but just as unlikely to join any fight that could be avoided. The two characters began alternating as leads on the show as they journeyed through small towns with odd names like Oblivion and Apocalypse. Along the way, they associated with fellow card sharps like Dandy Jim Buckley and Gentleman Jack Darby. There was also Samantha Crawford, a lovely female rogue who loved to challenge the Maverick brothers to see who could out-con the other.

    All these elements helped make Maverick a television western that stood apart from the crowd. Audiences responded to the mix of traditional Western adventure and good-natured humor, making the show an instant hit. Bret Maverick, in particular, became a hero for many armchair cowboys. As a result, the writers began to play up the comedy elements even more, expanding the storylines to satirize other prime time programming. Maverick lampooned everything from Gunsmoke to Dragnet. The show would also use actors known for other roles, like Edd "Kookie" Byrnes from 77 Sunset Strip, for cameo roles designed to make viewers' heads turn.

    Maverick continued to enjoy solid ratings through the end of the 1950's, but hit a snag in 1960 when James Garner left the program over a contract dispute. To replace him, the producers introduced a new Maverick cousin, Beau. Beau had been sent to London for disgracing the family name during the Civil War (by winning a medal). Beau would be played by Roger Moore, who would later move on to greater fame as James Bond. The show also briefly added another brother, Brent, played by Robert Colbert, before finally ending its run in the summer of 1962. Since then, Maverick has continued to be a popular member of the cult television pantheon. Its enduring status as a beloved show led to two short-lived follow-up series, Young Maverick and Bret Maverick. There was also a 1994 movie version of Maverick which featured James Garner alongside Mel Gibson and Jodie Foster. The follow-ups proved that the magical Maverick mixture of laughter and tumbleweeds was an enduring, age defying source of great family entertainment.

    Aired Sunday nights at 7:30pm on ABC. The final season aired Sunday nights at 6:30pmmoreless
  • 8
    Bewitched (1972)

    Bewitched (1972)

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    ABC (ended 1972)
    Bewitched is a fantasy sitcom chronicling what happens when a witch and a mortal fall in love and get married in 1960s and '70s suburban America. At the very center of the show is Elizabeth Montgomery's portrayal of a good-hearted witch named Samantha. A strong, independent woman with the world at her finger tips (or at the twitch of her nose), she gives up her witchly life to do things the "mortal way". Her mortal husband Darrin Stephens (played by Dick York, and later Dick Sargent) is a talented advertising executive with McMann & Tate. He obsesses with leading a "normal life" where one works hard to earn a good living for one's family. He constantly struggles against disapproving witches and warlocks, like Samantha's powerful mother, Endora (played by Agnes Moorehead).
    Endora is determined to prove to Samantha that the mixed-marriage marriage is a tremendous mistake. Over the show's eight year run, Endora tries numerous spells, all creating humiliation and chaos in Darrin's mortal world. This often ends up affecting Darrin's money-obsessed boss and best friend, Larry Tate (played by David White). Larry's wife, Louise (played by Irene Vernon and Kasey Rogers), is Samantha's best friend, although she is unaware that Sam is a witch.
    In season two, life changes dramatically when Samantha and Darin give birth to daughter Tabitha Stephens (played by five babies that season and by twins Erin and Diane Murphy starting in season three). Many early Tabitha episodes revolve around whether she is a witch or mortal until the big reveal in season three. Later in season six, the Stephenses give birth to a boy, Adam. Although less airtime is spent on his character, eventually audiences find out that he too has powers.
    Recurring characters include Samantha's favorite aunt, Clara, who is a lovable, bumbling witch (played by Marion Lorne). Due to Aunt Clara's extended age, she is suffering the loss of her powers and inadvertently wreaks havoc at the Stephens home. Also often wreaking havoc are Samantha's practical joking Uncle Arthur (Paul Lynde), her Shakespeare orating father, Maurice (Maurice Evans), a bad joke-telling witch doctor, Dr. Bombay (Bernard Fox) and a shy witch-maid Esmeralda (Alice Ghostley). Elizabeth Montgomery also portrays Samantha's free-spirited, mischievous twin cousin, Serena.
    On the mortal receiving end of the seemingly hallucinogenic world of witches are neighbors Gladys and Abner Kravitz. Gladys, first portrayed by Alice Pearce and later by Sandra Gould, was immediately aware that the Stephens household was positively strange, and was certain that something "beyond this world" was at work across the street. Abner (George Tobias) never believes it. Darrin's mother, Phyllis Stephens (Mabel Albertson), fairs no better, as she is forever witnessing zany antics only to have her husband, Frank Stephens (Robert F. Simon and later Roy Roberts) not believe it.
    Bewitched earned nearly two dozen Emmy nominations during its run. Marion Lorne and Alice Pearce won well deserved awards, as did director and producer, William Asher (Elizabeth Montgomery's husband at the time). In 1970, Bewitched presented a Christmas episode regarding bigotry and racism, and received a special Emmy, the Governor's Award, for the landmark episode "Sisters at Heart". Beyond the theme of bigotry and "mixed-marriages", the series explored cultural issues of consumerism, materialism, human vanity, women's liberation, and mass hysteria. Season six of Bewitched brought about the biggest change to the series as Dick York was replaced by Dick Sargent in the role of Darrin. This element of the show has become a cultural touchstone, with many viewers debating their favorite Darrin.
    First Telecast: September 17, 1964 Last Telecast: July 1, 1972 ABC Daytime: 1968 - 1973 ABC Saturday Morning: 1971 - 1973 Episodes: 254 Episodes (74 black and white, 180 color) Ratings Season 1: #2 Season 2: #7 Season 3: #8 Season 4: #11 Season 5: #12 Season 6: #25 Season 7: (above #25) Season 8: (above #25)moreless
  • 9
    The Addams Family

    The Addams Family

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    ABC (ended 1966)
    The Addams Family centers around one of the two "creepy" families that premiered on television in 1964. ABC aired The Addams Family and CBS aired The Munsters.

    The Addams Family consisted of Gomez and Morticia Addams and their two children, Pugsley and Wednesday. Also included are Uncle Fester, Grandmama, the hairy Cousin Itt, the butler Lurch and Thing! The series is based on a one-panel cartoon created by Charles Addams that had appeared in The New Yorker magazine since the 1930s. The show's title came from the cartoonist's name; The family in the cartoon is never referred to by name. The finger-snapping theme song was written by Vic Mizzy, who also write the theme for Green Acres. The series lasted two seasons, yet gained much more success in syndication. The series was later transformed into a the 1991 feature film starring Raul Julia and Angelica Huston.

    ABC Broadcast History: Sept 1964-Sept 1966 Fridays 8:30 p.m.moreless
  • 10
    The Real McCoys

    The Real McCoys

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    ABC (ended 1963)
    The McCoy family moves from the mountains of West Virginia to California's San Fernando Valley. The leader of the clan is Grampa--a cranky old geezer with a distinctive voice and gait--but underneath it all, he has a heart of gold. Living with him are his grandson, Luke, and Luke's bride, Kate. Due to the death of Luke's parents, these three adults are raising Luke's teenage sister, Hassie, and his younger brother, Little Luke.moreless
  • 11
    The Patty Duke Show

    The Patty Duke Show

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    ABC (ended 1966)
    Number Eight Remsen Drive, Brooklyn Heights, Brooklyn, New York, the residence of the Lane family: Martin, the managing editor of the New York Chronicle; his wife, Natalie; their daughter, Patty, a perky, bubble gum chewing teenager who dug Paul Anka records and slumber parties; their son Ross; and their glamorous, intellectual Scottish cousin, Cathy Lane, who is residing with them until she completes her high school education and is able to rejoin her father, Kenneth Lane, a foreign correspondent for the Chronicle. Stories depict the lives of two pretty high school girls, sixteen-year-old identical cousins: Patty, the average American girl, possesses an unquenchable thirst for life and the ability to complicate matters that are seemingly uncomplicatable; and Cathy, shy, warm, and sensitive, possosses a love for the arts, and, treasuring her European unbringing, sometimes encounters difficulty as she tries to adjust to the American way of life. The girls confused everybody in their middle-class neighborhood by mischievously switching personalities at critical moments. Richard was Patty's boyfriend, a part-time Western Union messenger. Mrs. MacDonald was the family housekeeper. In this show's final season, it was followed by another popular teen-com, Gidget. The Patty Duke Show's run on Nick at Nite was from September 1988 to August 1993. First Telecast:September 18,1963
    Last Episode:May 04,1966
    Last Telecast: August 31,1966 Episodes: 104 B&W Episodesmoreless
  • 12
    F Troop

    F Troop

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    ABC (ended 1967)
    F Troop was a classic comedy set in the Old West. Fort Courage was the home of the US Army's sorriest band of misfits, led by the well-meaning Captain Parmenter, scion of a distinguished line of military officers, but himself naive, clumsy, bumbling and reliant on the Army manual. The old hand of the fort was Sergeant O'Rourke, who secretly ran O'Rourke Enterprises, a string of profitable but not always upstanding businesses, on the side, including the town saloon and an Indian souvenir company. He was happy when Parmenter was assigned to Fort Courage, a commanding officer who would be easy to hide his shenanigans from. O'Rourke's sidekick was the loyal but not too bright Corporal Agarn. Their business partner was the cranky but affable Wild Eagle, chief of the Hekawi. Completing the circle was Wrangler Jane, the beautiful blonde owner of the general store in town. She was a expert in all things Western, including shooting, horseback riding and lassoing, and fancied the dashing, young captain who was too bashful to return her affections in public. The men of F Troop were a motley lot. Bugler Dobbs had a hard time playing anything but Yankee Doodle, and not well at that. Duffy would often hold forth on how he stood side by side with Davy Crockett at the Alamo. Vanderbilt, who often stood guard duty, was nearly blind and hard of hearing. Duddleson was a slob, sort of F Troop's equivalent of Peanuts' Pigpen. Hoffenmueller spoke no English. The rest were as incompetent as they were undistinguished. A running joke was the guard tower constantly falling down, usually blasted by the balky cannon but sometimes felled by something as simple as an arrow. Aiding and abetting O'Rourke in his numerous moneymaking schemes were the Hekawi, the most cowardly tribe in the country. Lacking the will and skills to fight, they turned to commerce, manufacturing the souvenirs for O'Rourke Enterprises and brewing the whiskey for his saloon. Chief Wild Eagle was helped by his second in command, Crazy Cat. Unlike other military comedies such as McHale's Navy or Gomer Pyle, nobody ever really hated each other, as Captain Binghamton did McHale and Sergeant Carter did Gomer. The show and all its characters were all in good-hearted fun, a family show for all ages. The theme song said it perfectly: "Where Indian fights are colorful sights but nobody takes a licking."moreless
  • 13
    Love, American Style

    Love, American Style

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    ABC (ended 1974)
    Love, American Style entertained viewers with stories about common people finding love in all walks of life. In this anthology series, each hour-long broadcast consisted of a group of vignettes, aired sequentially and separately and each with an introductory title card. Normally there were three or four vignettes to a show, although occasionally there were as few as one or as many as five. Short blackout skits would be shown in between segments whenever time allowed. The skits featured a recurring cast of players which included James Hampton, best known as Hannibal Dobbs from F Troop, and veteran character actor Stuart Margolin, brother of executive producer Arnold Margolin. The syndication rerun package consisted of 30-minute broadcasts that were edited from the original hour-long broadcasts, except for those which aired in the first half of season 2, which ran in a 30-minute time slot. The show never ranked above #25 in the Nielsen Ratings. Time slots that Love, American Style originally aired in: September 29, 1969 to January 12, 1970: Mondays, 10:00 to 11:00. January 23, 1970 to September 18, 1970: Fridays, 10:00 to 11:00. September 25, 1970 to January 15, 1971: Fridays, 9:30 to 10:00. January 22, 1971 to January 11, 1974: Fridays 10:00 to 11:00. In 1970, the show received a Golden Globe nomination for Best TV Show in a Musical or Comedy. It also won two Emmys for Charles Fox's musical compositions and was nominated for two more. The theme song was originally sung by the pop group, the Cowsills, but later replaced by an uptempo version, credited to the "Love American Style Singers." There was a short-lived revival in 1986 called The New Love, American Style, which aired on ABC's daytime schedule. One of the segments, "Love and the Happy Days," spawned a successful spin-off series, Happy Days.moreless
  • 14
    The Jetsons

    The Jetsons

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    ABC (ended 1987)
    With the success of The Flintstones, the modern Stone Age family, Hanna-Barbera decided to make a similar family cartoon, but set in their vision of the Space Age in the 21st century. This new series that debuted September 23, 1962 became The Jetsons. Set mainly in sky-high Orbit City, the show featured the family of George Jetson, Jane, his wife, their daughter Judy, and son Elroy living the average life in the future with flying space cars, instant transport tubes, and various robots and gadgets than can get their work done for them in a matter of seconds.

    George brought in the family income by working at Spacely Space Sprockets, run by his stocky, ill-tempered boss Cosmo Spacely, who's usually quick to fire George for any reason he could find. But somehow, he always managed to get his job back and continue supporting his family. He works as an indexer and is teamed with his helpful computer R.U.D.I. Other than the threats of firing by Spacely, George would also have to worry about any schemes carried out by Mr. Spacely's top business rival W.C. Cogswell, owner and president of Cogswell Cogs. If there's a dispute between the two businessmen, it's almost certain George would wind up in the middle of it. Most times, though, things always worked out in the end.

    Jane is the housewife who tends to the home, but loves to shop for the latest fashions and various items that can be a help to the family, like new gadgets that can help them in new ways. She's assisted by the family's robot maid Rosey (which can also be spelled Rosie). She's one of the older-fashioned models compared to most of the advanced robot maids of the future, but the Jetsons love her and regard her as a member of the family.

    Judy is the Jetsons' teenage daughter who attends Orbit High School and goes for the latest teen fashions, trends, and music, and seems to have a different boyfriend in most episodes. If she's lucky, she can even wind up dating a celebrity, like her favorite rock star Jet Screamer, much to her father's chagrin.

    Elroy is the Jetsons' genius son who attends Little Dipper Elementary School and is a straight-A student. He's a part-time inventor and can make new creations in hope to make a better future, and if fortunate, a little money on the side. But most times, he likes to be an average boy by playing various sports, and with his faithful companion, the family's dog Astro, who at times is overly affectionate, and can annoy George at times. But like Rosey, he's regarded as a member of the family.

    The Jetsons reside at the Skypad Apartments, which are properly cared for by superintendant Henry Orbit, who like Elroy is a mechanical genius. At times, he can invent gadgets that can help him with his maintenance work. His greatest accomplishment is his robot assistant Mac, who can get his work at the Skypad Apartments done in half the time. But he does have feelings for Rosey as the two are occasionally seen as a couple, but are mainly friends.

    Other recurring characters in this series include Mr. Spacely's family, particularly his wife Stella (sometimes called Petunia, likely her nickname), one of few people who can actually put a scare in him if he rubs her the wrong way. And they have a young son close to Elroy's age named Arthur. Common characters at Spacely Sprockets are Uniblab, an underling robot who at times is a stool pigeon for Mr. Spacely to George's dismay, as well as Spacely's secretary Miss Galaxy. Cogswell also had a few subordinates of his own. Among them were his assistant Harlan and his scientist Moonstone.

    The Jetsons ran for only one season on ABC, but the series was more successful in syndication. This led to a revival in 1985 with new episodes with more advanced animation that was richer in color and made the series even more futuristic than the 1960's version of the 21st century. New characters were introduced as well, including a new alien gremlin pet for the Jetsons, named Orbitty, who has springlike legs and suction cup feet, enabling him to hang upside down. He could also tinker with machines and change color in accordance to emotion. Another new animal for the revival was a robot dog for Cogwell named Sentro, who served as a guard dog and a spy often used against Mr. Spacely in efforts to beat him to the punch on his latest projects.

    These episodes aired in syndication, which generated the same level of success as the originals when they went in that direction. This led to 10 more episodes to finalize the series in 1987, as well as two TV movies, the music-themed Rockin' with Judy Jetson, which was preceded by the epic crossover The Jetsons Meet the Flintstones, which brought the Space Age and the Stone Age together as Hanna-Barbera's most famous families had a grand adventure spanning two eras. The Jetsons had its true finale when Jetsons: The Movie hit the theaters in 1990, as this would be among the last voice work for actors George O'Hanlon (George Jetson) and Mel Blanc (Mr. Spacely) for they both had died just prior to the movie's release.

    Overall, The Jetsons may not have had the supreme popularity of The Flintstones, but it did have a wide appeal for families of any generation and certainly had a place in the heart for those who would turn on and watch the series.

    The Jetsons, like many Hanna-Barbera series, can be seen on Boomerang from Cartoon Network. Check your local listings. And the majority of the series can be seen on DVD, so it would be a good means to build your cartoon collection.moreless
  • 15
    Top Cat

    Top Cat

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    ABC (ended 1962)
    The misadventures of a smart-aleck, street-wise alley cat name T.C., and his pals Benny, Choo Choo, Fancy, Brain and Spook; who get into many acts of trouble with Officer Charlie Dibble, and always have each other. Watch Top Cat on Boomerang. Like The Flintstones, Top Cat was another situation cartoon created by Hanna-Barbera Theme song lyrics: Top Cat The most effec-tu-al Top Cat Who's intellectual close friends get to call him T. C. Providing it's with dignity Top Cat The indisputable leader of the gang He's the boss He's the VIP He's a championship He's the most tip top - Top Cat Yes he's the chief He's the king, but above everything He's the most tip top - Top Cat!moreless
  • 16
    Disneyland

    Disneyland

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    ABC (ended 1990)
    Walt Disney, one of Hollywood's most ambitious producers, was first approached to do television in 1950, when The Coca-Cola Company offered him a one-hour special. The one hour special, "One Hour in Wonderland," aired December 25, 1950 on NBC and garnered 90% of the television viewing audience. A second special, "The Walt Disney Christmas Special," aired December 25, 1951 on CBS. When Walt had drawn up plans for a theme park, known as Disneyland, he found a hard time obtaining funding; critics, including Walt's brother Roy, thought that it was unfeasible and that it would be a fiasco. At the same time, the ABC television network offered him a deal for a television anthology series. Walt wouldn't agree to it unless they put up partial financing for Disneyland (a term that had kept CBS and NBC from signing with him). ABC agreed, and also paid him $50,000 per program, an exorbitant sum for the time. The show, titled Disneyland, premiered on October 27, 1954 and was an immediate success. Historically, the show is significant for two reasons. First, with thirty-four seasons, it is the longest-running prime time network series in history (not counting news programs; if one were to count news programs, 60 Minutes would take that title). Second, it was the first original television production by a major Hollywood studio. Other studios resented television for fear that it would keep people from going out to the movies. Thus, they refused to produce television programs, and they refused to let networks or stations use any of their more recent or better-known material. Walt Disney was the first Hollywood producer to do so. Disneyland was a mixture of cartoons, live-action adventures, documentaries, and nature stories. Some of these were made expressly for television, but others were former theatrical releases. Many of the early programs were designed to promote upcoming theatrical releases. One particular early success of the Disneyland series was the Davy Crockett trilogy. This was a phenomenal success in every aspect; the merchandising bonanza that followed sold $300 million worth of Crockett memorabilia. Thus, ABC wanted more adventure stories along the lines of Davy Crockett. Disney provided them, but none were nearly as successful. Along the way, in 1958, it was retitled Walt Disney Presents. Eventually the show became more reliant on original material, though pre-existing material was used at times. In 1961, his contract with ABC expired. He moved his show to NBC where he could broadcast it in color (ABC would not have the capability for color broacasting until 1962). It was rechristened Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color, with an original theme song by Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman (who went on to write the song scores to such well-known Disney films as Mary Poppins, The Jungle Book, The Many Adventures of Winnie-the-Pooh and Bedknobs and Broomsticks). It premiered on NBC on Sunday, September 24, 1961. On NBC, he was able to re-air many of the ABC shows in color, as they had been filmed that way as insurance for possible future airings once color broadcasting, or "colorcasting," took hold. In September of 1966, doctors told Walt Disney, a lifetime chain-smoker, that he had lung cancer. Though the cancerous lung was removed, doctors told him that the cancer had been detected too late, and he died on Thursday, December 15, 1966. Knowing full well that no one could replace him as a host, Walt Disney Productions dropped the hosted introduction segments after the season's end. Luckily, Walt had filmed that all of that season's host segments before it was too late. The show changed its name to The Wonderful World of Disney on September 14, 1969, and dropped the Sherman Brothers theme song in favor of various alternating medleys of well-known songs from Disney movies and parks. The trusted Disney name continued to insure high ratings for the next few years. As popular tastes changed dramatically during the late 1960s and early 1970s, the public seemed to have largely begun to turn away from anything Disney (except theme parks and merchandise), seeing the name as symptomatic of a square, uptight, and unhip mindset that young people were coming to reject. The studio itself suffered from the lack of hit movies and accusations of incompetent management at the time. The ratings of the anthology series, however, remained reasonably stable, enough so that NBC renewed Disney's contract through 1978. In the fall of 1975, the show began a ratings decline when it was moved back to 7 PM from 7:30 PM. Disney's ratings fell from the Top 30 and continued to fall every year afterwards. The following year went face to with CBS's 60 Minutes. Though it had begun in 1968 and was scheduled on Tuesday, the CBS newsmagazine had been scheduled on Sunday evenings since the 1971-1972 season, and had been held back until after football season due to the risk of pre-emptions; it was this year that the show finally began its season in the fall. The show was easily able to beat ABC's Sunday night offerings but trailed the CBS newsmagazine by a wide margin. As the number of original installments decreased every year, so, too, did the ratings. In 1979, NBC (which, as a network, was also in the midst of a very public, humiliating decline) threatened Disney with cancellation unless the ratings improved. That fall, Walt Disney Productions rechristened the anthology series Disney's Wonderful World and commissioned a new, original theme song by John Debney and John Klawitter, new opening and closing credits, and a new announcer, Gary Owens (longtime announcer Dick Wesson committed suicide in January of that year). In a flashback to the original themed format, many episodes initially were divided into one of four categories: "Fantasy Night," "Adventure Night," "Comedy Night," and "Animation Night." Beneath the "happy new face" sung of in the new theme song, however, was more of the same: too little original material, airings of theatrical movies, and far too many reruns. In spite of this, the face-lift helped the ratings, so the show was renewed for the 1980-1981 season. But the next season saw only 10 installments that had not been aired on the anthology series before, and pre-emptions were far more frequent. Ratings for the show's 27th season did not improve, and in on December 30, 1980 NBC announced that it would not be renewing the series for next season. All was not lost that year, as the show was then immediately picked up by CBS. It was moved from its longtime Sunday night slot to Saturday night at 8 PM, as the network would not displace its highly-rated pride and joy 60 Minutes. Retitled Walt Disney, the show promised to present more original programming than it had in its final years on NBC. On September 26, 1981, after a huge advertising campaign by the network, the series premiered on CBS. Ratings improved against mediocre competition, and the show was renewed for another season (its 29th on network television). A few of these shows were pilots for series that were never picked up. The second CBS year saw an increase in the number of reruns (as opposed to last year's increase in new episodes), and the ratings dropped. Disney did, however, produce several midseason replacement series for CBS, but all of them failed. On Monday, April 18, 1983, Walt Disney Productions and Westinghouse Broadcasting launched The Disney Channel, a cable network created to showcase the large library of Disney cartoons, movies, and TV shows (the anthology series was rerun under the name Walt Disney Presents). Thus, in the eyes of CBS, the anthology series had outlived its purpose and was canceled. There were occasional network and syndicated specials, but all of Disney's television resources were concentrated on the cable service. When Michael Eisner became CEO of Walt Disney Productions in September of 1984, one of the first things he and his new regime did was express an interest in reviving Disney's presence on network TV. He had some success, as the Emmy-winning, Touchstone-produced sitcom The Golden Girls and the Saturday morning cartoon (a medium with which Walt Disney himself had refused to get involved due to fears of compromised quality) Disney's Adventures of the Gummi Bears both premiered on NBC on Saturday, September 14, 1985 and lasted several years. However, these particular shows were the exception, not the rule; a number of series that the new regime eventually launched failed (Wildside and The Ellen Burstyn Show, for instance). Also, of course, did the company plan to revive the anthology series. Now known as The Disney Sunday Movie, it made its much-hyped return to network television on February 2, 1986 after a hiatus of 2 years, 4 months, and eight days, replacing the dismally-rated Ripley's Believe it or Not. Just as Walt Disney had hosted the original until his death, Michael Eisner appeared in an introductory segment at the beginning of each episode. Nostalgia and ratings were high initially, but both eventually wore off. The show premiered at a two-hour length, but in the fall of 1987, once again being soundly beaten in the ratings regularly by 60 Minutes in its first hour, and by Murder, She Wrote in its second, it was shortened to one hour for its third and final season on ABC. NBC, which had not been able to launch a hit show in Disney's old time slot in the seven years since the show was axed by that network, picked up the show, which was renamed The Magical World of Disney. At first, a rotating "wheel" format was used, utilizing three different genres; every fourth week would be a special. This lasted until a few months into the following season. Eisner continued to host the show, but ratings on NBC were no better than they had been on ABC, and it limped through a two-year run here before the network pulled the plug for good. After 36 years (save for the September 1983-January 1986 hiatus), one of television's last remaining institutions from its golden age came to an unceremonious end. In 1995, The Walt Disney Company announced plans to buy out the ABC television network, which went through in January of 1996. In the fall of 1997, a family-oriented movie time slot was set aside on ABC and christened The Wonderful World of Disney. Ratings to date have been middling. Though the show is not currently repeated anywhere (The Disney Channel dropped it and all vintage Disney programming in September of 2002), episodes are slowly being released on DVD in the United States, and its legacy of quality television entertainment for all members of the family lives on in the hearts and minds of many. Here is a chronology of titles used for the series: Disneyland: October 27, 1954-September 3, 1958
    Walt Disney Presents: September 12, 1958-September 17, 1961
    Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color: September 24, 1961-September 7, 1969
    The Wonderful World of Disney: September 14, 1969-September 2, 1979
    Disney's Wonderful World: September 9, 1979-September 13, 1981
    Walt Disney: September 26, 1981-September 24, 1983
    The Disney Sunday Movie: February 2, 1986-September 11, 1988
    The Magical World of Disney: October 9, 1988-September 9, 1990 The final name was used as an umbrella title for Disney movie airings on cable's The Disney Channel from September 23, 1990 to August 25, 1996. ABC Broadcast History (1954-1961):
    October 27, 1954-September 3, 1958: Wednesday, 7:30 PM-8:30 PM
    September 12, 1958-September 25, 1959: Friday, 8:00 PM-9:00 PM
    October 2, 1959-September 23, 1960: Friday, 7:30 PM-8:30 PM
    September 25, 1960-September 17, 1961: Sunday, 6:30 PM-7:30 PM NBC Broadcast History (1961-1981):
    September 24, 1961-August 31, 1975: Sunday, 7:30 PM-8:30 PM
    September 14, 1975-September 11, 1977: Sunday, 7:00 PM-8:00 PM
    September 18, 1977-October 23, 1977: Sunday, 7:00 PM-9:00 PM
    October 30, 1977-September 13, 1981: Sunday, 7:00 PM-8:00 PM CBS Broadcast History (1981-1983):
    September 26, 1981-January 1, 1983: Saturday, 8:00 PM-9:00 PM
    January 4, 1983-February 15, 1983: Tuesday, 8:00 PM-9:00 PM
    July 9, 1983-September 24, 1983: Saturday, 8:00 PM-9:00 PM
    (two irregularly scheduled airings on May 3, 1983 and May 21, 1983) ABC Broadcast History (1986-1988):
    February 2, 1986-September 6, 1987: Sunday, 7:00 PM-9:00 PM
    September 13, 1987-September 11, 1988: Sunday, 7:00 PM-8:00 PM NBC Broadcast History (1988-1990):
    October 9, 1988-July 2, 1989: Sunday, 7:00 PM-8:00 PM
    July 9, 1989-July 23, 1989: Sunday, 8:00 PM-9:00 PM
    August 6, 1989-February 25, 1990: Sunday, 7:00 PM-8:00 PM
    March 4, 1990-April 15, 1990: Sunday, 7:00 PM-9:00 PM
    April 22, 1990-May 6, 1990: Sunday, 7:00 PM-8:00 PM
    May 27, 1990-July 22, 1990: Sunday, 7:00 PM-9:00 PM
    August 5, 1990-September 9, 1990: Sunday, 7:00 PM-8:00 PM
    First Telecast: October 27, 1954
    Last Telecast: September 9, 1990 Episodes: 751 (180 black and white episodes, 571 color episodes [as far as the format in which they were first broadcast]) (NOTE: many of these were originally theatrical releases, and a small number were specials aired at other times, but for purposes of their first airing on the anthology series they are counted as episodes)moreless
  • 17
    That Girl (1966)

    That Girl (1966)

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    ABC (ended 1971)
    Talented, young, and beautiful, and hoping to make a career as an actress, Ann Marie leaves her home in Brewster, New York and moves to Manhattan,where she acquires Apartment 4-D at 344 West 78th Street. Stories tenderly depict her world of joys and sorrows as she struggles to further a dream, supporting herself by taking various part-time jobs, cope with parents who don't understand her, and share the interests of her boyfriend, Don Hollinger, a reporter for Newsview magazine. Ann shared a romance with Don for five seasons and finally got engaged in the final season. Before they can could get married, the show was cancelled. Broadcast History: Sept. 8, 1966-Apr. 6, 1967, ABC Thursday at 9:30-10:00pm Apr. 13, 1967-Jan. 30, 1969, ABC Thursday at 9:00-9:30pm Feb. 6, 1969-Sept. 10, 1970, ABC Thursday at 8:00-8:30pm Sept. 25, 1970-Sept. 10, 1971, ABC Friday at 9:00-9:30pm The show never broke into the top 30 in the Nielsen ratings.moreless
  • 18
    The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet

    The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet

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    ABC (ended 1966)
    Welcome to The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet guide at TV.com. The real-life Nelson family - Ozzie, his wife Harriet and their sons David and Ricky - played themselves in this long-running sitcom, where Ricky got his start as a teen idol. When the Nelson boys grew up and married their sweethearts, Kris and June, their real-life wives played their TV wives. The series began as a radio program in 1944. At that time David and Ricky were played by actors. It wasn't until 1949, when radio personality Bing Crosby's sons began to play themselves on Bing's show that the real David and Ricky decided to join the Nelson family radio show. The "adventures" the family experienced every week involved very little conflict or friction. Problems and misunderstandings were solved quickly and with a shared laugh over the silliness of it all.moreless
  • 19
    The Newlywed Game

    The Newlywed Game

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    ABC (ended 1974)
    "Once upon a time, there was this nice, family TV game show on CBS called Password, wherein teams of two tried to guess words using just one word. It did very well in the ratings, and was quite educational, too. "Then, one day – July 11, 1966, to be exact – a CBS News special report about Robert McNamara reporting on the Vietnam War pre-empted Password. That didn't make people very happy. So, they turned the station to see what else was on. "Some people saw a game unlike what they had ever seen before. There was this handsome young man asking four newlywed couples questions about their marriages. Sometimes, you saw just the beautiful young ladies; and other times, the good-looking men were on, but they always got back together to talk about their marriages. "Sometimes, the couples kissed each other. Other times, they pouted and made a scene. And sometimes, they shared information that was quite intimate (can you say "intimate," kiddies). "The audience on TV laughed and laughed, and the handsome young host did everything to help make the audience laugh. The people couldn't believe what they were seeing on the TV. But they became curious and decided to watch this new show when it came on the next day ... and the next day ... and the next day ... forgetting all about Password wondering if the newlywed couples would or could live happily ever after." That, in a nutshell, tells the story of the classic game show The Newlywed Game, the tell-all game show where four couples – all married less than two years – answered questions about their relationship to win a prize. The game was played in two rounds, each with two parts (though never referred to as such). In the first part, the wives were secluded off-stage (when the show first aired, the husbands were secluded off-stage) while host Eubanks posed a series of three questions to the husbands – usually multiple choice or fill-in-the blank, sometimes with more than one answer required. After the questions were asked, the wives were brought back onstage to answer the same questions. A correct match earned the newlywed couple 5 points, but the real fun came when there was not a match. Usually, not matching meant an argument, with the spouses each (shall we say) strongly defending their answer. And yes, Eubanks did everything to make the situation worse (often using one spouses words against him/her, or even relaying what the spouse said while the other was off-stage); and of course the audience played right along, loving every moment. In the second round, the husbands were taken to the sound-proof room (when the show first aired, the wives were secluded off stage) while the wives were posed the questions, the fourth being a special 25-point bonus question. Correct matches at this point were worth 10 points (for the first 3 questions). The special 25-point bonus question – usually general enough so as not to cause an argument, unless that too was incorrect – often determined the day's winner. The winner after all the questions were asked (or a tie-breaker was played, if necessary, by the couple predicting their point total) "won a special bonus prize, chosen especially for" them. Usually, this prize was kitchen appliances; rooms of furniture; stereo/TV equipment; things for the game room (such as a pinball machine or a pool table) a boat, motorcycle or trailer; a piano; or a trip (with the requisite luggage and camera thrown in). And yes, couples who wanted a specific prize competed for it on that day's show. Special episodes were frequently dedicated toward expectant couples ("maternity day") and couples who had previously appeared on the show but, even though they didn't win, they had won the audience over (refered to as "Alumni Day"). During the ABC run, during the Christmas season, couples donated their gifts to charity. Thousands of couples let all of their secrets out of the bag during The Newlywed Game's four lives. In addition to the 1966-1974 ABC and 1996-2000 syndicated versions, the most often remembered versions (and most-reran on Game Show Network [GSN]) came with the 1977-1980 (1 Night a week) and 1985-1989 5-Day-a-week syndicated incarnations. The rules for The Newlywed Game were modified for the 1988-1989 season, with host Paul Rodriguez; and again when the series resurfaced as a new entry in the 1996-1997 season, with Gary Kroeger as host. Neither of the "modified" versions sat well with fans (like any version did with some), but the alterations basically involved converting the scoring into dollars and rules to how the questions were asked and how the awards were paid out. Bob Eubanks would return to helm the 1996 version during its second and third seasons (1997-1999), and that along with reverting to the original rules made for a welcome reception from long-time (and new) fans. The only difference was that the grand prize each time was a "second honeymoon" (remember, before, it could also be furniture, electronics or transportation). The 4th and Last Season (1999-2000) is a repeat of the previous season. As one might expect on a show like this, there were countless classic moments during the history of The Newlywed Game. None was more infamous than one such moment that occurred early in the 1977-1980 syndicated run. During a maternity week episode, Eubanks had asked the question, "Where, specifically, is the weeeeeiirdest place that you have ever gotten the urge the make whoopee?" The husband gave a pedestrian reply: "The freeway." His wife's answer was, to put it mildly, not: "Is it (bleep)?" (you fill in the blank, but it made for uproarious laughter). Needless to say, the young woman clearly misunderstood the question.moreless
  • 20
    The Double Life of Henry Phyfe

    The Double Life of Henry Phyfe

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    ABC (ended 1966)
    A C.I.S. spy, U-31, is killed in a hit and run, and Gerald Hanahan, C.I.S. sub-chief, must find someone who looks like him to be U-31 in his place. He finds Henry Phyfe, a humble accountant of Hamble and Hamble and convinces Henry to be sworn in as the new U-31. Because Henry has no knowledge of the spy business, and because Henry's fiance Judy and her mother Florence don't know of Henry's secret life, the results are often hilarious.moreless
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