Friday, April 25, 2014

Jon Provost in Life-1957

Still looking forward to meeting Jon Provost in Cincinnati at the annual Nostalgia Expo next month. Here's a couple of pieces from LIFE detailing his early days on LASSIE.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Make Room For Danny

MAKE ROOM FOR DADDY began in 1953 and was already 6 years old by the time I started watching it. Originally it had starred Danny Thomas with Jean Hagen, Rusty Hamer and Sherry Jackson. By the time I could remember seeing it, you had Marjorie Lord added to the cast as the new wife and Angela Cartwright as the new daughter. Annette Funicello was also a regular for a while.

It was a fixture in our house until I was six years old and even then daytime reruns persisted! Just five years later, however, most of the original cast returned in a less successful but no less entertaining update entitled MAKE ROOM FOR GRANDDADDY!

Saturday, April 19, 2014

NBC Week-1970

The week in which most of NBC's new series premiered in September of 1970 was dubbed--by NBC itself--as NBC WEEK. Note that on several evenings, local affiliates opted to air their own programming instead!

Disney and Bonanza were nearing the end of long runs but still had a few years to go. This version of THE BILL COSBY SHOW was good but didn't make one percent of the impact of his later sitcom. THE BOLD ONES was a rotating series that would stick it out for a few years.

THE RED SKELTON SHOW switched to NBC in a half hour format after nearly 2 decades on CBS with an hour. Red wasn't happy and it showed. LAUGH-IN was in the middle of its groundbreaking run and the NIGHT GALLERY pilot featured Steven Spielberg's first professional credit!

Don Knotts had made some great big screen comedies in just a few short years but saw the writing on the wall and opted to return to television. Sadly, although this series is fondly remembered by those of us who saw it, there weren't very many of us. JULIA was a gentle "message" sitcom and pioneered black the presence on TV. It also gave football player Fred Williamson his real start as an actor. 

THE MEN FROM SHILOH was THE VIRGINIAN, updated with new cast members and with a new name so as not to wear out its welcome. The Kraft show, likeweise had been on for ages. FOUR-IN-ONE was the proto-MYSTERY MOVIE where McCLOUD debuted but the other 3 spokes didn't survive the season.

Flip Wilson would be another one to cross racial lines and become a big hit on all sides. IRONSIDE was Raymond Burr's successful post-Perry second act. NANCY was a cute show with a cute cast about the supposed President's daughter. Dino, of course, had been a TV fixture for years. Whether or not he remembered any of it is a different question.

THE HIGH CHAPARRAL was a good western in the tradition of THE BIG VALLEY. THE NAME OF THE GAME was the wonderful semi-anthology series featuring rotating stars Tony Franciosa, Gene Barry and Robert Stack and BRACKEN'S WORLD was a VALLEY OF THE DOLLS riff soap that didn't last too long.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Timmy's In the Well by Jon Provost

I am not a dog person but when I was little, I sure wanted to be because I loved LASSIE! I'm currently enjoying reading this fascinating autobiography by Jon Provost, one of my TV siblings from back in the day and this year a scheduled guest at May's NOSTALGIA EXPO in Cincinnati!

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Happy Birthday to Doris Day

Doris Day's '60s movies are not her best but they're where I learned to love Doris Day. And what's NOT to love? Band singer, recording star, musical star, comedy actress and eventually television legend with her long running DORIS DAY show and musical specials. Plus she's a local girl (from Cincinnati) made good! Today, Doris turns 90. Happy birthday, Dodo!