In Fall TV Preview Madness, I present a network television schedule preview special from the distant past. We see the good, bad, and ugly for a network’s entire upcoming fall slate.
I’m counting down the days until the Fall 2012 television season gets underway the only way I know how — by bringing you network promos for TV seasons long gone. Today’s preview is for CBS’s 1966 Fall TV season. Your host for this preview is Garry Moore, a long-time fixture on The Eye.
You’ll see stars this fall on CBS! (* denotes new series.)
7pm — Lassie (1954 – 1971)
7:30pm* — It’s About Time (Starring Frank Aletta, Jack Mullaney, and Imogene Coca; ended after 26 episodes.)
8pm — The Ed Sullivan Show (1948 – 1971)
9pm* — The Garry Moore Show (Ended after 19 episodes.)
10pm — Candid Camera (1960 – 1967)
10:30pm — What’s My Line? (1950 – 1967)
It’s About Time, which lasted one season, was a Sherwood Schwartz romp in the same vein as Gilligan’s Island. The show even borrowed the same props and music. In some ways it was a predecessor to Land of the Lost, or at least until it was completely retooled about halfway through the season.
The Garry Moore Show, while strictly speaking a new program, was actually the third version of the show. This last edition got clobbered in the ratings by TV’s top show, Bonanza.
7:30pm — Gilligan’s Island (1964 – 1967)
8pm* — Run, Buddy, Run (Starring Jack Sheldon; ended after 13 episodes.)
8:30pm — The Lucy Show (1962 – 1968)
9pm — The Andy Griffith Show (1960 – 1968)
9:30pm* — Family Affair (1966 – 1971)
10pm* — The Jean Arthur Show (Ended after 12 episodes.)
10:30pm — I’ve Got a Secret (1952 – 1967)
Run, Buddy, Run was a typically broad period comedy about a jazz musician on the run from some gangsters. The Jean Arthur Show was a sitcom about opposing mother-and-son lawyers, with Jean Arthur co-starring with Ron Harper. I barely made it through the preview, Arthur was so shrill.
The big success of the new shows on Monday was Family Affair, which ran for 138 episodes over five seasons. Sebastian Cabot played Giles French, the English valet and the Mr. Belvedere of his day. Family Affair was the #14 rated program for the ’66-’67 season.
7:30pm — Daktari (1966 – 1969)
8:30pm — The Red Skelton Hour (1953 – 1970)
9:30pm — Petticoat Junction (1963 – 1970)
10pm — CBS News Hour
No new shows for CBS on Tuesdays, which makes sense since Daktari and The Red Skelton Hour were Top 10 programs. Petticoat Junction was in the Top 30.
7:30pm — Lost in Space (1965 – 1968)
8:30pm — The Beverly Hillbillies (1962 – 1971)
9pm — Green Acres (1965 – 1971)
9:30pm — Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. (1964 – 1969)
10pm — The Danny Kaye Show (1963 – 1967)
Once again, CBS stuck with familiar favorites rather than roll out any new shows. The Beverly Hillbillies, Green Acres, and Gomer Pyle were all Top 10 shows in ’66.
7:30pm* — Jericho (Starring John Leyton, Don Francks, and Marino Masé; ended after 16 episodes.)
8:30pm — My Three Sons (1965 – 1972)
9pm — The CBS Thursday Night Movies
Before there was a short-lived Jericho on CBS several years ago, there was a short-lived Jericho on CBS in the ’60s. The first one was a World War II drama about a top-secret counterintelligence team (Code Name Jericho) behind enemy lines, giving the Nazis what for.
7:30pm — The Wild Wild West (1965 – 1969)
8:30pm — Hogan’s Heroes (1965 – 1971)
9pm* — The CBS Friday Night Movies
Nothing new on Friday in terms of scripted shows, although CBS did add a second night of movies to the schedule.
7:30pm — The Jackie Gleason Show (1962 – 1970)
8:30pm* — Pistols ‘n’ Petticoats (Starring Ann Sheridan, Ruth McDevitt, and Douglas Fowley; ended after 26 episodes.)
9pm* — Mission: Impossible (1966 – 1973)
10pm — Gunsmoke (1955 – 1975)
Pistols ‘n’ Petticoats had nothing to do with Petticoat Junction, just to be clear. Nothing like some good ol’ period racism to get the laffs going. I have no idea why this preview didn’t include any footage from Mission: Impossible, but if I had to hazard a guess I’d say it wasn’t ready in time. Nevertheless, it and Family Affair were the only new CBS shows from ’66 to gain any traction.