were luxuriating in a prime time world of fantasy in 1967, no doubt reflecting
the underlying optimism of an expanding economy.
witches, incompetent females, airborn clergy, humanized animals, colorful
crusaders and wandering loners were just some of the way-out concepts
found on television during this era.
was TV's hottest commodity in January, 1967, but shows with a sci-fi or
fantasy bent were falling by the wayside by 1968.
the many action-adventure shoot-em-ups on the schedule, critics and concerned
parent groups were asking aloud - is television programing responsible
for our increasingly violent society? Playwrite Arthur Miller publically
decried TV fare, "...whose brutality is photographed in sufficiently
grew louder after the 1967-68 season closed with live, three network coverage
of the 1968 Democratic Convention in
Chicago where rioting hippies took center stage.
this for video clips:
BATMAN on DVD!
Andy Griffith Show
2. The Lucy Show
3. Gomer Pyle, USMC
4. (tie) Gunsmoke
7. Red Skelton Show
8. Dean Martin Show
9. Jackie Gleason Show
10. NBC Saturday Night at the Movies
12. Beverly Hillbillies
13. Ed Sullivan
14. The Virginian
15. (Tie) Friday Night Movies
17. Lawrence Welk Show
18. Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour
19. Gentle Ben
20. Tuesday Night Movies
FALL PREVIEW SHORTS:
Monday Night Line-up
Thursday Night Line-up
Entire Fall, 1967 Line-up
produced this pop-art, psychedelic spot
introducing their 1967-68 season.
has enjoyed a ratings lock on Sunday nights for a long, long time - a
tradition stemming from their powerhouse 1967-68 lineup.
This was Lassie's final year teamed with forest ranger Corey Stewart.
Now more of a wanderer, the Collie takes up with two younger rangers (Scott
and Bob) in 1968.
- Gentle Ben
Dennis Weaver and Clint Howard starred with a friendly black Bear named
Ben. Ivan Tors ('Flipper') produced this series in the everglades of Florida.
A top twenty show in 1967, ratings dropped drastically in 1968.
Ed Sullivan Show
- Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour
These funny guys began a three season run in January, 1967.
A long parade of great TV shows belly-flopped going head to head with
the Cartright family on NBC. But the Smothers Brothers finally made a
dent - for the first time in three years, 'Bonanza' wasn't the number-one
rated show. The first season of the Smothers show was standard variety
show fare with an interesting mix of unusual guest stars. In the fall
of 1967, controversy began with CBS censoring an appearance of blackballed
folk singer Pete Seeger.
- Mission Impossible
Peter Graves joined the team in 1967 as Jim Phelps, head of the IMF (Impossible
Mission Force). Also featuring Marin Landau, Peter Lupus and Barbara Bain
(who won the Emmy for Best Actress in a Dramatic Series three years in
a row - 1967, '68 and '69).
'Mission Impossible' was revived on TV in 1988 - again, with Peter Graves
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/ MONDAY 8:30
In 1966, key scenes for this series were shot in Spain for added realism
- plus there was leftover wreckage from old WWII movies laying around
in the desert anyway. It was too expensive to continue filming overseas
for season two and the audience noticed the difference - ratings were
way down in 1967.
shows were so popular there were comic book versions of the top programs,
including 1967 titles like: Bewitched, Hogan's Heroes, Flying Nun,
Star Trek, Daktari, The Invaders, Lost in Space, Man from UNCLE, Rat Patrol,
Garrison's Gorillas, Beverly Hillbillies, The Lucy Show, Gomer Pyle, Gunsmoke,
Lassie, Cowboy in Africa, Andy Griffith, Bonanza, Iron Horse, Maya, The
Monkees, Batman, Tarzan and many others.
cliche in modern times to wonder what CBS might have been thinking when
they broadcast a sitcom about the hilarious adventures American POWs had
in a German Concentration Camp. But then, all good sitcoms require a hefty
suspension of disbelief and Nazis always make a great comic foil. Pitching
this to a network today would get you tossed off the lot!
/ MONDAY 8:00
Man From U.N.C.L.E.
Last season for Napoleon Solo and Illya Kuryakin. U.N.C.L.E. was an enormously
popular series for the first two years but as the scripts got sillier,
ratings sank lower.
In an attempt to save the franchise, a new producer and music composer
were brought in, new opening titles were shot and the storylines took
a more serious turn. They succeeded in improving the quality of the series,
but the formula was played out - and a move to Monday nights didn't help.
U.N.C.L.E. was cancelled midseason;
Robert Vaughn stated that he got word of the show's cancellation just
one day before filming was halted.
of two-part episodes were shot this season and released as theatrical
features in Europe. Artwork for the Lunch Box (seen above)
was by Jack Davis.
/ TUESDAY 8:30
(1967 - 1969)
Thrilling sci-fi series about a single witness to an impending alien
invasion of Earth. A Quinn Martin production, 'The Invaders' was closer
in tone to 'The F.B.I.' (which QM also produced) than 'Star Trek.'
/ TUESDAY 7:30
I Dream of Jeannie
finds a bottle on the beach.
Lost In Space
/ THURSDAY 7:30
a casting choice that caused shockwaves in Hollywood, Eartha Kitt took
over the role of Batman's love interest, Catwoman and Yvonne Craig
joined the cast as Batgirl for the third and last season.
were way down in the fall of 1967 but still respectable. NBC wanted to
pick up the show for a fourth season but backed out because of the expense
of rebuilding the Batcave set - which was destroyed days after ABC cancelled
/ THURSDAY 8:00
Premier season - Sally Field takes to the skies to spread mayhem and
the gospel in San Juan, Puerto Rico. For a show set in a convent, there
was very little religious content.
/ FRIDAY 7:30
Off To See The Wizard
adventures of Dorothy and the gang frame a series of theatrical films
along with nature shows geared to children. This
incredible promo displays scenes from 'Clarence, The Cross-Eyed Lion,'
'Zebra In The Kitchen' and more - all popular movies for kids from a few
years earlier. This phenomenon also spread into merchandise and became a Halloween favorite through a line of Wizard of Oz costumes.
'Star Trek' was cancelled at the end of this season - only to be revived
by a 'grass-roots' letter writing campaign that stunned NBC by its enormity.
It was later discovered to have been coordinated by producer Gene Roddenberry.
Some people believe that NBC deliberately made the final season of 'Star
Trek' so abysmal that no one would care when they cancelled it for good
/ FRIDAY 7:30
Diana Ross and the Supremes appeared as nuns in one of the last episodes.
CBS aired reruns of 'Tarzan' during the summer of 1969.
/ SUNDAY 7:00
Voyage To The Bottom Of The Sea
On this last tour of duty, Commander Crane (David Hedison) and Admiral
Nelson (Richard Basehart) faced off against a devious leprechaun, abominable
snowmen, pirates, and deadly dolls. Like all Irwin Allen productions,
the first few episodes of the season were top notch. ABC wanted to renew
'Voyage' for another year - but Allen talked them into the infinitely
inferior 'Land of the Giants' instead.
NIGHTS ON CBS:
(1955-1975) CBS cancelled the show after the 66-67 season, then decided
at the last minute to renew and move the show to Monday nights. The show
zoomed into the top ten for the next six years.
- Lucy Show
(1962-1968) Last season for Lucy Carmichael and banker Mr. Mooney. Next
season the format changes slightly, Lucy's real-life kids were added to
the cast and the show became known as 'Here's Lucy.'
- Andy Griffith Show
(1960-1968) Last season for TV's number one rated series. Andy married
Helen Crump in the fall of 1968 and eased out of the series - while Ken
Berry and Arlene Golonka eased in and the name changed to 'Mayberry RFD'
- Family Affair
(1966-1971) Five years after the series left this air, the actress who
played little Buffy (Anissa Jones) was found dead of a drug overdose.
- Carol Burnett
(1967-1978) CBS finally talked the queen
of variety specials into doing her own weekly series in 1967. It took
ten years for this smash hit to run out of steam.
Disney died on December 15, 1966. After his final introduction aired on
April 2, 1967, there would be no regular host for the remainder of Walt
Disney's Wonderful World of Color's
original run, which ended with the 68-69 season. The show was renamamed
'The Wonderful World of Disney' in 1969.
The networks didn't know it, but westerns were on
the way out. After over a decade of dominating the ratings, with a few
exceptions, the folks at home were growing weary of the genre.
/ MONDAY 7:30
Cowboy in Africa
An Ivan Tors production ('Daktari'), with Chuck Connors as a wrangler
who migrates to Africa to help with their animal management program. Lasts
only this season.
Set in Arizona, this series deals with the Cannon and Montoya families.
/ THURSDAY 7:30
(1967 - 1971) One of three new westerns this season to get renewed.
/ WEDNESDAY 7:30 - Virginian
(1962 - 1971)
Drury and Doug McClure in a first class oater set in Medicine Bow, Wyoming,
circa the 1890's. Key cast member Lee J. Cobb left the production in 1966
and was replaced by John Dehner, Charles Bickford (who died) and then
John McIntire, who had successfully replaced Ward Bond on 'Wagon Train.'
Jeanette Nolan ('Dirty Sally') joined the cast this year.
/ WEDNESDAY 7:30
Legend of Custer
Maunder as disgraced General George A. Custer with Slim Pickens as his
sidekick, California Joe. Michael Dante was cast as Crazy Horse.
/ THURSDAY 7:30
(1964 - 1970)
Fess Parker ('Davy Crockett') as the famous frontiersman.
/ SUNDAY 9:00
Canary was added to the show in season 9 as Candy. On the first episode
of the season, Ben joined up with an Army unit to rescue Hoss and Little
Joe from hostile natives. John Wayne dismissed these shows as 'living
room westerns' because they were shot on a set, which meant lots of indoor
/ MONDAY 7:30
Starting on radio in 1952, there are still 'Gunsmoke' TV movies being
produced today. Jim Arness gained more control over the production this
year - with superior scripts in 1967, the show shot into the top ten for
the next six years.
/ FRIDAY 8:00
on the classic John Wayne film (1953); a one-hour weekly series with Ralph
Taeger starring as Cavalry scout Hondo Lane.
series also featured Kathie Brown, Noah Berry, Jr. and Buddy Foster (Mayberry
RFD). Michael Pate returned in the role he played in the original
film, Chief Vittorio.
dog Sam, who ended up on the wrong end of an Indian's lance in the movie,
was resurrected in the TV version which was cancelled after only three
months. Two episodes were edited together to comprise a feature film,
Hondo and the Apaches.
/ FRIDAY 9:00
Guns of Will Sonnett
One of the better dramas of 1967. Walter Brennan as Will Sonnett, his
grandson was played by Dack Rambo - they search dusty Western towns for
their son/father, an outlaw gunfighter on the run. Along
the way, they encounter human interest stories - all neatly wrapped up
in thirty minutes.
/ SATURDAY 9:30
wins a railroad in a poker game, then fights his way down the tracks -
violent competitors and angry creditors be damned! Derailed midseason.
Dundee and the Culhane
A sophisticated British barrister travels the wild frontier in search
of cases - a wagon train chaser, if you will. Starred John Mills.
/ FRIDAY 7:30
Wild, Wild West
order to keep the show on the air in 1965, Robert Conrad agreed to do
his own stunts to save money. An accident while filming in January, 1968
left Conrad in the hospital for a week - that's when CBS demanded he stop
with the stunts. The star - and the show - were too valuable. It
seems absurd that this was considered the most violent program on TV in
- 8 of
these 13 Westerns were renewed.
/ TUESDAY 7:30
(1966 - 1969)
Third season. A smash hit when it debuted January, 1966, Daktari spawned
a host of imitators and lasted three seasons.
NIGHTS ON ABC:
for the ladies.
8:00 - Flying Nun
8:30 - Bewitched
"Oh Donald, please Donald... your pants are hanging in my closet and
I'm feeling so sad!" Season two for Ann Marie's quest for fame in New
York. Ethel Merman and Sid Caesar guest starred during '67-68;
Ruth Buzzi had a recurring role as Ann's kooky friend.
year for the original prime time soap opera - broadcast Monday and Thursday
nights at 9:30. Ed Nelson, Christopher Connelly and Ryan O'Neal were seen.
The next season of 'Peyton Place' was the last.
- Good Company
Famed lawyer F. Lee Bailey (O.J. Simpson trial) interviewed stars like
Tony Curtis and Hugh Hefner from their homes. Gone by December.
- Dating Game
8:00 - Newlywed Game
8:30 - Lawrence Welk Show
9:30 - Iron Horse
10:30 - ABC Scope
- Jackie Gleason Show
8:30 - My Three Sons
9:00 - Hogan's Heroes
9:30 - Petticoat Junction
10:00 - Mannix
7:30 - Maya
networks had such high hopes for their 'exotic locale' shows like Tarzan,
Daktari, 'Cowboy in Africa' and 'Maya' but most were gone by season's
end. TVparty gets a lot of requests for 'Maya'
Jay North ('Dennis the Menace') and Sajid Khan were two teens travelling
India - not in a '67 Corvette - but on the back of an elephant named Maya.
season. The show was revived in 1995 but ran for only two months.
9:00 - Movie
They were consistent - NBC
ran most of these shows in the very same timeslots for the better part
of a decade:
10:00 - Snap Judgement
- Pat Boone ('66-'67)
11:30 - Hollywood Squares
12:00 - Jeopardy
12:30 - Eye Guess
1:00 - Let's Make A Deal
1:30 - Days of Our Lives
- The Doctors
2:30 - Another World
- You Don't Say
3:30 - The
(1966-1968) Last of two years for this unstructured sitcom - featuring
the first modern examples of rock videos created for television. Reruns
of 'The Monkees' were a staple of the CBS and ABC Saturday morning schedules
for most of the seventies. Davy Jones, Peter Tork, Mickey Dolenz, and
Mike Nesmith starred.
/ TUESDAY 8:00
format with Lewis doing his famous movie characters in skits and blackouts
along with musical guests like The Osmond Brothers. Unlike most variety
shows, this one was not filmed before a live audience - until the second
/ TUESDAY 9:30
ABC loves these initials - remember 'N.Y.P.D. Blues' not to mention their
current series, 'N.Y.P.D. 24/7'?
/ SATURDAY 10:00
coolest private eye - driving that hot 'cuda convertable. During this
first season, Joe Mannix (Mike Connors) was working for a high tech firm,
Intertect. He opened his own office in year two with secretary Peggy (Gail
Fisher). The success of this show led to a flood of lone detective-with-secretary
/ MONDAY 9:00
(1966-1969) Howard Duff, Ben Alexander and Dennis Cole starred as LA cops,
filmed at locations around the city. Barney Phillips joined the cast in
1967 as their new boss.
/ THURSDAY 9:30
Dragnet 67 / 68
a nine year run in the fifties, 'Dragnet' returned to NBC in January,
1967 with faster paced stories dealing with relevant themes like drug
abuse and student unrest.
Joe Friday's inflexible manner when confronting young malcontents was
a great comfort to the old folks at home who were convinced that society
was crumbling around them. Starred Jack Webb and Harry Morgan - oddly,
the pilot film was shot in 1966 but didn't air until 1969.
/ SATURDAY 7:30
returned to NBC in February, 1968 with reruns from the 1966 season; replaced
'Maya' which never caught on. Future
James Bond Roger Moore as the cool do-gooder crook who left behind a distinctive
7:30 - Legend of Custer
critics hated it. Native American leaders were revolted. Historians puked
in their beer. ABC cancelled 'Time Tunnel' for this?!? ABC
was trying to sap the audience away from what was on NBC - 'The Virginian'
- but failed.
- The Second Hundred Years
comedy about a suburban guy who's 100 year-old grandfather thaws out of
an iceberg and comes to live with the family.
Monte Markham in a dual role as grandfather and grandson... with Arthur
O'Connell as the son in the middle.
7:30 - Lost In Space
Robinson family blasts off into space and bounce from one strange planet
to another for this final year of three. CBS was willing to renew LIS
for a fourth season, but only if producer Irwin Allen would cut the budget.
He couldn't - they were already shooting too many scenes in front of a black
five; ratings were starting to dip for the show that dominated the early-sixties.
Larry Pernell guest starred as Dash Riprock from 1966-1969.
- He and She
though Wednesday was a big ratings night for CBS, the audience tuned out
'He and She,' one of the finest shows of the year. This was the sitcom
that broke the mold, re-introducing strong writing and mildly eccentric
but believable characters to the genre; from the guys who later brought
us 'The Mary Tyler Moore Show' and 'The Bob Newhart Show.'
Benjamin portrayed New Yorker Dick Hollister, cartoonist for a popular
comic strip and TV character Jetman. Benjamin's real-life bride
Paula Prentiss was seen his wife Paula and Jack Cassidy was the pompous
ass who played Jetman. Like
most fore-runners, recognition and ratings were not forthcoming. Re-run
as a summer replacement series (June - September) in 1970.
- Dundee and the Culhane
dies and is gone in December - mourned by no one.
7:30 - Virginian
competition on the other channels was so weak, this show gave NBC a solid
9:00 - Kraft Music Hall
- Run For Your Life
portrayed a lawyer with only a short time left to live, so he travelled
the country looking for people to help. A reverse 'Fugitive' that lasted
are the top shows for March, 1968 (near the end of the 1967-68 season) broken
down by demographics.
Top Fifteen: (1967-68)
1. Lucy Show / 2. Andy
Griffith / 3. Gomer Pyle / 4. Gunsmoke / 5. Family Affair / 6. Bonanza
/ 7. Red Skelton / 8. Dean Martin / 9. Jackie
Gleason / 10. Saturday Night Movies / 11. Bewitched
/ 12. Beverly Hillbillies
/ 13. Ed Sullivan / 14. The Virginian
/ 15. Green Acres
6 - 11 Top Ten:
1. Flying Nun / 2. Second Hundred Years / 3. Family Affair / 4. Monkees
/ 5. Gomer Pyle / 6. Bewitched / 7. Beverly Hillbillies / 8. Gentle Ben
/ 9. Off to See the Wizard / 10. Walt
12-17 Top Ten:
1. Guns of Will Sonnett / 2. Second Hundred Years
/ 3. Monkees / 4. Star Trek / 5. Smothers Brothers / 6. Flying Nun / 7. Saturday Movies / 8. I Spy / 9.
Dragnet / 10. Family Affair
1. Saturday Movies / 2. Friday Movies / 3. Thursday Movies / 4. Wed Movies
/ 5. Mission: Impossible / 6. Tuesday Movies / 7. Dean Martin / 8. I Spy
/ 9. Sunday Movies / 10. High Chapparral
in mind that there was no such thing as renting movies in 1967, the whole
idea that you could watch a movie in your own home - in color - a movie
that played in a movie theater within the last decade - was revolutionary
at the time.)
Your Classic TV Blog!
Sunday nights at 8:30
September 10, 1967
- September 7, 1969
One of the few genuinely funny, old-school style of sitcoms on television
during the late-sixties, 'The
Mothers-In-Law' was ill-suited
for the timeslot it was given - between 'The Wonderful World of Disney'
sitcom starred Kaye Ballard as Kay Buell and Eve Arden as Eve Hubbard,
two longtime next-door neighbors who become in-laws when their kids marry.
Roger Carmel co-starred as Kay's husband Roger and Herbert Rudley played
Eve's husband Herb.
all of the bickering on this thirty-minute comedy, it certainly wasn't
'Disney' and with the focus mostly on the women, it wasn't for the 'Bonanza'
crowd either. Audiences defected to the last half of 'The FBI' on ABC
and 'The Ed Sullivan Show' on CBS.
producer of The Mothers-in-Law
was Desi Arnaz for Desilu Productions. Arnaz was proud of this show, and
worked hard to collect for this series the quality talent that made 'I
Love Lucy' and the first season of 'The Lucy Show' so fabulous. He
succeeded in that, but the production never caught on in a big way with
aired for two years.