Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Thursday Thirteen # 15 - Thirteen Classic Television Shows Now On DVD




I love television and I did not realize that so many vintage shows were now available on DVD. I choose thirteen titles you don’t see in reruns. Some of these take me back to my childhood, in fact there were so many it was really hard to choose. I hope you visit this website and find some titles that you enjoy as well. What are some of your favorite vintage television shows that you wish you could see again?

Richard Pryor (1977) This show lasted only four episodes due to its controversial subject matter and its time slot (why would you put Richard Pryor on at 8:00). It is probably more famous for the talent it introduced, rather than the show itself. The cast included Robin Williams, Sarah Bernhard, John Witherspoon, and Tim Reid. Not bad huh?

Tony Orlando and Dawn (1974) Tony Orlando, along with Telma Hopkins and Joyce Vincent Wilson were a singing group who had several hits including "Tie A Yellow Ribbon Around The Old Oak Tree". The went on to have a successful variety show which aired from 1974 - 1976. This was a time when variety shows ruled, much like reality televison now. It is a genre that I wish would return.

Soupy Sales (19??) I remember watching this show before I even started elementary school on channel 7 out of Detroit. It was really silly with a lot of pie throwing and sight gags, something children really love.

Too Close For Comfort (1980) Ted Knight and Nancy Dussault starred as Ted and Muriel Rush, owners of a San Francisco Duplex. There two adult daughter also live in the duplexYou can see Ted Knight on reruns of the Mary Tyler Moore Show, but he was really funny in this one as well.

Hazel (1961) Hazel was a white maid (what a concept) who always seemed to be solving problems for her boss and his family. The series is notable for starring Whitney Blake, the real life mom of Meredith Baxter Birney, as the mother on the show.

Untouchables (1959) Robert Stack and the voice of radio great Walter Winchell were the highlights of this show about Chicago gangland life. This show introduced the "drive by" as mobster were always rolling up blasting folks with their Tommy Guns. The show also featured well known guest stars each week.

The Carol Burnett Show (1967) After Ed Sullivan's "Toast Of The Town" this is probably my favorite variety show of all times. Besides Ms. Burnett the show featured Harvey Korman, Vickie Lawrence, Lyle Waggoner, and Tim Conway, as well as weekly guest stars. This is the show that spawned "Mama's Family".

Chico and the Man (1974) This show ran for four seasons, which was one season too long. After the suicide of the principle star (Freddie Prinze) the show should have ended; however the producers went out and found a kid, named him Chico and went on with the show (huge mistake). Jack Albertson, Della Reese, and Scatman Crothers also starred.

The Judy Garland (1963) This variety show lasted for only one season. but what an enjoyable season it was. Variety shows were really big in the 1960's, with sketch comedy, etc., but this one consisted mostly of musical acts and singing.

Mary Hartman Mary Hartman (1976) This show was innovative and fresh. A spoof of soap operas, this show poked fun at the genre in a unique way. A Norman Lear production set in Fernwood Ohio, the show dealt with many of the topics considered too racy so it aired at 11:00 pm in many markets. The show is also noted for launching the careers of Mary Kay Place, Graham Jarvis, Martin Mull, and Dabney Coleman.

Johnny Quest (1964) I can hear the theme music in my head as I type this. Jonny, along with his family of Dr. Benjamin Quest, Hadji, their dog bandit and bodyguard Race Bannon. They traveled around the world investigating strange phenomenon and fighting villians.

The Electric Company (1971) This was instructional television at its best. Not only did entertainers like Morgan Freeman Jr., Hattie Winston, Lee Chamberlain, and Irene Cara get their start on the show, but veterans like Bill Cosby and Rita Moreno were also regulars.

Peter Gun (1958) Craig Stevens portrayed private detective Peter Gunn. This show is now remember for its jazzy theme music. What distinguished Gunn from other gumshoes of his day was that he epitomized "cool", hanging out at "Mother's" a waterfront club, where his girlfriend was an entertainer.

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others' comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

88 comments:

Chelle Y. said...

The Electric Company? Now, that brings back memories! "You gotta zoom, zoom, zoom, azoom!" LOL!

Lori said...

Lots of memories on this list. Carol Burnett was one of my favorites. Hazel was one of those shows I watched after school. The hubby was a big Electric Company fan. I could never really get into it. Same goes for Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman, I'm still not sure what that was really all about. Tony Orlando and Dawn--haven't thought about that show in years, but i used to love those skits.

Malcolm said...

Your comments about "Chico and the Man" going a season too long were funny and right on the money. I also agree with you in regards to NBC scheduling "The Richard Pryor Show" at 8 pm. Not only that, but it was up against "Laverne and Shirley" and "Happy Days" (the top 2 shows on TV at that time).

Here are some of the shows that I would like to see again:

77 Sunset Strip
Riptide
It Takes A Thief
Room 222
Up & Coming

SJ Reidhead said...

I was such a Johnny Quest fan! You notice there is no Bonanza yet.

SJR
The Pink Flamingo

http://thepinkflamingo.blogharbor.com/blog

thrivingat30 said...

Loved Electric Company, The Carol Burnett Show, and Too Close for Comfort. I was born in '77, but I still saw the first two quite a bit (I suppose they were all reruns even though I didn't know it). For some strange reason, I can remember some episodes of Too Close for Comfort in vivid detail. Too bad I can't remember things that are actually important!
Great post!

www.mamapj.com

SandyCarlson said...

Chico on DVD? Hazel? You have made my day!

Lilibeth said...

I didn't watch TV as a child, but my children had their favorite shows. I bought the DVD of McGyver and also the whole series of Pinky and the Brain and Animaniacs for them this year. Now my grandchildren are singing about Chicken Boo.

Holly said...

I'm waiting for Love Boat - which I think will be out soon. That and "Life Goes On"...oh and "My So-Called Life".

And go ahead you know you want to ask about my #13 - LOL!

Thanks for visiting my TT-13.

Smiles,

Holly
http://theabundanceplace.com

mercedesrules said...

Bringing back the memories here! I love most of these shows. There are a few I do not know! Happy TT!

Sue said...

What a fun trip down memory lane!!! I remember almost all of these :)

anthonynorth said...

Coming from the UK I haven't seen all of those, but The Untouchables was great, and I remember watching Jonny Quest as a kid.
Very nostalgic post.

nicholas said...

We got several of those in England in years gone by. Hazel is a very dim memory from childhood, but I loved Johnny Quest. I never cold get into Too Close For Comfort.

I saw Chico & The Man when I lived in Canada. Freddie Prinze was very talented but it was a case of too much too soon. Such a waste! And yes, it was madness to try to keep the show going. You could see that their hearts weren't really in it.

Nicole Austin said...

Oh my gosh, those sure bring back memories. Its so cool they've put them on DVD!
Happy TT!

Open Grove Claudia said...

Wow. I don't think I saw any of these. Pretty sad, eh? We weren't allowed to watch TV - so I only snuck the twilight zone.

Happy TT!

Karen said...

Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman!
I'd forgotten all about that one and I loved it. Very, very funny and really rather tragic that at the time I identified so strongly with Mary Hartman...

happyhousewife said...

I remember electric company, I might have to get the dvd.
Happy TT~

Lori's Light Extemporanea said...

Oh yeah! These brought back piles of memories. I still enjoy watching Carol Burnett. We watch a lot of Dick Van Dyke and I Love Lucy around here. My girls love them more than I ever did at their ages.

Fun TT!

pussreboots said...

We have a bunch of the Electric Company discs. Although I wasn't a fan of the show when I was a kid, my children love the show.

pjazzypar said...

chelle y., you are actually referencing the PBS show out of Boston called ZOOM, which was also a wonderful show during that era.

lori, I am with your hubby because I really enjoyed the Electric Company. Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman was just a spoof of soap operas and not much more. Wasn't Tony Orlando and Dawn fun?

malcolm, there they go not answering the question (smile). I would love to see Up & Coming again. Remember "The Righteous Apples"? That's another early eighties PBS shows. I remember when you showed the Aretha Franklin 222 episode on your show.

sj.reidhead, I loved Jonny and Hadji. Great show.

thriving at 30, thanks for stopping by. You are a little young to be remembering these shows as well as you do. I guess they use to be in reruns at one time, but not recently.

sandycarlson, Hey go visit the site I am sure you will see something you really love. Thanks for visiting.

lilibeth, You missed some good stuff, but television isn't for everyone. Thanks for visiting.

holly, I love "Life Goes On" and "My So Called Life", there is nothing like teenage angst.

mercedesrules,Thanks for visiting.

sue, Happy TT. Thanks for checking me out.

anthonynorth, Wasn't the "Untouchables" a great show? Thanks for visiting.

nicholas, I am surprised that "Hazel" played in Great Britain. "Chico" was a wonderful show. You are right it was a waste.

nicole austin,Thanks for visiting.

open grove claudia, The "Twilight Zone" was great. It now shows nightly on the Sci Fi channel.

karen, Mary Hartman was kind of sad, but it was also very funny. Mary Kay Place was hilarious.

happyhousewife, The Electric Company was wonderful, especially when Bill Cosby was a semi regular.

lori's light extemporanea, I like Dick Van Dyke and Lucy too, but they show them all the time. I want to see some of the vintage stuff that is not readily available. Thanks for visiting.

pussreboots, Electric Company is a wonderful show for children. It actually taught my son how to read, well before he started school. Thanks for checking my blog out.

fullbodytransplant said...

Oh my God that is a fabulous list!

You have now provided our life with a year full of laughs, my wife has never seen Mary Hartman Mary Hartman! I am buying it this weekend, thanks.

Gray Matters said...

They should totally bring The Electric Company back. Great list!

Lyrical Press, Inc. said...

Electric Warehouse rocked! lol

Happy TT.

- Renee

Bethany said...

I haven't seen many of those, but it's awesome they have them on DVD for everyone to enjoy. Thanks for stopping by...didn't see any leprechauns when I was in Ireland but it was October so maybe they were hibernating? ;) Happy TT!

Brenda ND said...

I love all these old shows and I really haven't seen any of them for years. Good TT!

Wysperia aka: Wyspy ~ Wysp said...

I'm afraid these were before my time, although I do remember Too Close For Comfort (vaguely). I didn't know Richard P. had his own show- I can see why they stopped. He's foul but funny as heck! Not for the kids though *shakes head*
Great TT!
~W~

The Mama Bear said...

Definitely some memories there. Great theme for a TT
Mine is up at The Cafe.

Chris said...

I loved Johnny Quest and Electric Company. Happy TT!

Nap Warden said...

OMG, I so loved Too Close for Comfort!

It's All Good! said...

Awww, I remember those! I loved the Carol Burnett Show. Thanks for sharing.

Wacky Mommy said...

Yay, Room 222! We were just talking about that one at work the other day.

Malcolm said...

Yes, I remember The Righteous Apples. It must have came on at the same time as something else that I watched because I didn't see it all that much. I do remember that it feat. Mykelti Williamson and Elizabeth (E.G.) Daily as two of The Righteous Apples. I wish that PBS would release these series on DVD.

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I saw Chico & The Man when I lived in Canada. Freddie Prinze was very talented but it was a case of too much too soon. Such a waste! And yes, it was madness to try to keep the show going. You could see that their hearts weren't really in it.

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