Historic Prime-Time TV Show Intros
February 1, 2020 7:26 PM   Subscribe

22 new series premiered through the winter and spring of 1985, 13 of them represented here by their theme intros and the remaining 9 through their network promos, as no intros for them were available at the creation of this video. Only 3 of these shows survived for at least another season: Crazy Like a Fox, Mr. Belvedere, and Moonlighting.
YouTuber RwDt09 has a stunning passion for American TV show history. As you’ll see within, they have archived and collated an inconceivable number of show intros.

New Shows
Fall, 1955
Fall, 1956
Fall, 1957
Fall, 1958
Fall, 1959 (Part 1)
Fall, 1959 (Part 2)
Fall, 1960
Fall, 1961
Fall, 1962
Fall, 1963
Fall, 1964 - Spring, 1965, Part 1
Fall, 1964 - Spring, 1965, Part 2
Fall, 1965 (Comedies)
Fall, 1965 (Dramas)
Fall, 1967
Fall, 1968
Fall, 1969
Fall, 1970
Fall, 1971
Fall, 1972
Fall, 1973
Fall, 1974
Fall, 1975
Fall, 1976
Fall, 1977
Fall, 1978
The Hellish Mid-Season of 1979
The Season That Almost Wasn’t, 1980-1981
Fall, 1981
Spring, 1982
Fall, 1982
Fall, 1984
Mid-Season, 1984
Fall, 1985
Winter-Spring, 1985 (See above the fold)
Fall, 1986
Fall, 1987
Spring, 1988
Fall, 1988
Fall, 1990
Fall, 1991
Fall, 1992
Fall, 1993
Fall, 1994

Nightly TV Lineups
Saturday Night, Spring, 1956
Friday Night, Winter, 1957
Tuesday Night, Spring, 1958
Wednesday Night, Spring, 1958
Tuesday Night, Fall, 1959
Thursday Night, Fall, 1959
Friday Night, Summer, 1960
Monday Night, Fall, 1960
Tuesday Night, Fall, 1960
Wendesday Night, Fall, 1960
Friday Night, Winter, 1961
Monday Night, Spring, 1962
Thursday Night, Spring, 1963
Tuesday Night, Fall, 1963
Friday Night, Fall, 1964
Saturday Night, Fall, 1964
Sunday Night, Fall, 1964
Monday Night, Winter, 1965
Monday Night, Spring, 1966
Batman Nights, Mid-Season, 1966
Tuesday Night, Summer, 1966
Friday Night, Winter-Spring, 1967
Wednesday Night, Fall, 1967
Saturday Night, Summer, 1968
Monday Night, 1968-1969
Friday Night, Spring, 1969
Friday Night, Summer, 1970
Saturday Night, Fall, 1972
Sunday Night, Fall, 1972
Tuesday Night, Fall, 1973
Friday Night, Fall, 1974
Monday Night, Spring, 1975
Monday Night, February, 1976
Tuesday Night, Early Summer, 1976
Thursday Night, December, 1976
Wednesday Night, Early Spring, 1977
Friday Night, Spring, 1978
Saturday Night, Early Spring, 1978
Sunday Night, April, 1978
Saturday Night, Fall, 1979
Thursday Night, Early Spring, 1982
Fall, 1983
Saturday Night, Fall, 1984
Tuesday Night, Early Spring, 1986
Saturday Night, Fall, 1986
Tuesday Night, April, 1987
Wednesday Night, Spring, 1987
Friday Night, Early Summer, 1987
Thursday Night, Late Summer, 1989
Saturday Night, Winter, 1990
Monday Night, Early Spring, 1996
Saturday Night, Fall, 1997

UPN / The WB
Winter-Spring, 1995

ABC
Fall, 1961
Fall, 1962
Fall, 1966 (New shows)
Summer, 1968
Early Spring, 1977
Fall, 1981

CBS
Spring, 1962
Summer, 1965
Winter-Spring, 1972
Spring, 1983

FOX
Fall, 1987

NBC
Fall, 1960
Winter-Spring, 1962
Winter, 1966
Spring, 1976
Fall, 1976

Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Horror Intros
1970s
1980s
More 1980s
1987-2002
1990-1994
1995-1999

Top Shows
1958-1959
1965-1966
1973-1974

Shows In General
Prime Time, 1940s
Forgotten TV Theme Intros, 1950s
Various Intros, 1950s
Prime Time Game Shows,1950s
Quaint TV Show Intros, 1950s
More Syndicated TV Series Intros, 1950s
Miscellaneous Shows, 1950s
More Miscellaneous Shows, 1950s
Even More Miscellaneuous Shows, 1950s
Yet Even More Miscellaneous Shows, 1950s
Still Yet Even More Miscellaneous Shows, 1950s
And Still Yet Even More Miscellaneus Shows, 1950s
And Again, Still Yet Even More Miscellaneous Shows, 1950s
And Yet Again, Still Yet Even More Miscellaneous Shows, 1950s
Mosty Rare Intros, 1950s - 1960s
Syndicated TV Series, Late 1950s - Early 1960s
Modern-Era TV Cop Shows, 1957-1962
Vintage Sitcoms, 1960-1965
Animated Theme Intros to Sitcoms, 1960s
Rare "Lost" Classic Themes, 1960s
One-Season Wonders, 1960s
Mostly Rare Intros, 1960s
The Spy Show Craze, 1960s
Military Dramas and Sitcoms, 1960s
Rare and Maybe Not-So-Rare Westerns, 1960s
Mosty Obscure Intros, 1960s
Mostly Rare Intros, 1960s
Rare Intros, 1960s
More Theme Intros, 1960s
Miscellanous Shows, 1960s
Other Kinds of TV Stuff, 1960s
Yet Another Batch, 1960s
Prime Time Toons, 1960s
Unsold Pilots, 1960s
Modern-Era TV Cop Shows, 1963-1970
"Lost" and Not-So-Lost Class Themes, 1970s
One-Season Wonders, 1970s
More One-Season Wonders, 1970s
Westerns, 1970s
Syndicated Shows, 1970s
Miscellaneous Shows, 1970s
More Miscellaneous Shows, 1970s
Odds and Ends, 1970s
More Odds and Ends, 1970s
Good, Bad, and Ugly Intros, 1970s
Somewhat Dull Intros, 1970s
Mostly Mediocre, 1970s
Unmemorable Intros, 1970s
Short-Lived Sitcoms, 1970s
More Intros, 1970s
Shows Starring or Co-Starring Robert Urich, 1973-2001
Youth-Targeted Sitcom Failures, 1977-1979
Drama and Action Shows, 1980s
Cop and Private Eye Shows, 1980s
Adventure and Cop Shows, 1980s
Ratings-Challenged Cop Shows, 1980s
Mostly Painful Sitcoms, 1980s
Mostly Unmemorable Sitcoms, 1980s
Barely Memorable Shows, 1985-1989
Syndicated Action Intros, 1987-2002
Lame, So-So, and Okay Intros, Early 1990s
Ratings-Starved Sitcoms, Early 1990s
Miscellaneous Shows, 1990s
Sundry Intros, 1990s
Action/Crime Ratings Failures, 1990s
The Supermarionation of Gerry and Silvia Anderson

Fantasy TV Lineups
1955-1959
1959-1964
1964-1966
1966-1969
1970-1974
1974-1978
1978-1984
1984-1988

previously and very similar, but that was almost two years ago and this was a lot of typing so maybe this is ok?
posted by Going To Maine (73 comments total) 92 users marked this as a favorite
 
Not comprehensive enough.
posted by Jessica Savitch's Coke Spoon at 7:47 PM on February 1 [26 favorites]


I was a grownup and watching TV and don't remember a single show from that 1985 clip. Geena Davis had a show with Alfre Woodard, Bill Maher, Mark Hudson and Bronson Pinchot?
posted by octothorpe at 7:57 PM on February 1 [12 favorites]


Joe Pesci and Dean Martin!?
posted by McNulty at 8:01 PM on February 1 [1 favorite]


As a GenX kid I lived for those preview shows that the networks would do for their upcoming Saturday morning lineups. The NBC 1983 special was 90 minutes long!

So yeah, lots more to add here. Just kidding, this is pretty epic.
posted by JoeZydeco at 8:11 PM on February 1 [9 favorites]


hahaha, I was like "Why did 1985 suck so hard for new TV shows" and then I realized that it was really just the Winter/Spring 1985 new TV shows that sucked (overall), because if you watch the video for Fall 1985, you'll find that 227, Growing Pains, Golden Girls, Alfred Hitchcock Presents (the 1985 one, obviously), Amazing Stories, Misfits of Science (i loved this show, sue me), MacGuyver, Spencer for Hire, and The Equalizer all premiered in the Fall of 1985. #daaaaaamn
posted by 23skidoo at 8:17 PM on February 1 [16 favorites]


please alert me when you come across the one where one character paint rollers another
posted by lalex at 8:33 PM on February 1 [56 favorites]


*turns to the camera with a warm, friendly smile of greeting and recognition*
bleep
posted by bleep at 8:47 PM on February 1 [9 favorites]


I was all about Misfits of Science, I was so perplexed as a kid that such a cool show could have been cancelled so fast. Luckily MacGuyver made a go of it, or I would have given up on TV.
posted by lefty lucky cat at 8:50 PM on February 1 [5 favorites]


The Fall 1985 video also has the intro to Lime Street with Robert Wagner and Samantha Smith just featured on the blue.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 9:05 PM on February 1 [1 favorite]


I was born in 1972, lots of memories in them there links.
posted by vrakatar at 9:11 PM on February 1 [3 favorites]


Another Misfits fan checking in.

Watching this made me wonder: what determines when an actor is listed just by name, versus when they are listed by "$name as $roll"? Like in the Winter 1985 clip, at 2m58s, why is that suddenly "and Joe Regalbuto as Norman Tuttle"?
posted by glonous keming at 10:01 PM on February 1 [6 favorites]


I was a grownup and watching TV and don't remember a single show from that 1985 clip.

That's your problem. I was a teenager, which is the right age to remember things.

But not even Moonlighting? That felt like a legit cultural phenomenon for a season or so, Emmy award nominations, launched Bruce Willis, etc.
posted by mark k at 10:10 PM on February 1 [3 favorites]


The "X as Y" is normally contractual. It's a big actor with a supporting role, at the very end, so they stand out.
posted by MythMaker at 10:17 PM on February 1 [3 favorites]


Mr. Belvedere, you say, the light of my life?
posted by Brocktoon at 10:25 PM on February 1 [9 favorites]


The “X as Y” is normally contractual. It's a big actor with a supporting role, at the very end, so they stand out.

So why, in Buffy, did Alyson Hannigan get an “as Willow”? That seems like a different case, since I think that was her debut.
posted by Going To Maine at 10:25 PM on February 1


Hey, I remember Crazy Like a Fox!
posted by Chrysostom at 10:44 PM on February 1 [3 favorites]


So glad the chronicler started with 1955, since I was born right in the middle of the fall premieres. A newspaper for the day I was born had articles about 2 shows that were debuting in the next couple days: The Honeymooners and Alfred Hitchcock Presents (both the original versions that would be revived a couple times). Many other interesting things: the debut of Phil Silvers as Sgt. Bilko, new variety shows headed by Perry Como and Dinah Shore, the beginning of the Grand Ole Opry, a short-lived Casablanca series starring a definitely NOT Bogart, several westerns the most notable being Gunsmoke, and an anthology billed as a Directors' Showcase with the spotlighted Director in this opening being Ida Lupino (a WOMAN director!).

But also the Monday following the Friday I was born, two daytime series debuted just for me... on CBS in the morning Captain Kangaroo and on ABC in the afternoon The Mickey Mouse Club.
posted by oneswellfoop at 10:54 PM on February 1 [4 favorites]


So why, in Buffy, did Alyson Hannigan get an “as Willow”? That seems like a different case, since I think that was her debut.
That’s only the case in later seasons. The S1 intro doesn’t list her as Willow.
posted by Cogito at 11:03 PM on February 1


Thought I'd watch to see which ones I remembered, but, whew. Even allowing for the fact that these are mid-season replacement series, if people can't remember why TV used to be considered artistically crappy...

Although, I, um, I seem to remember ALL the lyrics to Mr. Belvedere. Can I please have those brain cells back, I have many better uses for them.
posted by praemunire at 12:16 AM on February 2 [5 favorites]


(Admittedly, I'd probably give Code Name Foxfire an episode or two.)
posted by praemunire at 12:18 AM on February 2


Code Name Firefox does seem more interesting than it probably should. I kinda want to see an episode or two of that now as well.

Geena Davis' show Sara wasn't all bad, from what I recall, but that intro, the lettering and even the name of the show are all so dreary that I don't blame anyone for not giving it a chance.

What was up with Me and Mom? It seemed like a warm hearted situation comedy kinda deal but not in front of a studio audience and then there's a scene where Lisa Eilbacher's character pulls out a gun and starts shooting at someone? They might have wanted to clarify their introductory concept a bit more for that one.
posted by gusottertrout at 12:45 AM on February 2


please alert me when you come across the one where one character paint rollers another

YOU FOUND IT! It’s right up there at about 13 minutes into that one link. It’s funny I would have placed it two years earlier and with women. Well, I’m glad that mystery’s finally solved...
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 12:57 AM on February 2 [4 favorites]


It’s right up there at about 13 minutes into that one link.

Are you just being a wise-ass or is there a "one link" where the paint roller thing can actually be found? C'mon, this'd be big news around these parts!

That Otherworld intro looks like something from a Galaxy Quest-esque satire about down-and-out actors who were on a cheesy sci-fi show in the 80s. Like, maybe the movie begins with that clip and then we cut to one of the actors today at some sparsely-attended autograph show in Burbank and he's sitting behind a card table and taking sips from a flask.
posted by Ursula Hitler at 2:17 AM on February 2 [2 favorites]


Moonlighting was Significant. Bruce Willis, sure, but the 'breaking the 4th wall' thing is what I remember. It felt groundbreaking even though it shouldn't have.

This is an amazing post, Going to Maine!! Thank you for all the typing!

Now, does anyone know if there are entire *episodes* of said crappy 80s TV out there? Asking for a friend.
posted by jrochest at 2:21 AM on February 2 [6 favorites]


I miss the days when networks would just throw everything they had up on the screen and let them fight it out. And you never knew what actually was going to rise to the top - and often it wouldn't be the sure bets.

I remember in the early 90s when Fox was rolling out a block of new series, and it was really trying to sell everyone on The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr. It sounded like a slam-dunk - a tongue-in-cheek western comedy with Bruce Campbell. But there was ad after ad and promo after promo for Brisco County. Nevertheless, it struggled to find an audience, and within one season it was cancelled.

However, by that time friends had been quietly telling me about this other show that premiered at the same time that I really ought to check out - something about a pair of paranormal investigators for the FBI.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 5:51 AM on February 2 [3 favorites]


But not even Moonlighting?

Yeah, I commented too quickly before Moonlighting came up in the video. We watched that show in college religiously and usually had friends over for the showing. We were all too poor for VCRs so you still had to watch the broadcast.

I haven't watched it since it went off the air and kind of don't want to know how badly it's held up.
posted by octothorpe at 6:00 AM on February 2 [3 favorites]


I really love the early stuff. The 1940s reel was unexpectedly delightful, and really interesting with its mix of cheapness as well as surprising sophistication.

It does make me wonder...What was the very last show that was entirely sponsored by a single product/corporation and carried the name in the title (ex: Texaco Star Theater), or was otherwise very conspicuously featured in the titles, or, as in the case of game shows, with the sponsor's logo as part of the set?
posted by Thorzdad at 6:31 AM on February 2


The star of this video is the dog, credited with "Introducing Tony as Hunk." It is not the same bull terrier that played Spuds MacKenzie, but they seemed to be popular in the 80s. I definitely remember the name MacGruder and Loud but none of those people seem familiar to me.
posted by soelo at 7:23 AM on February 2


I really love the early stuff. The 1940s reel was unexpectedly delightful, and really interesting with its mix of cheapness as well as surprising sophistication.

One of the shows in that reel is The Gay Nineties Review which seems to be a variety show reminiscing over the music from the late 19th century. It's kind of wild to think that there was obviously a big enough audience that still remembered the Victorian era but it would have been roughly the same distance in time as the Woodstock era is to now.

Archive.org has pretty high-quality scan of an episode from 1948.
posted by octothorpe at 7:40 AM on February 2 [1 favorite]


The Dana Carvey Show had Pepsi products as sponsors, included the name in the title and did a song about them to open the show.
posted by InfidelZombie at 8:08 AM on February 2


Okay, Otherworld looked weird af *and* I caught Jonathan Banks's name at the end of the credits, so I checked out its Wikipedia entry.

IT'S WEIRD AF

Episode 5: Village of the Motorpigs
Episode 6: I am Woman, Hear Me Roar

I would pay *cash money* to listen to Jonathan Banks reminisce about his turn as Kommander Nuveen Kroll in this fiasco.
posted by Caxton1476 at 8:10 AM on February 2 [3 favorites]


I rewatched Moonlighting a few years ago and for me it held up fairly well considering the ages of everyone (myself included) involved. I mean, it's not perfect, but it's pretty good and not nearly as cringe-inducing as one might think.
posted by glonous keming at 8:25 AM on February 2 [2 favorites]


I'd forgotten how long intros used to be. And on the one hand, it was nice to have a proper credits sequence. But OTOH Hollywood being what it is I expect that mostly they had long intros because hey you only have to pay for that footage once and now we only need 21 minutes per episode instead of 23.

Also: I'm just a caveman. I was frozen in ice or something and thawed out by your scientists. I don't understand blah whatever. But if there's one thing I do know, it's that the car you catch a glimpse of in the intro for Otherworld was made by Dean Jeffries originally for the 1977 tv version of _Logan's Run_.
posted by GCU Sweet and Full of Grace at 8:40 AM on February 2 [5 favorites]


I was 14 at the time, and Otherworld would have been in my wheelhouse. I'm not sure how I missed it, but I may still have those braincells, or at least sacrificed them to a different cause.
posted by mollweide at 8:43 AM on February 2


I remember Otherworld, too! It was... underwhelming.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:55 AM on February 2


Otherworld has not aged well. I do remember enjoying it, but I was 11.
posted by emelenjr at 8:59 AM on February 2


Too many TV memories to discuss, but I'm putting in a pitch for...something.
Media ownership rights are a tricky thing, especially for abandoned or development-hell properties. But if I were given my own vanity channel to run, it would be exclusively 'Brilliant But Cancelled' content.
Summer replacement series, pilot episodes that never made it, things that should have been hits but were in impossible time slots, troubled productions that quit when the star flamed out, etc.
Coming up on 90's week; after Seaquest DSV, it's Thieves, with John Stamos and Melissa George, followed by back to back episodes of Grace Under Fire and The John Larroquette Show. Then stay tuned for the Freaks and Geeks marathon...
posted by bartleby at 9:48 AM on February 2 [6 favorites]


Favorite-sterical, RNTP! a deep cut!
posted by bartleby at 10:23 AM on February 2


I only watched the first couple episodes of Mr. Belvedere. Can somebody fill me in? It was obvious he was some sort of itinerant grifter, but I'm wondering how dark it went.
posted by Beardman at 10:29 AM on February 2 [4 favorites]


Just as a reminder, the silly 80s show with Simon McCorkindale is pronounced "muh-NYE-mull."
posted by GCU Sweet and Full of Grace at 10:44 AM on February 2 [2 favorites]


Nuh-uh. It's much more fun to say with the Spanish/Portuguese inflection on the As: mah-ni-MAHL.
posted by bartleby at 10:56 AM on February 2


Ok, dammit I broke out the vintage disc binder and now I can't decide whether to spend the day with Profit, Tales of the Gold Monkey, or the 2007 reboot of The Bionic Woman where Katee Sackhoff plays the evil prototype. Ooh! Veritas:The Quest - why did I preserve this, was it good?
posted by bartleby at 11:04 AM on February 2


Nuh-uh. It's much more fun to say with the Spanish/Portuguese inflection on the As: mah-ni-MAHL.
posted by bartleby


I prefer otherwise.
posted by GCU Sweet and Full of Grace at 11:09 AM on February 2 [2 favorites]


Fair enough. Probably shouldn't even get started on its tech companion Automan.
posted by bartleby at 11:15 AM on February 2


I only watched the first couple episodes of Mr. Belvedere. Can somebody fill me in? It was obvious he was some sort of itinerant grifter, but I'm wondering how dark it went.

All I know is once they had to stop filming for a couple days because the guy who played Mr. Belvedere sat on his balls.
posted by rhizome at 11:27 AM on February 2 [4 favorites]


Mr. Belvedere... I'm wondering how dark it went.
I did watch a few episodes recently in a cabin with no cable, just an antenna for local stations. One episode has the high school aged daughter upset because her boyfriend did not want to have sex. Mr. Belvedere was talking with him and suggested that he might be gay and if he was, that was okay. I was surprised at the depiction of sexually active teens and the positive attitude towards homosexuality in a sitcom from that time period. I was a bit annoyed that they jumped from him not being ready at age 16-18 to being gay, too.
posted by soelo at 11:30 AM on February 2 [4 favorites]


I shouldn't have started with 1992, now I just hate everything.

It's fascinating that in almost every show I recognize at least one name; I guess that's the reality of being a working actor, but watching a huge chunk of these you think about the thousands of aspiring actors hoping for a shot and literally a handful of people have consistently gotten work for decades. And many of those people aren't good! So how much do those aspiring people suck or have shit managers or are bad at people skills that they've never had a chance while your Jay Mohrs or Robyn Givenses have had show after show after show?
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 11:49 AM on February 2 [3 favorites]


Mr. Belvedere also went dark in an episode where Wesley gets molested by his camp counselor. It was one of those Very Special Episodes.
posted by emelenjr at 12:05 PM on February 2 [1 favorite]


I was surprised at the depiction of sexually active teens and the positive attitude towards homosexuality in a sitcom from that time period.

There were a lot of VSEs on Mr. Belvedere. An attempted date rape of the daughter, and discrimination against one of the kid brother's HIV-positive classmates.
posted by praemunire at 12:10 PM on February 2 [4 favorites]


There is a lot of Bernie Kopell as you watch these. And so many other actors you recognize, but not by name.
posted by Windopaene at 12:42 PM on February 2 [3 favorites]


Bernie Kopell on the Gilbert Gottfried podcast a few years ago. The guy has been in the biz forever.

I'm sure there are a lot of other character actors from these shows in the Gilbert archives, too, but I knew Bernie was in there and he's really a Ken Berry-level presence in TV history.
posted by rhizome at 12:52 PM on February 2 [2 favorites]


I maintain that the intros and theme songs of pre 80s tv shows are often the most entertaining and memorable parts of the shows. Even among shows that are well remembered and popular today.

I am curious to see at least one episode of many of these shows. The John Forsythe Show, co starring Ann B. Davis(!) and Elsa Lanchester(!!), was apparently a comedy that transitioned into a spy show mid-season(?!?!) dropping Ann B. Davis and Elsa Lanchester along the way in a futile bid to save the show.

It's nice to be reminded how Holland Taylor has been playing the WASPy middle aged professional woman for 40 years.

Can't find it here yet, but I'd like to see James at 15(16) again, which was kind of racy/sensitive for pre-teen me at the time. It's not clear the short lived show was bad, or if it was mercifully allowed to end, given that it's difficult to be aged 15-16 for more than a couple seasons.
posted by 2N2222 at 1:11 PM on February 2 [2 favorites]


Bernie Kopell impressed me mightily in the 1960s for having recurring roles on two consecutive sitcoms, as a "wacky neighbor" on That Girl, and as a "villain with a cheesy German Accent" on Get Smart. That's versatility, especially since Get Smart kept bringing him back when most of its villains were killed off.

One more note about the openings from my birth-season, Fall 1955. There was one new game show among them, titled "The Big Surprise" with a record-setting grand prize of $100,000, celebrity contestants, and a host named Mike Wallace. Yes, the future 60 Minutes muckraker hosted a questionable quiz. No wonder his son, Chris Wallace, feels no shame with being a token journalist at FauxNews.
posted by oneswellfoop at 1:19 PM on February 2


lalex: please alert me when you come across the one where one character paint rollers another

Iiiii haaaaaate yoooooouuu
posted by tzikeh at 1:29 PM on February 2 [2 favorites]


I maintain that the intros and theme songs of pre 80s tv shows are often the most entertaining and memorable
Even just musically. I have always wanted to get a chorus and small orchestra together to do a live, belted-out version of the theme from It's A Living.
posted by bartleby at 1:29 PM on February 2 [1 favorite]


EmpressCallipygos: The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr. It sounded like a slam-dunk - a tongue-in-cheek western comedy with Bruce Campbell.

That show would have been a massive (for our new measures of "massive" when it comes to audience demos) hit today. I loved it. Still have the DVD set. Bah.
posted by tzikeh at 1:31 PM on February 2


lalex: "please alert me when you come across the one where one character paint rollers another"

Have you seen this possible solution though? (direct link to video)
posted by Rhaomi at 2:14 PM on February 2 [1 favorite]


After watching the top-of-the-post one I spent a while going the the SFF titles last night, looking for all the short lived SF series that kept getting rolled out and dying when I was 10-15 years old. I too have no memory of Outland and don't understand how I missed it, but The Powers of Mathew Starr (with Oscar winning Louis Gosset Jr.!) and The Phoenix were things I watched every episode of, talked about at school, and haven't thought about in 40 years.

The one I'd really like to rewatch was a Wizards and Warriors (starring Julia Duffy and Jeff Conaway) which was a fantasy spoof (something hard to tell from the intro.) No idea if it holds up but I thought it was hilarious, but there wasn't really a market to spoof something most people weren't paying attention to.

I remember in the early 90s when Fox was rolling out a block of new series, and it was really trying to sell everyone on The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr. It sounded like a slam-dunk - a tongue-in-cheek western comedy with Bruce Campbell. But there was ad after ad and promo after promo for Brisco County. Nevertheless, it struggled to find an audience, and within one season it was cancelled.

I legit liked Brisco County when I finally saw it on re-runs. I really think the ads were marketing to 13 year old boys, rather than Evil Dead fans. The ads made me think it was a western, and seeing "Brisco vs. the Motorcycle Gang" seemed like it'd be eyerollingly bad. In fact it was always science fiction (albeit set in the old American West)and it mostly worked.

It wasn't brilliant I thought the scene where Brisco finally catches the villain John Bly, and Bly just beats the crap out of him because ***spoiler*** Bly is from the future and of course knows martial arts and Brisco just did honest American fisticuffs, cracked me up.
posted by mark k at 3:12 PM on February 2 [1 favorite]


Watching the 90s shows, I am deeply attracted to every female DA’s hair. What happened to me?
posted by Abehammerb Lincoln at 3:20 PM on February 2 [3 favorites]


I have vague, positive memories of Saturday mornings watching Otherworld which inevitably aired a few years later over here in the UK, probably inbetween series of The Greatest American Hero. Looks like Youtube has some episodes up, so I'll brace myself for disappointment.

I also recall enjoying Crazy Like A Fox which weirdly was on after the ten'o'clock news (plus maybe after that second half of any 8.30/9pm film) kinda in The Equaliser slot.

Obviously Moonlighting was solid gold, must watch TV. (9pm BBC2?)
posted by I'm always feeling, Blue at 4:25 PM on February 2 [1 favorite]


Started randomly with Fall 1990 and it reminded me of that Parker Lewis Can't Lose existed, which I thought was so cool when I was nine years old, and how much it owed to Ferris Bueller's Day Off.

Then the next intro right after it is for a Ferris Bueller show! So much teenage fourth wall breaking on primetime in 1990.
posted by good in a vacuum at 5:07 PM on February 2 [1 favorite]


Really, none of you Knight Rider/Blue Thunder/Air Wolf fans tuned into Night Hawk? Shame. (Honestly, you didn't miss anything worth seeing.)
posted by sardonyx at 5:32 PM on February 2


The one I'd really like to rewatch was a Wizards and Warriors (starring Julia Duffy and Jeff Conaway) which was a fantasy spoof (something hard to tell from the intro.) No idea if it holds up but I thought it was hilarious

Nah, I saw an old DVD of it recently and we couldn't even get through one episode.
posted by praemunire at 5:54 PM on February 2


Then the next intro right after it is for a Ferris Bueller show!

With a young Jennifer Aniston as Jeannie Bueller.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:22 PM on February 2


Brisco County was great. Had it aired ten or fifteen years later, after steampunk became a thing, it probably would have had a pretty good run.

While it was airing, one of the cable movie channels also had The Last Dragon in heavy rotation. My housemates and I were pretty much The Julius Carry Fan Club.
posted by MrBadExample at 10:02 PM on February 2 [2 favorites]


Bernie Kopell was just in an episode of Silicon Valley.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 6:19 AM on February 3 [2 favorites]


OMG, thanks for this post. I'm on a slow project of remembering and organizing bits of my forgotten past and one method I've had success with is TV and Movies. I'm sure going through this list will answer a bunch of questions about "what was the name of that one show" that is impossible to Google.
posted by zengargoyle at 12:04 PM on February 3 [1 favorite]


Brocktoon, an "itinerant grifter"?! The same man who's other sobriquets include Thaddius, Big Bob, Benny, The Man Who Rides Alone, Head Cheese, El Stinkmeister, and Beacon of Bliss? I will respectfully disregard your comment as a minor misunderstanding, and refrain from housing you in a jar in my basement...this time.
posted by Brocktoon at 5:53 PM on February 3 [1 favorite]


I only knew about Mr. Belvedere because in Milwaukee it was kind of a big deal that Bob Uecker had gotten a sitcom gig.

I was born in mid-1969. If a show was either still on the air when I became conscious of what was on TV in ~1973, or it was in reruns when I was an older kid in the 70s, then I knew it:

-Marcus Welby. MD
-Love, American Style
-The Brady Bunch
-Medical Center (only the intro—and it's weird to see something like that when you haven't seen it for almost 50 years)
-The ABC Movie of the Week (only the intro; during the summer it meant that it was my bedtime)
-The Debbie Reynolds Show (OK, not really; later in the 70s I saw Monty Python's take-off sketch The Attila the Hun Show which lifted the intro almost wholesale)

Heck of a lot of "Oh, hey I've seen them before!" actors like William Windom in these clips, too! And I had no idea David Hartman was an actor. He was the host on Good Morning, America when I was a kid. And how I know I'm an MTV kid is, these intros were draggy and long!
posted by droplet at 6:43 PM on February 3


OMG, I remembered SO MANY of the 1965 shows.

I am so fucking old.
posted by Archer25 at 7:46 PM on February 3 [1 favorite]


Really, none of you Knight Rider/Blue Thunder/Air Wolf fans tuned into Night Hawk?

Street Hawk.

Um, so I've heard.
posted by suetanvil at 7:48 PM on February 3 [1 favorite]


Duh. I knew I messed that up. Silly me. Mind you, I should get a pass because I actually watched the darned thing. I paid my penance.
posted by sardonyx at 8:06 PM on February 3


Worse, I was thinking of Knightboat: The Crime-Solving Boat!
Every week there’s a canal!
Or an inlet!
Or a fjord!

posted by I'm always feeling, Blue at 8:48 PM on February 3


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