1) Momma the Detective: Yesterday's post looked at this great unsold pilot that aired January 10, 1981. Esther Rolle as a crime-solving housekeeper as presented by Larry Cohen!
2) William Sanderson: Happy birthday to Friend of the Show (well, he liked our Instagram post on our Newhart episode) and TV icon William Sanderson!
3) He's the Mayor: With all due respect to Ted Danson and his new NBC sitcom, he's not the mayor. This guy is the mayor:
5) The Odd Couple: One of my favorite shows is spotlighted this weekend on Decades' Weekend Binge. Your Saturday and Sunday are accounted for now!
6) Super Comedy Bowl: On this night 50 years ago, CBS aired this hourlong special sending up pro football, featuring stars like Lucille Ball, John Wayne, Norm Crosby, Carol Burnett, Jack Lemmon, and Art Metrano! Featured players include Joe Namath and Rosey Grier. They did it the next year, too, but I regret to report that the tradition ended after Super Comedy Bowl II.
Read Frank Deford's takedown of this here: I don't know about you, but this makes me want to see this even more.
CBS, which more or less pioneered the pro game on TV, must have decided that the football follower is a cretin, or at very best a buffoon. On something called The Super Bowl Comedy Hour the humor was trite and witless, made all the worse by a hyena laugh track. Essentially, the hour was devoted to a succession of senile sight gags, all based on the premise that because an athlete is big and strong it is a laff riot for sure when he bangs little men on the back or crunches knuckles shaking hands or displays a large appetite. There are so many genuinely funny things in sport that it is a shame this rare foray into athletic humor had to plunge its viewers into the depths of banality
7) Rod Stewart: Happy birthday to the man you'd think was the King of Pop in the early days of MTV since he was on about 20 times a day!
8) Mitch Miller: On our 1980-81 TV season episode, we talked about how NBC came on strong in the fall but ran out of material by the time CBS and ABC were kicking it in gear. Could the fact that MITCH MILLER got a primetime special on January 10, 1981, be a sign of this?
It's actually on YT, so you can check it out yourself!
9) The Waltons: The cast reunited Thursday for a Stars in the House special to benefit the Actors Fund. Hey, speaking of the Actors Fund, the Waltons alone might have approached 100 stars!
10) Tanya Roberts: R.I.P.