Monday, October 31, 2022

Happy Halloween from BOTNS!

From all of us at BOTNS to all of you...Happy Halloween!

Last year, we presented a list of Halloween-themed and Halloween-related episodes of the podcast for your enjoyment while we take a break before our next season. We reproduce it below (updated to add Kolchak!) along with our customary picture of Batty winner Solomon Grundy (Outstanding Villain of Season 6 for Legends of the Superheroes) holding a Lowenbrau button.

Have a happy and fun Halloween, everyone!

Sunday, October 30, 2022

Top Ten #201: Special "We hit 200, and this is one more than that" Edition!

1) Halloween: Get ready for tomorrow's holiday! It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown is still the best.

2) Crisis on Infinite Learverses: This video from the official Norm Lear YT channel has us thinking it's finally going to happen:

3) McDonald's Gift Certificates: A piece of candy was 30 seconds of joy, but getting these was an excuse for your folks to take you to McDonald's!

4) Henry Winkler: Happy birthday to the TV icon, who also has a one-off countdown of spooky Seventies songs on Sirius XM. It's as amiable as you would expect. "I always wanted to meet Freddie Mercury...:

5) The World Series: The Astros changed leagues years ago, but Philly/Houston still feels NLCS to me:

6) Fruit Brute: I had my first box of this last week, and it's been a long time since I had any of the monster cereals besides Count Chocula, but to me it tastes just like FrankenBerry. Not that it's a bad thing.

7) Chiller Theater: If you had something like this when you were a kid, chances are you still have an occasional bad dream because of it:

8) Hammer House of Horror/Planet of the Apes: Decades Network celebrates the holiday with marathons of these two shows!

Wait, is Planet of the Apes a horror show? Or was the horror when a programmer realized they didn't have enough episodes of Hammer House to fill the weekend?

9) Halloween with the New Addams Family: NBC premiered this special 45 years ago tonight!

10) R.I.P.: Jules Bass, Leslie Jordan

Wednesday, October 26, 2022

This Day in TV History: St. Elsewhere premieres on NBC

40 years ago tonight, October 26. 1982, NBC ended its primetime evening with the debut of medical show St. Elsewhere.

We talked about the series in depth on the podcast. It never was a big ratings getter, rising from terrible to middle-of-the-pack ratings, but it was a big critical success, earning 13 Emmys, placing on multiple lists of the best TV shows of all time, and even getting a Genius Award for Ed Flanders as Dr. Westphall (It had the misfortune of being in our sixth season along with Batty buzzsaw Cheers).

That pic above is from TV Guide's 1982 Fall Preview issue, which also highlights the series in its Editor's Choice column:

We saw only a 10-minute sample of scenes from NBC's St. Elsewhere, but that and five excellent scripts were enough to raise hopes that this series may do for hospital drama what Hill Street Blues does for the inner-city police precinct--which is to offer a richly drawn entertainment that's about as good as television gets. 

Note that the mag made that Hill Street comparison in the close-up page, too.

The promo below includes another series that debuted on this night but did not stick around: Robert Urich's Gavilan.

Monday, October 24, 2022

Murder Monday: BOTNS remembers Ron Masak

I have the unfortunate duty of devoting a second straight Murder Monday to marking the death of a Murder, She Wrote alum's life (both from natural causes, thank goodness). Last week I talked about my love of the iconic program and Angela Lansbury, and this week I confess: I was skeptical about Ron Masak, who passed away several days ago after a long career that included his portrayal of Sheriff Mort Metzger on MSW.

When I dove into watching Jessica Fletcher's exploits in order, I had this dread in the back of my mind that soon The Bos would leave the series and things would go downhill. Yes, Cabot Cove's intrepid Sheriff Amos Tupper would depart as Tom Bosley would go on to star in Father Dowling, and where would that leave the viewers? Where would it leave ME?

Well, for one thing, Tupper was not in nearly as many episodes as I expected. Would you believe he appears in a mere 19 of 264 per IMDB? Metzger is in 41. A more important factor is that Masak is great! I''m almost halfway through season 7 now, and I look forward to seeing Mort Metzger and am disappointed if a Cabot Cove episode does not include him.

What I like about Metzger is that he isn't a boob--not to say Tupper is, but Amos is a small-town lawman in over his head despite meaning well whenever there's a murder. Metzger offers a different dynamic as a New York cop assuming he can ease into retirement with a simple, peaceful gig in Maine. The series backs down a little bit from the brash New Yorker aspect as Metzger settles in, but his general attitude persists. Mort's most amusing quality is his exasperation, on display at the behavior of the locals and also at the theories Jessica provides at every murder scene. 

Yet he does not push Jess away; to the contrary, he welcomes the help of Mrs. F, as he calls her, even if he doesn't always believe her. He respects her and, while he is stubborn sometimes, he isn't so pigheaded as to ignore the facts. It's a good relationship the two of them have.

Masak's delivery and charm make the character a likable and stable presence in the Cabot Cove episodes. He's not the cliched pushy New Yorker the character could have been, but he does bring a different energy to the bucolic (yet murder-plagued) Maine setting. He even gives the series its own "unseen character" running gag in the form of his oft-mentioned wife, a real piece of work and a former service member who keeps Mort on his toes.

Rest in peace, Ron Masak! Laurie and I will continue to look forward to your appearances each Murder Monday.

But we still enjoy Tupper, too. Here is a spot with Masak and The Bos together:

Sunday, October 23, 2022

Top Ten #200: Special #200 Edition!

1) 200: It's a nice round number! Here are a few shows that somehow never made it to 200 episodes:

Me and the Chimp
Hee Haw Honeys
One of the Boys

2) National Talk Show Day: There have been thousands of TV talk shows with millions of episodes, but only one of them was gutsy enough to book economist Jerome Smith!

3) Epcot Center: The Opening Celebration: 40 years ago tonight, CBS' Walt Disney anthology series presented this TV special featuring the likes of host Danny Kaye and guests like Marie Osmond. I went to Epcot shortly after it opened and did not see Kaye nor Osmond. I liked the Figment dragon and the big golf ball dome thing, though!

4) Michael Learned: The Waltons star appeared recently on the TV Confidential podcast.

Or was it Michael Lerner?

5) Weird Al Yankovic: Happy birthday to one of the true legends of early MTV!

6) The Mary Tyler Moore Show: Along with a handful of other older shows like Hill Street Blues, it's now on Prime Video (but still on Hulu).

7) John Denver: Mo Rocca's Mobituaries podcast returned this month with an interesting look at John Denver.

Or was it Michael Lerner?

No, it was definitely John Denver.

8) Joe Montana: I finally watched the Peacock docuseries Cool Under Pressure about the greatest QB of all (Yeah, I said it!), and I just wish more people--or anyone--had talked about it.

9) National Mother-in-Law Day: I hope you have a better relationship with yours than Louise does with Mother Jefferson!

10) R.I.P.:  Ron Masak:

Wednesday, October 19, 2022

Dream Theater: Felix is real?

This is gonna sound weird, but last night I had a dream that I was in a hotel, and I had to leave the room I was in to go downstairs a floor to find a water fountain. Then I had to get a handful of water--yes, a handful of water. I just knew this.

Why did I need the water? Simple: To go back upstairs into that original room and splash that water into the face of Tony Randall!

Well, I say Tony Randall, but I know that really it was Felix Unger. I know this because the reason I was getting the water to throw in his face was to prove a "fan theory" that Felix was in our universe

Don't ask me how Oscar Madison fit into this. Don't ask me anything else, really. In fact, I woke up before i could get back upstairs, which leaves me disappointed yet kinda glad I didn't ambush Felix with a couple palms full of tepid hotel fountain water (Do they even have standalone water fountains in hotel hallways anymore)?

Don't assume anything except that it was one weird dream!

Monday, October 17, 2022

Murder Monday: BOTNS Remembers Angela Lansbury

As I started watching Murder, She Wrote along with Laurie for the podcast, a funny thing happened: We really liked it. I mean, at first, there was a bit of, "Hey, wouldn't it be funny to watch one of these every week," but it became no joke. Yes, there are goofy aspects to it, and we laugh at the show sometimes (but we also laugh with it), but the bottom line is, what we affectionately term "Murder Monday" is still one of our biggest rituals 2 1/2 years later.

At one point, I was running Murder Monday posts here, and while that fell by the wayside more than once, I am still going through the entire series in chronological order, and we are about halfway through by now. There are many things that appeal to us--the cozy mysteries, the guest stars, the vivid supporting characters--Well, basically, there's one main reason: The brilliance of Batty-winning star Angela Lansbury.

In fact, this year we have had a sometimes-contentious relationship with our weekly journey to Cabot Cove (and parts unknown all over the globe, but mostly New York). In the sixth season, Lansbury wanted to reduce her workload, and the series stepped up its production of non-Jessica episodes. It went from the occasional backdoor pilot to about a third of the stores featuring minimal Jessica in season 6. Some of them were quite good, but I felt anger--OK, as much anger as I can generate over 30-year-old episodes of Murder, She Wrote--each time we opened Peacock, pressed play, and discovered it was one of "those" episodes on tap. 

One night we had to watch two episodes in a row to wash the bitter taste out of our mouths after we were hoodwinked again by the show. We needed our Jessica! I should clarify that when I say we, I really mean me because Laurie is much more rational about this (and all things) that I am.

I don't mean to buy MSW, but to praise Lansbury. Her snooping, righteous Jessica is an endearing and lovable presence due to the performance. Week in and week out, she delivers. Even the lame episodes where she tapes an intro give you at least that little bit of Lansbury, and while it makes her absence in the rest of the story more painful, it gives you a little something.

Years after doing our podcast episode, I continue to watch the series each week. I have the Funko. I own a few of the novels based on the show. I have a TV Guide with a Jessica Fletcher cover (you can't be surprised at that). I even have a board game of the show. Some of this is for laughs, but really it's because we love watching the program, and it's somehow comforting not only to have it to look forward to every week, but to have an artist's rendering of Jessica Fletcher on the premises looking out for possible murder.

It's all because of Angela Lansbury! Farewell, and rest in peace!

Sunday, October 16, 2022

Top Ten #199: Special one more till 200 edition!

1) Angela Lansbury: Rest in peace, Angela Lansbury! I will have more to say tomorrow, but what a career, and what a loss for the entertainment world. It's amazing that she was nominated 12 straight times for Murder, She Wrote Emmys yet never won. She was a BGOT due to her Season 7 batty for Outstanding Lead Actress.

2) Byron Allen: Recently the entertainer-turned-mogul made history with the most expensive home purchase by a Black person in the United States. In other news, Skip Stephenson got that creaky screen door on his back porch fixed!*

3) Department Store Day: It seems like there is one of these every month, but, hey, I don't mind posting an old Hills commercial.

4) Hotline: This Lynda Carter TV movie debuted on this night in 1982 on CBS, and it looks like a thriller!

(Picture found here).

5) Cool Million: 50 years ago tonight, this James Farentino vehicle premiered on ABC. It's not to be confused with Shirley Hemphill vehicle One in a Million. Hey, I wish Hot Wheels would make a die-cast Shirley Hemphill vehicle to go along with my Batmobile and Avengers car.

6) Shaping Up: In yesterday's post, we included a video of ABC promos that included this short-lived ABC sitcom. I can't be the only one who wants to see more of this:

7) Tim McCarver: Happy birthday to someone who somehow went from being one of the most beloved baseball broadcasters to one of the most resented when he went national. I loved him on Mets games in the Eighties.

8) Mr. T: 40 years ago tonight, T guested on a seminal Silver Spoons, and you can hear more about that right here!

9) Suzanne Somers: Happy birthday to the star of She's the Sheriff!

10) RIP Robbie Coltrane:

*Note: I realize Skip Stephenson has been gone for 30 years.

Saturday, October 15, 2022

This Day in TV History: For Lovers Only premieres on October 15, 1982

Now, here's a TV movie I gotta see (description from's database): 
Loving newlyweds in search of the perfect honeymoon are always welcome at Bliss' Cove Haven, a sensuous resort dedicated to the fulfillment of romantic fantasies.

It's not that I am interested in 1982 ABC's vision of sensual fantasy, but check out this cast. Given the cast and the subject matter, I am both repelled by and drawn to this movie:

Andy Griffith, Gary Sandy (not Patrick Simmons; I checked), Gordon Jump, Katherine Helmond, Sally Kellerman, Deborah Raffin, Robert Hegyes! Here's a photo from IMDB:

Check out a promo for a rebroadcast in 1986. You KNOW that stuff was still strong 4 years later! You even see Wayne Knight. How dare they not name Gary Sandy, though?

Friday, October 14, 2022

Promo Theatre: ABC promotes Automan...and more!

In this promo reel posted by the great ewjxn YT account, we get all sorts of 1984 ABC goodness, including several looks at the same AKA Pablo and two glimpses of the Automan episode we discussed on the podcast! And, hey, don't forget Shaping Up with Leslie Nielsen!

Wednesday, October 12, 2022

One final (for now) personal Batty: Outstanding Season 10 Book

Before we turn the page on the Season 10 Battys, I would like to give one more personal unofficial award--a literary one, if you will. This season, as discussed on the podcast, I did a lot of reading for prep. I want to recognize one more time the fine books I read that helped provide info for the shows we covered:

Michael Landon: His Triumph and Tragedy by Aileen Joyce
Confessions of a Prairie Bitch by Alison Arngrim
The Case of the Alliterative Attorney: A Guide to the Perry Mason TV Series and TV Movies by Bill Sullivan with Ed Robertson
It's Garry Shandling's Book by Judd Apatow
Laugh Lines by Alan Zweibel
Enemies, A Love Story
Bob Hope on TV: Thanks for the Video Memories by Wesley Hyatt
The Laugh Makers: A Behind-the-Scenes Tribute to Bob Hope's Incredible Gag Writers by Bob Mills
An American Saga: The Definitive History of High School USA (OK, I made that one up, but if anyone ever writes it...)

And my unofficial yet sincere Batty for Outstanding Book goes to...

Wow, this is a tough choice. There are biographies and reference guides mixed in, and I got something out of all of these. Attorney and Video Memories are tremendous resources I refer to often, and the latter's lively reviews are quite enjoyable. Alison Arngrim's memoir was even better than I expected. The Shandling and Zweibel books are entertaining and revealing. Mills' book, despite the title, is really a fascinating look at Hope himself and his later career as much as anything. Even the Landon book taught me a lot I didn't know about the icon.

However, if someone asked me to recommend one book on this list, it would be Enemies, A Love Story. Yes, it is an oral history, and it is a Kindle Single. But I am counting it as a book, and what a book! It's addictive, and it offers tremendous insight into all aspects of the long-running movie show--not just their fabled relationship, but the production and business aspects of the program as well. Therefore I am giving my unofficial Outstanding Book Batty to Enemies, A Love Story.

Tuesday, October 11, 2022

Season 10 Battys: Snubs and Surprises

After another eventful Batty Awards show, It's Garry Shandling's Show stands as the single biggest winner from the Season 10 Battys. What were the biggest snubs and surprises from the show? Let's take a look.

We have mentioned on the page that the big snubbees were Bob Hope and Spider-Man, as their shows each got zero Battys. It's a particular surprise in the case of Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends, a fun listener-suggested series that we enjoyed talking about on the podcast.

Carrie from Little House played a pivotal role in "Blizzard" yet didn't make the noms for Outstanding Youth. And whither so many of the crew from High School USA? The sheer numbers of the massive cast of that TV movie might have worked against some potential candidates, but it should be proud that its lone choice, Todd Bridges, won.

The "as oneself" category is loaded with snubs. There were so many people in the Bob Hope special, and in the 21st century, whenever there's a chance for Muhammad Ali to get an award and he does not, it's an upset. There might be some controversy over Jeff Goldblum being nominated in this category and for Outstanding Supporting Male, and we hear the questions. That's something for the Blue Ribbon Committee to answer someday,

One of the most controversial categories each year is Outstanding Facial Hair, and while some might think Arthur Coleman from Perry Mason deserved a nod, I ask, do you remember Arthur Colemar? Actually, Hair and Facial Hair were rather straightforward this year. Garry Shandling losing for his hair might be a cruel shock to him, but Michael Landon getting that Batty is by no means a surprise.

Willie Oleson may not have had a shot at Youth, but his paste eating carried him to a mild upset over Conrad Bain's buffoonish Arthur Harman for Biggest Dope.

Perhaps the biggest upset came in the Non-Human category, where Goldblum's meat locker rode the positive wave of energy generated by It's Garry Shandling's Show to knock off robots, Rankin-Bass characters, and beloved Mister Rogers' Neighborhood icons like Trolley.

Outstanding Song saw Fred Astaire win for an Easter Bunny song in a surprise considering competition from TV staples Charo, Dean Martin, and Mac Davis. Perhaps the Easter songs didn't split the votes as much as the Hope votes did.

Nita Talbot scored a big upset by becoming a two-time winner for Supporting Female and knocking off favorites Nancy Walker and Barbara Hale in the process. But what about Bosom Buddies' Donna Dixon and Thelma Hopkins, who weren't even nominated?

The Supporting Male category was loaded with talent even without snubbed actors like Tony Dow and Crispin Glover, plus the likes of Bert Freed and the other guest stars in Perry Mason. Robert Redford is one of the more notable exclusions from the list. John Astin's win has to be considered a surprise when you look at the competition: Popular William "Paul Drake" Hopper, plus 3 men who won other Battys that evening--Goldblum, Astaire, and Victor French.

Looking at the Outstanding Male Batty, Fred Rogers' win is not a huge shock, but there are some notable exclusions. Spider-Man didn't even get a chance here. The lack of Bill Macy for Maude stands out, and poor Michael J. Fox didn't get a single nom for being the lead in High School USA. Outstanding Heel Beau Middleton gets the last laugh after all!

Overall, the show didn't really have an upset on the level of Battlestar Galactica's infamous win for Outstanding Theme Song last season, and the Random Number Generator didn't even make an appearance. Is this a sign that we are on the same page when voting? Was this season filled with more clear-cut choices? That's for you, the listeners, to decide.

Monday, October 10, 2022

Season 10 Battys: In Memoriam

Here is the list of names we read in the In Memoriam segment on the Season 10 Batty Awards show. No disrespect is intended to any of the TV personalities we lost but did not recognize in this segment. R.I.P. to all as we pay tribute one last time by listing them here:

Clu Gulager
Roger E. Mosely
Olivia Newton John
Nichelle Nichols
Burt Metcalfe

Tony Dow
Taurean Blacque
Pat John
Larry Storch
David Birney

Philip Baker Hall
Charles Siebert
Bo Hopkins
Robert Morse
Liz Sheridan

Gilbert Gottfried
Barrie Youngfellow
Nehemiah Persoff
Scoey Mitchell
Emilio Delgado

Conrad Janis
Johnny Brown
Howard Hesseman
Ralph Emery
Bob Saget

Dwayne Hickman
Marilyn Bregman
John Madden
Betty White
Bernard Shaw

Sunday, October 9, 2022

Top Ten #198: Special Post-Battys Edition!

1) It's Garry Shandling's Show: The big winner in both prestige (earning awards for Episode and Series) and volume (earning the most total Battys), this self-referential 1980s sitcom deserves a wider audience. Hopefully Garry, wherever he is, can accept losing the Outstanding Hair award to Michael Landon.

2) John Schuck: Special salute to the latest recipient of the Robert Pine Genius Award. If this doesn't get Munsters Today back on streaming, nothing will!

3) Nita Talbot: She has won 2 of the last 3 Outstanding Supporting Female Battys. Look out if we do Supertrain in Season 12!

4) Bea Arthur: There was Maude, there is Maude, and there always will be Maude in the Hall of the Immortals where the Outstanding Female winners reside. Maude--THEN. NOW. FOREVER.

5) Todd Bridges: Surely the most satisfying of all his comebacks is winning an Outstanding Youth Batty for something he did 40 years ago--uh, not this commercial, but this is still cool:

6) Jeff Goldblum: What more can you say about a man and his meat locker? Both won key Battys this week, and it's safe to say their performances carried It's Garry Shandling's Show to the big wins.

7) Moonlighting: Series creator Glenn Gordon Caron got everyone excited on Tuesday by teasing a big streaming announcement for Wednesday...only to deflate everyone by announcing that the process of trying to find a streamer was underway. Well, at least the botched reveal showed how many are enthusiastic about getting the series a platform.

8) Don Meredith: Current Monday Night Football analyst and ex-Cowboy Troy Aikman paid tribute to former MNF analyst and ex-Cowboy Meredith on Monday night:

9) TV Guide: A company called Fandom acquired TV Guide last week, and while the mag ain't what it used to be, we have great respect for its history around here.

10) R.I.P.: Loretta Lynn, Joan Hotchkiss, Judy Tenuta:

Saturday, October 8, 2022

Season 10 Battys: Complete list of nominees and winners

Thanks to everyone for listening to this season's Batty Awards. As a handy guide, here is a list of all the categories and the winners in bold. SPOILERS if you haven't heard the podcast yet!

OUTSTANDING YOUTH: King Bruce (Easter), Grant Schumacher (Shandling), Kitty Pryde (Spidey), Laura Ingalls (LHOP) Mary Ingalls (LHOP), Willie Oleson (LHOP), Todd Bridges (High School USA)

OUTSTANDING PERFORMANCE AS ONESELF: Bob Hope (Bob Hope Specials), Sammy Davis Jr. (Bob Hope Specials), Gene Siskel (Siskel and Ebert), Roger Ebert (Siskel and Ebert), Jeff Goldblum (It's Garry Shandling's Show), Bert Convy (It's Garry Shandling's Show)

OUTSTANDING HAIR: Bert Convy (It's Garry Shandling's Show), Michael Landon (LHOP), Nancy McKeon (High School USA), Garry Shandling (It's Garry Shandling's Show)

FACIAL HAIR: Leonard Maltin (Siskel and Ebert) Bill Macy (Maude), Sammy Davis Jr. (Bob Hope Specials) Victor French (LHOP), Gene Shalit (Siskel and Ebert)

Lady Elaine and Queen Sara explaining what love is to Lady Aberlin (Mister Rogers)
Texaco explaining it doesn't really make much money off gas and oil (Bob Hope Specials)
Stanley Roderick's explanation of toupees on the witness stand (Perry Mason)
Siskel explaining what Ebert thought about Batman (Siskel and Ebert)
Sunny explaining how to eat an Easter egg (Easter Bunny)

BIGGEST DOPE: Wille Oleson (LHOP), Mr. Plaza (High School USA), Mel Tartar (Kolchak), Hamilton Burger (Perry Mason) Arthur Harmon (Maude)

OUTSTANDING HEEL: Anne-Marie Conklin (High School USA), Beau Middleton (High School USA), Captain Wells (Kolchak), Miss Beadle (LHOP), Mr. Fontaine (McMillan and Wife)

OUTSTANDING VILLAIN: Countess (Easter), Cyberiad (Spidey), Werewolf (Kolchak), Monica Fontaine (McMillan and Wife), Colemar (Perry Mason)

OUTSTANDING NON-HUMAN: Sunny (Easter), Gadzooks (Easter), The Robot (High School USA), X the Owl (Mister Rogers), Trolley (Mister Rogers), Jeff Goldblum's meat freezer (It's Garry Shandling's Show)

Listener Award #1: Best Friends Award
This Batty is for the outstanding besties who displayed their friendship in an episode we discussed on the podcast this season!

Nominees: Kip and Henry (Bosom BuddiesSpider-Man, Firestar, Iceman (Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends); Charles Ingalls and Isiah Edwards (Little House on the Prairie); Mac and Enright (McMillan and Wife); Garry Shanding and Jeff Goldblum (It's Garry Shandling's Show)

Listener Award #2: Missing in Action Award
This Batty is for the regular character in a series who was not featured in an episode we covered and whose presence was missed the most.

Nominees: Aunt May (Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends); Jonathan Garvey  (Little House on the Prairie); Mr. McFeely (Mister Rogers' Neighborhood); Mrs. Naugatuck (Maude); Emmanuel Lewis (Bob Hope Specials)

OUTSTANDING THEME SONG (LYRICS): Easter Bunny is Comin' to Town, It's Garry Shandling's Show, High School USA, Bosom Buddies, Maude

OUTSTANDING THEME SONG (INSTRUMENTAL): Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends, Perry Mason, Kolchak, McMillan and Wife, Little House on the Prairie, Thanks for the Memories (Bob Hope), Siskel and Ebert

From Easter Bunny:

Which Came First, the Chicken or the Egg? - The Hendrews Sisters
All You Have to Do is Think "Can Do" - Fred Astaire and the Cast

From Bob Hope Special:
Poor Boy Music by Mac Davis and the Struts
I've Grown Accustomed to His Face by Dean Martin
Fernando by Charo

From Maude:
Hard-Hearted Hannah, the Vamp of Savannah by Bea Arthur as Maude

OUTSTANDING SUPPORTING FEMALE: Nancy Walker (McMillan and Wife), Wendy Jo Sperber (Bosom Buddies), Nita Talbot (Kolchak), Adrienne Barbeau (Maude), Barbara Hale (Perry Mason) Charlotte Stewart (LHOP)

OUTSTANDING FEMALE: Susan St. James (McMillan and Wife), Firestar (Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends), Lady Aberlin (Mister Rogers), Bea Arthur (Maude), Nancy McKeon (High School USA), Karen Grassle (LHOP)

OUTSTANDING SUPPORTING MALE: Fred Astaire (Easter Bunny), John Astin (McMillan and Wife), William Hopper (Perry Mason), Victor French (LHOP), Kevin Hagan (LHOP), Jeff Goldblum (It's Garry Shandling's Show)

OUTSTANDING MALE: Fred Rogers (Mister Rogers), Michael Landon (LHOP), Darren McGavin (Kolchak), Rock Hudson (McMillan and Wife), Garry Shandling (It's Garry Shandling's Show), Raymond Burr (Perry Mason)

BEST EPISODE: Easter Bunny Is Comin' to Town; Mister Rogers, “What Is Love;” Spidey, “The X-Men Adventure;” Maude, “Maude's Musical;” Bob Hope's All-Star Comedy Spectacular from Lake Tahoe; LHOP, “Blizzard;” Bosom Buddies, 'Waterballoongate;” Kolchak, “Werewolf;” McMillan and Wife, “Cop of the Year;” High School USA; It's Garry Shandling's Show, “Go Go Goldblum;” Siskel and Ebert, “Batman/Ghostbusters 2/Honey, I Shrunk the Kids.”

BEST SHOW: Mister Rogers, Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends, Maude, Siskel and Ebert, Perry Mason, It's Garry Shandling's Show, Kolchak, McMillan and Wife, Bosom Buddies, LHOP

ROBERT PINE GENIUS AWARD: John Schuck (McMillan and Wife)

Friday, October 7, 2022

Season 10 Battys by the Numbers

Let's take a look at the 10th Battys by the number of awards won per show:

It's Garry Shandling's Show: 5
Little House on the Prairie:3
High School USA: 2
Mister Rogers' Neighborhood: 2
McMillan and Wife: 2 (plus the Genius Award)
Maude: 1
Kolchak: 1
Perry Mason: 1
Bosom Buddies: 1
The Easter Bunny Is Comin' to Town: 1
Siskel and Ebert: 1

Shut out: Bob Hope Specials, Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends

A few more numbers of note:

Temperature of average walk-in meat freezer (recommended): -10 to 0 degrees F

Average annual income per family in Walnut Grove circa 1870s: -.45 cents
Minimum wage in 1983: $3.35/hour
Beau Middleton's allowance in 1983: $500/week

Per capita corn consumption circa 1970s: 28 pounds
Per capita potato consumption circa 1972: 122 pounds
Per capita corn AND potato in the same meal consumption circa 1972: too low for accurate measurement

Episodes of Maude dealing with a certain controversial subject: 1
Episodes of Maude in which the sound of Maude's voice may have served as de facto birth control: 84

Number of stars Roger Ebert gave Cop and a Half: 3

Number of series (not specials/movies) we covered in Season 10: 10
Number of those available for official streaming as of this writing: 6

Number of Battys won by Bob Hope: 0
Number of jokes about the Battys that Bob Hope would make if he were around today to give a monologue: 2
Number of jokes about Dwight D. Eisenhower that Bob Hope would make if he were around today to give a monologue: 3

Thursday, October 6, 2022

Season 10 BATTY Awards

Live on tape from the Spectrum in Philadelphia, we look back at season 10 and dole out another heap of BATTY Awards on the shows and stars that made the season special. As always, we honor everything from outstanding show to outstanding facial hair with a few surprises in between. Plus, we honor a singular figure with the Robert Pine Genius Award!

#podcast #tv #retrotv #seventies #eighties #awardshow


Check out this episode!

Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Batty History: Looking at "the big winner" each season

One way of looking at the big winner of a given Battys is counting up total awards. However, in a competition that includes prizes for facial hair, some might argue the outstanding series and outstanding episode trophies are most important. When the same show wins both in the same ceremony, it is arguably the big winner of the season. 

Let's take a look at past Battys and see who won Episode and who won Series:

1: CHiPs (Episode), The Incredible Hulk (Series)
2: Search (Episode), Magnum P.I. (Series)
3: Three's Company (Episode), Taxi (Series)
4: Late Night with David Letterman (Both)
5: Best of the West (Episode), Hill Street Blues (Series)
6: Cheers (Both)
7: Doctor Who (Episode), Miami Vice (Series)
8: Columbo (Both)
9: The Rockford Files (Both)

So the last two, 3 of the last 4, and 4 of the last 6 have had a double winner at the end of the night. Will Season 10 continue the trend and yield one big winner that can earn both awards? 

Also note that a special or a movie has never won for best episode. Will that streak end this season with, say, High School USA? Bob Hope's Tahoe special? The Easter Bunny Is Comin' to Town? Find out soon!

For Your Batty Consideration: Little House on the Prairie

We closed out the tenth season of BOTNS with one of the few bright spots of its era for NBC: Little House on the Prairie. It's a program we discussed doing for years, and we finally got to it with Season 3's "Blizzard," a wild episode that proves our feeling that it's one of the most disaster-filled series in television history. We're still kind of surprised we weren't attacked by locusts while recording.


Our podcast episode
Show notes and YT playlist

Anonymous Batty Insider says: "This episode had everything--most all of the cast, a disaster, death, great hair..There are plenty of chances for noms here and maybe even some wins. The podcast's affection for late 1970s NBC is obvious, but then again, that didn't necessarily make Real People a Batty king. Ultimately, it should be said that it's pretty tough to forecast these awards when we don't even know the categories until the actual show!"

Monday, October 3, 2022

For Your Batty Consideration: Bosom Buddies

In our penultimate episode of this tenth season, we discussed a sitcom that seems much more remembered than it might merit at first glance. Bosom Buddies may not hold up as much as we would like it to, but in our discussion of the second-season episode "Waterballoongate," we talk about how ditching the attention-grabbing gimmick that sold the show led to a better show.


Our podcast episode
Show notes and YT playlist

Anonymous Batty Insider says: "Hanks and Scolari received Batty attention in past seasons, but they are underdogs here. They could play spoiler in a few categories, but I think Bosom Buddies might have to settle for that TV Land award it won. Part of me wishes Richard Nixon had actually guested in 'Waterballoongate' so that he'd be eligible."

Sunday, October 2, 2022

Top Ten #197

1) Batty Fever: It's spreading, folks! The Battys are coming! Start reviewing Season 10 now and get ready to play along at home!

2) Hal Linden: The 91-year-old actor told MarketWatch he has no plans to retire! Consider THAT an FYI!

3) National Custodial Worker's Recognition Day: Yes, even the odd ones:

4) The Munsters: The original series, which we talked about last season, is still available. That's all we're sayin'.

5) Rex Reed: Happy birthday to the longtime critic, who we touched on briefly in our look at movie review shows earlier this season.

6) Betty White: A weekend auction event of her memorabilia and possessions raised over $4 million.

7) Italian-American Heritage Month: Remember when this show aired for a few weeks in 1979 after the stereotypes offended many people?

8) Three's a Crowd: It's not much, but, hey, this show is new on Tubi, I think. The service also added Too Close for Comfort a few weeks ago. Maybe it will surprise with something else later this month.

9) Not Just Another Affair: This TV movie premiered 40 years ago tonight. Gil Gerard and Victoria Principal!

10) R.I.P. Dale McRaven, co-creator of Mork and Mindy; and drummer John Hartman, who co-created the Doobie Brothers. Hartman died in December 2021, but the band posted a tribute to him last week.

Saturday, October 1, 2022

This Day in TV History: Remington Steele premieres on NBC

40 years ago tonight, NBC ended its Friday with the premiere of a new light detective comedy, Remington Steele.

This is a show that hasn't really come up on the podcast yet, and now that I think about it, it's mostly missing in action nowadays. Despite lasting 5 seasons (4 of them, really, plus a fifth of movies) and 90-some episodes, it hasn't resurfaced much lately. The series came out on DVD long ago but is now out of print. Me-TV has shown it sporadically. 

To my knowledge, it has never been on an official streaming service, and it looks like it missed its window to be added with other 20th Century Fox shows on Hulu. if Hulu were still in the business of adding such shows instead of dropping them (like The Fall Guy), this would be a great candidate. Maybe Tubi could resurrect it someday.