Sunday, December 31, 2023

Top Ten #281: Say bye-bye to 2023!

1) The Battys: What better way could there be to close out a year than with the Batty Awards! (That's a rhetorical question; please don't answer it.) As we close out 2023, we thank you again for your support and for helping make Season 11 the most interactive one yet. 

2) New Year's Eve: Dick Clark is long gone, but his Rockin' Eve continues. Who can forget the classic night 40 years ago when Clark welcomed Priscilla Barnes and Doug Barr as co-hosts?

3) Dallas and Night Court: The big winner with 5 Battys is Dallas, the site of the awards (though that is unrelated---we swear--), yet Night Court took the prestigious prize for best show.

4) The Rifleman: Congratulations to this year's "retro retro" series, which more than earned its spot on our schedule by winning Best Episode for "Ordeal!"

5) Jackee: The first-ever female Genius Award winner might actually be able to upstage some of the previous recipients if they starred together. Hey, we should look that up: Imagine Jackee and Ed Flanders sharing scenes together, for example.

6) Billy Crystal and Dionne Warwick: The new Kennedy Center honorees surely owe their tributes to their stints on Soap and Solid Gold, respectively.

7) Orange Bowl: 50 years ago tomorrow, Penn State capped off an undefeated season with a win in Miami over LSU. They were led in part by Heisman winner RB John Cappelletti. In a sign of how different things were, PSU finished 12-0 yet were fifth in the final AP rankings.

Uh, let's just not talk about how Penn State did in the Peach Bowl yesterday. 

8) Three's Company: A brand-new complete series set from VEI includes the same sourced materials as before plus The Ropers on Three's a Crowd. Oh, and it's DVD. I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for these shows to get 4K restorations. It's a nice thing, though, for people who weren't able to get the old Anchor Bay DVD sets.

9) Weekend marathons: Besides the Twilight Zone (SyFy and Heroes & Icons), MeTV has a marathon of series finales today, and Catchy Comedy has a Fish marathon today after finishing up Bridget Loves Bernie. It's nice to see some short-lived programs getting some play on the channel.

10) R.I.P. Richard Franklin Bobby Rivers, Tommy Smothers:

Friday, December 29, 2023

Season 11 Battys: Complete List of Nominees and Winners

We hope you enjoyed the Season 11 Batty Awards! Thanks to all of you for listening and maybe even participating via the Listener Choice prizes! Thanks as well to the good folks at Southfork Ranch for hosting us! For reference, here is a list of all the categories and the winners in bold. SPOILERS if you haven't heard the podcast yet!

OUTSTANDING DUO (VOTED BY LISTENERS): Sonny and Cher (Sonny and Cher), John Tesh and Mary Hart (Entertainment Tonight), Jonathan and Jennifer Hart (Hart to Hart), Starsky and Hutch (Starsky and Hutch), Bobby and Pam Ewing (Dallas), Robert Urich and Oprah (Star-Spangled Celebration)

OUTSTANDING YOUTH:  The Mute (Littlest Hobo), The Mime (Littlest Hobo), Jay North (Dennis the Menace), Johnny Crawford (Rifleman), Regina King (227), Charlene Tilton (Dallas), P.B. (Dennis the Menace)

OUTSTANDING PERFORMANCE AS ONESELF: Leonard Maltin (ET), John Tesh (ET), Ron Hendren (ET), Sonny Bono (Sonny and Cher), Cher (Sonny and Cher), Burt Reynolds (ET), Suzanne Somers (Star-Spangled), Yakov Smirnoff (Star-Spangled)

OUTSTANDING HAIR: Ron Hendren (ET), Markie Post (Night Court), Stefanie Powers (H2H), Cher (Sonny and Cher), Paul Michael Glaser (S&H), Victoria Principal (Dallas), Jay North (DTM), Atlantic Starr (Star-Spangled)

OUTSTANDING FACIAL HAIR: Leonard Maltin (ET), Mike Farrell (MASH, Hal Williams (227), Franlin Cover (227), Mark Twain (DTM), Arcade owner (Hobo)

BIGGEST DOPE: Amnesiac Jonathan Hart (H2H), Susan Nimoy as Susan Kendall (H2H) (Note: We didn't mention the character name on the pod and do not mean to indicate the actress herself is a dope), Brian George as Jonathan Forsythe (227) (Note: Ditto), Thugs (Hobo)

OUTSTANDING HEEL:  Steve Kanaly (Dallas), Cranky arcade owner (Hobo), Brian Stokes Mitchell (Night Court), Charles Lane (DTM), Irene Tedrow (DTM)

OUTSTANDING VILLAIN: Jose Ferrer (Exo-Man), John McLiam as the murderous professor (NOTE: His name is Jennings; Bellamy was another guy in the episode) (S&H), Nature (The Rifleman), Jack Ging (H2H), Larry Hagman (Dallas)

OUTSTANDING NON-HUMAN: The Littlest Hobo (Hobo), Robot (DTM), Gateway Arch (Star-Spangled), Gran Torino (S&H) Buzzards (Rifelman), Freeway (H2H)

OUTSTANDING SUPPORT STAFF: Antonio Fargas (S&H), Lionel Stander (H2H), Jamie Farr (MASH), A. Martinez (Exo-Man), Jack Colvin (Exo-Man)
NOTE: Radar was not in the episode!

MOST RIDICULOUS PREMISE OF THE 1983 NBC FALL SCHEDULE (VOTED BY LISTENERS): Man turns himself into various animals (Manimal), 60 Minutes is vulnerable enough that we can program another newsmagazine against it (First Camera), a superintelligent oragnutan becomes a government operative (Mr. Smith), two single guys hire a goregeous live-in maid for their apartment (We Got It Made), a glamorous deceased movie star comes back as a ghost to mentor a teenage boy (Jennifer Slept Here), Wyatt Earp's descendants work as carnival rousters and bounty hunters (The Rousters).

NOTE: 3-way tie between Mr. Smith, First Camera, and We Got It Made in the listener vote led to determination by random number generator.

OUTSTANDING THEME SONG (LYRICS): The Littlest Hobo, Dennis the Menace (animated), Sonny and Cher, 227

OUTSTANDING THEME SONG (INSTRUMENTAL): Night Court, Entertainment Tonight, Hart to Hart, Dallas, Dennis the Menace (live action), MASH, The Rifleman, Starsky and Hutch

NOTE: Winner determined by random number generator, with Dallas beating Night Court

From Sonny and Cher: I Got the Music in Me/Making Music Is My Business (Tina Turner and Cher)
From Star-Spangled Celebration: Roots of Rock and Roll medley (Chubby Checker), America the Beautiful (Phil Driscoll), Little Sister (Dwight Yoakam), Meet Me in St. Louis (Suzanne Somers) , St. Louis Blues (Jennifer Holliday)

OUTSTANDING SUPPORTING FEMALE: Jackee (227), Marsha Warfield (Night Court), Gloria Henry (DTM), Jenny Sullivan (S&H), Barbara Bel Geddes (Dallas)

OUTSTANDING SUPPORTING MALE: John Laroquette (Night Court), Richard Moll (Night Court), Charlie Robinson (Night Court), Bernie Hamilton (S&H), Harry Morgan (Exo-Man), Alan Arbus (MASH), Harry Morgan, (MASH), Joseph Kearns (DTM), Jim Davis (Dallas)

OUSTANDING GUEST PERFORMER: Franklin Cover (227), Pat Corley (Night Court), Marcia Wallace (Night Court), Tina Turner (Sonny and Cher), David Steinberg (Sonny and Cher)

OUTSTANDING FEMALE:  Markie Post (Night Court), Marla Gibbs (227), Stefanie Powers (H2H), Victoria Principal (Dallas), Anne Scheeden (Exo-Man), Loretta Swit (MASH)

OUTSTANDING MALE:  Harry Anderson (Night Court), Robert Wagner (H2H), Chuck Connors (Rifleman), Alan Alda (MASH), Hal Williams (227), David Soul (S&H), Paul Michael Glaser (S&H), Larry Hagman (Dallas), Patrick Duffy (Dallas)

BEST EPISODE: "Another Day in the Life," Night Court; Series Premiere and 1986 episode, Entertainment Tonight; "Small Change," Littlest Hobo; "What Murder?" Hart to Hart; "ABC Star-Spangled Celebration;" "The 50,000th Customer," Dennis the Menace (live action); "The Boss Gets Scalped/Mr. Dennistein/The Lean Green Jumping Machine," Dennis the Menace (animated); "Exo-Man;" "Bless You Hawkeye," MASH; "Tina Turner and David Steinberg," Sonny and Cher, "Ordeal," The Rifleman; "The Butler Did It," 227; "A Coffin for Starsky," Starsky and Hutch; "Pilot," Dallas

BEST SHOW: Night Court, Entertainment Tonight, The Littlest Hobo, Hart to Hart, MASH, Sonny and Cher, Dennis the Menace (animated), Dennis the Menace (live action), The Rifleman, 227, Starsky and Hutch, Dallas


Thursday, December 28, 2023

Season 11 BATTY Awards

Live whenever you’re hearing it from Southfork Ranch, it’s the season 11 BATTY Awards! Join the stars, the youths, the non-humans, and the dopes for the biggest night in retro TV podcasting! We might not have a choir of 500 people or Oprah on a rooftop, but we do have a random number generator and two Dennises the Menace! 

#podcast #tv #retrotv #seventies #eighties #battyawards #awardsshow


Check out this episode!

Tuesday, December 26, 2023

For Your Batty Consideration: Dallas (Season 11, Episode 14)

Note that we announced during out 13th episode of the season, the look at the disastrous 1983 NBC fall schedule, that those shows would not be eligible for Battys! So we go forward to our season finale, in which we talked about a series beginner--the pilot of Dallas. Not only was the series suggested by you, but you also voted on which episode we discussed!

What an episode it was, too, and we remarked how well everything worked. We talked about Who Shot J.R., but we focused on the classic megahit's origins.

Our podcast episode

Show notes and YT playlist

Anonymous Batty insider says: "Let's talk one last time about episode selection because Vicki Principal may have won the jackpot when the listeners selected the pilot, which is all about Pam. There are so many possible candidates here that you have to think the series could do well on Batty night. Can't help but wonder how some of those 1983 NBC shows might have done, but maybe someday we will find out."

Monday, December 25, 2023

Merry Christmas from BOTNS!

We have reached another holiday season, and we thank our listeners for helping make our EPIC Season 11 so much fun! The Battys are coming soon, and 2024 will see the return of the podcast, but today here are some links to our past Christmas episodes!

We just reran our first holiday special episode: A doubleheader combining The Leprechauns' Christmas Gold with A Family Circus Christmas! Stick around for a bonus at the end!

We have plenty more episodes looking at Christmas-themed animation. For example, this is the 50th anniversary of Tommy Smothers in The Bear Who Slept Through Christmas.

You can listen to us discussing the Hanna Barbera characters in Yogi Bear's All-Star Comedy Christmas Caper! Anyone else remember The Little Rascals Christmas Special?

And don't forget Season 9's Rudolph and Frosty's Christmas in July!

So we say again, from all of us to all of you, Merry Christmas, Happy Hannukah, Happy Kwanzaa, and of course Happy EVEN, even!

Sunday, December 24, 2023

Top Ten #280: Special Yuletide joy edition

1) Christmas: It's almost here! Let's enjoy the season and enjoy the greatest of all holiday specials once more: The Leprechaun's Christmas Gold!

No, I mean the other greatest of all holiday specials:

2) The Leprechaun's Christmas Gold: Of course, we presented an encore presentation of one of our holiday-themed episodes this week, and I had the joy of sharing the original special with Laurie the other day. It was followed by the confusion of wondering what we just saw.

3) A Family Circus Christmas: This 1979 special is the other spotlighted program on the podcast flashback this week. I STILL hide the nice drinkware when Sarah Vaughn hits that high note in "The Dreamer."

4) The Most Wonderful Time of the Year: Batty Season, that is. We hope you have been following our posts here lately and picking your favorites in anticipation. Who do you like for best series? How about theme song? And who will be this season's Robert Pine Genius Award recipient?

5) Susan Lucci: Happy birthday!

6) Daytime Emmys: Lucci was among those honored (Lifetime Achievement Award) at this year's ceremony, which also celebrated Entertainment Tonight and General Hospital. Sesame Street was among the winners at the Children's and Family Emmys.

7) The FBI: Quinn Martin's long-running show is now available on demand on Tubi.

8) Hart to Hart: I have been chuckling about this Christmas episode the last few days. Jonathan Hart's unique brand of benign smugness is a winner each time, even in (especially in?) the holiday season.

9) The New Adventures of Batman: McFarlane Toys announced a new line of action figures based on the Filmation 1977 cartoon, and I think they look pretty good. It irritates me, though, that a toy line is coming out and the series is no longer on streaming. Tubi had it for a brief period, but I don't think Max has ever carried it. Maybe now it will come back to help sell the toys?

10) R.I.P. Jack Axelrod and Herman Rush: Victor Jerome on General Hospital and the former president of Columbia Pictures Television, respectively.


Saturday, December 23, 2023

For Your Batty Consideration: Starsky and Hutch (Season 11, Episode 12)

Yet another listener-inspired selection, Starsky and Hutch gave us a lot to talk about, from violence on TV to buddy shows to the parodies and self-parody of the series. "A Coffin for Starsky" is a fine example of the series clicking. Too bad this is another example of a series that is pulled from streaming during our podcast season! 

Our podcast episode

Show notes and YT playlist

Anonymous Batty insider says: "A lot of people have underestimated this series over the years and lost a lot of money doing so. I'd say the fact that it was pulled from Prime Video would hurt the Batty chances if I didn't know that Rick bought the DVDs afterwards. Hey, that in itself might indicate something, huh?"

For Your Batty Consideration: 227 (Season 11, Episode 11)

Another listener suggestion, 227 surprised us with a funny episode reuniting star Marla Gibbs with Jeffersons co-star Franklin Cover ("The Butler Did It"). There were laughs, surprises, and "jive talk," and we enjoyed it. We explored the origins of the series and tried to avoid its final season or so. 

Our podcast episode

Show notes and YT playlist

Anonymous Batty insider says: "I don't see this as being a top top contender, but I see it having a lot of depth and challenging in a lot of categories. Again, we gotta talk episode selection; Regina King might have had an easier time getting a Batty to go with her Oscar if they had focused on one that featured her more. One thing to look out for: This podcast has strong ties to the DMV area, so will "227's" DC setting give it a bit of a home-field advantage?"

Friday, December 22, 2023

For Your Batty Consideration: The Rifleman (Season 11, Episode 10)

Our "retro retro"/Silver Age slot this season went to a type of program we have not discussed much: A Western! It was a breath of fresh air, as Season 2's "Ordeal" is a gripping episode that pits Lucas and Mark against just about everything. This whole podcast is a fun discussion attempting to provide some context for the series but also just breaking down why it is so effective and enjoyable. This might have to last us a while considering the lack of Westerns in the Seventies and Eighties!

Our podcast episode

Show notes and YT playlist

Anonymous Batty insider says: "The guys really seemed to enjoy this one, so don't take it lightly. We're still getting used to the idea of these older shows competing for Battys, but we know they are eligible. One thing I wonder: Will the presence of the old "Dennis the Menace" from earlier this season take some of the uniqueness away from 'Rifleman"?

For Your Batty Consideration: Sonny and Cher (Season 11, Episode 9)

The listeners spoke again, choosing Sonny and Cher as their variety show pick. We talked about the pair's chemistry and the guest appearances of Tina Turner and David Steinberg. Don't forget Shields and Yarnell! Please tell us you didn't forget Shields and Yarnell! Do you think Mike and I have similar chemistry to Sonny and Cher?

Our podcast episode

Show notes and YT playlist

Anonymous Batty insider says: "The interesting battle here will be in the Song category and maybe the as oneself category, as this show will be going up against the Star-Spangled Celebration. Not sure how strong the show is overall, but if there's one thing I've learned from being in this business, it's that you should never count out Cher."

Thursday, December 21, 2023

Encore: Holiday Special - The Leprechaun's Christmas Gold and A Family Circus Christmas

This holiday season, gather round the ol' fireplace, roast some chestnuts, sip some hot chocolate and join us we go all the way back to our first ever holiday special, and nothing says the holidays like dopey kids, ghosts, leprechauns, and hags! Rankin and Bass weave one of their most complicated stories yet in The Leprechaun's Christmas Gold, and Jeffy Keane takes a trip into own subconscious to learn the meaning of Christmas...or something. Come to think of it. You might want some eggnog for this one. 

#podcast #tv #retrotv #seventies #eighties #holidayspecial #familycircus #rankinbass #leprechauns


Check out this episode!

Wednesday, December 20, 2023

For Your Batty Consideration: MASH (Season 11, Episode 8)

We revisited the iconic sitcom MASH, which we talked about in our fifth season, with a focus on the later years--Potter and Winchester instead of Blake and Burns. "Bless You Hawkeye" has laughs and that patented pathos the show was known for in those later years.

Our podcast episode

Show notes and YT playlist

Anonymous Batty insider says: "It's a huge series, yeah, but some might think it already had its shot back with the Season 5 Battys. Despite a great episode, "Tuttle," MASH won only one Batty and didn't rack up a lot of noms, either. Has the show grown in their minds? Will the increased number of categories help? I don't know, but the fact that we're asking the questions may not be a good sign for such a classic. Bottom line: The "second time around" thing might hinder the series' chances.

Tomorrow on Battle of the Network Shows...


Tuesday, December 19, 2023

For Your Batty Consideration: Exo-Man (Season 11, Episode 7)

Our TV movie this season was Iron Ma--Well, no, it was Exo-Man, an unsold pilot that could have been a contender...with a lot of changes. We had a lot of fun talking about a show that doesn't have a ton of information about it. What worked? What didn't? Do we still want a toy of the title character? What is a "malfuntion"? And we even discovered an original theme song! If you're a fan of this forgotten movie, this is a show you gotta hear!

Our podcast episode

Show notes and YT playlist

Anonymous Batty insider says: "The flick may not be a classic, but I could see Exo-Man providing some intrigue on Batty night. It has heroes and villains, and it does stand out in its own way. David Ackroyd is no Reb Brown, but there is a certain aura when he puts on the suit."

For Your Batty Consideration: Dennis the Menace (Season 11, Episode 6)

The traditional animation slot this season was filled by Dennis the Menace, but we paired the episode with an episode of the black-and-white live-action series, "The 50,000th Customer." Our podcast talked about everything from Charles Lane to Mark Twain, and we got into the comic origins of the character and how well the series adapted him.

Our podcast episode

Show notes and YT playlist

Anonymous Batty insider says: "The animated series seems like a longshot for awards, but you never know. Remember, by precedent established with The Munsters, the old show is eligible, too, and that could do a little damage."

Monday, December 18, 2023

For Your Batty Consideration: Star-Spangled Celebration (Season 11, Episode 5)

We kept the fun of Season 11 going with a special July 4 celebration from 1987, an epic ABC broadcast hosted by Robert Urich and Oprah from St. Louis. The show honored not just the USA, but reading, with literacy being a running theme. It's a unique piece of American TV history loaded with songs, vignettes, and even an appearance by BOTNS fave Yakov Smirnoff. As of now, it is still available on YouTube!

Our podcast episode

Show notes and YT playlist

Anonymous Batty insider says: "This is an interesting case because the guys relied on an upload that was not 100% complete and had some rough spots--factors that might affect the voting. This should be a huge factor in several categories, including Outstanding Performance as Oneself and Best Song. It'll be an embarrassment of riches in the song category. Does Suzanne Somers get a bump for sentiment? Reading is fundamental, but does it lead to Batty wins? We'll see."

For Your Batty Consideration: Hart to Hart (Season 11, Episode 4)

Another listener suggestion led us to the world of super-rich (but benign super-rich) Jonathan and Jennifer Hart. "What Murder?" was an interesting installment that found Jonathan getting a nasty case of amnesia. Some questionable decisions ensued, and murder was somehow one of the least appalling. Unfortunately, this show kicked off a season-long trend of shows being pulled from streaming right after we get to them!

Our podcast episode

Show notes and YT playlist

Anonymous Batty insider says: "I think the guys liked this series a lot more than they expected, but will that translate into Battys? I don't know. It does seem that they were able to separate the show from the controversy in Robert Wagner's life. Prime Video yanked the series soon after they talked about it, and it's been around but not in complete on-demand form. Is it out of mind? The fact that Rick went on about that Halloween episode a few months ago is a good sign. Hart to Hart could score well in some of the early categories like Non-Human and Hair. If it does, maybe it builds some momentum even though it is not an obvious favorite in anything."

Sunday, December 17, 2023

Top Ten #279: Special "Get that shopping down now" Edition

1) Christmas: Yes, decorations are already being marked down. Stock up for 2024! I have really picked up my holiday-themed watching the last week, focusing on things I have never seen or have not seen in years.

2) Catchy Comedy: The diginet has a marathon this weekend featuring Christmas episodes many of you probably have seen, today spotlighting the likes of Bob Newhart, Taxi, Cheers, and Night Court.

3) The Bear Who Slept Through Christmas: This animated special premiered 50 years ago tonight on NBC! Click here to listen to our podcast about it.

4) The Odd Couple: Good news: The complete series was released on Blu-Ray this week. Bad news: Don't ASSUME that the music cut from the DVDs (including many nonsensical edits) was restored for the BD. You know what happens when you ASSUME...

5) John Schneider's Christmas Holiday: 40 years ago, the Dukes star got an hour special from CBS. 

6) Perry Como's Christmas in New York: Two hours later, on ABC, another TV icon celebrated the holidays. I guess ABC put it on so late because of Como's notoriously hard-edged material.

7) Eugene Levy: Happy birthday!

8) The Bobby Van and Elaine Joyce Special: 50 years ago tonight, CBS broadcast this variety show from the couple, and a print ad to promote it touted the singing and dancing debut of Richard Thomas! (Note: The clip below does not feature singing nor dancing, but it does feature 1973)

9) Sports Illustrated: Heads rolled last week after the revelation that the website had run AI-generated stories under fake bylines. The CEO was fired, and I hope they at least gave him a free Football Follies video as part of his severance package.

10) R.I.P. Ellen Holly: The first Black regular lead on a network dayltime soap (One Life to Live) died December 6/

Thursday, December 14, 2023

For Your Batty Consideration: The Littlest Hobo (Season 11, Episode 3)

We returned to Canada to consider memorable CTV series The Littlest Hobo, a half-hour adventure/drama fronted by a mysterious canine. "Small Change" features 1980s arcade action, cranky old dudes, bumbling hoods...and MIME! Oh, yes, plenty of mime. Throw in a beloved theme song, and you get a series that may linger in the mind more than you expect.

Our podcast episode

Show notes and YT playlist

Anonymous Batty insider says: "Maybe not the biggest show in the lineup, but one that has a big pull for a lot of people. Ultimately, though, we are talking about two guys deciding the awards, though maybe the nominating committee will be generous. One thing we know is that Rick's wife Laurie has lobbied for the Hobo to be Outstanding Non-Human. That seems like a shoo-in nomination, at least. Canadian shows haven't exactly dominated the Battys, but there haven't been a lot of them, either."

Tuesday, December 12, 2023

For Your Batty Consideration: Entertainment Tonight (Season 11, Episode 2)

The winner of our infotainment listeners' choice poll was venerable syndicated hit Entertainment Tonight, and we discussed a pair of episodes, including the series premiere! It was interesting to see the peak Tesh/Hart era compared to the early days of the show, and we got a good look at a lot of different aspects of 1980s pop culture.

Fun fact: Movie critic Leonard Maltin was nominated for Outstanding Facial Hair last season for our Siskel and Ebert (and more) movie critics episode.


Our podcast episode
Show notes and YT playlist

Anonymous Batty insider says: "One of the big factors come Batty time, one the shows themselves can't control, is episode selection. BOTNS went with the very first episode, yes, but the other they discussed separated John Tesh and Mary Hart, with Mary on assignment in Boston (We still don't know why she was there, do we?). That may hurt ET's chances. However, this should be a big player in the "as oneself" category, and I'll be interested to see how that theme song does."

Sunday, December 10, 2023

Top Ten #278

1) Norman Lear: We often reserve the 10 spot for the deceased, but we have to make an exception for this icon.CBS paid tribute with a new special, and the likes of Me-TV are showing the likes of All in the Family, but I was pleased to see this rarity uploaded: An episode of 1977's All That Glitters:

2) Happy Hanukkah:

3) Bob Hope: The holiday season belongs to Bob and Bing, and, yes, that is still true in 2023. Check out Bob and Emanuel Lewis doing a Miami Vice parody with Brooke Shields in this recent upload. Yes, the special was sponsored by Texaco!

4) Opposable Thumbs: I am very much looking forward to reading Matt Singer's new book about the Siskel and Ebert partnership. Maybe Santa will bring it to me!

5) CBS Monday Night: 50 years ago tonight, the network showed the Grinch, Frosty, and Perry Como. Now, that's how you celebrate the season.

6) Who's the Boss: Hulu just added all 8 seasons of the series but refused to take a stand on who in fact the boss is. Meanwhile, we are a third of the way into the month, and the nation still awaits My Three Sons on Prime Video after it missed its announced December 1 launch.

7) The Love Boat: In the eighth season's "Christmas Show," the crew celebrates the holidays by hiring 3 Santas: Ray Walston, Avery Schreiber, and Scatman Crothers!

8) The Independence Bowl: Bowl games just aren't what they used to be. 40 years ago tonight, this game was syndicated and pitted Ole Miss against Air Force for no particular reason. The randomness of December bowl games rules!

9) Joe Castiglione: Congrats to the longtime Red Sox radio announcer, honored this week with the Ford Frick Award by the Baseball Hall of Fame

10) Theodore Wilson: Happy (what would have been) 80th birthday to a true classic!

Thursday, December 7, 2023

For Your Batty Consideration: Night Court (Season 11, Episode 1)

We began our eleventh season of Battle of the Network Shows with a look at the beloved 1980s NBC sitcom Night Court, talking about its cast changes, its variations in quality, and its place in the Eighties NBC pantheon. We are big fans of the show, and we saw that people were excited to see this as the season opener. 


Our podcast episode
Show notes and YT playlist

Anonymous Batty insider says: "Chatter around the podcast spiked when this episode dropped, but was it because people loved Night Court or because it was the first of the season? Maye a bit of both. This show will be a major contender in all the main categories and likely even stuff like the hair ones. Ultimately the two guys who vote are Mike and Rick, and they made it clear how much they enjoyed Night Court. Could be a big winner. Only thing to look out for is the show competing against itself in some divisions."

Monday, December 4, 2023

And now, a word from their sponsor: Is this guy doing a Bruce Willis?

 Check out this beer commercial, and tell me if there isn't something familiar about this guy's persona:

Sunday, December 3, 2023

Top Ten #277: Special Post-Thanksgiving/Pre-Christmas Edition!

1) Chico and the Man: I haven't seen a lot of this show, and I bet a lot of people haven't because it hasn't been in circulation much. I was pleasantly surprised by how funny the pilot was when I saw it a few days ago. Bravo to Tubi for making this sitcom available to everyone starting this month.

2) Soul Train: The Soul Train Awards, held last week, ain't what they used to be, but I like seeing the show remembered. That's right, I said the show, not the brand.

3) Melody Anderson: Happy birthday to the star of Manimal! As far as I know, she didn't get the opportunity to turn into animals, though.

4) Quarterback Princess: "What is the original nickname Jim Rome gave Jim Everett?" No, it's actually the CBS original movie that premiered 40 years ago tonight and starred Helen Hunt.

5) The Heisman Trophy: Also 40 years ago, it was Mike Rozier of Nebraska (Nobody called him "Running Back Princess" who won the prestigious award.

6) National Roof Over Your Head Day: You know who has one of the best roofs in television? Snoopy. Of course, in his case, the roof was under his, er, head.

7) Writers of variety shows: There was a flap this week over the Emmy organizers removing the Outstanding Writing in Vareity Series/Special category from the main telecast. You're playing with fire when you risk incurring the wrath of Bruce Vilanch!

8) Big John: On this night in 1983, NBC aired this unsold pilot starring Dale Robertson as a Montana cop who joins the NYPD. Sound a bit like McCloud? Well, let me give you the X-factor: Robertson's partner on the force? You guessed it, Joey Travolta.

9) From Star Wars to Jedi: Yet another program telecast 40 years ago tonight, this PBS program looked at George Lucas and the movies that were then known as the trilogy, not the original trilogy. I am sure Lucas talks in the special about how he accomplished everything he wanted to and would never change a thing about those movies.

10) R.I.P. Marty Krofft, Frances Sternhagen: