Would you like to see the ABC fall promo reel from 1982? Here you go:

Remember how big of a deal it used to be when the networks would announce their new shows?

Here’s 1967:

Here is Fox’s from 1987, notable because it was the first season Fox tried to compete with the big three. Notable series introduced include 21 Jump Street and Married With Children:


Category: Theater

About the Author

Will Truman (trumwill) is a southern transplant in the mountain east with an IT background who bides his time taking care of their daughter while his wife brings home the bacon. You will probably be relieved to know that he does not generally refer to himself in the third-person except when he's writing short bios on his web page.

15 Responses to New TV Seasons, From Long Ago

  1. Wow. Those really bring back memories (except for the ’67 stuff, but I do remember the flying nun…I was born in 1973). And yes, my mom used to watch the season promos. There also were promos for Saturday morning cartoons that usually came on on Friday nights (if my memory is not faulty, which it probably is).

    A few observations:

    I actually remember the show “Duet” and watched it at the time. If I recall, it was about a couple cohabiting before marriage, and that was supposed to be something shocking, yet “on the way to being normalized, for example, by this show.”

    Tracy Ullman: I knew the Simpsons got their start there, but it’s one thing to *know* that, and another to actually see, for example, that Dan Castellenata is in the cast. I don’t know, just seems hard to realize there was a time pre-Simpsons.

    21 Jump Street: I remember the show, but don’t think I ever watched it. I remember thinking that “Johnny Depp” (from other commercials) was actually “Johnny Death,” and thought that was a stupid name.

    I remember the Geo. C. Scott as President show. The only episode I remember is one where he and his wife separate.

    Married with Children: When my sister separated (temporarily, before permanently) she stayed with us (my parents and me) and watched it all the time. When my brother separated about 10 years later (termporarily, but they got back together), he watched it all the time. I don’t have fond memories of that show.

    The Winds of War: What a production! My wife and I netflixed it (and War and Remembrance) a couple years ago. I remember being astounded at how much effort the producers/directors put into making such a story.

    the Day After: My mom wouldn’t let me watch it. I rented it ca. 2002. It was still, even then, very disturbing.

    It’s so weird how nostalgia works. Even though I think I know better, I look back on those years–where the fall promo was really a thing–as something to be missed, even though there is so much transparent (to me) commercialism, etc.

    • “And yes, my mom used to watch the season promos.”

      I should say “my mom and I.” It probably tells you something about my view of the world that I spent so much of the ’80s looking forward to such things as the fall lineup.

    • trumwill says:

      My brother was a big fan of Duet, which I didn’t really like. But then the spin-off came around, and I liked that and my brother didn’t. The spin-off was Open House, which basically dumped the boyfriend (See? Premarital cohabitation is a bad idea!) and landed the main characters in a real estate office. I developed a crush on one of the characters on that show, played by a relative unknown named Ellen DeGeneres. I can still sing the theme song to that show.

      I remember ads from Mr President, but never saw the show.

      I caught 21 Jump Street on afternoon reruns.

      I have no recollection of Women in Prison. Seems like very much an Early Fox show show, and it’s interesting to see some actors/actresses I now recognize.

      • trumwill says:

        Thinking about Duet makes me think of Mary Page Keller, who is one of those actresses that Hollywood really tried to make happen. They gave her multiple shows, which didn’t quite make it.

        Rena Sofer they torpedoed by trying to make her happen. Twice they replaced someone with her on shows (Just Shoot Me and 24) and in both cases there was a huge fan backlash and she was quickly written off.

        Also, Lana Parilla, who they shoehorned on to Spin City, gave a shot to on Boomtown, put in Lost and 24… and it just never quite happened.

        • Mike Hunt Ray Rice says:

          Mary Page Keller … Rena Sofer … Lana Parilla

          The actress who most belongs in this category is Paula Marshall.

        • trumwill says:

          Don’t recognize her, actually, though she has been in a couple things I’ve seen every episode of.

      • Mike Hunt Ray Rice says:

        I developed a crush on … Ellen DeGeneres

        So you turned her lesbian. Now we know the rest of the story.

        Women in Prison. Seems like very much an Early Fox show show

        It seems like an SNL sketch.

  2. Peter says:

    I watched the 1967 ABC promos, and of the ten or so new shows The Flying Nun was the only one I’ve ever heard of.

  3. I’m such a railfan that I noted the original Vancouver SkyTrain cars in the 21 Jump Street opening…

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