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Whatever Happened To TV On Saturdays.


DM72

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I remember back in the 80's growing up, Saturday was THE day of the week. Back then, all three networks aired cartoons for hours. There was pro wrestling (NWA, WWF). There was Soul Train, American Bandstand and maybe Solid Gold (remember that show). Also on Saturdays back in the day, I remember that westerns, karate flicks and monster movies were quite popular. Since I lived in Western New York we got the canadian stations and I rebember watching the sport of curling. Who can forget the Wide World of Sports? What about all those fishing shows that used to come on? Bill Dance (who I think is still on) Fishing with Roland Martin, and The Orlando Wilson Fishing Show (I can still remember that theme) were great late afternoon shows.

Today, we have none of that. I was flipping through channels this past Saturday and found that most of the network channels were airing informercials all the way up til around 3:00pm. Yeah, we might have more channels and multi media, but give me what we had in the 80's anyday over what we have now.

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it the late 60s early 70s Saturday morning was so big we had preview shows for it on the Friday before the premiere of the season, and it was the talk of my elementary schools. I recall the week leading up to the big saturday cartoon premieres .. there was such a buzz among us 2nd graders. Advertising in all the comic books (which we could buy from 7-11 for 12 cents.)

~Bang

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As far as Wide World is Concerned, once ESPN became a major force in sports TV, it kind of became obsolete. ESPN is, in a way, just a 24/7 viewing of Wide World (though it doesn't have as many of the quirky sports).

Soul Train, American Bandstand and Solid Gold all became passe once MTV and BET became a cultural phenomenons (though it doesn't really serve the same purpose it used to). I'm surprised Soul Train stayed on the air as long as it did.

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it the late 60s early 70s Saturday morning was so big we had preview shows for it on the Friday before the premiere of the season, and it was the talk of my elementary schools. I recall the week leading up to the big saturday cartoon premieres .. there was such a buzz among us 2nd graders. Advertising in all the comic books (which we could buy from 7-11 for 12 cents.)

~Bang

I remember that. Those Friday night preview of the upcoming Saturday morning season shows were usually hosted by a star of one of the networks primetime shows.

---------- Post added June-9th-2011 at 12:16 PM ----------

As far as Wide World is Concerned, once ESPN became a major force in sports TV, it kind of became obsolete. ESPN is, in a way, just a 24/7 viewing of Wide World (though it doesn't have as many of the quirky sports).

Soul Train, American Bandstand and Solid Gold all became passe once MTV and BET became a cultural phenomenons (though it doesn't really serve the same purpose it used to). I'm surprised Soul Train stayed on the air as long as it did.

BET has never become a cultural phenomenon.

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The same thing that happened to everything on "free" tv - cable and infomercials.

Pro wrestling was awesome for small, local stations, UHF stations, and burgeoning cable stations because there was a lot of it, it was cheap as hell to air, and it drew ratings. Every region had a fairly large wrestling "league" that could afford a tv show that had production values of the local nightly news show in Terre Haute, Indiana. All those leagues are gone.

So, your choices are expensive syndicated shows - or infomercials where the station actually gets paid.

As for cartoons, they all moved to cable.

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I use to set an alarm clock to watch Hong Kong Phooey, sometimes a bit early and watching the station sign on, SIGN ON. How many remember the national anthem montage some stations had?I think it ended with the astronaut on the moon? That doesn't happen anymore.

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I use to set an alarm clock to watch Hong Kong Phooey, sometimes a bit early and watching the station sign on, SIGN ON. How many remember the national anthem montage some stations had?I think it ended with the astronaut on the moon? That doesn't happen anymore.

I'm not sure, but I believe atleast one of our stations still have the national anthem montage.

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Cartoons are now on 24x7 on cable (and some are gret. Phinnes and Ferb rock).

Movies are on demand and are one a thousand cable networks.

Wide World of Sports - like someone said - ESPN (and other sport channels).

etc...etc....

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Yeah, Saturday morning cartoons were great. Underdog, Rocky & Bullwinkle, Looney Tunes, Scooby-Doo, etc. Now cartoons are available all the time and as such the anticipation and feeling of "specialness" that something in limited availability provides isn't there anymore. Always leave them wanting more...

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I remember back in the 80's growing up, Saturday was THE day of the week. Since I lived in Western New York we got the canadian stations and I rebember watching the sport of curling.

remember "The Hilarious house of frightenstien"? another Canadian classic. or how about Mr. Dressup?

oGgqvmKxbv2fyB8.jpg characters of THHOF

Mr_Dressup.jpg Mr Dressup, Casey & Finnegan

You mentioned the big networks, but I have wondered what has happend to all TV networks. In the smae time period you are talking about, A&E launched in 1984, and I can remember them airing operas, ballets, symphony concerts, documentaries and about the lowest form of Art or Entertainment they had on was A&E's an evening at the Improv or Caroline's Comedy Hour. Now look at their shows: Billy the Exterminator, Dog the Bounty Hunter, Gene Simmons Family Jewels, Hoarders, Parking Wars and Storage wars. What in gods name does any of those shows have to do with Art or Entertainment?

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For me, Saturday mornings used to be:

Cartoons - besides those mentioned: Milton the Monster, Quick Draw McGraw, , Tennesee Tuxedo, George of the Jungle, Secret Squirrel, Atom Ant, Underdog, Cool McCool, Magilla Gorilla

Abbott & Costello

The Bowery Boys & Dead End Kids

Lil' Rascals

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If you were puffin' stuff:

cshdzAtBW4M

Little known fact: Paul Simon was added to the credits for the theme song when he successfully sued The Kroffts; Simon claimed that the theme ripped off his song "The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin' Groovy)

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it the late 60s early 70s Saturday morning was so big we had preview shows for it on the Friday before the premiere of the season, and it was the talk of my elementary schools. I recall the week leading up to the big saturday cartoon premieres .. there was such a buzz among us 2nd graders. Advertising in all the comic books (which we could buy from 7-11 for 12 cents.)

~Bang

I remember those days as well. Only problem was that they'd get me all worked up for the new cartoons and such,and I'd have to wait like,a whole sometimes to see them. Geez that was forever. :silly: I distinctly recall my dad yelling out to my brother and I that cartoons were about to start. We left skid marks getting to the t.v..

Sigh. Now you all have gone and done it. :mad: :sad:

;)

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Banana Splits had some great little cartoons within the show as well. And Danger Island. :)

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I remember watching the revolving door of Saturday morning cartoons in the early 90's. I loved Saved by the Bell at the time (still do), and WWF SUPERSTARS midday.

There is nothing on nowadays worth turning on regular TV on Saturday anymore. There's no Walker equivelent on at night. America's Most Wanted is going away. There's no Disney movie on ABC anymore. There's nothing.

And TV stations wonder why people are flocking towards Netflix. There is specific content we want and we will pay a fair price for it.

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As far as Wide World is Concerned, once ESPN became a major force in sports TV, it kind of became obsolete. ESPN is, in a way, just a 24/7 viewing of Wide World (though it doesn't have as many of the quirky sports).

You can still catch some quirky sports on the Wide World of Sports Show. :pfft:

Anyway, as far as Saturday morning cartoons go, nothing will ever - ever - top Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

teenage_mutant_ninja_turtles_1988-show.jpg

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remember "The Hilarious house of frightenstien"? another Canadian classic. or how about Mr. Dressup?

oGgqvmKxbv2fyB8.jpg characters of THHOF

Mr_Dressup.jpg Mr Dressup, Casey & Finnegan

I have to say I don't remember those shows.

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I guess you can call my generation the last of the Saturday Television. I remember watching cartoons on Saturday Mornings until noon. Go outside and play the whole day and then come back in the house and watch Walker Texas Ranger, Early Edition, and later on, The District. Nowadays, I can't even say when was the last tine I watched TV on a Saturday that didn't have anything to do with sports.

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I guess you can call my generation the last of the Saturday Television. I remember watching cartoons on Saturday Mornings until noon. Go outside and play the whole day and then come back in the house and watch Walker Texas Ranger, Early Edition, and later on, The District. Nowadays, I can't even say when was the last tine I watched TV on a Saturday that didn't have anything to do with sports.

I think ABC's Disney 1 Saturday Morning was the last big hurrah of the Saturday morning cartoon block on basic cable. That said, Recess was one of the greatest cartoons ever. So at least we got to see it go out with a bang.

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I think ABC's Disney 1 Saturday Morning was the last big hurrah of the Saturday morning cartoon block on basic cable. That said, Recess was one of the greatest cartoons ever. So at least we got to see it go out with a bang.

1 Saturday Morning was indeed great.

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