Tuesday, August 21, 2012

A little foil on the Antenna

I thought that I’d revive the old Fairness Doctrine in this post and give those of you who receive Antenna TV in your viewing area—be it on your cable system or off-the-air with the very instrument in its title—a look at the cable channel’s Fall 2012 schedule.  Antenna TV is kind of a newcomer to the classic TV game, and though they do offer some interesting reruns to tempt the palate of the discriminating vintage boob tube fan, they don’t quite have access to the voluminous library of Me-TV.  (This is why I jokingly refer to Antenna TV as my mistress.)  Sadly, Antenna TV is going to jettison several of its rarities to make room for its revamped schedule, among them The Adventures of Rin Tin Tin, Here Come the Brides, Iron Horse, Suspense Theatre (I used to watch this back when it was on RTV) and S.W.A.T.  NewsRadio is also being retired, as well as Too Close for Comfort…a show that, quite honestly, I’m not too busted up to see shown the door.

The only new additions to the schedule are Benson, the spin-off from Soap that actually lasted longer (1979-86) than the original series, and Barney Miller.  I’m pretty jazzed about the last one though I will state for the record I wish it was one of the shows the channel would showcase on a five-day-a-week basis.  (I mean, they’ve got two hours of Three’s Company on a day, ferchrissake.  I guess we know their position on torture.)  Antenna TV is also expanding its movie franchise—which they call “Antenna TV Theater”—an hour or two a week…which would fine and dandy if they didn’t feature commercials.  (Well, you can’t have everything.)  They also set aside a block on Friday nights devoted to black-and-white classics…

Friday nights
06:00pm George Burns & Gracie Allen
07:00pm Jack Benny
08:00pm Father Knows Best
09:00pm Bachelor Father
10:00pm Leave it to Beaver
11:00pm Dennis the Menace
12:00am McHale’s Navy
01:00am Antenna TV Theater

…which I believe is the only time you can watch Bachelor Father…and starting in the fall, will be the only time you can see McHale’s Navy (it used to be on in the afternoons, and they’ve moving Hazel up to replace it).  So here’s the full schedule, which you can also download in PDF form here:

05:00am Antenna TV Theater
11:00am Adam-12
12:00pm Dragnet
01:00pm Hazel
02:00pm Father Knows Best
03:00pm Dennis the Menace
04:00pm Leave it to Beaver
05:00pm The Partridge Family
06:00pm All in the Family
07:00pm Three’s Company
08:00pm Maude
09:00pm Good Times
10:00pm Sanford and Son
11:00pm Three’s Company
12:00am Alfred Hitchcock Presents
01:00am George Burns & Gracie Allen
02:00am Jack Benny
03:00am Antenna TV Theater

05:00am Antenna TV Theater
09:00am Totally Tooned In
10:00am E/I series
01:00pm Three Stooges
02:00pm Adam-12
03:00pm Dragnet
04:00pm The Monkees
05:00pm The Partridge Family
06:00pm The Flying Nun
07:00pm Gidget
08:00pm It Takes a Thief
11:00pm Alfred Hitchcock Presents
01:00am Three Stooges
03:00am Benny Hill

05:00am Antenna TV Theater
01:00pm Three Stooges
02:00pm Adam-12
03:00pm Dragnet
04:00pm The Monkees
05:00pm The Partridge Family
06:00pm The Flying Nun
07:00pm Gidget
08:00pm Barney Miller
09:00pm WKRP in Cincinnati
11:00pm Soap
12:00pm Benson
01:00am All in the Family
02:00pm Maude
03:00pm Good Times
04:00pm Sanford and Son

With the news of the passing of one of my favorite character actors, William Windom, I’d like to think that Antenna TV would take a second stab at bringing back his 1963-66 sitcom The Farmer’s Daughter (based on the 1947 film, with the lovely Inger Stevens in the role that won Loretta Young an Oscar).  It had originally been announced at the time the channel went on the air but they abandoned plans to air it not long afterward—I think Cultureshark blogger-in-exile Rick Brooks told me that Sony wouldn’t pony up the funds to restore the repeats.  I don’t get the opportunity to do many tributes to celebrities who have left this world for a better one like I did in the past, but Windom was one of my very favorites—I knew that anytime I ran across him in a movie or TV show it would be worth my while.  His sadly neglected sitcom, My World and Welcome to It, cries out for a DVD release—when the series got a brief revival on CBS in the summer of 1972, it was the only show I was excited about seeing when Mom told me it was time to come in for the evening (something I’d usually throw a tantrum about).  R.I.P., Mr. Windom. You will be missed.

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