Do you remember on Dallas when J.R. would sneer about “losers” whose yearly salary wasn’t enough to buy one of his trademark Stetsons? Continue reading ‘Knots Landing’ (Season 2): Long-running series premiered 40 years ago
Sometimes you just need some soap-opera suds to kick off the holidays. Continue reading ‘Seasons of the Heart’ (1994): Good performances lift film about awful people
Mill Creek Entertainment has released a DVD and digital download combo pack of Sudden Fury: A Family Torn Apart, Continue reading ‘Sudden Fury: A Family Torn Apart’ (1993): Solid performances in true crime dramatization
It’s been over forty years since CBS’ Dallas, in its sophomore 1978-79 season, moved to Friday nights and started its run as the highest-rated TV series of the first half of the 1980s. Continue reading ‘Dallas’ (Season 2): A cheatin’, double-crossin’, backstabbin’ legacy begins
Spinning the dial the other day (which is a neat trick with a remote…), I noticed not for the first time that the daily soap opera pickins is mighty slim, shall we say: just four left on the Not So Big Anymore Three (five if you count reruns of the sublime The Doctors on Retro TV, which I never miss). Why, back in my day…(cue nursie: Gramps is at it again). Anyway, if you grew up when your Grammy’s “stories” were still the queens of daytime, you may have heard of—or been lucky enough to catch it yourself—TV’s strangest daily serial: ABC’s supernatural gothic horror romance, Dark Shadows. Continue reading ‘Dark Shadows’ (The Beginning, Vol. 1): What was it like before vampires & werewolves?
Dreamy Dr. Joe Gannon can crack my chest open anytime. In fact, he already did…when he first flashed those cold, cold baby blues at me…. Continue reading ‘Medical Center’ (Season 1): Sexy, dreamy Chad Everett solves your medical & romantic issues
It’s Thanksgiving on Walton’s Mountain, so pass the turkey gizzards and hold off on the back-sass, mister! Continue reading ‘The Waltons’: Iconic show’s 1973 Thanksgiving story revisits old romance
Welcome to the fourth DVD voyage of The Love Boat’s Pacific Princess, where the hook-ups are plentiful and the penicillin shots are always free! Continue reading ‘The Love Boat’ (Season 4): The ABC juggernaut’s highest-rated season
The golden age of Aaron Spelling TV. Wait…no! Every era was a golden age for Aaron Spelling TV, and if you were a teenager in the 1990s, you remember this “golden age” best! Continue reading ‘Beverly Hills, 90210’ (Season 1): Welcome to the 90s, high school
Peyton Place, that puritanical New England hot-bed of sex, scandal, class conflict, repressed emotions, and tasteful suffering, is back! Continue reading ‘Peyton Place’ (Part 3): 9 years later, DVD releases resume!
Well, maybe more like Getting Close to Getting Gotti…but no cigar from the Teflon Don. Continue reading ‘Getting Gotti’ (1994): Gambino crime boss gets ’90s TV treatment
All the talk this week about the 40th anniversary of Dallas’s debut got me thinking about one of the many pretenders to its prime time network soap opera throne Continue reading ‘The Yellow Rose’: 80s primetime soap could have been a contender
2018 marked the 40th anniversary of the premiere of Dallas, the CBS prime time soap opera that ran for 14 seasons, Continue reading ‘Dallas’ (Season 1): 5 episodes & a BBQ – a taste of what’s to come
“This is the continuing story of Peyton Place….”
Ah, yes…round two of the original Dynasty: the bastard child of night-time super-soap Dallas.
Classic TV fans will no doubt want to cut a slice of birthday cake today for Stephen J. Cannell, the prolific creator of such muscular, iconic tube fare as The Rockford Files, Baretta, Baa Baa Black Sheep, The A-Team, Riptide, and 21 Jump Street. For a birthday treat, let’s look at the first season of Cannell’s critically acclaimed cop/mob series, Wiseguy.
Good ‘ol Mare. I had to poke around all the way up into the 1990s to find a TV movie where Mary Tyler Moore is menaced (apparently she was too good to do cheap actioners during her series’ heyday…): ABC’s Payback, from 1997, with Fredric Lehne, Adam Scott, and guess who? ‘Ol Lou Grant!
Next up on our hit list is Rhoda! Now, you can find Valerie Harper’s 1977 NBC made-for-TV movie, Night Terror, for sale on various public domain discs, but make sure you type in Night Drive, because somehow, somewhere, this spiffy, creepy little actioner was re-titled.
Available through Warner Brothers’ Archive Collection (a real rarity, considering how few MTVs from this era have made it onto disc), ABC’s 1973 telemovie, Dying Room Only, directed by Philip Leacock, written by the master, Richard Matheson, and starring Cloris Leachman, Ned Beatty, Ross Martin, and Dabney Coleman, is a model of efficient, effective suspense.
During this Christmas season, if you want your child to believe that the world is coming to an end from greed and indifference, Continue reading ‘The Year Without a Santa Claus’ (2006): Nominee for worst-ever Christmas movie