I remember watching television

In the spring of 1962, I had only two TV choices

cbs eyeMark Evanier posted the openings to the 42 different television shows that comprised the spring 1962 prime-time TV schedule for CBS. Of the shows, listed at 23:45 of the video, the only shows I never heard of were Ichabod and Me, Window on Main Street, Oh! Those Bells, Frontier Circus, and Father of the Bride.

I’m not sure I ever watched Hennessey, Checkmate, or all of the anthology dramas. But I surely viewed the others, especially the Saturday night lineup of Perry Mason, The Defenders, Have Gun Will Travel, and Gunsmoke.

He also posted the lineups for NBC for Fall 1962 and ABC for Fall 1961 (both at 24:50). I recognize many, though not most of the NBC shows. Maybe it was that WNBF, the CBS affiliate was on VHF, Channel 12, while WINR was on the UHF range, Channel 40.

But I recognized a LOT of ABC shows, even though Binghamton didn’t have an ABC affiliate until November 1962, when WBJA, Channel 34 came on line. That’s likely because WNBF carried a lot of ABC shows.

Unsurprising, I ran the category  Old TV Theme Songs on a recent JEOPARDY! 

Meanwhile, Ken Levine, who has written for prime time network television, recently noted that some recent network shows, one that had been on for four seasons, had been canceled and he had never heard of them. I’m very much in the same boat.

It’s a different time. Netflix and a bunch of platforms followed by a plus sign, from Disney to Paramount. And even shows that others recommend to me I can’t find the time/inclination to watch. As a result, I’ve seen NONE of the programs nominated for this year’s Emmys that weren’t on broadcast TV.

Just a few

So what I DO watch is heavily influenced by what my daughter views. She got into Station 19, which is a spinoff of Grey’s Anatomy. These stories are so intertwined that if you were to see one without the other, it might not make as much sense.

It reminds me of when I was collecting comic books, and you didn’t understand what was going on in the Fantastic Four or the Amazing Spider-Man if you didn’t also check out a particular issue of X-Men or The Avengers.

The other thing odd about the 19/Grey’s series is that the storylines were almost a year behind “real-time” this past season. So the narratives in the spring of 2021 took place in the height of COVID and demonstrations right after the murder of George Floyd. Then in the last episode of Grey’s, but not 19, the story fast-forwarded almost a year.

I have a friend who writes, every time I mention television, that I should not watch it. Yeah, yeah, I know, I know. It’s bad for your sleep, your health, your brain, your self-esteem, maybe your eyes.

I take my blood pressure daily in the morning, before breakfast. If my wife’s had the TV on, even if it’s off the ten minutes before the reading, my BP is about 15 points higher systolic and about 10 points higher diastolic.

I’m sure watching far less, and the pandemic did not increase my consumption by one iota.


Author: Roger

I'm a librarian. I hear music, even when it's not being played. I used to work at a comic book store, and it still informs my life. I won once on JEOPARDY! - ditto.

One thought on “I remember watching television”

  1. I wonder if the bp effect is partly screen glow? I know mine reads higher if I’ve been looking at the computer – even something calming – before taking it, and it doesn’t if I’ve been reading a book or just sitting.

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