Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The Joey Bishop Show

This sitcom was on for four seasons, 1961-1965. I have no memory it. I remember his late night talk show on ABC in the late 60's, but this one escapes me.

I looked back on the network schedules and noticed that Joey's competition included 'Top Cat', 'Bonanza' and 'Lawrence Welk'. I loved 'Top Cat' and 'Bonanza' and remember that my mom always watched 'Lawrence Welk'. So that kind of explains it.

But it is still odd, because I would guess that between 1963 and 1980, I saw pretty much every show at least once. Even the 13-weekers. And I remember most of them. You'd think I would've at least been aware of this 'Joey Bishop Show', considering it was on for four years!

It could be because the show was so dull that I blanked it out. This may be the case, because I recently had the displeasure of seeing a few episodes on Retro TV (RTV).

The only way to describe it is that it's like 'The Dick Van Dyke Show', but without any laughs and a terrible star. It was made by Danny Thomas' company, which also did 'Dick Van Dyke', so I guess they were going with the same kind of look-and-feel. Joey even has a 'show business' job, like Rob Petrie. Joey is a TV Talk Show host, a premonition of the real Joey's next gig.

Unlike Dick, who was funny and lovable, Joey is just boring. Even worse, he does some occasional 'winks' and speaks to the camera. A bad thing for a guy we don't like in the first place.

But there is one interesting thing about 'The Joey Bishop Show'. When it started on NBC, it was in color. For it's final season, it switched over the CBS, which didn't have any color programming at the time. So 'Joey' went to black-and-white.

It is, apparently, the only show in the history of television to begin it's run in color and end it in black-and-white.


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