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Dateline: Events/Week of January 22, 1997 In News, Pop Culture, Tech, Celebrity, Entertainment & Fascinating Facts


In The News

Madeleine Albright was sworn in as the nation’s first female secretary of State. She declared that the United States must never be “complacent or timid or unwilling to look beyond our borders.” President Clinton said – “Madeleine Albright has the strength and wisdom to help ensure that America remains the indispensable nation.” Her story is the best of America’s story, told with courage, compassion and conviction.”

President Clinton called on U.S. schools to raise their proficiency in science and math to the highest levels in the world – as he highlights education as a top priority for his second term.

Belgrade - Student protesters sang and danced in a three-day standoff against a cordon of riot police blocking their march against Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic.

Marshaling its arguments to quash a debate that won’t go away, the Vatican presented its most comprehensive case yet against women becoming Roman Catholic priests. The church’s long-standing argument, essentially, is that Christ was male and wanted his priests to be male and that the church can’t overrule that. The event was to present a book that stitches together recent major papal pronouncements on the issue, along with essays by theologians and scholars.

Laura Patterson (43) – a former trapeze artist from Sarasota, FL is killed while practicing a bungee-jumping routine in the Superdome – for a Super Bowl half-time show. She hit her head on the floor of the Superdome – apparently – her bungee cord was too long or didn’t work. When she came back up from the bungee bounce – she was limp. The NFL has canceled the routine.

Newt Gingrich tells his Georgia constituents that he was singled out for an ethics investigation because he is a conservative.  

The DNC raises $27 million from guests attending White House coffee klatches/receptions with President Clinton. Not bad! The President later defended his political donor’s White House visits, saying they get no more than a “respectful hearing” when they visit the White House.

Secretary of State Madeleine Albright pledges to make the promotion of human rights, especially religious liberty – a top priority of U.S. foreign policy.

Chanting Hindu prayers, Mohandas Gandhi’s great-grandson topped a copper urn filled with the last remains of India’s independence leader into the Ganges River – 49 years after his murder.


Business News – January 22, 1997

The FTC said that the Pizzeria Uno restaurant chain has agreed to stop advertising a line of thin-crust pizzas as “low fat.” The FTC said it was false and misleading advertising.

Pepsi Co. says it will spin off its food chains and concentrate on its core drinks. KFC, Taco Bell and Pizza Hut will be turned over to shareholders as a publicly traded company.


Sports news – January 22, 1997

Super Bowl XXXI in New Orleans – The Green Bay Packers beat the New England Patriots 35-21. Desmond Howard gets the game’s MVP.

Carl Lewis – the most decorated track and field athlete in history, says he is retiring in June. His final race will be June, in Houston.


Entertainment news – January 22, 1997

Comedian Tommy Chong is on a nationwide search to find a new partner – a new Cheech, who is now doing just fine in TV and movies. 

A poll of over 500 movie exhibitors says that Tom Cruise and Mel Gibson tied as the top money making stars of 1996.

Vindicated bomb suspect Richard Jewell says 20th-Century Fox will make a movie about his ordeal.


Music news – January 22, 1997

The late Tupac Shakur is named favorite rap-hip-hop artist at the 24th Annual American Music Awards. Toni Braxton and Alanis Morissette were also winners. Braxton got favorite female soul R&B artist and Morissette was favorite pop-rock female artist. Garth Brooks got favorite male country artist.

Top music albums – January 22, 1997

Evita – soundtrack

Tragic Kingdom – No Doubt

Sublime  Sublime

Rhyme & reason – soundtrack

Falling Into You – Celine Dion

The Preacher’s Wife – soundtrack

Don Killuminati – Tupac Shakur

Keith Sweat – Keith Sweat

Secrets – Toni Braxton

Romeo & Juliet – soundtrack

Tha Doggfather – Snoop Doggy Dogg

Bow Down – Westside Connection

Death Row’s Greatest Hits – Various artists


The late Tupac had all kinds of material left – especially from his 1995 “All Eyez on Me.” Some of it will be released. Meantime – his album is in the top-10 “The Don Killuminati” and – the Gramercy Pictures comedy starring him and Tim Roth opens in wide screen release this week. All-in-all – Shakur has some 150 unreleased songs.


Television news – January 22, 1997

Bill Cosby, appearing on “60 Minutes” – described his anguish over his son’s murder and acknowledged having an extramarital affair. Also this week, he returns to work on his sitcom, which has been shut down.

TCI (cable) says it will reinstate MTV and sister VH1 – which it dropped on several it its major cable systems – due to public outcry. TCI set off a big concern when it dropped VH-1, MTV, Lifetime, WGN, Comedy Central and E! to make room for new services that were offering to pay for carriage. Up to 1 million subscribers were affected.

Bill Cosby puts off a guest star role in “Touched by an Angel” due to the death of his son.

On Super Bowl Sunday – MTV counter programs in its 4th annual “Butt-Bowl” – featuring two Beavis and Butt-Head cartoons. 

 Wow – Tom Selleck guests on “Friends” this week – on NBC Must See Thursday!

Wow – Kato Kaelin is going on “BZZZ!” to look for a date/love match. The show is seen in syndication.

Jamie Gertz lands a recurring role on ER as psychiatrist Nina Pomerantz.


Friday night television listings/TV guide - week of January 22, 1997

CBS – Dave’s World, Everybody Loves Raymond, JAG, Nash Bridges, Dave Letterman

NBC – Dateline NBC, Figure Skating, Jay Leno, Conan O’Brien

ABC – Family Matters, Boy Meets World, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, Clueless, 20/20, Nightline, Politically Incorrect w/Bill Mahr

Fox – Sliders, Milenium

PBS – Washington Week, Wall St. Week

VH1 – Pop up video, RuPaul Show, Movie, Sex Appeal


On David Letterman – A repeat with the Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Steven Seagal.

On Jay Leno – New show – Gemini Barrett, Geraldo Rivera


Top TV Shows/Ratings – January 22, 1997

Super Bowl XXXI (FOX) – 87.87 million viewers

Super Bowl Postgame – 57.58

ER – 35.09

Seinfeld – 29.86

X-Files – 29.10

Naked Truth – 25.91

Friends – 24.70

The Single Guy – 22.15

Frasier – 19.08

Home Improvement – 18.93

NUPD Blue – 18.89

PrimeTimeLive – 18.75

Cosby – 18.54

20/20 – 17.99

Mad About You – 17.63

Carline in the City – 16.76

The Drew Carey Show – 16.17

Dateline NBC (Fri.) – 16.16

Walker, Texas Ranger – 15.77

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