When Was The Original “Star Trek” At Its Height In Popularity? Pop Culture Triva

Mr. Pop History – As we all know, the original NBC run was between 1966 and 1969 – then, it was off the air. But something happened in syndication, where all 79 original episodes could be seen. The audience kept building and building. “Trekkies” loved it and began buying merchandise and Star Trek “conventions” began popping up. By 1977, the show was more popular than ever – seen on 160 stations here and 120 stations in other countries. It was about this time that Paramount began taking a second look. A Star Trek movie was being considered and (creator) Gene Roddenberry was taking feelers from the likes of ABC and CBS to continue the series.

Gary West – mrpopculture.com and www.mrpophistory.com

Loud TV Commercials – Are They A Thing Of The Past? Pop. Culture. Trivia.

Mr. Pop History – What’s amazing is – this problem dates all the way back to the 1950′s. Broadcasters always, always denied the accusation. Just a few weeks ago – back in September – Congress finally did something about it. So – let’s see if it happens. It is quite annoying. Here’s an article from a radio/TV engineering authority:

“The United States Senate unanimously passed a bill late Wednesday, September 27th, to require television stations and cable companies to keep commercials at the same volume as the programs they interrupt. The legislation, sponsored by Senator Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island, requires the FCC to adopt its recommendations as regulations within a year and begin enforcing them a year later. The House of Representatives had already passed similar legislation. Before it can become law, minor differences between the two versions have to be worked out when Congress returns to Washington after the November 2nd elections.”

60 Minutes Question. This Week In History. Pop. Culture.

From James A – Before ABC’s 20/20, they had tried another news magazine-type show. What was it?

Mr. Pop History – NBC and ABC envied the ratings and financial success of CBS’ 60 Minutes. It took ABC a while. One was something called “Seven Days” – a sort of week-in-review program. The problem – you couldn’t rerun it – and the ratings weren’t that good.

Over at NBC? Some 10 magazine shows came and went before they hit the right formula and timing. More in another Q&A.

Mr. Pop Culture Report – March 12

A Georgia man who posted a video of himself on the Internet holding a sign that said  “Elton John” must die” has been arrested for making terroristic threats. Neal Horsley, 65, was arrested in Carrollton, about 50 miles west of Atlanta, said Atlanta Police Sgt. In the video posted Feb. 28 on YouTube, Horsley held the sign in front of a building where he said John has a condo. John’s publicist, Fran Curtis, confirmed that John has an Atlanta apartment but declined further comment.

Thursday – You don’t see much of Jerry Seinfeld on his own new NBC show, “The Marriage Ref,” which he lets someone else host. But the 55-year-old comedian co-hosted “Live” with Kelly Rippa. Guest was Donald Trump.

CBS announces that it will provide 3-D coverage of the NCAA Final Four to 100 movie theaters nationwide in a move to bring this new form of sports broadcast to the masses.

Leno Ratings – The Nielsen Co. says Jay Leno averaged 5.6 million viewers last week, his first back at NBC’s “The Tonight Show” following hisill-fated prime time show. Letterman had 3.7 million at CBS. Leno took advantage of curiosity over his return and a strong lineup of guests, including Olympic stars and Sarah Palin. It was a half-million more than he averaged his last season at “Tonight.” But the second week finds the  late-night contenders at a close race – with Leno averaging 4.3 million viewers and Letterman at 4 million.

Government Reaches Further Into Your Pocket – Vertex, a company that calculates sales tax for Internet sellers, reports that the average general sales tax rate nationwide reached 8.629% at the end of 2009, the highest since the  company started tracking data in 1982. That was up a nickel on a taxable $100 purchase from a year earlier and up nearly 40 cents for the decade.

Television news this week in 1986 –

HBO will show “Comic Relief,” a March 29 benefit for America’s poor and homeless. The show will originate from the Universal Amphitheater in Hollywood and will be hosted by Robin Williams, Whoopi Goldberg and Billy Crystal. Among the comedians and actors scheduled to participate – Peewee Herman, Michael J. Fox. Buddy Hackett, Joe Piscopo, Carl and Rob Reinder, Martin Mull, David Steinberg. Jerry Lewis, Sandra Bernhard, Howie Mandel, Gilda Radner and Weird Al Yankovic.

The Movie Channel announces its new “VCR Theater” – aimed at those who can videotape movies while they’re asleep. But, do the studios like the taping of their movies? The home entertainment software business is a $12-billion-a-year business.  An 800 number will be on display for the three-hour event.

More cable – Dabney Coleman is back – The Arts & Entertainment Network just picked up all 27 episodes of  “Buffalo Bill” – the NBC series that ran in 1984.

Don’t miss the Easter Seal Telethon (Sat – March 8) – hosted by Pat Boone and Donna Mills.

TV Network Ratings – CBS And CW’s Gossip Girl Higher

ABC promoted premiere week as “National Stay-At-Home Week,” but viewers were more eager to stay home for CBS.

Even as rivals saw their returning shows decline — some sharply — during the first week of the TV season, CBS saw big growth for several series’ season premieres: NCIS, up 29% from last year’s opener, was helped by a big cliffhanger; Criminal Minds was up 34%; How I Met Your Mother rose 20%; and Two and a Half Men, CSI: Miami and CSI: NY all gained as well.

Also on the upswing: CW’s Gossip Girl, which hit record highs this month.

The gains were matched by declines for Desperate Housewives and Grey’s Anatomy from last fall (though both shows returned above their spring averages) amid bigger drops for Heroes, House, Law & Order: SVU, ER and Without a Trace.

And they eased fears that last winter’s three-month writers’ strike would have a lasting effect on the TV business as viewers fell out of the habit of watching their favorite shows.

USA Today/Mr Pop Culture

Photo – Gossip Girl Cast