Studio footage of the Jackson 5 recording “Jump For Joy” at Sigma Sound back in 1976!
In the 70’s
In 1972 M*A*S*H and Bob Barker’s The Price Is Right debut; Home Box Office becomes first pay-TV channel. Emmerdale Farm (now just called Emmerdale) premieres on ITV in the UK.
1977 in television – The miniseries Roots airs on ABC; first episode of Three’s Company. Dad’s Army ends on BBC1.
In 1973 Large-screen projection color TVs hit the market in the USA. The Young and the Restless, Match Game and Pyramid begin hugely successful daytime TV runs. Last of the Summer Wine premieres on BBC1.
In 1976 South Africa has television service for the first time; Family Feud premieres on ABC; UK punk group the Sex Pistols cause controversy and outrage by swearing on Today; a Thames Television regional early evening show.
At the start of the decade, long-standing trends in American television were finally reaching the end of the road. The Red Skelton Show and The Ed Sullivan Show, long-revered American institutions, were finally canceled after multi-decade spans. The “family sitcom”, popularized by the travails of Ozzie and Harriet Nelson in the 1950s and 1960s, saw its last breath at the start of the new decade with The Brady Bunch, which ran for five seasons. Although the show was never highly rated during its original run, it has been broadcast in syndication continuously since 1974, and many children have grown up with it, causing them to think of the Bradys as the quintessential family — not only in 1970s television, but quite possibly all of American television. In the early 1970s the high concept sitcoms like I Dream of Jeannie and Bewitched began to lose American interest with I Dream of Jeannie ending its run in 1970 and Bewitched ending in 1972.
By the mid-to-late 1970s, viewers tired of socially responsible sitcoms. Former CBS head of programming Fred Silverman defected to struggling ABC started the trend of TV centered on sexual gratification and bawdy humor and situations, nicknamed “jiggle television.” Jiggle TV shows included the crime-fighting television series Charlie’s Angels, which starred up-and-coming sex symbols Farrah Fawcett, Jaclyn Smith, and Kate Jackson and the risqué sitcom such as Three’s Company, modeled after the British series Man About the House, in which swinging single-man Robin Trip pretended to be gay in order to live in an apartment with two single women. Mildly controversial at the time, the show quickly became a Top Ten hit in the ratings.
In 1978 Dallas paves the way for the return of prime time soaps in the United States. Abarembo Shogun begins 25-year run in Japan. Grange Hill premieres on BBC1 in the United Kingdom.
On November 28, 1979, Air New Zealand Flight 901 crashed on the flanks of Mount Erebus in Antarctica, killing all 257 people on board.
In 1974 Happy Days premieres on ABC. Monty Python’s Flying Circus ends in the UK, and comes to American TV audiences for the first time. Australian TV tests color transmissions (full-time color comes in ’75.)
In 1979 43 million viewers watch Elvis! on ABC. All-sports cable channel ESPN is launched. The Pinwheel Channel changes its name to Nickelodeon. A technician’s strike forces ITV off air for eleven weeks (except in the Channel Islands) while BBC2 launches the first computer generated ident in the world.
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