Vote for the Next Television Obscurities Article

Here’s your chance to help decide which article I should write next. You can vote using the poll on the right (under the Amazon.com ad). Personally, I’m partial to The Strange Case of “Selena Mead” but I have a feeling “Coronet Blue” will win the day. I’ll keep the poll open until 11:59PM on Sunday, December 14th and try to have the article up by January 1st, 2009. But no promises.

“90 Bristol Court”: An umbrella title for three separate sitcoms (Karen, Harris Against the World and Tom, Dick and Mary), this ninety-minute series debuted on NBC in October of 1964. Broadcast from 7:30-9PM on Mondays, it suffered in the ratings and two of the three installments were soon canceled. Only Karen finished out the season.

“Coronet Blue”: This hour-long drama has developed something of a cult following due to the mystery surrounding the plot. In the series, a man is pulled out of a river with no memory of his past aside from two words: coronet blue. He gives himself the name Michael Alden and attempts to uncover who he is and why people are trying to kill him. He never finds out. Coronet Blue ended after only eleven of its thirteen episodes had aired (not that the last two provided any answers). Almost as intriguing as the mystery of Michael Alden is what went on behind the scenes: Coronet Blue was produced in 1965 but didn’t air until 1967.

Nielsen “Black Weeks”: Until the mid-1970s, the A.C. Nielsen Company (now Nielsen Media Research), which provided the networks with the all-important ratings information, would not release national ratings information four weeks out of the year. During these so-called “black weeks,” the networks would fill their schedules with plenty of repeats and the occasional “prestige” program (documentaries, specials, adaptations of classic novels).

The Strange Case of “Selena Mead”: Polly Bergan was signed to star in a half-hour series based on Patricia McGerr’s short stories featuring secret agent Selena Mead. The stories, published in The Los Angeles Times‘s “This Week” supplement, saw Selena — a spy — off on missions for Section Q. Although scheduled by CBS for its 1965-1966 season, the series never materialized.


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