TV Guide, Volume 13, Number 13 (Issue #626)
Published March 27th, 1965
Published by Triangle Publications, Inc.
Dick Van Dyke and Mary Tyler Moore of The Dick Van Dyke Show were on the cover of this issue of TV Guide. As the scan of the front cover shows my copy is pretty beat up. But all the pages are intact. The bulk of the issue is made up of television listings around which are wrapped two color article sections running 36 pages. There are actually only 35 pages of articles; a crossword puzzle takes up the 36th page. Every edition of TV Guide contained the same article sections; only the listings section was changed. This particular issue is from the Western New England Edition.
The issue opens with brief reviews of Flipper and The American Sportsman by Cleveland Amory. He calls Flipper “probably the best new children’s show on the air, and one which is curiously engrossing, week after week, for adults.” As for The American Sportsman — a four episode documentary series — Amory laments that “the fishing is boring, the bird shooting pathetic, and the ‘he-man’ exchanges embarrassing.” On the next page, above the copyright notice and table of contents, is Neil Hickey’s “TV Teletype” from New York, with brief notes about the television industry. For example, Hickey reports that Shari Lewis will appear in two episodes of The Dean Martin Show in the fall while Robert Culp and Bill Cosby will be spending three weeks in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Macao and Japan shooting “background film” for their new show I Spy.
“TV Teletype” is continued on the inner back cover, this time for Hollywood, in which Walt Anderson reports that Pernell Roberts will not be written out of Bonanza due to the “remote possibility that he will agree to come back.” Upcoming scripts, according to producer David Dortort, will refer to his character (Adam Cartwright) attending a European university.
Anderson also reports that Celeste Holm has been signed to star in an MGM pilot called Meet Me in St. Louis while Dennis Weaver will appear in Dr. Kildare. There is also a brief “Ten Years Ago This Week” section that recounts NBC’s dedication of its Burbank studios, Groucho Marks at the front of the ratings pack accord to ARB and Marlon Brando on Person to Person.
Te fourth page of the issue contains an editorial section titled “As We See It,” in which TV Guide notes that color programming, no matter what it is, will do better than popular black-and-white programming (i.e. The Bell Telephone Hour will outrate The Fugitive in color homes). Eventually, however, there will be so many color sets and so much programming in color that ratings will not be affected all that much and there will be no advantage to being in color.
The first big article, entitled “A Visit to a Videloand Disaster Area,” has Neil Hickey reporting on The Entertainers, a CBS program starring Carol Burnett, Imogene Coca, Gwen Verdon and Bob Newhart, among others. The show premiered to weak ratings and poor reviews and then Burnett was sidelined with a neck injury, rock and roll acts antagonized Newhart (who soon quit the show) and the show’s choreographer, Ernie Flatt, quit to work with Mitzi Gaynor.
Burnett’s return was threatened by legal wrangling relating to Fade Out–Fade In, a stage musical she was to appear in. The dispute was settled with Burnett returning to the musical, meaning she would have little time to devote to The Entertainers. In the words of Hickey, her “value to the show was diluted even further by this added drain on her professional, physical and emotional resources.” The last episode aired on March 27th, 1964.
The second article, “This Actor Is No Oriental Uncle Tom,” is about Jack Soo, and opens with Hal Kanter, creator of ABC’s Valentine’s Day, recounting how he flew to Las Vegas to sign Soo. When told what the series would entail, Soo stated he would not play an Oriental Uncle Tom. Kanter insisted Soo read the pilot script and once he did, he decided to take the job. Soo’s character would be an equal player. The rest of the article offers a brief biography of Soo.
Next up is an article by Edith Efron about Lawrence E. Spivak titled “Stalking the Hunter,” about the Meet the Press moderator’s questioning style and politics. This is followed by the 86 page interior section. It opens with brief news bites, specials of note, sports, letters and a movie guide. Then the listings begin in earnest.
Following the listings is the cover story about The Dick Van Dyke Show, which includes brief interviews with Dick Van Dyke himself, Mary Tyler Moore, Rose Marie and Morey Amsterdam. Dick Van Dyke explains that the show will be ending following the 1965-1966 season because “there are just so many ideas, and we’ve used most of them.” Then there is a short article about baseball in Houston, another short article about former sports stars turned television stars (Chuck Connors, Dennis Weaver, Jack Ging and John Beradino).
The magazine then publishes reactions to a January 30th article written by Newton N. Minow and Lawrence Laurent about “the failure of present legislation governing political broadcasts and advocated new laws and liberal use of common sense.” Among those responding to the article are Frank Stanton, CBS President, Robert W. Sarnoff, NBC Chairman of the Board, Sen. John O. Pastore (D, R.I.), Mike Shaprio, General Manager of WFAA in Dallas, and Nathan Karp, National Campaign Manager for the Socialist Labor Party.
Finally, there is a one-page article on Pat Priest (a.k.a. Marilyn Munster on The Munsters). Then the crossword puzzle, the aforementioned “TV Teletype” section and the back cover advertisement for Winston cigarettes. For the record, both article sections contain at least one advertisement for cigarettes (I only saw one in each section but I admit I could have missed others).