50 Years of The Andy Griffith Show

The Andy Griffith Show premiered exactly fifty years ago on CBS on Monday, October 3rd, 1960. The beloved, long-running, highly-rated sitcom began as an episode of The Danny Thomas Show (“Danny Meets Andy Griffith”), broadcast in February 1960. Both Ron “Ronny” Howard and Frances Bavier appeared alongside Andy Griffith in the episode, although Bavier was not playing Aunt Bee, the character she would portray on The Andy Griffith Show and Mayberry R.F.D..

The Andy Griffith Show ran for eight seasons–the first five in black and white and the remaining three in color–and 249 episodes. It spawned a spin-off, Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C., in September 1964. When the series ended after the 1967-1968 season, it was followed by a sequel, Mayberry R.F.D., which ran through the 1970-1971 season.

Daytime repeats of The Andy Griffith Show were aired on CBS under the title Andy of Mayberry from the fall of 1964 through the summer of 1968. A reunion telefilm, Return to Mayberry, was broadcast in April 1986. A pair of reunion specials, “The Andy Griffith Show Reunion” and “The Andy Griffith Show: Back to Mayberry,” aired in February 1993 and November 2003, respectively.

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18 Replies to “50 Years of The Andy Griffith Show”

  1. CBS began repeating Andy’s show in daytime in the fall of 1964 [weekdays, 11am(et)]. However, there was an unwritten rule at the time that, if earlier episodes of a series were repeated on a network’s daytime schedule- or in syndication- while the series continued to appear in first-run episodes on the network- the repeats HAD to appear under a different title, so as not to confuse viewers {several good examples include “DRAGNET” (as “BADGE 714”), “THE LINEUP” (“SAN FRANCISCO BEAT”), “RICHARD DIAMOND, PRIVATE DETECTIVE” (“CALL MR. D”) and “GUNSMOKE” (“MARSHAL DILLON”; those 1955-’61 half-hours were repeated on Tuesday nights from 1961 through ’64)}. Because “THE ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW” was still on in prime-time, the daytime repeats were retitled “ANDY OF MAYBERRY”, and a “new” title sequence was filmed (a similar “reissue” title, without an announcer, would also be created for network/syndicated episodes under the original title as well). After Andy left prime-time in September 1968, the original title was restored for the daytime repeats until they left the network in 1969.

    The practice of retitling TV series for the purpose of syndicating them [or network repeats] while they were on the network continued into the mid-’70s {“MARCUS WELBY, M.D.”/”ROBERT YOUNG, FAMILY DOCTOR”, “IRONSIDE”/”THE RAYMOND BURR SHOW”, “HAPPY DAYS”/”HAPPY DAYS AGAIN”, “LAVERNE & SHIRLEY”/”LAVERNE & SHIRLEY & COMPANY”}. However, in 1975, CBS began repeating “ALL IN THE FAMILY” in daytime without retitling the repeats; they later let “M*A*S*H”‘s title stay the same when they repeated those on their “LATE MOVIE” rotation in 1978. And when “M*A*S*H” finally went into syndication in the fall of 1979, the title stayed the same as the network edition…and that was virtually the end of that practice.

  2. I think the last example would have been “The Rockford Files” which went into syndication before its run was over and was known as “Jim Rockford Private Investigator” its first year or two in syndication (this would have been 1979-80).

  3. I deliberately left that one out because I KNEW someone like you would mention it, ‘ejp’…when it comes to information, I’m certainly NOT a “hog”.

  4. Let’s not forget “Emergency One!” in syndication while the final two seasons of “Emergency!” were still airing on NBC.

  5. I just found out CBS’s “Cold Case” was retitled “Cold Case Files” when it went into syndication. I guess they are still changing syndication titles today.

  6. Pb, I believe the Cold Case Files seen in syndication is A&E’s documentary series, unrelated to the CBS drama.

    I’ve also been trying to come up with potential names for M*A*S*H in syndication but can’t for the life of me think of anything usable. I wonder if that’s the reason it wasn’t retitled, there simply wasn’t anything that would work.

  7. Re: M*A*S*H and syndication titles–I seem to remember it sometimes being referred to as “M*A*S*H 4077th” in syndication. I can’t confirm this, however.

  8. Actually, “McGARRETT” was an alternate title used on “THE CBS LATE MOVIE” during the 1979-’80 season, when earlier episodes of “HAWAII FIVE-O” were repeated on the network’s late-night schedule, while the last season of first-run episodes were seen in prime-time. I’ve never seen repeats under the “McGARRETT” title locally…just as I’ve never seen a “M*A*S*H 4077th” title in syndication from 1979 through ’83, either.

    There was an acknowledgment, during the end credits of “COLD CASE” (and the “complete” versions ARE shown in syndication), mentioning the fact it had no connection with “COLD CASE FILES”.

  9. Reruns Of Death Valley Days Were Seen With Different Hosts “The Pioneers” Which Had The 1955 To 1956 Episodes With Host Will Rogers,Jr,Trails West Had The 1956-1957 Episodes With Harry Carey,Jr As Host From 1957 To 1959 Western Roundrup Had The Eighth And Ninth Season Episodes With Host Elisha Cook,Jr As Well As Western Star Theatre Had The Tenth And Eleventh Season Episodes With Host Rory Calhoun In Black & White Call Of The West Had The Twelvth And Thirteenth Season Episodes In Color With Host John Payne Death Valley Days Kept The Ronald Reagan,Robert Taylor,Dale Robertson Episodes In Reruns On The Other Hand Reruns Of WAGON TRAIN Under The Title MAJOR ADAMS TRAILMASTER In Syndication On ABC In Daytime Reruns Or Revert To Their Original Title WAGON TRAIN Then TRAILMASTER Had The Black & White And Color Episodes On ABC From 1961 To 1963 The 90 Minute Version Of WAGON TRAIN In Color As Well As The One Hour Black & White Episodes From 1964 To 1965 Were Seen In Syndication Under The Original Title Wagon Train Chips Under Title CHIPS Patrol Burke’s Law Became AMOS BURKE SECRET AGENT The Westerners Under The Original Titles Black Saddle,Johnny Ringo,Law Of The Plainsman And The Westerner Kraft Suspense Theatre Under The Syndication Title Suspense Theatre And Bob Hope Presents The Chrysler Theatre Under The Title UNIVERSAL STAR TIME Alcoa Premiere Under The Syndication Title FRED ASTAIRE PREMIERE THEATRE Today Cold Case Under Syndication Title Lilly Rush With A 38 Snubnosed Or Desperate Housewives Under The Syndication Title Wisteria Lane Lassie In Syndication Under The Title JEFF’S COLLIE The JEFF Episodes TIMMY AND LASSIE The Timmy Episodes Or FURY Brave Stallion

  10. CBS Begin Airing The Andy Griffith Show In Reruns In The Daytime Under The Syndication Title Andy Of Mayberry From September 21,1964 at 11 am et 10 am CT/PT Until September 11,1970 The Andy Griffith Show Went Into Syndication On Monday September 6,1971.

  11. CBS Airing Reruns Of The Jack Benny Program In The Daytime Under Syndication Titles Sunday With Jack Benny And The Jack Benny Daytime Program.

  12. Does anyone know where the title sequence to Andy Griffith was filmed or if in fact it was an actual location?

  13. Reruns Of Death Valley Days Were Seen Under Various Titles Such As.
    The Pioneers Will Rogers,Jr,1955-1959,
    Trails West Ray Milland, 1957-1961,
    Western Star Theatre Rory Calhoun,1961-1963,
    Call Of The West John Payne 1962-1966,
    Frontier Adventure Dale Robertson 1965-1970.

  14. When Did Death Valley Days Go From Black & White To Color Sixty-Seven Miles Of Gold In Color Part Of Call Of The West. The Red Eagle Of Goose Creek In Color Part Of
    Call Of The West In Color.
    Death Valley Days In Color From 12th Season On 1963-70.
    Did It Really Please Tell Me.

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