WKRP in Cincinnati aired its last episode this week back in 1982. The show aired for four seasons starting in Sept 1978.
The show was created by Hugh Wilson and was based on his experience working at top forty radio station, WQKI in Atlanta. Originally airing on Monday nights at 8 pm, the show had to go up against Welcome Back Kotter and Little House on the Praire. Ratings were not good and the show actually went on hiatus for eight weeks. When it returned, the ratings went up thanks to being in a great time slot right after M*A*S*H. CBS moved the show back to Monday at 8 pm during the second season. The show continued to move around and each time, it lost viewers.
The final show aired on April 21, 1982, and was actually ranked at #7 in the weekly ratings. In the years following the cancellation, the show became a hit in syndication. Due to this success, a spinoff, The New WKRP in Cincinnati was created for syndication in 1991 and aired for two seasons.
Click the image to watch the 1st episode of WKRP in Cincinnati via Amazon Prime.
The #1 Country album this week in 1979 was The Gambler by Kenny Rogers. The album went on to sell more than 35 million copies. The title track and She Believes in Me also went to number one on the country singles charts.
The Gambler was a huge cross over singles hit that made it to #16 on the pop chart and #3 on the easy listening chat. In 1980, A made for TV movie based on the song aired on CBS. The film was so successful that four sequels were also produced.
Dallas premiered on CBS in 1978. A year later it was moved to Friday night and became part of a blockbuster lineup along with The Incredible Hulk and The Dukes of Hazzard. That same year it was a top 15 show of the entire season. The next year it was top 10, and for the following five years, it was the #1 or #2 show of the year.
The episode revealing who shot J.R. was watched by 90 million people. Night time soaps were a staple of Gen X era TV, and without a doubt, Dallas was King of all of them. After the show was canceled in 1991, three Dallas TV movies aired and in 2010, TNT revived the show for three seasons.
What are your thoughts and memories of the show and why do you think it was such a huge success?
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