Monday, December 20, 2010

This week in Television History: December 2010 PART III

Listen to me on TV CONFIDENTIAL with Ed Robertson and Frankie Montiforte Broadcast LIVE every other Monday at 9pm ET, 6pm PT (immediately following STU'S SHOW) on Shokus Internet Radio. The program will then be repeated Tuesday thru Sunday at the same time (9pm ET, 6pm PT)on Shokus Radio for the next two weeks, and then will be posted on line at our archives page at We are also on Share-a-Vision Radio ( Friday at 7pm PT and ET, either before or after the DUSTY RECORDS show, depending on where you live.

As always, the further we go back in Hollywood history, the more that fact and legend become intertwined. It's hard to say where the truth really lies.

December 23, 1966
How The Grinch Stole Christmas priemered.

The classic Dr. Seuss Christmas story combined with the animation of Chuck Jones. Horror icon Boris Karloff supplies the voice of the Grinch, who plans on spitefully ruining Christmas for the town of Whoville by stealing all the presents. Watched regularly every holiday season and beloved by children and cynical adults alike, this animated gem is just that and more. The story is from the book by Dr. Seuss. Thurl Ravenscroft (of "Tony the Tiger" breakfast commercial fame) provides the memorable bass singing voice for the tune "You're a Mean One, Mister Grinch."

December 24, 1948
Perry Como Show debuts.

Perry Como launches his long-running TV variety show. At first, the show was simply a TV broadcast of Como's musical-variety radio program and lasted just 15 minutes. Gradually, though, the program grew into its new medium. The show grew to a half-hour, then a full hour in 1955. The show ran until 1963.
Como was born in 1912 in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania. As a teenager, he worked as a barber but began touring with bands as a young man. By the 1940s, he was releasing a string of hit recordings, starting with "Long Ago and Far Away" in 1944. Between 1940 and 1955, he was second only to Bing Crosby in the number of hits released-including 42 Top 10 hits by 1958. Among his chart-toppers were "Prisoner of Love," "Surrender," and "Chi-Baba, Chi-Baba."

December 25, 1995
Actor and singer Dean Martin dies at the age of 78.

Martin was born Dino Paul Crocetti in Steubenville, Ohio, in 1917. After working as a prizefighter and a steelworker, Martin started a nightclub act. In 1946, he teamed up with comedian Jerry Lewis, and they became one of the most successful comedy duos of all time. A hit with live audiences and on television, Lewis and Martin made 16 movies together over 10 years, starting with My Friend Irma in 1949. After the duo split up, Martin launched his own TV variety show, which ran from 1965 to 1974. In the late 1950s and early 1960s, Martin teamed up with Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Peter Lawford, and Joey Bishop to perform in Las Vegas. The group, known as the Rat Pack, made several movies together in the early 1960s, including Ocean's Eleven (1960), Sergeants Three (1962), and Robin and the Seven Hoods (1964).

To quote the Bicentennial Minute, "And that's the way it was".

Stay Tuned

Tony Figueroa
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