Classic TV Birthdays: January 17

Today is Betty White’s 92nd birthday. She appeared in such classic series as Date with the Angels, The Golden Girls and The Mary Tyler Moore Show. She is currently starring in Hot In Cleveland, an original comedy series on TV Land. Betty is the widow of classic game show host Allen Ludden (Password).

January 17 also marks the birthday of several stars who are no longer with us, including Andy Kauffman (Taxi), Eartha Kitt (Batman), Shari Lewis (of Shari Lewis & Lamb Chop fame) and Sheree North (veteran character actress, later played Babs Kramer on Seinfeld).

A number of classic TV stars passed away on this day, among them Richard Crenna (The Real McCoys), Don Kirshner (Don Kirshner’s Rock Concert), Allan Melvin (All In The Family, The Brady Bunch, Gomer Pyle USMC, Magilla Gorilla, The Phil Silvers Show) and Doodles Weaver (veteran character actor).

Classic TV Stars Live: Bill Cosby Tickets

Hey, hey hey! Bill Cosby, star of Fat Albert & The Cosby Kids, The Bill Cosby Show, The Cosby Show and I Spy, is on tour now.

Check out the schedule and ticket availability:

Classic TV Shows on Cable & Satellite

As a classic TV junkie, I watch most of my shows on MeTV, Netflix or DVD. I still subscribe to Dish Network but am seriously considering cutting the cord when my contract expires this summer.

Just for kicks, I went through the TV listings for a bunch of cable/satellite channels to see what classic shows (50s-60s-70s-80s) are on their schedules as of January 2014. I included some 1980s shows to pad the listings.

Even with 100+ channels, it was pretty slim pickings:

Rawhide, The Rifleman, The Three Stooges

Angel Two
Bonanza, Fat Albert & The Cosby Kids, Lassie, The Lone Ranger, The Roy Rogers Show

The Flintstones, Huckleberry Hound, The Jetsons, Jonny Quest, Looney Tunes, MGM Cartoons, The New Scooby Doo Movies, Scooby Doo Where Are You?, Secret Squirrel, The Smurfs, Tom & Jerry, Yogi Bear

Cartoon Network
Looney Tunes, Tom & Jerry

The A Team, The Cosby Show, Miami Vice

The Dukes of Hazzard

Encore Black
227, Amen, Diff’rent Strokes, What’s Happening!!

Encore Classic
Magnum P.I., Murphy Brown, Night Court

Encore Westerns
Bat Masterson, Bonanza, Gunsmoke, Have Gun Will Travel, The Life & Legend of Wyatt Earp, Maverick

Family Entertainment TV
Fat Albert & The Cosby Kids, Highway to Heaven, Lassie, The Lone Ranger, The Roy Rogers Show, Sergeant Preston of the Yukon

$100000 Pyramid, $25000 Pyramid, Blockbusters, Match Game, Press Your Luck, Sale of the Century, Super Password

Hallmark Channel
The Brady Bunch, Cheers, The Golden Girls, I Love Lucy, The Waltons

Hallmark Movie Channel
Matlock, Mister Ed, Murder She Wrote, Perry Mason

The Hub
ALF, Family Ties

The Big Valley, Bonanza, The High Chaparral, Little House on the Prairie, Matlock, The Virginian, The Waltons

Hee Haw, Pop! Goes The Country, The Porter Wagoner Show

The Twilight Zone

TV Land
The Andy Griffith Show, The Brady Bunch, The Cosby Show, Gilligan’s Island, The Golden Girls, Gunsmoke

227, The Waltons

Please let me know if I missed any channels or programs. Thanks.

Obits: Dave Madden, Russell Johnson

Two classic TV supporting actors passed away on Thursday.

Dave Madden was best known for playing band manager Reuben Kincaid on The Partridge Family (ABC 1970-74). It currently airs nationally on the Antenna TV network. Madden died of congestive heart and kidney failure…he was 82.

The last surviving male cast member of Gilligan’s Island, Russell Johnson, died of natural causes. Johnson played Professor Roy Hinkley on the show, which aired on CBS from 1964 to 1967. Gilligan’s Island currently airs nationally on MeTV and just recently returned to TV Land after a long hiatus. Russell Johnson was 89.

Our sympathies to their families, friends and fans.