Showing posts with label Nick At Nite. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Nick At Nite. Show all posts

Retro RePost: Memorial Day Weekend Kicks Off Nick-At-Nite's Block Party Summer

Monday, May 30, 2022

Wow, Memorial Day Weekend has come and gone already!  Technically, today, Monday the 30th, is Memorial Day, but I'm sure you have been celebrating all weekend long.  

On the other hand, I have been very busy with work and moving from one state to another.  

Since I've been so busy, and Memorial Day is the unofficial start of summer, I thought it would be an excellent time to RePost one of the articles I'm most proud of.  This article was also one of the major driving reasons behind this website.  I have always wanted to write this article, and I'm so glad I did. 


The Nick-At-Nite Block Party Summer meant a lot to me and was a very important part of my childhood.  It's hands down the most successful post on this blog, and I'm very proud of it.  The weeks of effort into collecting the data needed to write it were so worth it.   I hope you've read it already, but if you haven't, please check it out!  


Happy Memorial Day, everyone!  

ON TO SUMMER!

Retro RePost: Nick-at-Nite's Block Party Summer

Wednesday, July 28, 2021

This little blog of mine suddenly saw a spike in viewership a few months ago.  I was confused but delighted!  In looking into it, I discovered that one page gets viewed at least 20 times for every single view of any other.  Then I discovered that the same article was the number one search result on Google when you typed in "Nick at Nite Block Party Summer."

I was floored.  Number one in Google for something so special to me as the Nick at Nite Block Party Summer!  Then I realized this is WHY I created this website.  Not to be famous or be number one... but the fact that you can come to my little site and find nearly EVERYTHING you wanted to know about a particular topic without having to comb through thousands of websites.  

I've always said that people who put stuff online are saints.  You can google or Youtube almost anything, and there's a "how-to" or historical documentation there in full detail.  The people who take the time to do all of that are God-sent, especially if you are desperately looking for something for weeks, and then BAM!  There it is in full detail.  

I started this blog with the idea of writing about things I enjoyed or remembered from my youth.  I hoped to combine several bits of information from various sources and make one solid article where EVERYTHING is in one place.  Sure it makes some really long articles sometimes, like with my "Lunchbox Snacks of YesterYear" series (or my coming "Airlines of YesterYear" series), but I hope you can easily find what you need in a one-stop-shop type of place here at YYR.  


In my "Tribute to Nick-at-Nite" series, one article took the most research but was also the most important to me.  One article that represented so many summers of my childhood and so many hours of television.  This one article represents so many hours with Dad in front of the TV laughing so loud that Granny heard us next door.

The Nick-at-Nite Block Party Summer.  


Sometimes I still can't believe that this little blog of mine is the number one and two search result when you type in "Nick at Nite Block Party Summer" into Google (as of today.) 

Wow, what an honor.  

Thank you.

The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour

Thursday, April 1, 2021

I've written a few times before about my love for the classic sitcom "I Love Lucy."  Growing up, my Dad introduced me to the show during the early years of Nick-at-Nite.  As I consider them, the "Golden Years" of Nick-at-Nite, "I Love Lucy" was a staple on the network.  The Block Party Summer's "Lucy Tuesday's" and the frequent "Whole Lotta Lucy" marathons during the year were integral to building my love for the show.

I had a pretty early bedtime when I was young, and even though in the summer my bedtime would be quite a bit later, I'd usually only get to see the first episode at 9PM, or if I was lucky, the 9:30 episode.  My Dad would record them on VHS for me, and I'd watch them the next morning before starting my day of summer-time fun.  

I was, and still am, a fan of sappy series finale episodes.  As a kid, I specifically remember seeing the Happy Days finale on a Saturday afternoon rerun.  After all of the storylines were wrapped up and the episode was over, the actors came back on-screen (out of character) and said thank you and goodbye.  It was sometime around 1993, and here I am, about 9 years old, upset that a show that ended 20 years prior was over.  What can I say?  I'm an old soul with a sensitive side that likes when things get a proper ending.

Knowing this, you can see why I was confused when "I Love Lucy's" final episode didn't say goodbye.  There was no mention that it was the end, nor did they conclude any storylines.  It ended just like any regular old episode.  Lucille Ball did include her two real-life children in the background as her own sort of goodbye, but I didn't know that at the time.

Then, in 1994, Nick at Nite started running something called the "Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour" along with regular "I Love Lucy" episodes.  At first, I thought this was just another programming block like the "Whole Lotta Lucy" marathon, but it would only be an hour marathon instead of all night.  That night, Dad and I sat down to watch the first episode together.  He knew what we were about to watch, and I guess since he never explained it to me, he figured I knew what it was too.  

I was amazed to find out it wasn't an hour of "I Love Lucy" but a continuation of the story of the Ricardos and Mertzes living in Westport, Connecticut.  Except, it seemed like they were hardly ever there.  They were always taking a trip somewhere, like Las Vegas or Alaska.  

Which, honestly, suits me just fine.  As I've mentioned before in other articles, I have real wanderlust and enjoy a good "vacation" story.  The Hollywood episodes of "I Love Lucy" were always my favorite, so why would a trip to Havana, Mexico, or Japan be any different?


So, what exactly WAS the "Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour," you ask?

Long story short, it was a collection of 13 one-hour-long "specials" that aired between 1957 and 1960.  The show is considered a follow-up to "I Love Lucy" and featured the same cast of characters:  Lucy and Ricky Ricardo, Fred and Ethel Mertz, and Little Ricky.  

Confusingly, the show was original billed as the "Ford Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Show," and then the "Westinghouse Desilu Playhouse Presents The Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Show."  I much prefer the Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour moniker that was used for syndication purposes.

You regular readers of this site know that try as I might, I can't just leave you with "long story short."  

So, what really happened?

Retro RePost: Nick At Nite's Block Party Summer

Monday, March 15, 2021

Hopefully this is the last Retro RePost for a while.  But, with the success of our last one that featured my article covering the 35th anniversary of Nick-at-Nite, I figured why not take a look back at my most successful (in terms of page views and google searches) article of all time...


Nick-At-Nite's Block Party Summer!  


Perhaps you missed it the first time, or you're new to YesterYear Retro, or maybe you just want to read it again... but enjoy "Nick-At-Nite's Block Party Summer!"

Retro RePost: A Look at 35 Years of Nick-At-Nite!

Wednesday, March 10, 2021

 Another Retro RePost here, and this one I'm very proud of!

First featured on "The Retro Network," this piece covers the 35-year history of Nick-At-Nite and what the TV network-within-a-network meant to me over the years.  


Please check it out while I work on getting life settled back into a routine and finish the big feature I've been working on for a new series of Retro Movie Reviews!  

So, without further ado, please click the following link to check out "A Look at 35 Years of Nick At Nite!"


Thanks for reading!

Nick at Nite's TV Land

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

By the mid-90s, Nick at Nite was reaching the height of its popularity, and its library of classic television expanded to the point where some of the older shows beloved by all were being pushed aside to make room for fresher content.  In response, executives at Nick at Nite's parent company Viacom decided to launch a 24-hour channel to air the classic programs that had grown stale on Nick at Nite.

When the new network was announced in 1995, I couldn't have been more excited.  If you've been reading my articles this week that honor the 35th Anniversary of Nick at Nite, you'll know I fell in love with classic television at a young age.  When I read there would be a new channel dedicated to 24 hours of classic TV, I was beyond elated.


Speaking of my week-long tribute to Nick at Nite, I'd like to thank you for reading YesterYear Retro this week.  I know my articles were a bit long and packed full of information, but Nick at Nite of the 90s means so much to me, and I wanted to make sure I paid my respects and did it justice.  I had to comb through hundreds of websites and old message boards to find some of the information that I provided this week, so, hopefully, someone else looking for Nick at Nite and TV Land information only has to come here to find it all.

I often consider that when TV Land shifted towards modern and original programming, it was also the beginning of the end for Nick at Nite, so it's quite fitting that TV Land bembe the subject of my final article for Nick at Nite Week on YRM.

Nick at Nite's Block Party Summer

Friday, June 26, 2020

In honor of Nick at Nite's 35th Anniversary, I wanted to be sure to include an article about my all-time favorite television event, The Nick at Nite Block Party Summer.  This programming block on Nick at Nite was arguably the network's most popular and beloved stunt in network history and hooked a lot of 90s kids on classic television.

As a kid, I had a really early bedtime.  I remember being so upset when my parents sent me to bed while it was still light outside, and my next-door neighbor, the kid who got every toy on the shelf and everything else, was still out playing.  However, during the summer, when "Lucy Tuesdays" and the rest of the Nick at Nite Block Party Summer was on, I can still remember the sheer joy of staying up late and watching the whole night's programming with Dad.  Other than times when I was sick, and my parents let me sleep on the couch in front of the tv, this was one of the few times I remember being allowed to stay up late.  And of course, it involved classic television.


Launching in 1994, the Block Party Summer ran during July and August every summer through 2000.  After 2000, it faced a few different iterations before being discarded by the network in 2006 for weekly marathons.  In what some people call the original "Netflix binge-watching," The Block Party Summer would air three-hour mini-marathons of a different sitcom every night.  Each night was given its own branding and advertising, such as "Mary Mondays" or Lucy Tuesdays."

"Hi Honey, I'm Home!"

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

One of the best qualities of Nick at Nite during the early days of the "network" was that they were willing to attempt something new and way outside the box.  In 1991, Nick at Nite tried their hand at something new that paid homage to the sitcoms of yesteryear complete with the network's own kitschy charm.  If you read my last post, which was a Look Back at 35 Years of Changes at Nick at Nite, you know that this experiment was one my family truly enjoyed.

"Hi Honey, I'm Home!" focused on a typical 1990s teenager from New Jersey named Mike Duff who discovers that his new neighbors, The Nielsens (get it?), are the same family from the old 1950s sitcom.  Having moved to New Jersey after their show was removed from syndication, The Nielsen family faces constant culture shock integrating into 1991 American suburbia.  Mike is the only one who knows the family's secret and he helps them navigate 1990s America.  Every episode included a guest appearance by a favorite classic TV character (and storyline friend of the Nielsen family,) such as Gale Gordon as Mr. Mooney or Al Lewis as Grandpa Munster.


This show was a hit with my household.  I remember my parents really enjoyed this show because it was cute, full of nostalgia for their childhood favorites, and was family-friendly so even my brother and I could watch it.  In 1991, I would have been about 7 years old and I'm sure most of the jokes went over my head, but, I had been watching Nick at Nite with my Dad enough to get most of the references to the classic sitcoms.

A Look at 35 Years of Nick At Nite

Monday, June 22, 2020

This coming week Nick at Nite will celebrate it's 35th Anniversary as family-friendly programming during the evening hours on Nickelodeon.  On July 1, 1985, it launched with only a handful of shows and a small collection of movies.  Its library may have been small when it started, but since then, the network has added a vast array of properties and has gone through many different changes.

On the 10th Anniversary in 1995, they aired one episode of every series that had ever aired on the network over the past 10 years.  In 2005, they aired a 48-hour marathon on TV Land, the spin-off sister network, to celebrate the 20-year milestone.  Other than a few on-screen graphics, the network did not honor its 30th Anniversary in 2015.


It does not appear they plan on doing anything for the 35th this year.  So since Nick at Nite won't, I intend to mark the 35th Anniversary with a week-long retrospective of the first network for retro television here on YesterYear Retro Memories!

Many viewers have since grown disenfranchised with Nick at Nite, myself included, but there was a time for many of us that it was the only home for nostalgic television classics.

Nick at Nite 35th Anniversary coming Up Next Week

Friday, June 19, 2020

July 1st will mark the 35th Anniversary of Nick-At-Nite!

Be on the lookout for Nick-At-Nite themed content next week leading up to the big day!  It seems Nick-At-Nite won't be doing anything to commemorate the day (so far), so hopefully, you can get your fix of the retro television institution here.


This week I aim to cover an overview of the entire 35 years, as well as the transition out of retro television and into more syndicated family-friendly shows from recent years.

Something I've wanted to write about for a long time, The Nick-At-Nite Block Party Summer, will get the retrospective it deserves this week as well!

We'll also cover the transition to spinoff channel TV-Land to wrap up the week.

Stay tuned, fellow nostalgia lovers.  We're gonna take a road trip down memory lane.  Next stop, Nick-At-Nite!