Fixing Hub Nights

As regular readers of this blog know by now, I’m not a huge fan of The Hub’s nighttime schedule, and would really like to see it revised. I’m not saying get rid of the 1980’s family sitcoms, especially since they seem to be working, I just don’t feel that The Hub should rely solely on 80’s family sitcoms for their PM lineup. I get that The Hub is a family network and all that good stuff, and there’s nothing wrong with that, but even to be family-friendly, Hub’s PM lineup is sorely lacking. Come on, people in the 80’s didn’t just watch domestic sitcoms and nothing else. Family-friendly doesn’t mean that The Hub can or should only run one genre of programming and no others, variety is the spice of life, and I as well as others would like to see something else on there at night.

Here’s my suggestion: keep the canceled family sitcoms (Happy Days, Laverne & Shirley, Mork & Mindy,The Facts of Life, ALF, Who’s the Boss?, Step by Step, et al) running on The Hub (so don’t worry, retro fans, I’m not suggesting that the domcoms leave the channel; their fans can have them), but place them on a block, call it The 80’s Rock or Family Time or Kickin’ It Old School or Hangin’ with the Family or something similar. Said block would run weeknights from 7 PM to 10 PM. From 10 PM to 6 AM, The Hub could run a late-night adults’ block (I don’t have a name for it yet; let’s call it Hub Nights for now), similar to Adult Swim but less stoner-y and more politically correct, consisting of both reruns of other genres besides domestic comedies as well as some original programs, both made exclusively for the channel and acquired. Some examples of what to expect on this block:

  • Retro Action Shows: Sliders, Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, Lois & Clark, The A-Team, The Greatest American Hero, Riptide, Knight Rider, Baywatch, Baywatch Nights, The Powers of Matthew Star, RoboCop: The Series, Mutant X, Farscape, etc.
  • Retro Comedy/Sketch/Variety: Carol Burnett and Friends, The Best of Saturday Night Live, SCTV, Carson’s Comedy Classics, Fernwood/America 2-Night, The Red Green Show, The Muppet Show/MuppeTelevision/Muppets Tonight, etc.
  • Retro Camp Teencoms: The Monkees, Saved by the Bell, Parker Lewis Can’t Lose, Weird Science, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, etc.
  • Riff Shows: Mystery Science Theater 3000, Mad Movies with the LA Connection, On the Television, Cheap Seats, etc.
  • Hidden Camera Prank Shows: Candid Camera, TV’s Bloopers and Practical Jokes, etc.
  • Crimefighter/Superhero/Spy Spoofs: Batman (the 60’s Adam West version), Get Smart!, Police Squad!, The Tick, Lancelot Link, Secret Chimp, The New Adventures of Beans Baxter, etc.
  • Campy Retro Cartoons and Kids’ Shows: 1980’s Transformers, G.I. Joe, Fonz and the Happy Days Gang, Laverne & Shirley in the Army, Pee-Wee’s Playhouse, The Kids from C.A.P.E.R., Going Bananas!, Krofft shows such as H..R. Pufenstuf, The Bugaloos, Sigmund and the Sea Monsters, Land of the Lost, Far Out Space Nuts, Filmation shows such as The Ghost Busters, The Groovie Ghoulies, The New Adventures of Gilligan, Star Trek Animated, etc.
Toss in some original productions and you’ve got yourself a pretty decent late night block. None of these shows are too dark, edgy or provocative, so I could see them running on The Hub (licenses and ownership rights permitting, of course) without tarnishing their family-friendly image, especially since this block would air after 10 PM, and the family sitcoms are still around and air early enough for their fans to enjoy them without interference. I’d watch a block like this, how about you?
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4 Comments

  1. I don't know if Hub actually picked up Saved by the Bell. If they did, it's probably the New Class (1993-2000), which has been ignored while the “original class” reruns now belong to MTV. Just thought that would help.

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  2. I actually said this earlier on a Toonzone thread. I do agree that seeing sitcoms that were on Nick at Nite 10 years ago isn't really that compelling, especially considering the potential for the countless shows of the '80s, such as action, crime, and sketch shows. If I could add something, I'd even add in family dramas similar to 7th Heaven or Parenthood, or teen shows like Buffy, Angel, or Smallvile. Sure it might cost a lot, and might not happen, but it would be neat nonetheless.

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  3. I would totally watch something like that.

    Just a stupid idea from the sci-fi fan in me: maybe the Hub could air some 60s Star Trek, or, if they could get the rights from the BBC, some 70s/80s Doctor Who? Air those at around 9:00 nightly to transition out of the daytime schedule into the nighttime block.

    The only problem I would see with getting the rights to those are that both Trek and Who are multi-billion dollar franchises. Therefore, the episodic rights might be a bit pricey. Also, 70s/80s Doctor Who is VERY serialised, and said serials would take up around 2 hours in full (with the exception of one season, which would take 4 hours per serial).

    Also, do some Red Dwarf. A new series aired a year ago, and that show is somewhat cheap to get the rights to. The only problem is that it is airing on some PBS stations, so the deal would be complicated.

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  4. I freakin' loved Red Dwarf. Like MST3K, Hasbro would probably have to jump through hoops to acquire it, but it did air there, I'd watch the heck out of it.

    The classic Trek aired on G4 for a while, so I imagine it wouldn't be completely beyond the realm of possibility for The Hub to get it. Not sure about Dr. Who.

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