Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Classic TV (?): Dance Fever (1979)

Ever wonder why Merv Griffin made the decision to revive Jeopardy! as a syndicated entry in the 80's, five years after it had ended its 2nd run on NBC?

Well, the answer may lie in the fact that Griffin already had a foothold in syndication, between his own nightly talk show and a weekend competition show that bowed as a mid-season entry in January 1979, Dance Fever. Not sure exactly when Wheel of Fortune began its syndicated run, by the way.

Fever cashed in on the fading disco craze of the mid-to-late 70's, and was hosted by Denny Terrio for the first seven seasons. Beginning with season 8, Adrian Zmed (T. J. Hooker) replaced Terrio as host, with no discernable explanation for the switch. Must've made a difference in the long term, since the series ended in 1987 after 9 seasons.

The series returned in 2003, this time on cable, on ABC Family, but lasted a little more than a month before it was cancelled.

Here's a sample clip.

Comic Freeman King was the announcer for the first two seasons, but was replaced by the late Charlie O'Donnell beginning with season 3. Now, what could've been wrong with that idea?

Rating: C.

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