Thursday, September 8, 2016

Forgotten TV: The Six O'Clock Follies (1980)

While M*A*S*H was rolling along on CBS, NBC decided they needed a brand new service comedy, albeit one set during the Vietnam War. What they got was a total bomb.

The Six O'Clock Follies was a spring replacement series in 1980. Six episodes were ordered, but only four aired. The show was set around the AFVN (Armed Forces Vietnam Network) news team. You've heard of Armed Forces Radio, I'm sure, but not so sure they tried television. Too costly and dangerous, you might think.

Randall Carver came over from Taxi to star in this show. Turned out to be a big career mistake, although Taxi didn't last too much longer after this. In fact, a few years later, Taxi moved from ABC to NBC to finish its run. Joby Baker hadn't done anything since Good Morning, World in 1967, which happens to be the year Follies was set in. The ensemble also included some future stars in Philip Charles McKenzie (later of Brothers), Laurence "Larry" Fishburne (most recently on CSI), whose next TV gig was the Saturday morning series, Pee-Wee's Playhouse, six years later, Bill Paxton, and Phil Hartman (later of Pee-Wee's Playhouse, Saturday Night Live, Newsradio, & The Simpsons).

Gilmore Box offers the intro. The theme song is performed by Joe Cocker.

I had heard of the show through commercials, but never saw it otherwise. No rating.

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