Laser Time – Network Debuts


Fall TV premieres? Who cares?! We’re talking about the shows that launched entire networks. Can you remember what was the first original programming ever aired by your favorite channel? Laser Time is here for you…


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18 thoughts on “Laser Time – Network Debuts

  1. Weirdly enough, I think the most I ever watched of Married With Children was in the 2012 thanks to Canadian syndication and getting up at like 5:30 am on weekdays back in sophomore year of high school… (yes, I’m young)

  2. I was a teenager when the WB and UPN debuted. I enjoyed The Wayans Brothers show on WB quite a bit, Unhappily Ever After was fairly good too, even though it was a blatant Married with Children rip off. Over on UPN, I enjoyed Platypus Man, mostly because I was a big fan of Richard Jeni’s stand up; Pig Sty was an okay show as well.

    When G4 debuted, I actually enjoyed the show Arena. Talk about being way ahead of its time. Watching people playing games competitively? Who would do such a thing? The rest of their schedule was crap.

    1. RE: Platypus Man – the name came from one of Jeni’s stand-up bits he did before making the show. Also, his character on the show was just a TV chef, if I remember.

      As for Hot in Cleveland, it is a perfectly harmless sitcom that would have fit in perfectly in 1996 on some network. The show is meant to feel just like comfort food style reruns of similar, more popular shows (IE: Friends). Even new episodes of Hot in Cleveland feel like five year old reruns.

  3. Speaking of TV Land original series you guys might want to look into the Jim Gaffigan Show. I thought it was going to be some easy sitcom but it is super meta. It feels like TV Land is trying to steal some of that Louie FX thunder.

  4. Sooo many memories. I remember seeing Exit 57 on a church ski trip (we didn’t have CC until after MST had moved to Sci-Fi), specifically the bit where the kid just wants to go out but his parents keep trying to get him to say who he loves more. My very first exposure to Colbert.

    It wasn’t original programming (I think they started “Sci-Fi Buzz” the following Sunday) but I distinctly remember sitting and watching the last 10 minutes of the Sci-Fi Channel launch countdown (which had been literal weeks of video wallpaper featuring space images and clips of Star Wars, Doctor Who and random shit I don’t remember with a repetitive voiceover). It ended, they ran a fake newscast from thousands of years in the future, and then STAR WARS. It was awesome.

  5. I am uncharacteristically psyched for the new Muppet show.

    It looks like 30 Rock with Muppets, and that really excites me for some reason.

  6. The interesting thing about this type of Laser time episode is that it is very informative and interesting to listen to, even if it lacks some of the replay-ability that other episodes do have. It says a lot about my millennial status and general pop culture tastes that this kind of show is in my blind spot. A great show that made me say “well isn’t that neat?”

  7. Great show! It brought back a lot of memories, especially the Good Morning Mickey opening!

    There was one thing I wanted to add though. AMC actually had an original series 10 years before Movie Fakers. From 1996 through 1998 they produced an original scripted series that took place in a radio station in the 30s/40s. I thought it was funny at the time (NO idea how it held up). It lasted almost 60 episodes and was killed when new management took over the network.

  8. Bar trivia last week the final question was which was the first non music MTV show. Got it and helped us get third place.

    I don’t know if you guys ever did it but a show talking about the failed and ridiculous shows/specials of early Fox, WB, and UPN would probably make a fun show. Maybe a quiz of some sort.

  9. As an American Studies guy I’m actually really sad to see Boomerang go. My interest in the old cartoons I would watch on Boomerang got me interested in cultural history. Before Boomerang and discovering that comics existed before the 90’s I wanted to be a scientist, thank god Boomerang and Spider-Man steered me away from a much more lucrative field.

  10. C’mon Henry. Pete Holmes can be a little needy but he’s a really funny guy. Both of his albums are great and his short lived TBS show is a gold mine of great short videos. And “You Made It Weird” is like “WTF” for people who don’t hate themselves.

  11. The Wayans brothers opening part was a response to TV networks “Uncle Tomming” black characters to make them act white.

  12. I would rent the Winnie the Pooh “Too Smart for Strangers” on an almost weekly basis, along with the never ending story, the newsies and other random stuff from my public library. STOP, DON’T TOUCH THERE, IT’S NOT ALRIGHT WITH ME! (The full episode was available on youtube last time a checked, and if worth watching at least once).

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