“As God is my witness, I thought turkeys could fly.” That line comes from the hysterical episode of WKRP In Cincinnati called “Turkeys Away.” From a Pinterest page, a picture of Richard Sanders as Les Nessman from that episode:
WKRP In Cincinnati is one of my favorite TV shows ever. I worked in radio, although not until after the show’s original run ended. Most of the humor seemed organic. Think the “Turkeys Away” episode was contrived? It was inspired by a real promotion conducted by an Atlanta radio station, although in real life the live turkeys were tossed from the back of a truck and not from a helicopter.
Let me back up…feeling left out after new Program Director Andy Travis (played by Gary Sandy) has basically taken control of the station, Station Manager Arthur Carlson (Gordon Jump) has a big idea for an unforgettable Thanksgiving promo–drop live turkeys from a helicopter into a crowd waiting below. He keeps this plan a secret from all but one other station employee, bumbling Sales Director Herb Tarlek (Frank Bonner).
The line I quoted at the beginning of this post is the last line of the episode and is said by Carlson.
One of the lines from the opening theme song of WKRP was “up and down the dial.” That played out in real life for the show, to its detriment, as beginning in its second season, CBS moved WKRP’s day/time slot around quite a bit. In those days before easily programmable DVRs people had to watch a show live. If they didn’t know when it was on, then they couldn’t watch it.
Declining ratings caused the show to be cancelled after four seasons. Ironically, the last original episode ranked at number 7 in the Nielsen ratings the week it aired, but the show had already been cancelled. I don’t know if the public knew about the cancellation and that’s why the ratings were good.
I don’t know what possessed me to write about WKRP and “Turkeys Away” today, but I hope those of you who remember the show, and the episode, enjoyed the “throwback.”
When we decided to put our house on the market in early July so we could move to the desert, my wonderful wife and I made a little bet as to when we would actually move. She said September 18; I said November 18.
With the flurry of showings in the first two weeks after listing the house, it looked as if my wonderful wife was a lock to win. Now, there is no way we will move by the 18th of September, so the clock is ticking. Whoever is closer to the actual move date wins the bet. The stakes? No one’s business but our own, but it is a small bet more for fun than for anything else.
Is my showing/writing about a car in almost every post necessary? I love cars (duh…), but sometimes I have nothing car-related about which to write for a given post. I have to admit that sometimes I just show a car because I think that’s what the readers expect. Why do you think I write about historical car “events” from sources like 365 Days of Motoring?
Anyway…from My Classic Garage a picture of a car like the one my father bought instead of a 1965 Corvette convertible:
This is a 1965 Cadillac Deville convertible. My father’s car was light blue and I am only 95% sure it was a ’65. Cadillac built 19,200 Deville convertibles for that model year.
At the time, I didn’t know he was considering buying a Corvette convertible. He told me much later, perhaps during one of the summers I worked for him. Who knows? If he had bought the Vette, I might still have it today.
His Cadillac was the first car I ever saw with power windows, power locks, etc. Those features made quite an impression on the very young me.
My attraction to Cadillacs comes honestly. Buying a 2000-02 Eldorado after we move is still a distinct possibility. I guess showing a ’65 Deville convertible is a throwback, at least to me.
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13 thoughts on “Throwback Thursday: WKRP Edition”
Great memory of the Cadillac. I still remember the day my aunt and uncle stopped by in their new 1963 Caddy Convertible. Red with White interior. My day was made when my uncle took me for a spin. That Christmas I got the promo model.
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Good to “hear” from you, C/2, and thanks for sharing your memory.
You’re a regular reader. Do you expect something about cars in every post and are you disappointed by those few posts that are without a car reference?
You know that I am a Motorhead. Of course I expect a blog about the Automobile. But I always enjoy your other interests I am always learning something new. Keep up the great work.
Thanks for replying, C/2, and thanks for the kind words about the blog.
As markcars2014 wrote a while ago, being a “content creator” is not easy, especially without a supervisor to “order” content. I am very proud of this blog, but I have days when I wonder if it’s worth the effort. While I can no longer write that I have never received any payment for writing Disaffected Musings, you can be sure I will not get rich from this blog.
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Love that Caddy! On WKRP, every so often, I hear the WKRP theme played on SiriusXM ’70s on 7 channel. Last time I heard the theme, I realized how much I miss those theme songs. :-).
Do you realize that Les Nessman is the inventor of social distancing? He had that imaginary wall (drawn with yellow tape) around his desk. People had to “knock” to come into his office area. >grin<
LOL at the Les Nessman/social distancing comment!
I think the theme songs have disappeared so the networks have 15 more seconds of commercial time to sell. It is show business, after all.
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Loved WKRP… I’ve watched it recently on some retro cable channel… they still run some of the great shows I grew up and came of age with… Barney Miller, All in the Family, Adam-12, M.A.S.H (of course, it’s been on in reruns since it was cancelled)… I love the old Johnny Carson shows, too.
I grew up in Cadillacs… dad always had one but never bought a new one until I was in high school. He had a ’57, ’58, ’64, ’68, ’70, ’72, ’74.. I think ’78 was the first new one.. and then he switched to Mercedes Benz… ’65 was a major change from ’64 and the ’68 dad had was very similar in looks to this ’65.. the over under headlights. It was the first car we had with an 8 track player. And, the ’68 was so much longer than the ’64 he had to move the garage door out a foot or two to fit it in. My buddy, Monte and I, used to sit in the car in the garage and listen to the 8 track I had of Inna Gadda Da Vida… probably ran dad’s battery down. I was, maybe, 12..
BTW, dad’s were all four door sedans… Fleetwood, Fleetwood Brougham or whatever..
Thanks for sharing, Carl.
I actually think Cadillac still makes a good car, but the message is lost on potential under-40 car buyers. I do not like the three-character, alpha-numeric naming convention for their cars, though. Hard to know which car is the ATS or CTS or CT-6 or whatever.
Thanks for the compliment and thanks for joining the conversation.
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My uncle Frank the real estate salesman always drove a Cadillac. He said it was because he had to take clients around to show the real estate.
I liked WKRP then and now on the reruns. I liked Les but was always wondering what Johnny Fever was going to say next. Fun show that no one in the TV business would put on the air today, sadly.
Thanks, Philip. By the way, you now have the most comments out of the last 1,000 by anyone except me. I appreciate your participation.
In my opinion, the term “situation comedy” has become an oxymoron.
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