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WFLD Channel 32 - The Baxters - "Women's Roles In Marriage"(Part 1, 1980)

Here's Part 1 of the Norman Lear created "interactive" program, The Baxters, as aired on WFLD Channel 32.

It was a pretty unique idea - the first half would be a fairly normal sitcom (whether or not it's any good is another question) that dealt with some issue of the day. The second half would be an in-studio discussion group to talk about the issues raised. Each city had their own locally produced second half (except for those who chose to use the "national" version) and here in Chicago it was hosted by Norman Mark.

The first episode of The Baxters broadcast on WFLD was on Sunday, January 13th 1980 at 10 PM, and the last time it was shown was Sunday, November 29th 1981 at 10:30 PM. (Thanks to Chris Tufts - A.K.A. Phantom for his help in dating these)

This was Episode #111, where Mrs. Baxter takes Mr. Baxter out to dinner for his birthday, and they get into an argument over the proper role of a woman in their marriage.

Voiceover heard at the beginning is WFLD director Don Shannon.

This aired on local Chicago TV on Sunday, March 16th 1980 during the 10pm to 10:30pm half-hour.

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This clip aired on Sunday, March 16th 1980, and is included in the following categories:

Viewer Comments

There were actually two versions of The Baxters. The first version was more straightforward, the second version was indeed a sitcom complete with laughtrack. Each version had a different cast. Since I'm not hearing any laughtrack, I'm guessing this was the former version. Excellent find!

Also, the sitcom version had an actual theme song, which this one doesn't.

Comment posted by 4thtroika on Saturday, January 30th 2010 at 1:11am.

Wow, it's weird without the laugh track
Comment posted by OfficeDrone on Saturday, February 6th 2010 at 2:30am.

TV as agitprop...when TV began its slow but steady decline.
Comment posted by SuperCFL on Sunday, February 7th 2010 at 5:28pm.

Larry Keith who played Fred Baxter passed away July 17, 2010 at age 79 from cancer.
Comment posted by Phantom on Wednesday, July 21st 2010 at 10:40pm.

Wow. That's a shame.
Comment posted by FuzzyMemories on Wednesday, July 21st 2010 at 10:48pm.

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This clip has been viewed 3512 times.
This clip debuted on FuzzyMemories.TV on Wednesday, January 27th 2010.
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I remember Lou Antonio from an awful Monkees-inspired movie "The Phynx." Odd 'comedy' film with an all-star cast, including Richard Pryor, Colonel Sanders, the Bowery Boys, James Brown, Dick Clark, Ed Sullivan, the Lone Ranger and Tonto, and several others, mostly from the old days of Hollywood.


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Actually, I don't recall seeing this package on KABC. A few other markets that did use it though include stations in Philadelphia (WPVI-TV) and Baltimore (WJZ-TV). Some of you might also remember seeing the first 5 seconds of this clip as part of Entertainment Tonight's opening intro back in 1982.


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