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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 2390 times.
This clip debuted on FuzzyMemories.TV on Wednesday, January 27th 2010.
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Most Recent Site Comments

Comment posted in WSNS Channel 44 - Sign-On & ONTV Transition (1985) by FuzzyMemories on Wednesday, May 27th, 2015 at 12:29pm CT

Just to verify (which it turns out "Zappi" did ID back in 2010) - the music at the end during the transition to ONTV is "The Chicago Theme (Love Loop)" by Hubert Laws.


Comment posted in WGN Channel 9 - The 1985 Chicago Automobile Show Special (First 10 Minutes, 1985) by ChrisBCritter on Thursday, May 21st, 2015 at 3:34am CT

Check out the technician fleeing the shot at 3:45 as the Camaro comes into view! Lucky his yellow shirt matched the car to help camouflage his exit...


Comment posted in WMAQ Channel 5 - NewsCenter5 - "Mount St. Helens" (1980) by OldTVNut on Wednesday, May 20th, 2015 at 11:26am CT

Am I the only person who thinks that Jerry Taft should be surprised on his next birthday with this clip?


Comment posted in McDonald's - "We Do It All For You" (Commercial, 197?) by T.K. on Friday, May 15th, 2015 at 11:21pm CT

Can't beat the million-dollar sound of a jingle performed by the Ron Hicklin Singers. Even after 40 years, "At McDonaaaald's..." still sticks to the brain. It's been so long since a memorable uptempo jingle has been used in a national ad campaign, using one would stand out against all the maudlin and futuristic aural wallpaper used today.

If I'm not mistaken, that's a billboard for Ronrico rum visible through the window at 0:35. Even though no one at home was going to be putting this spot on "pause" in 1975, it surprises me they let that slip into something so tightly produced.


Comment posted in WGN Channel 9 - The 1985 Chicago Automobile Show Special (First 10 Minutes, 1985) by FuzzyMemories on Friday, May 15th, 2015 at 11:05pm CT

T.K. - You're correct - I hadn't noticed that, but this is the last regular appearance of Frazier Thomas on Family Classics that has yet been found. I don't have the opening for "The Black Swan" but I do have the last half hour or so including the complete ending, some of which you see here. I'll have to give this a proper posting at a later time.


Comment posted in WGN Channel 9 - The 1985 Chicago Automobile Show Special (First 10 Minutes, 1985) by T.K. on Friday, May 15th, 2015 at 10:37pm CT

Less than two months before the death of Frazier Thomas... am I right in that this is the latest of his regular appearances to have surfaced so far? (I'm not counting the clips used in the retrospective stories in April.)

The intro music to the car show sounds like it came from this catchy number used on the CHEK-TV Friday Night Movie in 1981. WGN's recording sounds like it came from someone holding a mic up to a record player in their basement, however. I'd love to hear it in full.


Comment posted in WTTW Channel 11 - Doctor Who - "The Leisure Hive" (Opening & Technical Difficulties Moment, 1983) by Detroit4Chicago on Friday, May 15th, 2015 at 7:00pm CT

She sounds as if she's doing an ad-lib news report on NPR's All Things Considered.


Comment posted in McDonald's - "We Do It All For You" (Commercial, 197?) by Micronaut on Thursday, May 14th, 2015 at 6:07pm CT

Correct me if I am wrong BUT is that Dee Wallace at 0:29??


Comment posted in Coke - "Verbose Challenge" (Commercial, 1977) by Detroit4Chicago on Monday, May 11th, 2015 at 10:43pm CT

Pete: "The guy that does the V/O for Forensic Files?"

Yep. Still going after all these years!


Comment posted in Coke - "Verbose Challenge" (Commercial, 1977) by Pete on Saturday, May 9th, 2015 at 11:49pm CT

The guy that does the V/O for Forensic Files?


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