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WBBM Channel 2 - How the Grinch Stole Christmas (Excerpts, 1975)

Here's some surviving excerpts of the 1975 airing of a holiday perennial, the animated adaptation of Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas on WBBM Channel 2. Includes:

A more complete "Season's Greetings" WBBM Station ID, with the same bumper slide as on here (voiceover by ??) - followed by CBS "bong"

Animated "A CBS Special Presentation" bumper

Opening titles of How the Grinch Stole Christmas

How the Grinch Stole Christmas opening sponsor billboard (for Kellogg's cereals - "Your Best Days Start with Breakfast," and Nestle - makers of Crunch, $100,000 and Choco-Lite candy bars, and Quik chocolate drink mix "for you and your family") (voiceover by ??)

Final moments of last scene of How the Grinch Stole Christmas

How the Grinch Stole Christmas closing sponsor billboard (products same as on opening billboard) (voiceover by ??)

Closing credits of How the Grinch Stole Christmas (with voiceover promos by Bill Martin)

This aired on local Chicago TV on Friday, December 12th 1975.

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This clip aired on Friday, December 12th 1975, and is included in the following categories:

Viewer Comments

CHOCO-LITE!!!! That's the chocolate bar I was trying to remember.
Comment posted by NuBnPrnc2k on Tuesday, November 29th 2011 at 7:45am.

End credits promo V/O added to clip description.
Comment posted by W.B. on Tuesday, November 29th 2011 at 12:14pm.

What is the "CBS bong" anyway? When did they stop using it?
Comment posted by FuzzyMemories on Tuesday, November 29th 2011 at 4:06pm.

Funny you should ask. The CBS "bong" sounded almost like a piano note. I personally measured the sound as being 433 Hz modulated by a faint 866 Hz. It was heard at the top of the hour for the purpose of signaling the start of a network feed. It can still be heard to this day on WBBM Newsradio 780 (and where I live in NYC, WCBS Newsradio 880 - and countless other CBS Radio affiliates across the nation) before the hourly CBS News updates. It was last used on the TV side around the late 1970's or early '80's.
Comment posted by W.B. on Tuesday, November 29th 2011 at 4:12pm.

A lot of TV programming on all the networks no longer start at the top of the hour. It's not uncommon for a show to start at say, 8:59:30 PM or even at say, 10:01:10 PM. The networks often air network commercial breaks at the top of the hour. Therefore, the use of tones at the top of the hour aren't practical at all anymore. I sure do miss them though. NBC Television had a "beep" at the start of their shows. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N2dWhjB8_0U&feature=related :12 into video. Although this was used in this instance for radio, I use to hear this on WMAQ-TV and WNDU-TV, South Bend before the NBC peacock would air all the time when I was little.
Comment posted by Matt on Tuesday, November 29th 2011 at 7:34pm.

NBC's "beep" (both on radio and TV) from the 1960's into the '70's was about 750 Hz, lasting about :00.5 seconds, and sounded like a combo of sine, square and sawtooth (with sine being the louder, of course). (And the opening and closing V/O on that clip was the late Bill Wendell, in-between being sidekick to Ernie Kovacs and becoming David Letterman's first NBC announcer.) It should be noted that this kind of tone with that kind of length lasted on at Philadelphia radio station KYW 1060 AM for many, many years after it switched to the current all-news format way back in September 1965; last I checked, the frequency of that tone was 787 Hz.

The other factor about TOH (and even BOH) tones today is the digital delay applicable at many radio stations today, with anywhere from 8 to 20 second drift after the exact time. (And don't get me started on the lag between picture and sound, with a lot of times looking like a badly dubbed Japanese monster movie where the lip movements don't match what's being spoken.)

Comment posted by W.B. on Tuesday, November 29th 2011 at 8:02pm.

Was this from a Betamax tape recorded on BI speed (from the Betamax console) or a U-Matic tape?
Comment posted by Betamax75 on Thursday, December 1st 2011 at 12:41am.

@Betamax75 - No actually, this clip, along with the Grinch clip, WGN White Christmas broadcast segment, the ""Dart Gun Fun" clip, and Dominick's 1977 Turkey commercial were all from EIAJ open-reel 1/2" tape - same batch that I got at the beginning of this year. I have so many tapes left that we still need to transfer. I am going to need to do another fundraiser soon to finance some of these.
Comment posted by FuzzyMemories on Friday, December 2nd 2011 at 11:06pm.

"Now stay tuned for The Frosty the Snowman!"
oops.
...but first this public service announcement from The Smokey The Bear... :)

Comment posted by ChrisBCritter on Saturday, December 3rd 2011 at 2:16pm.

Anyone notice anything else strange about the ending voiceover? A flub, perhaps? ;-)
Comment posted by FuzzyMemories on Saturday, December 3rd 2011 at 2:55pm.

There was no flub that I know of; the audio briefly faded due to a tape dropout. No, Martin clearly intoned, "Now stay tuned for 'Frosty the Snowman'." If you've heard audio tape dropouts on some music, you'd know what I mean. However, the way he said it, it almost sounded like, "Now stay tune for..."
Comment posted by W.B. on Saturday, December 3rd 2011 at 3:17pm.

"Monday, the p---- gang..." - no one else hears this but me? :-)
Comment posted by FuzzyMemories on Saturday, December 3rd 2011 at 3:50pm.

You're right - no extra "the" - oh well. In the immortal words of Emily Litella: "Never mind."

And now that you mention it, Fuzzy, it does sound like - uh, that...

Comment posted by ChrisBCritter on Saturday, December 3rd 2011 at 3:51pm.

Again, Bill Martin did seem to have a peculiar way of pronouncing some things from time to time. But the way he said the word sounded more like rhyming with "Venus." And his pronunciation of the lead character's first name sounded almost like the nickname of former Cubs manager, and member of the 1961-65 "College of Coaches," and announcer for much of the 1960 baseball season, "Jolly Cholly" Grimm.
Comment posted by W.B. on Saturday, December 3rd 2011 at 5:26pm.

The V/O on the station ID is Ed Roberts (compare with other clips featuring his voice and 1974 TV 2 News at 6 open).

And here's an example of NBC's TOH "beep" on TV. This was recorded off WMAQ-TV (!) on December 10, 1974, right before a Kraft-sponsored Andy Williams Christmas special. However, the tone in this example was 747/748 Hz (thanks for the measurement, W.B.).

@W.B.:
I saw a clip on YouTube from 1980 where the CBS "bong" was still being used, so they continued to used it until the early '80s.

EDIT: I.I.R.C., the clip with the CBS "bong" was from WCCO-TV in the Twin Cities.

Comment posted by IAmNomad on Thursday, December 13th 2012 at 1:19am.

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This clip has been viewed 1822 times.
This clip debuted on FuzzyMemories.TV on Monday, November 28th 2011.
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Most Recent Site Comments

Comment posted in Marriott's Great America (Commercial, 1979) by pvx on Thursday, September 18th, 2014 at 12:49am CT

In reply to Szake's, T.K.'s, and Fuzzy's comments regarding the letters flashing in the corners of the screen at the beginning--I have seen this as well in other national TV commercials on film from this era.

I have a really good hunch as to what this is--going from my experience working master control in local commercial television and handling the physical airing of commercial spots (albeit much later in the early 2000s on videotape and satellite-delivered video files for on-air playout, as opposed to the film print this commercial is most likely from), this is more than likely an ISCI (Industry Standard Commercial Identifier) code, an unique 4 letter & 4 number identification code assigned to national commercial spots that receive national network and/or local affiliate airing. Each ISCI code is unique to the spot for identification for advertisers, ad agencies, post-production staff, and the station's/network's traffic/logging, ad sales, and and master control personnel. A typical ISCI code is usually in the format of ABCD1234.

I'd hazard to guess that it must of been the industry standard in the 70s to have the ISCI code digits show up on the corners of the first few film frames of the spot, to ease identification for the master control/projectionist/editor at a station to know what spot it was while splicing it together with other commercial films to make a spot reel (or when threading the spot by itself up in a film-chain projector) for airing in a local commercial break.

When the transition to delivering commercials to stations/networks on videotape became more common practice, usually the ISCI code was displayed during the slate & countdown before the spot on the beginning of the tape (obviously not aired, unless the MCO screwed up and switched it up too early ;) )).

I wonder of the ISCI code of this spot is something like xMxHx0x3 (the "x"s being whatever letters/numbers displayed at the left side of the screen, which is mostly cut off in this video), say, something like IMGH1023?


Comment posted in Boxcar Willie - King Of The Road - 20 Great Tracks (Record Offer, 1981) by Phantom on Wednesday, September 17th, 2014 at 5:10pm CT

This album came from Suffolk Marketing which also sold records of Slim Whitman, Jim Nabors, Jim Reeves & Cristy Lane.


Comment posted in Marriott's Great America (Commercial, 1979) by T.K. on Wednesday, September 17th, 2014 at 4:04pm CT

I was able to stop on two frames... the first with M in the upper-right corner and H in the lower-right and the second frame with O in the upper-right and 3 in the lower-right. So... MO, H3? If it was flashing M-O-M, I'd think maybe it was a subliminal message to ask your mother to buy a ticket.


Comment posted in Marriott's Great America (Commercial, 1979) by FuzzyMemories on Wednesday, September 17th, 2014 at 1:39pm CT

Seriously though, it seems like the letters change in each corner very quickly, like it is cycling through something. I also see an 'O' in the upper-right hand corner. Can't we get the conspiracy nuts to break this down for us? This is probably bigger than the "subliminal" station sign-off message. ;-)


Comment posted in Marriott's Great America (Commercial, 1979) by FuzzyMemories on Wednesday, September 17th, 2014 at 1:36pm CT

I still see the X. ;-)


Comment posted in WGN Channel 9 - 10th Inning with Jack Brickhouse - "Interview with Bob Lurie" (1976) by T.K. on Wednesday, September 17th, 2014 at 8:51am CT

When Lurie said, "Toronto certainly is a great city and I know the commissioner wants to get a team in Washington," he's referring to the Seattle Mariners, the other American League expansion team that had been announced in January 1976.

The A.L. had been embroiled in a lawsuit with the state of Washington, which accused the league of breach of contract for not allowing a local nonprofit group to purchase the bankrupt Seattle Pilots prior to the 1970 season. (The other owners believed their clubs would be devalued as a result of such an arrangement. Instead, the team was sold to Bud Selig and moved to Milwaukee between the end of spring training and Opening Day 1970.) Granting another expansion franchise to Seattle was the league's way of settling the case and avoid paying $32 million in damages.


Comment posted in Boxcar Willie - King Of The Road - 20 Great Tracks (Record Offer, 1981) by Duck 182 on Wednesday, September 17th, 2014 at 3:40am CT

I think I remember my Grandma and Aunt having this on 8 track.


Comment posted in Marriott's Great America (Commercial, 1979) by ER3017 on Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 at 1:19pm CT

I see it too


Comment posted in Marriott's Great America (Commercial, 1979) by Szake on Monday, September 15th, 2014 at 9:14pm CT

You can see a M in the upper right hand corner, an H in the lower right hand corner and an I in the upper left hand corner one second into the video.


Comment posted in National Clothing Fashions - "Be a Disco Star Tonight" (Commercial, 1979) by OldTVNut on Monday, September 15th, 2014 at 11:32am CT

Yes, Steve Dahl had killed disco a month earlier at a White Sox game, but there are still some people who refuse to believe that disco is indeed dead.


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