TV Time Machine

Night Walk

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Mini*Pops Christmas

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Watch it, Buddy!

Periodically, I'll break into my best Peter Silverman imitation and exclaim "Watch it, buddy!" At some point in the 90s I saw CityTV's Silverman do this during one of his Silverman Helps segments and it stuck.

Thanks to Retrontario, I now have the exact clip. You'll hear it at the 19 second mark of this old CityPulse promo.

Silverman, who was dismissed from CityTV back in 2008, is now 85 years young.

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When I was growing up in the early 80s, ParticipACTION PSAs ran often. This ad, for example, is forever etched in my mind. I will sing this song on demand.

Then, there's Hal Johnson and Joanne McLeod. Their Body Break clips were everywhere. If they look like a couple, it's because they were. They married in 1999.

Get with the action!

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Hammy Hamster's Adventures on the Riverbank

Twelve years ago, I sang the praises of Hammy Hamster.

I remember fondly being mesmerized by Hammy Hamster. Hammy Hamster was the lead character in a television show entitled Hammy Hamster and he was indeed a hamster. Not a cartoon hamster, but an actual hamster. His best friend was G.P. who was a guinea pig and there were others. These riverbank creatures had calming adventures and I was just psyched to see actual rodents performing. It was very cool.

Now, thanks to Retrontario, we have a full episode of Hammy Hamster's Adventures on the Riverbank as it aired on Global TV back in 1982. It even has the original commercials.

That's my jam right there... sweet, sweet nostalgia.

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The Ron Oliver Show

At some point in the very early 90s (or was it the very late 80s?), I stumbled upon a YTV show called "The Ron Oliver Show". I was hooked.

For some reason, this show tickled my funny bone. It was great fun while it lasted, which wasn't very long. I've been trying to find evidence of this show online but it's surprisingly difficult.

Ron Oliver's IMDB page doesn't even list the show in his credits. A search of YouTube for "Ron Oliver Show" comes up empty. Did I dream this show up?

Thanks to Retrontario, there's now evidence I'm not completely delusional. Oliver's Twist was a YTV clip show that used the best bits of YTV Hits and the Ron Oliver Show and he's posted five minutes to his YouTube channel.

Does anyone else remember The Ron Oliver Show on YTV?

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Introduction to TSN (1984)

Meet John Wells, Jim Van Horne, Michael Landsberg and Terry Leibel from your new TSN.

British gymnastics!

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Video Hits with Samantha Taylor

Before MuchMusic appeared on my television, I got my video fix from two sources: Toronto Rocks on CityTV and Video Hits on CBC.

I preferred the rougher feel of Toronto Rocks, but I also enjoyed hearing from Samantha Taylor at 5pm. Here's a clip of Samantha Taylor hosting Video Hits in 1988, courtesy of Retrontario.

Samantha Taylor, by the way, was a pseudonym. Her real name is Myroslava Luciw. If anyone knows where she is today, I'd love to sit down and chat with her.

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The Worst of You Can't Do That On Television

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Battle of the Planets

Fables of the Green Forest was one of my very first favourite television shows. I watched it on TVOntario in the late 70s. I wrote about it here, and on Saturday morning, I awoke to a new comment on that entry informing me of a new Fables of the Green Forest YouTube channel.

Moments later, I was introducing my kids to Fables of the Green Forest, which contained maximum nostalgic value to me, but didn't really hold up. This led to clips of another show I loved at the time: Battle of the Planets.

I loved G-Force, 7-Zark-7 and 1-Rover-1. What I didn't realize at the time, however, was that Battle of the Planets was a terrible American adaptation of the Japanese anime series Science Ninja Team Gatchaman. For an excellent example of how they dumbed it down, check out this comparison of the two series.

Battle of the Planets! G-Force! Princess! Tiny! Keyop! Mark! Jason! And watching over them from Center Neptune, their computerized coordinator, 7-Zark-7! Watching, warning against surprise attacks by alien galaxies beyond space. G-Force! Fearless young orphans, protecting Earth's entire galaxy. Always five, acting as one. Dedicated! Inseparable! Invincible!

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