Dick Loudon and his wife Joanna decide to leave life in New York City and buy a little inn in Vermont. Dick is a how-to book writer, who eventually becomes a local TV celebrity as host of "... See full summary »
Arthur "Big Guy" Carlson tries to run a failing Cincinnati radio station owned by his "tough as nails" mother. His own incompetence is overshadowed by the strange employees that work at the station. From wild Disc Jockeys: Dr. Johnny Fever and Venus Flytrap to the geeky news director, Les Nessman and obnoxious advertising sales manager, Herb Tarlek. With the help of saner employees such as Bailey Quarters; the rather shy journalism major; Jennifer Marlowe, the beautiful receptionist who is the very opposite of a stereotypical "Dumb Blonde" and Andy Travis; the studly program director, Carlson tries gimmick after crazy gimmick to bring money into the station and make it a success. Written by
In the 1990s, reissues of the syndication of WKRP had nearly all music played by the DJs changed. While the original run of the series prided itself in both writing and acting by using current hit songs, it was later deemed too expensive to keep the rights for the originals in syndication (hundreds of thousands of dollars were at stake). Instead, songs were removed and replaced with "generic" studio music; even original "generic" music was replaced to avoid any possibility of later lawsuits. Because the actors often spoke over the music, voice impersonators were hired to emulate the actors in those scenes. In some cases this meant revising lines so that jokes about the song just played were removed, and changed to often-meaningless new titles. See more »
In the pilot episode, after the rock music change, the needle on the turntable is on the label of the record that's playing, yet the music is playing fine. Clearly, music was never playing from actual vinyl records when WKRP played their songs. See more »
This shows great strength (besides being funny) was that the characters became increasingly three-dimensional, a trait most sitcoms fail at..
Many sitcoms start out with great promise, but over successive seasons settle and turn dimensionally less realistic. Take for example Tony Danza's spiral down in "Taxi" into the "dumb guy." In WKRP in Cincinnati, the complete opposite was true. Two dimensional stereotypes at the beginning (cowboy programmer, dim-witted receptionist, lazy mama's boy manager, city-wise black DJ, etc.) were allowed over the show's course to become psychologically real. The on-going harassment by married salesman Herb Tarlek towards Jennifer the receptionist was finally confronted, and in subsequent episodes he was never quite the pig towards her as before. Alcoholism and drug abuse were addressed, but never in the "hit you over the head" PC style of today. The show could be simultaneously hilarious and of dire seriousness. If you can, catch the episodes in rerun in order. The final season is amazing, especially when the previous years have set you up for it. Carol Bruce (Mama Carlson) episodes are especially stunning. And always look for Les Nessman's roaming band-aid.
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