CBS had solid rating for the previous year. In fact, 9 out of 10 of the top rated shows for the 1963-64 season were on CBS. Still, CBS had 11 new shows on the fall 1964 schedule. Most successful were a couple of half hour comedies. The biggest flops were a couple of new dramas.
The links in the titles are to Wikipedia to where you can find more information on each show. These were the new shows that aired (All times Eastern Time Zone):
- My Living Doll; Sunday at 9:00. A comedy about a psychiatrist (Bob Cummings) who is given care of an android that looks life a beautiful girl (Julie Newmar) but doesn’t quite understand how life works. It made it through one season with 26 episodes made. View the intro on YouTube.
- Many Happy Returns; Monday at 9:30. A comedy about the manager (John McGiver) of the complaint department at a large department store. There were 26 episodes made but none on after April 1965. View intro on YouTube.
- Slattery’s People; Monday at 10:00. A drama about James Slattery (Dick Crenna) politician, lawyer an minority leader in a state legislature who crusades against injustices. Only lasted one season (30 episodes). View opening credits on YouTube.
- World War I; Tuesday at 8:00. A half hour documentary using films from the war to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of the start of the war.
- The Munsters; Thursday at 7:30. A ghoulish comedy. Herman (Fred Gwynne) looked a lot like Frankenstein’s monster. Grandpa reminded us Count Dracula. Eddie was a junior wolf-man. Niece Marilyn was what we call normal but was thought of by the family as unfortunately ugly. It’s hard to believe that the series only ran two seasons because it was repeated in syndication for many years. View the season one opening on YouTube. Also view the intro to an unaired pilot with some different cast members.
- The Baileys of Balboa; Thursday at 9:30. A comedy about the owner (Paul Ford) of a charter boat that was in the ritzy community of Balboa, Cal. The first mate of the boat was played by Sterling Holloway who was best known as the original voice of Winnie the Pooh This series lasted just one season with 26 episodes being made. It is on some lists as one of the worse TV comedies ever. View the opening credits on YouTube.
- The Entertainers; .Friday at 8:30. A variety show that should have worked as it starred Carol Burnett, Caterina Valente, and Bob Newhart plus guest stars. Newhart dropped out before the end of the year and the show closed down in March 1965. Burnett and Newhart would go on to much better shows.
- Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.; Friday at 9:30. People already knew Gomer (Jim Nabors) from his role on The Andy Griffith Show. Now in this comedy, Gomer joins the Marine Corps where he runs up against Sergeant Carter. (Frank Sutton). This became the 3rd most popular show of the 1964-65 season and then the 2nd most popular show the next year. All-together, the show ran 5 seasons with 260 episodes being made. Watch the entire first episode (below) and there are many more full episodes on YouTube
- The Reporter; Friday at 10:00. A drama about a reporter (Harry Guardino) at a NY daily newspaper. It only ran for 13 episodes. View the opening credits on YouTube.
- Gilligan’s Island; Saturday at 8:30. What is to say about the castaways that everyone doesn’t already know? Critics hated the show. People loved it. The first season was in B&W but has been colorized. The series ran for 3 season with 98 episodes that are still be shown today. View the opening for the pilot without the familiar song.
- Mr. Broadway; Saturday at 9:00. A drama about a public relations (Craig Stevens). This series just lasted 13 episodes. View opening credits on YouTube.