Potential Error in Muppet Show Airing Order

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kevsaund
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Jun 19, 2019 3:01 pm

Fri Jun 21, 2019 9:36 am

I was looking through the history of sources for the Muppet Show Airing Order and it appears that there is a mistake on the original airdate for one of the episodes.

https://www.thetvdb.com/series/the-mupp ... easons/all lists the episode Sandy Duncan as having aired on 10/4/76, which was true for the New York broadcast, but there was an earlier broadcast in LA on 9/25/76 according to Muppet Central: https://muppetcentral.com/guides/episod ... ncan.shtml This means it would have been the first episode to air, before Jim Neighbors on 9/27/76

Muppet Central has been used before as a valid source when the episode order was originally established so it should be valid still. viewtopic.php?f=18&t=9219&p=36687&hilit ... how#p41040
kevsaund
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Jun 19, 2019 3:01 pm

Fri Jun 21, 2019 10:14 am

Did some further digging, looking for additional sources and found that TVguide.com has different airdates listed as well for a number of the early episodes, including Joel Grey, and Rita Moreno in addition to the previously mentioned Sandy Duncan. Since they're a preferred source we may want to use their info: https://www.tvguide.com/tvshows/the-mup ... -1/100498/
kevsaund
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Jun 19, 2019 3:01 pm

Thu Jul 11, 2019 7:39 am

Any word on this? I'm happy to update it myself if someone will unlock it.
Equinox
Site Moderator
Posts: 1574
Joined: Sun Oct 11, 2009 2:41 am

Sat Jul 13, 2019 12:12 pm

kevsaund wrote:I was looking through the history of sources for the Muppet Show Airing Order and it appears that there is a mistake on the original airdate for one of the episodes.

https://www.thetvdb.com/series/the-mupp ... easons/all lists the episode Sandy Duncan as having aired on 10/4/76, which was true for the New York broadcast, but there was an earlier broadcast in LA on 9/25/76 according to Muppet Central: https://muppetcentral.com/guides/episod ... ncan.shtml This means it would have been the first episode to air, before Jim Neighbors on 9/27/76

Muppet Central has been used before as a valid source when the episode order was originally established so it should be valid still. viewtopic.php?f=18&t=9219&p=36687&hilit ... how#p41040
Okay, I've modified the air date for the Sandy Duncan episode to September 26, 1976, based on the Muppet Central info, and switched between it and the Jim Nabors episode, making the former the first episode of the season.
This aligns with fellow moderator mwkurt's decision to use the East Coast airdates:
mwkurt wrote:I did a quick, but extensive, survey of all of the guides that I could find. What I found was that hardly any two guides matched up on the first 5 episodes of season 1. Muppet Central gave me the answer to the dilemma. It seems that there was a East Coast (NY) airing and a West Coast (LA) airing. Most often, the episode that aired on the East Coast, aired on the West Coast a week later. It looks as if whoever entered the Season 1 information in TheTVDB, used the Muppet Central listing for the East Coast as they all matched. The one interesting anomoly I found was with one of the episodes in question, the Rita Moreno episode. Seems that it may not have aired on the East Coast as the only airdate for it was October 9, 1976 (LA). So it looks like all of the dates used here are East Coast dates, except the Rita Moreno episode.
However, I'm hesitant to make any further changes at this point, as TV Guide's episode guide is a far cry from our listings, in terms of both the air dates (TV Guide says the first episode aired on 9/5/76) and the order of episodes (TV Guide says the Rita Moreno episode is the second of the season, whereas we currently have it listed as #5).
kevsaund
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Jun 19, 2019 3:01 pm

Sun Jul 14, 2019 8:21 pm

Equinox wrote: However, I'm hesitant to make any further changes at this point, as TV Guide's episode guide is a far cry from our listings, in terms of both the air dates (TV Guide says the first episode aired on 9/5/76) and the order of episodes (TV Guide says the Rita Moreno episode is the second of the season, whereas we currently have it listed as #5).
That did seem weird, so I did some additional digging. From what I can find, the Joel Grey episode (#1 according to TV Guide) aired on 9/5/76 in England, which was weeks before the air date in the US. I managed to find a number of newspaper listings from the British Newspaper Archive (here's one) that confirm the 9/5 airdate for Joel grey, which I would guess is where TV Guide is pulling their info from. This search on the BNA further reinforces the TVguide.com listings as correct for Rita Moreno and Sandy Duncan as well. I'd have to dig further to double check all the dates, but it seems TVGuide.com is pretty reliable (probably why it's generally a preferred source.)

Looking to the wiki's rules episodes should be sorted based on country of origin. The Muppet show is a bit of a weird case, as the show was originally produced in England as a co-production with ATV (later ITV) where it seems to have aired first, and it was syndicated in the US, further increasing out original airdate woes.

Thanks again for your help in sorting this all out.
Equinox
Site Moderator
Posts: 1574
Joined: Sun Oct 11, 2009 2:41 am

Mon Jul 15, 2019 2:18 am

kevsaund wrote:That did seem weird, so I did some additional digging. From what I can find, the Joel Grey episode (#1 according to TV Guide) aired on 9/5/76 in England, which was weeks before the air date in the US. I managed to find a number of newspaper listings from the British Newspaper Archive (here's one) that confirm the 9/5 airdate for Joel grey, which I would guess is where TV Guide is pulling their info from. This search on the BNA further reinforces the TVguide.com listings as correct for Rita Moreno and Sandy Duncan as well. I'd have to dig further to double check all the dates, but it seems TVGuide.com is pretty reliable (probably why it's generally a preferred source.)

Looking to the wiki's rules episodes should be sorted based on country of origin. The Muppet show is a bit of a weird case, as the show was originally produced in England as a co-production with ATV (later ITV) where it seems to have aired first, and it was syndicated in the US, further increasing out original airdate woes.

Thanks again for your help in sorting this all out.
That does complicate things a bit. If we were to treat it as a series that originated in the UK, that would render Muppet Central a useless source and mean we need to find all the original air dates from England.
Maybe you can email the ITV Archive ([email protected])?
kevsaund
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Jun 19, 2019 3:01 pm

Mon Jul 15, 2019 7:06 am

Took your suggestion and they responded thusly:
The wikipedia article for the programme explains the programme's origin: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Muppet_Show. I'm afraid we don't have any transmission dates for this programme.
Which means we're probably on our own, if the Archivists are relying on wikipedia. My vote at this point is to fall back to TV guide and the British air dates.
Equinox
Site Moderator
Posts: 1574
Joined: Sun Oct 11, 2009 2:41 am

Mon Jul 15, 2019 9:34 am

kevsaund wrote:Took your suggestion and they responded thusly:
The wikipedia article for the programme explains the programme's origin: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Muppet_Show. I'm afraid we don't have any transmission dates for this programme.
Which means we're probably on our own, if the Archivists are relying on wikipedia. My vote at this point is to fall back to TV guide and the British air dates.
Pardon my language, but that blows!
Wouldn't TV Guide have the US air dates, though?
kevsaund
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Jun 19, 2019 3:01 pm

Mon Jul 15, 2019 12:06 pm

Equinox wrote:Wouldn't TV Guide have the US air dates, though?
Based on what I found on the British Newspaper Archive, TV Guide has at least the correct (British) airdates for the first 3 episodes (Joel Grey, Rita Moreno and Sandy Duncan.) I can keep searching through those archives and confirm the other dates, but that will take some time.
kevsaund
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Jun 19, 2019 3:01 pm

Mon Jul 15, 2019 12:51 pm

Well I kept poking around (as much as I can with a free account) on the BNA and it just keeps getting more and more confusing. It looks like the earliest reference to the Jim Nabors episode was in November, when we're pretty confident (via Muppet Central) that it aired in the US way before that, so my new updated guess is that TVGuide has a mix of British and American dates based on which one happened first, but that's just a guess and it's probably going to take a lot of work to sort it all out.
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