buy Flomax no prescription Synthroid without prescription buy buspar buy Singulair online buy Prednisone online Amitriptyline lasix without prescription buy buspar online buy super Levitra online Prednisone without prescription buy trazodone without prescription Zithromax No Prescription Propecia Amoxicillin

Pilot Error

Last weekend, I bought something called Unsold TV Pilots at a used book sale — a totally absorbing look at various shows that (as of 1991, when the book came out) were produced but never developed into full-run network series. Paging through this book is like looking into an alternate universe of what TV might have been like in the ’50s, ’60s, ’70s and ’80s. For those unfamiliar with the concept of TV pilots, a Wikipedia quote sums it up nicely:

A television pilot is a test episode of an intended television series. It is an early step in the development of a television series, much like pilot lights or pilot studies serve as precursors to the start of larger activity, or pilot holes prepare the way for larger holes. Networks use pilots to discover whether an entertaining concept can be successfully realized. After seeing this sample of the proposed product, networks will then determine whether the expense of additional episodes is justified. They are best thought of as prototypes of the show that is to follow, because elements often change from pilot to series. Variety estimates that only a little over a quarter of all pilots made for American television succeed to the series stage, although the figure may be even lower.

In other words, what we’re dealing with here is TV Land’s sloppy seconds. While it’s no surprise why derivative things like Steel Collar Man or Ebony Ivory & Jade never flew, occasionally shows have been done that turn out too costly or conceptually strange to get fleshed out into a full series. Bette Davis’ 1965 sitcom The Decorator fits in this category. The idea of Bette diva-ing it up as an Auntie Mameish interior decorator (with Mary Wickes as her sardonic assistant) sounds too irresistible to believe, but from the clip below the execution is a bit plodding. Still, I would have loved to have seen where this character could have gone had the show been picked up. Parts two and three of the pilot are also on YouTube. Thank goodness for the internet!

Comments are closed.

Post Navigation