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CBC Television Series, 1952-1982

by Blaine Allan

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Mon 10:00-10:30 p.m., 28 Mar-27 Aug 1973

Tue 9:30-10:00 p.m., 21 Mar-10 Sep 1974

Mon 10:00-10:30 p.m., 26 May-1 Sep 1975

Sun 12:30-1:00 p.m., 4 Apr-16 May 1976 (R)

Mon 10:00-10:30 p.m., 3 May-

Mon 10:30-11:00 p.m., 2 Aug-6 Sep 1976

Sun 2:00-2:30 p.m., 24 Apr-31 Jul 1977 (R)

Mon 10:30-11:00 p.m., 4 Jul-12 Sep 1977

Sat 2:00-2:30 p.m., 1 Apr-3 Jun 1978

Sun 2:00-2:30 p.m., 1 Apr-10 Jun 1979

Mon-Fri 1:00-1:30 p.m., 26 May-25 Jul 1980 (R)

Sat 6:00-6:30 p.m., 23 May-5 Sep 1981 (R)

Mon/Wed/Fri 3:30-4:00 p.m., 20 Sep-

Fri 3:30-4:00 p.m., 31 Dec 1982-8 Apr 1983 (R)

In the case of this summer show, "V.I.P." stood for "Very Interesting People." Lorraine Thomson, guest coordinator for Front Page Challenge, corralled the mystery guests for that quiz show and sat down in a minimal set for a more extensive interview. Guests ranged from hockey star Darryl Sittler to former British Prime Minister Edward Heath to former activist Jerry Rubin to Prince Edward Island Premier Alex Campbell. The show's producers were Don Brown and Ray McConnell.

Vacation Canada

Wed 10:00-10:30 p.m., 7 Apr-26 May 1971

This program, on outdoor activities, varied in length, because it followed the N.H.L. playoffs, and then followed Expo baseball games. John Foster hosted the show, which was produced and directed by Neil Andrews. Executive producer was John Lackie.

Vacation Time

Mon-Fri 4:30-5:30 p.m., 2 Jul-27 Sep 1962

Mon-Fri 4:30-5:30 p.m., 1 Jul-27 Sep 1963

Mon-Fri 4:30-5:30 p.m., 29 Jun-25 Sep 1964

Mon/Tue/Thu 4:00-5:00 p.m., 28 Jun-24 Sep 1965

Wed/Fri 4:00-4:30 p.m., 28 Jun-24 Sep 1965

Mon-Fri 4:00-5:00 p.m., 4 Jul-19 Aug 1966

Mon-Fri 4:30-5:00 p.m., 3 jul-8 Sep 1967

Thu/Fri 4:30-5:00 p.m., 4 Jul-26 Sep 1968

A summer replacement for regular children's programming, Vacation Time presented films, cartoons, and live broadcasts with special guests. For the first summer season, produced in Toronto by Denny Spence, the hosts were Toby Tarnow, Tom Kneebone, Lloyd Robertson, with comic sketches by Max Ferguson and swimming lessons by Jim Mitchell. In 1963, the show expanded and was produced in a number of cities. The hosts in Toronto on Mondays were Toby Tarnow, again, with Bruce Rogers and Donnalu Wigmore. Bob Switzer and Dan McAfee were hosts in Vancouver for the Tuesday show. The Wednesday show, from Winnipeg, was introduced by George Knight, with George LaFleche's segments at the Assiniboine Park Zoo, Per Holting on camping, and The Playground Players in a segment called Instant Theatre, filmed in Edmonton. Thursdays, the show alternated between Ottawa, with Ann Hodson and Peter Dodson, and Montreal, with Sheridan Nelson and Syn Davidson. On Fridays, the show returned to Toronto for the first seven weeks, and then went to Halifax, with Lloyd MacInnis, for the remainder of the season.

The next year, the hosts, in various locations, were Chris Wiggins, Don Francks, Alex Trebek, Jack Pearse, Bill Guest, Gerri Styne, Jeff Manshin, Don Pimm, Doug Campbell, and Ross Mortimer. The 1965 roster included Bruno Cimolai and Ross Mortimer in Vancouver, Don Tremaine in Ottawa, Ernie Coombs and Al Hamel in Toronto, Gerry Wilson in Winnipeg, and Kerry Wood in Edmonton. The final summer, the show concentrated on productions from outside Toronto, and included St. John's among the contributing centres.

Vacations Unlimited

Sun 6:30-7:00 p.m., 17 May-9 Aug 1953

This half-hour program for summer 1953 presented a feature on a different Canadian holiday spot each week.

Vagabond Honeymoon

Mon 6:30-7:00 p.m., 14 Jul-29 Aug 1966

Tue 5:30-6:00 p.m., 8 Aug-26 Sep 1967

Pat and Martin Simpson, newly married, financed their around the world honeymoon through odd jobs and by selling film footage that they shot along the way. They also produced this series of eight, half-hour programs that documented their trip--mostly by car and van--through Mexico, South America, Africa, India, Australia, Siam, and Europe.

Valley Sketches

Tue 7:30-8:00 p.m., 30 Jul-3 Sep 1974

Mon 7:30-8:00 p.m., 9 Sep-16 Sep 1974

Produced at CBOT, this series of thirteen, half-hour programs documented the history of the Ottawa Valley, using archival documents and photographs, as well as personal scrapbooks, heirlooms, and the recollections of residents. Produced by Cec Browne and researched by Sheila Petzold, it included programs on the effects of the War of l8l2 and the conquest of Europe by Napoleon on the settlement of the area, the timber trade, the development of the railway, and the construction of the Rideau Canal. Hosts and narrators for the show were Bob Karl and Ken Dougan.


Wed 9:00-9:30 p.m., 31 Dec 1952-21 Jan 1953

This title refers to a series that was replaced by (or finally titled) Four For The Show (q.v.).

Variety Situation Comedy Pilots

Tue 7:30-8:00 p.m., 3 Jan-31 Jan 1978

The network aired four pilots for three programs, all from CBC Vancouver, in January 1978. The Education Of Thomas Dorsey (3 January), produced and directed by Michael Berry, starred Hagan Beggs and Reg Romero in the story of a man who wins a lottery, but has oversold shares in the winning ticket. The Witch Of Westminster (l0 January), was also produced and directed by Berry, and also hinged on a lottery plot. Lois Maxwell and Michael J. Fox starred in the story of a disliked single woman who becomes immediately desirable once she wins a lottery. Nellie, Daniel, Emma, and Ben (q.v.), produced by Stephen Hickok, and aired in two episodes, starred Barbara Tremayne, Roy Brinson, Alicia Ammon, and Jack Ammon as four seniors who decide to leave their nursing home and take care of themselves.

The series was supposed to present the pilot for The Rimshots, produced by Perry Rosemond. A series of problems prevented the pilot from seeing the light and the series from being produced in its original form. It was transformed into Custard Pie (q.v.). (See Martin Knelman, "The Making of Custard Pie," The Canadian [24 September 1977]).)

The Verdict Is Yours

Mon-Fri 3:30-4:00 p.m., 17 Oct 1960-30 Jun 1961

This series of simulated court cases featured reporter Bill Stout.

Vic Obeck Show/Vic Obeck's Parade Of Sports

Mon 8:00-8:30 p.m., 8 Feb-20 Sep 1954

Wed 8:00-8:30 p.m., 6 Oct 1954-20 Jul 1955

Wed 8:00-8:30 p.m., 20 Jul-7 Sep 1955

Produced in Montreal, Vic Obeck's show highlighted football, but also covered other types of sports events and physical activities, from the Calgary Stampede to the Davis Cup to fitness with Lloyd Percival to water safety with Marilyn Bell.

Video One

Wed 5:00-5:30 p.m., 5 May 1971-6 Sep 1972

Originally part of Drop-In, and then scheduled as a summer show, Video 1, a public affairs magazine for high school age viewers, extended into the regular season. Its original host was Ian McCutcheon, but he was replaced by Rainer Schwartz, formerly the overnight disk jockey on CHUM-FM and one of the principal voices of alternative FM programming in Canada. The program marked itself as different from the conventional, pussyfooting kids' show when its first broadcast of the regular season was devoted to advice about contraception. Bob Gibbons was the producer and Don Elder the executive producer.

La Vie Qui Bat

Tue 5:30-6:00 p.m., 23 Jul-27 Sep 1968

Produced in Montreal, La Vie qui bat combined nature footage, documentary, and travelogue forms for a series of films about animals in various locations around the world.


A forum of opinion and commentary, Viewpoint was a five minute and fifty second soapbox for spokespeople and writers and broadcasters. Developed by Eugene Hallman in the 1950s, it lasted for eighteen years as a regular follow-up to the national news broadcast at the end of each weekday. After Hallman left in l974, the program stumbled along until Knowlton Nash, director of information programming, axed it, claiming that it cost CBC stations and affiliates seventy-five per cent of their audiences for local news at ll:30.

Apart from the nominal fee to the broadcaster and the cost of announcer Earl Cameron's time and the work of the minimal crew, Viewpoint was an inexpensive production that hardly encouraged access to the facilities of the public broadcasting service.

Producers included Gordon Bruce (l966-68), Donald McNeill (l968- 69), Nicholas Steed (l969-72), and Ian Murray (l973-76).

Vision On

Thu 4:30-5:00 p.m., 18 Sep 1975-25 Mar 1976

Thu 4:30-5:00 p.m., 16 Sep 1976-24 Mar 1977

Thu 4:00-4:30 p.m., 6 Oct 1977-

Wed 4:30-5:00 p.m., 5 Apr-6 Sep 1978 (R)

Wed 4:00-4:30 p.m., 7 Apr-9 Jun 1982

Vision On was originally designed as a program for children with hearing impairments. It used many different techniques-- pictures, sculpture, games, mime, animation, inventions--to explore a different subject each week, such as springs, monsters and ghosts, and signs. Regulars included Pat Keysell, Tony Hart, Wilf Makepeace Lunn, and Ben Benison. The show was produced by the BBC in cooperation with the Ontario Educational Communications Authority and the CBC.

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