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Subject: Local Programming in the early 90s

Written By: VideoPowerGuy on 09/15/11 at 10:06 am

Hello, I am new here and was curious to know if anyone knows how local programming worked in the late 80s and early 90s in the United States.  For instance, I lived near Detroit and we had two local stations, WKBD (was a FOX affiliate, called Fox 50, later changed to UPN) and WXON TV-20 (was called The WB, a WB affiliate).  I don't know what the difference was between WKBD, the FOX affiliate (Channel 50), and the actual FOX station (Channel 2) here at that time.  When WKBD was UPN, we also had FOX, so there were *two* stations affiliated with Fox in my area?

Anyways, did your local stations have names for the cartoon blocks that aired before and after school?  I'm trying to find Detroit Free Press TV Books from that era to find out when Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Video Power (a video game game show) and other cartoons were aired on weekdays and Saturday mornings.  I know shows Saturday and prime time schedules, and while that is awesome, it just shows the major networks.

Did everyone else have a "The WB" and "FOX" affiliate, and did they air the same stuff at the same times?  If so, then I could probably get by with a TV Book programming schedule from areas other than Detroit as well.

Thanks in advance,

Subject: Re: Local Programming in the early 90s

Written By: snozberries on 09/15/11 at 7:12 pm

Since you said you lived near Detroit I will assume that means you live in a town outside of Detroit

More than likely both stations 2 & 50 were independently owned tv stations that bought programming from fox.  Because of where you lived you were able to get Detroits Fox Channel and whatever town Channel 50 came from.  The way to track this is, in the late 80s early 90s, did both channel 2 & channel 50  air a fox program like 21 Jumpstreet at the exact same time. If they did then yeah you got both. If theydidnt then you shots merging going on that ive never encountered before

Typically all affiliate stations buy the full programming package so if fox has a cartoon block tmnt video power and whatever other shows aired at hat time then affiliate station will show it.  They have, in the afternoons some discretion about they air the shows but typically they all start at 3 and end at 5 because that makes the most sense considering the target audience

Fox 50 later changed to UPN probably because they couldn't compete with channel 2 I mean if they are showing the same things people weren't obligated to watch them but by affiliating with a new network they could reach a new audience and potentially raise their numbers and their revenue.

You migh do better finding old tv guides from that time.

If the cartoon block had the network name or they used images from the cartoon to promote that block. Like ads and teasers then they were used nationally it cost a lot of money to do that stuff so they wouldn't do it in just one area.

Hope this helps.

Subject: Re: Local Programming in the early 90s

Written By: VideoPowerGuy on 09/15/11 at 9:14 pm

Hey thanks.

I live just north of Detroit, only about 1/2 hour.  After researching on wikipedia, I realize I was wrong.

WKBD was channel 50 and was a Fox affiliate.
WJBK was channel 2 and was a CBS affiliate.
WKBD lost the Fox affiliation to WJBK and when it did, it went independent for a while before becoming a UPN affiliate.
When Fox went to WJBK, WJBK did not take and of Fox's children's programming.  That stuff continued to air on WKBD while it was a UPN affiliate.  I think that's where I got confused.

It just makes me wonder what WJBK aired on Saturday mornings if WKBD was still airing Fox cartoons as UPN, and did WKBD have to decline UPN's programming if they were airing Fox's?  CBS was UPN's parent company, wouldn't CBS be pissed about that?

I am trying to remember what channel and what time Video Power (the video game game show) was aired.  It was in the morning (I could've sworn 5:30) and must've been on The WB affiliate since the show was produced by DIC.  DIC also produced Captain Planet and I know for sure that that show was on The WB.  It was also on in the morning, after Video Power, I believe.

Since you were saying stations typically buy full programming packages, and since TV Guide says <<Local Programming>> for the independent stations, would I be able to look at someone else's local TV Schedule from that time and for the most part, would the affiliate stations be airing the exact same shows at the exact same times as in my area?

Subject: Re: Local Programming in the early 90s

Written By: snozberries on 09/16/11 at 12:59 am

Channel 2 being a CBS affiliate makes sense.

Is/are the station/s  who's programming you're interested in still operational?
If so I would contact them and see if they archived or kept records of the stations broadcast schedule.  Of they wanna know why tell them you're researching local programs and affiliations for a paper.

Subject: Re: Local Programming in the early 90s

Written By: wagonman76 on 01/23/12 at 8:25 pm

I lived in Northern Lower Michigan and still do.  We first got FOX over the airwaves in 1992 or so, as channel 45.  Finally some variety on TV.  Lots of good shows.

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