1963–64 United States network television schedule

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This was the television schedule on all three networks for the fall season beginning in September 1963.

ABC began its new fall schedule a week early, beating CBS and NBC out of the starting gate. New series debuting this week included sci-fi anthology The Outer Limits, police/lawyer series Arrest and Trial, drama The Fugitive, and game show 100 Grand.[1] ABC also completely revamped its Friday night schedule, with three new series: detective show Burke's Law, sitcom The Farmer's Daughter, and boxing program The Fight of the Week. Fight would mark the end of boxing on network television. Boxing had debuted on network TV in 1946 and had enjoyed a run on all networks at various times, but after September 11, 1964, boxing would disappear entirely from network television.[1]

CBS's success with rural comedies The Andy Griffith Show and The Beverly Hillbillies had convinced the network that rural sitcoms would continue to be popular. As a result, CBS president James Aubrey added what some critics described as an "endless procession of country clones [of] the wildly successful Beverly Hillbillies" to the network's schedule. Petticoat Junction, from the same producers of Hillbillies, debuted on September 24.[1]

Westerns continued to be popular on television, and all three networks scheduled several Western series. NBC, in particular, retained a number of Westerns on its fall 1963 schedule: two returning series The Virginian and Bonanza, and new series Temple Houston, and Redigo. NBC's Western-heavy schedule would pay off, as Bonanza again became the second highest-rated TV series in the Nielsen ratings that year; The Virginian reached #17. CBS's Gunsmoke reached #20.[2]

All times are Eastern and Pacific. New fall series are highlighted in bold.

Each of the 30 highest-rated shows is listed with its rank and rating as determined by Nielsen Media Research.[2]

     Yellow indicates the top 10 programs for the season.
     Cyan indicates the top 20 programs for the season.
     Magenta indicates the top 30 programs for the season.

Sunday[edit]

Network 7:00 PM 7:30 PM 8:00 PM 8:30 PM 9:00 PM 9:30 PM 10:00 PM 10:30 PM
ABC Fall Local The Travels of Jaimie McPheeters Arrest and Trial 100 Grand ABC News Reports
Follow-up Laughs For Sale
CBS Lassie (12/25.0) My Favorite Martian (10/26.3) The Ed Sullivan Show (8/27.5) The Judy Garland Show Candid Camera (7/27.7) What's My Line? (24/22.6)
NBC Fall The Bill Dana Show Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color (21/23.0) Grindl Bonanza (2/36.9) The DuPont Show of the Week
Spring Empire

Notes: Mister Ed aired on CBS from 6:30 to 7 p.m. 100 Grand only lasted three weeks, and was replaced by Laughs For Sale, which ran until December 1963.

Monday[edit]

Network 7:30 PM 8:00 PM 8:30 PM 9:00 PM 9:30 PM 10:00 PM 10:30 PM
ABC The Outer Limits Wagon Train Breaking Point
CBS To Tell the Truth (24/22.6) I've Got a Secret (12/25.0) The Lucy Show (6/28.1) The Danny Thomas Show (9/26.7) The Andy Griffith Show (5/29.4) East Side/West Side
NBC NBC Monday Night at the Movies Hollywood and the Stars Sing Along with Mitch

Note: Beginning in September, CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite (formerly Walter Cronkite with the News) and The Huntley-Brinkley Report expanded to a half hour, airing weeknights at 6:30 p.m.

Tuesday[edit]

Network 7:30 PM 8:00 PM 8:30 PM 9:00 PM 9:30 PM 10:00 PM 10:30 PM
ABC Combat! McHale's Navy (22/22.8) The Greatest Show on Earth The Fugitive (28/21.7)
CBS Fall Marshal Dillon (Gunsmoke repeats) The Red Skelton Hour (11/25.7) Petticoat Junction (4/30.3) The Jack Benny Program (12/25.0) The Garry Moore Show
Summer High Adventure with Lowell Thomas
NBC Mr. Novak Redigo The Richard Boone Show The Bell Telephone Hour / The Andy Williams Show

Note: The 1964 CBS summer series High Adventure with Lowell Thomas consisted of reruns of specials which had aired under that title during the late 1950s.

Wednesday[edit]

Network 7:30 PM 8:00 PM 8:30 PM 9:00 PM 9:30 PM 10:00 PM 10:30 PM
ABC The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet (29/21.6) The Patty Duke Show (18/23.9) The Price Is Right Ben Casey Channing
CBS Fall Chronicle / CBS Reports Glynis The Beverly Hillbillies (1/39.1) The Dick Van Dyke Show (3/33.3) The Danny Kaye Show (30/21.5)
Summer On Broadway Tonight
NBC The Virginian (17/24.0) Espionage The Eleventh Hour

Thursday[edit]

Network 7:30 PM 8:00 PM 8:30 PM 9:00 PM 9:30 PM 10:00 PM 10:30 PM
ABC Fall The Flintstones The Donna Reed Show (16/24.5) My Three Sons (27/21.9) The Jimmy Dean Show The Edie Adams Show / The Sid Caesar Show Local
Winter ABC News Reports
Spring Ensign O'Toole The Jimmy Dean Show
CBS Password Rawhide Perry Mason (26/22.1) The Nurses
NBC Fall Temple Houston Dr. Kildare (19/23.6) Hazel (22/22.8) Kraft Suspense Theatre / Perry Como's Kraft Music Hall (once a month)
Summer Ford Presents the New Christy Minstrels

Note: Ensign O'Toole on ABC consisted of reruns of the 1962-1963 NBC situation comedy.

Friday[edit]

Network 7:30 PM 8:00 PM 8:30 PM 9:00 PM 9:30 PM 10:00 PM 10:30 PM
ABC 77 Sunset Strip Burke's Law The Farmer's Daughter 10:00 The Fight of the Week / 10:45 Make That Spare
CBS The Great Adventure Route 66 Twilight Zone The Alfred Hitchcock Hour
NBC Fall International Showtime Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre (30/21.5) / Chrysler Presents a Bob Hope Special Harry's Girls The Jack Paar Program
Winter That Was the Week That Was
Summer On Parade

Saturday[edit]

Network 7:30 PM 8:00 PM 8:30 PM 9:00 PM 9:30 PM 10:00 PM 10:30 PM
ABC Hootenanny The Lawrence Welk Show The Jerry Lewis Show (ends 11:30)
CBS Fall Jackie Gleason and his American Scene Magazine (15/24.6) The New Phil Silvers Show The Defenders Gunsmoke (20/23.5)
Summer The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour
NBC The Lieutenant The Joey Bishop Show NBC Saturday Night at the Movies

ABC-TV Presents THE HOLLYWOOD PALACE will be debuted on January 4, 1964 replacing The Jerry Lewis Talk Show.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Castleman, Harry; Walter J. Podrazik (1982). Watching TV: Four Decades of American Television. New York: McGraw-Hill. pp. 162–170. ISBN 0-07-010269-4. 
  2. ^ a b Highest-rated series is based on the annual top-rated programs list compiled by Nielsen Media Research and reported in: Brooks, Tim & Marsh, Earle (2007). The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network TV Shows (9th ed.). New York: Ballantine. ISBN 978-0-345-49773-4.
  • Castleman, H. & Podrazik, W. (1982). Watching TV: Four Decades of American Television. New York: McGraw-Hill. 314 pp.
  • McNeil, Alex. Total Television. Fourth edition. New York: Penguin Books. ISBN 0-14-024916-8.
  • Brooks, Tim & Marsh, Earle (1984). The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network TV Shows (3rd ed.). New York: Ballantine. ISBN 0-345-31864-1.