1990 in American television

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The year 1990 in American television involved some significant events. Below is a list of American television-related events during 1990.

Notable events[edit]

Date Event
January 2 All My Children broadcasts its 20th anniversary special on ABC. Joe and Ruth Martin sit down with Erica Kane, her mother Mona, and Phoebe Wallingford as they go through scrapbook pictures which segue into memorable clips from the series's past twenty years.
January 14 The Simpsons airs their first regular episode, Bart the Genius.
January 15 Square One TV returns for its third season on PBS.
January 21 MTV Unplugged premieres on MTV with Squeeze as its debut guests.
February 17 On NBC, Aerosmith appear in Wayne's World, a recurring sketch on Saturday Night Live, where they perform the Wayne's World theme song.
March 13 All My Children actress Debbi Morgan quits the role of Angie Baxter Hubbard.
April 1 CBS dismisses prominent sportscaster Brent Musburger one day before his final assignment for the network, the NCAA Men's Basketball Championship. Musburger would sign with ABC Sports later that year.
Debut of comedy TV network Ha!.
April 21 Cartoon All-Stars to the Rescue, a special program warning children about the danger of drugs and featuring characters from several Saturday morning children's shows, is simultaneously simulcast by ABC, BET, CBS, Fox, NBC, USA Network, and Nickelodeon.
April 22 The Earth Day Special, a two-hour commercial-free special event premiered on ABC.
April 30 The long-lost pilot show for I Love Lucy is broadcast by CBS as a special.
May 25 CBS began broadcasting its daytime lineup in stereo sound; the last of the three major networks to do so.
June 7 The Cruise of Deception storyline is broadcast on the NBC soap opera Days of Our Lives.
June 27 Genie Francis, in an attempt to shed her image as Laura Spencer, started playing Irishwoman Ceara Connor on All My Children.
July 16 Radio DJ personality Rick Dees debuts an ABC late-night talk show, Into the Night, Starring Rick Dees.
July 30 MovieTime was rebranded as E!.
September 8 Fox Kids, a children's programming block, debuts on Fox.
September 10 The Disney Afternoon debuts as a syndicated children's block.
September 15 CBN renames itself The Family Channel.
October 1 TBS drops the "SuperStation" sub-title. It would return 6 years later.
October 13 WLAJ in Jackson, Michigan signs-on the air, giving the Lansing market its first full-time ABC affiliate.
November 3 The NBA on NBC debuts, with its first game being the Los Angeles Lakers visiting the San Antonio Spurs.
November 10 Chris Farley, Tim Meadows, Chris Rock, Adam Sandler, Rob Schneider and Julia Sweeney join the cast of Saturday Night Live.



The following is a list of shows that premiered in 1990.

Date Show Channel
February 6 Rodeo Drive Lifetime
February 9 The Bradys CBS
March 1 Carol & Company NBC
April 8 Twin Peaks ABC
April 14 In Living Color Fox
April 19 Wings NBC
May 5 TaleSpin Disney Channel
June 16 Monopoly ABC
July 7 Dream On HBO
July 12 Northern Exposure CBS
July 16 Match Game ABC
July 29 Tim Conway's Funny America
August 20 Parenthood NBC
August 22 Working It Out
August 23 Ferris Bueller
August 27 Guys Next Door
September 1 Midnight Patrol: Adventures in the Dream Zone Syndication
Haywire Fox
September 2 Parker Lewis Can't Lose
September 3 The Challengers Syndication
September 4 Barnyard Commandos
September 7 DEA Fox
September 8 American Chronicles Fox Kids
Attack of the Killer Tomatoes
Bobby's World
Peter Pan and the Pirates
Tom & Jerry Kids
Zazoo U
America's Funniest People ABC
New Kids on the Block
The Wizard of Oz
The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3 NBC
The Fanelli Boys
Gravedale High
Kid 'n Play
September 10 The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
Lenny CBS
Uncle Buck Syndication
The New Adventures of He-Man
Quiz Kids Challenge
Trump Card
September 11 The Family Man
September 13 American Dreamer NBC
Law & Order
Babes Fox
September 14 Tiny Toon Adventures Syndication
September 15 Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventures CBS
Captain Planet and the Planeteers TBS
Piggsburg Pigs! Fox Kids
September 16 The Adventures of Don Coyote and Sancho Panda Syndication
E.A.R.T.H. Force CBS
September 17 The Trials of Rosie O'Neill
September 18 Married People ABC
September 20 The Flash CBS
Top Cops
September 21 Evening Shade
Going Places ABC
September 23 Against the Law Fox
Dream On HBO
September 24 Adam-12 Syndication
September 26 Cop Rock ABC
September 29 Widget the World Watcher Syndication
October 1 America Tonight CBS
October 4 Beverly Hills, 90210 Fox
October 24 WIOU CBS
October 27 NBA Inside Stuff NBC
October 31 Swamp Thing Fox
November 2 Over My Dead Body CBS
November 3 NBA on NBC NBC

Network changes[edit]

The following shows aired new episodes on a different network than previous first-run episodes:

Show Moved from Moved to
TaleSpin The Disney Channel Syndication
Disney's Adventures of the Gummi Bears ABC
The Hogan Family NBC CBS
The Major League Baseball Game of the Week
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Syndication


Show Last aired Previous New/Same network Return date
Supermarket Sweep 1967 ABC Lifetime February 5
Match Game 1982 Syndication ABC July 16
Let's Make a Deal 1986 NBC
To Tell The Truth 1981 September 3
The Joker's Wild 1986 Same September 10


Date Show Debut
January 14 Free Spirit 1989
January 21 Fantastic Max 1988
February 24 Mission: Impossible
March 9 The Bradys 1990
March 12 Mama's Family 1983
March 23 Scrabble (returned in 1993) 1984
March 24 ALF 1986
April 6 Baywatch (returned in 1991) 1989
April 13 The Pat Sajak Show
April 24 Mancuso, F.B.I.
April 28 Tour of Duty 1987
April 30 My Two Dads
May 4 Just the Ten of Us 1988
May 6 227 1985
Booker 1989
May 7 Alien Nation
May 12 The Famous Teddy Z
May 17 Falcon Crest 1981
May 21 Newhart 1982
May 25 You Can't Do That on Television 1981
May 26 The Tracey Ullman Show 1987
June 14 NBA on CBS 1973
June 28 Wolf 1989
June 29 Hardball
July 6 Snoops
Pinwheel 1977
July 8 Mr. Belvedere 1985
July 21 Open House 1989
July 30 Sister Kate
August 4 Beauty and the Beast 1987
August 25 Kissyfur 1986
August 31 Rodeo Drive 1990
September 2 Tim Conway's Funny America
September 15 The CBN Family Channel 1988
September 29 E.A.R.T.H. Force 1990
November 10 Charles in Charge 1984
Pee-wee's Playhouse 1986
November 19 Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers 1989
November 28 DuckTales 1987
December 1 Alvin and the Chipmunks 1983
The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3 1990
December 8 Wiseguy 1987
December 12 Working It Out 1990
December 13 Remote Control 1987
December 26 Cop Rock 1990
December 28 Quiz Kids Challenge

Made-for-TV movies[edit]

Title Network Date of airing
Murder in Mississippi NBC February 5
The Death of the Incredible Hulk February 18
The Incident CBS March 4
A Killing in a Small Town May 22
It ABC November 18 & 20


Date Name Notability
January 7 Liam Aiken Actor
January 13 Liam Hemsworth Australian actor (The Hunger Games)
January 14 Grant Gustin Actor (The Flash)
January 15 Chris Warren, Jr. Actor (High School Musical)
January 26 Christopher Massey Actor (Zoey 101)
January 30 Jake Thomas Actor (Lizzie McGuire)
February 9 Camille Winbush Actress (The Bernie Mac Show)
February 14 Jake Weary Actor (As the World Turns, Fred: The Show, Animal Kingdom)
Brett Dier Canadian actor (Ravenswood, Jane the Virgin)
February 27 Lindsey Morgan Actress (General Hospital, The 100)
February 28 Georgina Leonidas English actress (Harry Potter)
March 4 Andrea Bowen Actress (Desperate Housewives)
March 7 Daniel Samonas Actor
March 13 Emory Cohen Actor (Smash)
March 16 Madison Riley Actress
March 18 Luke Tarsitano Actor (Fudge)
March 24 Keisha Castle-Hughes Australian actress (Game of Thrones)
March 26 Carly Chaikin Actress (Suburgatory, Mr. Robot)
March 30 Cassandra Scerbo Actress (Dance Revolution, Make It or Break It, Randy Cunningham: 9th Grade Ninja)
Allie Gonino Actress (The Lying Game)
April 6 Charlie McDermott Actor (The Middle)
April 9 Kristen Stewart Actress (The Twilight Saga)
April 10 Alex Pettyfer English actor
April 14 Christian Alexander Actor (The Lying Game)
April 15 Emma Watson French-English actress (Harry Potter)
April 18 Britt Robertson Actress (Swingtown, Life UneXpected, The Secret Circle, Under the Dome)
April 23 Matthew Underwood Actor (Zoey 101)
May 1 Caitlin Stasey Actress (Neighbours)
May 2 Kay Panabaker Actress (Summerland, No Ordinary Family)
May 16 Thomas Sangster English actor (Ferb Fletcher on Phineas and Ferb, Game of Thrones)
May 17 Leven Rambin Actress (All My Children, Scoundrels)
May 21 Scotty Leavenworth Actor
May 27 Chris Colfer Actor (Glee)
May 30 Dean Collins Actor (Jack & Bobby, The War at Home)
June 10 Tristin Mays Actress (Gullah Gullah Island, Private)
June 13 Aaron Taylor-Johnson English actor and singer
June 28 Jasmine Richards Canadian actress (Naturally, Sadie)
Nick Purcell Actor (The Troop)
July 2 Margot Robbie Australian actress (Pan Am)
July 11 Connor Paolo Actor (Gossip Girl, Revenge)
Kelsey Sanders Actress (Private) and singer
July 16 James Maslow Actor (Big Time Rush) and singer
July 27 Indiana Evans Australian actress and singer (Snobs, Home and Away, H2O: Just Add Water, Crownies, Secrets and Lies)
July 29 Matt Prokop Actor
Munro Chambers Canadian actor (The Latest Buzz)
August 1 Jack O'Connell British actor (Skins)
August 9 Adelaide Kane Australian actress (Neighbours, Power Rangers RPM, Teen Wolf, Reign)
Bill Skarsgård Swedish actor (Hemlock Grove)
August 10 Lucas Till Actor
August 15 Jennifer Lawrence Actress (The Bill Engvall Show, The Hunger Games)
August 17 Rachel Hurd-Wood British actress (Home Fires)
August 28 Katie Findlay Canadian actress (The Killing, The Carrie Diaries, How to Get Away with Murder)
August 29 Nicole Gale Anderson Actress (Jonas)
September 8 Ella Rae Peck Actress (Gossip Girl, Welcome to the Family)
September 9 Haley Reinhart Musician (American Idol)
September 10 Eddy Martin Actor (Just Jordan)
September 15 Matt Shively Actor (True Jackson, VP, The Troop)
September 21 Allison Scagliotti Actress (Drake & Josh, Warehouse 13, Stitchers)
Christian Serratos Actress (Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide, The Walking Dead)
September 27 Lola Kirke English-American actress (Mozart in the Jungle)
September 28 Kirsten Prout Canadian actress (Kyle XY, The Lying Game)
September 29 Doug Brochu Actor (Sonny with a Chance, So Random!)
October 6 Scarlett Byrne Actress (Harry Potter, Falling Skies, The Vampire Diaries)
October 7 Ayla Kell Actress (Make It or Break It)
October 13 Bailey Noble Actress (First Day, True Blood)
October 18 Jordan Calloway Actor (Unfabulous)
October 20 Galadriel Stineman Actress (The Middle)
October 22 Jonathan Lipnicki Actor (The Jeff Foxworthy Show)
October 24 Kirby Bliss Blanton Actress
October 29 Carlson Young Actress (As the Bell Rings)
October 31 Lil' JJ Actor (Just Jordan)
November 2 Kendall Schmidt Actor (Big Time Rush) and singer
November 17 Shanica Knowles Actress (Hannah Montana)
November 24 Sarah Hyland Actress (Modern Family)
November 29 Diego Boneta Mexican actor and singer (Underemployed, Scream Queens)
December 13 Emily Peachey Actress
December 15 Rachel Brosnahan Actress (House of Cards, Manhattan)
December 20 JoJo American singer
December 23 Anna María Pérez de Tagle Actress (Hannah Montana, Cake)
December 28 David Archuleta Singer (American Idol), actor


Date Name Age Notability
January 2 Alan Hale, Jr. 68 Actor (Skipper Jonas Grumby on Gilligan's Island)
January 9 Northern Calloway 41 Actor (David on Sesame Street)
January 18 Rusty Hamer 42 Former child actor (Make Room For Daddy)
March 24 Ray Goulding 68 Comedian, half of the comedy team Bob and Ray
May 10 Susan Oliver 58 Actress (Peyton Place)
May 14 Franklyn Seales 37 Actor (Dexter on Silver Spoons)
May 16 Jim Henson 53 Puppeteer (The Muppets creator)
May 25 Vic Tayback 60 Actor (Mel Sharples on Alice)
June 4 Jack Gilford 82 Actor (Cracker Jack commercials)
July 7 Bill Cullen 70 Game show host (original host of The Price Is Right)
July 8 Howard Duff 76 Actor (Felony Squad)
July 30 Karl Weber 74 Actor (Arthur Tate in Search for Tomorrow)[1]
October 26 William S. Paley 89 Founder and longtime head of CBS
November 3 Mary Martin 76 Actress & singer (Peter Pan)
November 12 Eve Arden 82 Actress (Our Miss Brooks)
November 27 David White 74 Actor (Larry Tate on Bewitched)
December 2 Robert Cummings 80 Actor (The Bob Cummings Show)
December 28 Kiel Martin 46 Actor (Officer J.D. LaRue on Hill Street Blues)


  1. ^ "Karl Weber; Longtime Radio Actor". Los Angeles Times. August 6, 1990. Retrieved 11 September 2016.