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TV Shows & Series: Popular TV Shows/Series of the 1940s (1940-1949)

TV shows/series in chronological context: The 1940s (pronounced "nineteen-forties" and commonly abbreviated as "the 40s") was a decade of the Gregorian calendar that began on January 1, 1940, and ended on December 31, 1949. It was the fifth decade of the 20th century. Most of World War II took place in the first half of the decade, which had a profound effect on most countries and people in Europe, Asia, and elsewhere. The consequences of the war lingered well into the second half of the decade, with a war-weary Europe divided between the jostling spheres of influence of the Western world and the Soviet Union, leading to the beginning of the Cold War. To some degree internal and external tensions in the post-war era were managed by new institutions, including the United Nations, the welfare state, and the Bretton Woods system, facilitating the post–World War II economic expansion, which lasted well into the 1970s. The conditions of the post-war world encouraged decolonization and the emergence of new states and governments, with India, Pakistan, Israel, Vietnam, and others declaring independence, although rarely without bloodshed. The decade also witnessed the early beginnings of new technologies (such as computers, nuclear power, and jet propulsion), often first developed in tandem with the war effort, and later ad... ()

TV Shows/Series of a single year: 1940 | 1941 | 1942 | 1943 | 1944 | 1945 | 1946 | 1947 | 1948 | 1949


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71 TV shows/series found (page 1/3):

The Lone Ranger(1949-1957)

30min per episode | Western, Action & Adventure
3.6/5 (with 7 votes)

The Lone Ranger is an American western television series that ran from 1949 to 1957, starring Clayton Moore with Jay Silverheels as Tonto. The live-action series initially featured Gerald Mohr as the episode narrator. Fred Foy served as both narrator and announcer of the radio series from 1948 to its finish and became announcer of the television version when story narration was dropped there. This was by far the highest-rated television program on the ABC network in the early 1950s and its first true "hit".

The Ed Sullivan Show(1948-1971)

1h per episode | Comedy
3.4/5 (with 5 votes)

The Ed Sullivan Show is an American TV variety show that originally ran on CBS from Sunday June 20, 1948 to Sunday June 6, 1971, and was hosted by New York entertainment columnist Ed Sullivan. It was replaced in September 1971 by the CBS Sunday Night Movie, which ran only one season and was eventually replaced by other shows. In 2002, The Ed Sullivan Show was ranked #15 on TV Guide's 50 Greatest TV Shows of All Time.

Meet the Press(1947-)

53min per episode | News
2.0/5 (with 3 votes)

Meet the Press is a weekly American television news/interview program airing on NBC. It is the longest-running television series in American broadcasting history, despite bearing little resemblance to the original format of the program seen in its television debut on November 6, 1947. Meet the Press is the highest-rated of the American television Sunday morning talk shows. It has been hosted by 11 moderators, beginning with Martha Rountree. The current host is David Gregory, who assumed the role in December 2008. The show began using a new set on May 2, 2010, with video screens and a library-style set with bookshelves, and different, modified intro music, with David Gregory previewing the guests using a large video screen, and with the Meet the Press theme music in a shorter "modernized [style]... the beginning repeated with drum beats". Meet the Press and similar shows specialize in interviewing national leaders on issues of politics, economics, foreign policy and other public affairs. Over the past few years, the program's usual time slot over the NBC network is between 9-10 a.m. local time in most markets, though this may vary by markets due to commitments by affiliates to religious, E/I or local news and public affairs programming. It also varies several weeks in the summer due to morning coverage of French Open tennis or the Monaco Grand Prix by NBC Sports. In earlier years, the program would air at noon every Sunday. The program also re-airs Sunday afternoons at 2 p.m. ET and early Monday mornings at 4 a.m. ET on MSNBC, along with an early Monday morning replay as part of NBC's "All Night" lineup. The program is also distributed to radio stations via syndication by Dial Global, and aired as part of C-SPAN Radio's replay of the Sunday morning talk shows.

You Bet Your Life(1947-1961)

30min per episode | Comedy
3.2/5 (with 2 votes)

You Bet Your Life is an American quiz show that aired on both radio and television. The original and best-known version was hosted by Groucho Marx of the Marx Brothers, with announcer and assistant George Fenneman. The show debuted on ABC Radio in October 1947, then moved to CBS Radio in September 1949 before making the transition to NBC-TV in October 1950. Because of its simple format, it was possible to broadcast the show simultaneously on the radio and on television. In 1960, the show was renamed The Groucho Show and ran a further year. Most episodes are in the public domain. The play of the game, however, was secondary to the interplay between Groucho, the contestants, and occasionally Fenneman. The program was rerun into the 1970s, and later in syndication as The Best of Groucho. As such, it was the first game show to have its reruns syndicated.

Studio One(1948-1958)

1h per episode | Drama
1.9/5 (with 2 votes)

An American radio–television anthology series, created in 1947 by Canadian director Fletcher Markle, who came to CBS from the CBC.

Directed by Yul Brynner

Kukla, Fran and Ollie(1947)

30min per episode | Kids & Family, Comedy, Kids & Family
3.3/5 (with 1 vote)

Kukla, Fran and Ollie is an early American television show using puppets, originally created for children but soon watched by more adults than children. It did not have a script and was entirely ad-libbed. It aired from 1947 to 1957.

The Goldbergs(1949)

30min per episode | Comedy
4.0/5 (with 1 vote)

The Goldbergs is a comedy-drama broadcast from 1929 to 1946 on American radio, and from 1949 to 1956 on American television. It was adapted into a 1948 play, Me and Molly, a 1950 film The Goldbergs, and a 1973 Broadway musical, Molly.

Suspense(1949-1954)

25min per episode | Drama
1.8/5 (with 1 vote)

Suspense is an American television anthology series that ran on CBS Television from 1949 to 1954. It was adapted from the radio program of the same name which ran from 1942 to 1962. Like many early television programs, the show was broadcast live from New York City. It was sponsored by the Auto-Lite corporation, and each episode was introduced by host Rex Marshall, who promoted Auto-Lite spark plugs, car batteries, headlights, and other car parts. Some of the early scripts were adapted from Suspense radio scripts, while others were original for television. Like the radio program, many scripts were adaptations of literary classics by well-known authors. Classic authors such as Edgar Allan Poe, Agatha Christie, and Charles Dickens all had stories adapted for the series, while contemporary authors such as Roald Dahl and Gore Vidal also contributed. Many notable actors appeared on the program, including Bela Lugosi, Boris Karloff, Franchot Tone, Robert Emhardt, Leslie Nielsen, Lloyd Bridges, and many more. The program was a live television series, but most episodes were recorded on kinescope. However, only about 90 of the 260 episodes survive today.

Directed by Robert Mulligan

Critic at Large(1948-1949)

30min per episode | Talk-Show
2.0/5 (with 1 vote)

Author and critic John Mason Brown, who once commented that "some television programs are so much chewing gum for the eyes," offered this intellectual alternative in 1948-1949. It consisted of an informal living-room discussion on the arts with two or three guests, of the caliber of author James Michener, producer Billy Rose, publishrer Bennet Cerf, and critic Bosley Crowther. The subjects ranged from modern art to new novels, films, the theater and fashions.

Texaco Star Theater(1948-1956)

1h per episode | Comedy
4.5/5 (with 1 vote)

Texaco Star Theater is an American comedy-variety show, broadcast on radio from 1938 to 1949 and telecast from 1948 to 1956. It was one of the first successful examples of American television broadcasting, remembered as the show that gave Milton Berle the nickname "Mr. Television". The classic 1940–44 version of the program, hosted by radio's Fred Allen, was followed by a radio series on ABC in the spring of 1948. When Texaco first took it to television on NBC on June 8, 1948, the show had a huge cultural impact.

Crusade in Europe(1949)

4.0/5 (with 1 vote)

- No description / details available yet. -

Gabby(1940-)

5.0/5 (with 1 vote)

Gabby was a Max Fleischer animated cartoon series distributed through Paramount Pictures. Gabby debuted as the town crier in the 1939 animated feature Gulliver’s Travels produced by Fleischer. Shortly afterward Paramount and Fleischer saw fit to give Gabby his own Technicolor cartoon series, eight entries of which were produced between 1940 and 1941. Gabby was voiced by Pinto Colvig, the voice of Walt Disney's Goofy. The Gabby cartoons were sold to U.M.&M. T.V. Corp. in 1955, which later became part of National Telefilm Associates, which became Republic Pictures, and was then sold to Paramount's current parent Viacom in 1999. Today, the Gabby cartoons are in the public domain.

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Winner Take All(1946)

30min per episode

Winner Take All, an American radio-television game show, ran from 1946-1952 on CBS and NBC. It was the first game show produced by the Mark Goodson-Bill Todman partnership. The series was originally hosted by Ward Wilson, but is best known for being the first game hosted by Bill Cullen. Although the game format was very simple, Winner Take All served as the genesis for many future game-show formats. It was the first game to use lockout devices, and the first to use returning champions.

Howdy Doody(1947)

30min per episode | Kids & Family

Howdy Doody is an American children's television program that was created and produced by E. Roger Muir and telecast on the NBC network in the United States from December 27, 1947 until September 24, 1960. It was a pioneer in children's television programming and set the pattern for many similar shows. One of the first television series produced at NBC in Rockefeller Center, in Studio 3A, it was also a pioneer in early color production as NBC used the show in part to sell color television sets in the 1950s.

Kraft Television Theatre(1947)

1h per episode | Drama

Kraft Television Theatre is an American drama/anthology television series that began May 7, 1947 on NBC, airing at 7:30pm on Wednesday evenings until December of that year. In January 1948, it moved to 9pm on Wednesdays, continuing in that timeslot until 1958. Initially produced by the J. Walter Thompson advertising agency, the live hour-long series offered television plays with new stories and new characters each week, in addition to adaptations of such classics as A Christmas Carol and Alice in Wonderland. Beginning October 1953, ABC added a separate series, created to promote Kraft's new Cheez Whiz product. This series ran for sixteen months, telecast on Thursday evenings at 9:30pm, until January 1955.

Candid Camera(1948-)

1h per episode | Comedy, Reality-TV

Candid Camera is an American hidden camera/practical joke reality television series created and produced by Allen Funt, which initially began on radio as Candid Microphone June 28, 1947. After a series of theatrical film shorts, also titled Candid Microphone, Funt's concept came to television on August 10, 1948. The show last aired for 10 episodes in 2014 on the TV Land network. A documentary about Allen Funt is currently in the works by the Candid Camera crew. The format has appeared on U.S. TV networks and in syndication in each succeeding decade, as either a regular show or a series of specials. Allen Funt himself hosted or co-hosted almost all of the TV versions until a 1993 stroke from which he never recovered. His son Peter Funt, who had co-hosted the specials with his father since 1987, became the producer and host.

Directed by Allen Funt

The World in Your Home(1944)

15min per episode | Documentary

The World in Your Home is an NBC Television TV series which aired from December 22, 1944 to 1948, originally broadcast on WNBT, NBC's New York flagship, then broadcast on NBC-affiliate stations WRGB in New York's Capital District and WPTZ in Philadelphia starting shortly after its premiere. The program consisted of educational short films. Each episode was 15 minutes long, and is believed to be one of the first television programs in the history of the NBC Television network. The series aired after I Love to Eat with James Beard in 1946, and after Campus Hoopla in 1947. Little else is known about the series.

The Philco Television Playhouse(1948-1956)

1h per episode | Drama

The Philco Television Playhouse is an American anthology series that was broadcast live on NBC from 1948 to 1955. Produced by Fred Coe, the series was sponsored by Philco. It was one of the most respected dramatic shows of the Golden Age of Television, winning a 1954 Peabody Award and receiving eight Emmy nominations between 1951 and 1956.

Directed by Fred Coe

Tom and Jerry(1940-2014)

Tom and Jerry is an American animated franchise and series of comedy short films created in 1940 by William Hanna and Joseph Barbera. Best known for its 161 theatrical short films by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, the series centers on the rivalry between the titular characters of a cat named Tom and a mouse named Jerry.

Actors Studio(1948-1950)

30min per episode | Drama

Actors Studio is an American TV show which aired for 65 episodes, from September 26, 1948 to October 26 on the fledgling ABC Television Network; then from November 1, 1949 to June 23, 1950 on CBS Television. It was hosted by Mark Connelly. The series showcased short pieces of adapted, classic and original drama, performed and produced live each week. Among some of the known authors were William Saroyan, James Thurber, Ring Lardner, Edgar Allan Poe, Irwin Shaw and Budd Schulberg. Featured actors included Martin Balsam, Richard Boone, Marlon Brando, Hume Cronyn, Julie Harris, Jean Muir and Jessica Tandy. Recurring performers included Jocelyn Brando, Tom Ewell, Steven Hill, Kim Hunter and Cloris Leachman. In February 1950, the series moved to Friday nights and was expanded to one hour, alternating every other week with broadcasts of Ford Theatre. In March, the name of the show was changed to The Play's the Thing. The series received a Peabody Award in 1948 for pioneering in the field of televised drama.

Americana(1947)

30min per episode

Americana is a weekly game show which ran on NBC from December 8, 1947 to July 4, 1949. The series was originally hosted by literary critic John Mason Brown and produced by Martin Stone Productions with NBC Television. Each week's show was sponsored by Encyclopedia Americana. The 30-minute show aired Mondays at 8:10pm ET in the 1947-48 television season, and Mondays at 8:30pm ET in the 1948-49 season.

Herman and Katnip(1944)

6min per episode | Animation, Comedy, Kids & Family

- No description / details available yet. -

Hour Glass(1946)

1h per episode

Hour Glass is the first regularly scheduled variety show shown on American network television. It ran on NBC from May 9, 1946 until March 1947.

Let's Rhumba(1946)

15min per episode | Music

Let's Rhumba was an American dance instruction program that aired on NBC from November 1946 to January 1947. Each 15 minute episode was hosted by D'Avalos. No episodes are known to survive as NBC had no archival policy at the time.

Paging You(1946-1948)

35min per episode

Paging You was a BBC comedy series which debuted on 3 November 1946 and was subsequently cancelled in 1948.

Campus Hoopla(1946)

30min per episode

Campus Hoopla is an American game show that ran on the NBC Television network from December 27, 1946 until its cancellation in 1947. The show was centered around a group of teenagers in a soda shop.

Geographically Speaking(1946)

15min per episode

Geographically Speaking was an American travel series that debuted on June 9, 1946 on NBC, and aired Sundays at 8:15 pm EST immediately following the game show Face to Face. The weekly 15-minute program was one of the first TV shows to have a regular sponsor, Bristol-Myers. The show consisted of hostess Mrs. Carveth Wells narrating her 16mm home movies of her trips with her husband to unusual and exotic places. When she ran out of home movies, the series ended in October 1947. Mrs. Wells later appeared as a contestant on Groucho Marx's You Bet Your Life, on TV and radio, in February 1958.

Front Row Center(1945-1956)

1h per episode | Drama

Broadway plays are presented live in condensed one hour versions.

Family Affairs(1949-1950)

30min per episode

Family Affairs was the first television serial broadcast by BBC Television.

Television Playhouse(1947)

30min per episode

Television Playhouse is an American anthology series that was broadcast live on NBC. The series aired from December 4, 1947 to April 11, 1948. The program was in cooperation with the National Theater and Academy, a federally sponsored theater group, and featured live performances of plays, some of which were by well-known authors. The first presentation was The Last of My Solid Gold Watchers by Tennessee Williams. Each episode was 30 minutes long, and featured actors and actresses who had not reached stardom. A wide variety of plays was presented on the program. Although short-lived, the "live play" format later became very popular during the early 1950s.

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