TelevisionWeek Executive Editor Tom Gilbert joins our roster of bloggers with this forum all about classic television, where anything from "Leave It to Beaver" to "Malcolm in the Middle" is fair game for discussion. Reunion specials, DVD releases of classic shows, vintage commercials -- anything that's ever been telecast is the hot topic here.


Timeless TV

Awards, Just for the Fun of It

April 15, 2007 2:27 PM

The TV Land Awards came off without a hitch last night at the Santa Monica Hangar.

First things first: The opening is an absolute gas -- far better than the recent Oscarcast's -- so if you don't see any other part of the telecast when it airs next Sunday (April 22), make sure to tune in to TV Land at 9 sharp to catch the first five minutes. All I can say is that host Kelly Ripa -- who did a smashing job, by the way -- is one helluva a good sport.

"Taxi," "Roots," "Hee Haw," "The Brady Bunch" and Lucille Ball were all honored, and you couldn't walk around the banquet tables without tripping over some blast from the past: Leslie Uggams, Tony Dow and Jerry Mathers, Kirstie Alley, Roy Clark, Jeff Conaway, Ann B. Davis and the Brady kids, and even Doris Singleton and Shirley Mitchell, the actresses who played Lucy's chums Carolyn Appleby and Marion Strong on "I Love Lucy" -- everybody turned out.

The best thing about the TV Land Awards is that since there are so few categories, the winners have time to make meaningful acceptance speeches. This was most pleasingly evident in the very touching 30th anniversary tribute to "Roots," which impacted so many lives -- and in no small measure those of the actors who were lucky enough to be cast in it.

Willie Nelson and The Judds showed up to sing in tribute to "Hee Haw," which gave them early exposure. That show was also represented by Clark, Barbi Benton, Misty Rowe and a host of "Hee Haw Honeys."

And in a nod to the present, NBC's current hit "Heroes" was presented the Future Classic award.

Another major highlight: The spoof "Ugly Betty White." If you liked the TV Land Awards' "Desperate Housewives" and "Sex and the City" spoofs a few years back, you'll love this send up. It should instantly get YouTube's Future Classic award.

Kudos to Executive Producer Michael Levitt for pulling off a tremendously entertaining show that deftly blends the old and the new.


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