TV Hosts

There were other hosts/performers of WABD-TV Ch.5 NYC's "Looney Tunes Show" aside from Sandy Becker. Sandy had hosted WABD TV Ch.5 NYC's "Looney Tunes Show" weekday evenings from Monday, April 11, 1955 to Tueday, July 8, 1958. After Sandy left the series, the station execs at WABD-TV moved the show to a Saturday evening timeslot and Herb Sheldon took over as the host/performer on Saturday, July 8, 1958. Herb would entertain and inform his viewers in between the reruns of "The Looney Tunes" Movie cartoons, until he left the show and Ch.5 on Saturday, August 2, 1958 following a creative dispute with station management. Bill Britten became the third and last host/performer of the show on Saturday, August 9, 1958.Britten would continue to MC the show until the series went off the air on Saturday, August 30, 1958. The Warner Brothers "Looney Tunes" Movie cartoons would also be seen on WABD-TV Ch.5 NYC's "Bugs Bunny Theater" Friday nights beginning on Friday, September l4, 1956. Sandy would entertain and inform his viewers on "The Bugs Bunny Theater" until he left the show on Friday, September 6, 1957. Herb Sheldon would take over as the show's host/performer on Monday, June 30, 1958. During Sheldon's tenure as the second host/performer of the series, the show would be retitled: "Bugs Bunny Presents!". Sheldon would continue to host "Bugs Bunny Presents!" until he left the show on Friday, August 1, 1958. Bill Britten would MC the program from Monday, August 4, 1958 to Wednesday, January 28, 1959. "Uncle Fred" Scott would host the show from Monday, February 2, 1959 to Friday, May 2, 1959. On Monday May 25, 1959, the show's title was changed to "Nuts & Bugs!". "Uncle Fred" Scott would entertain and inform his viewers in between the reruns of "The Looney Tunes" Movie cartoons and the Charley Chase, Edgar Kennedy, Andy Clyde and Leon Errol film comedies, until WNEW-TV Ch.5 cancelled "The Nuts & Bugs Show" on Thursday, August 13, 1959. Sandy also hosted reruns of the "Our Gang" Film comedies on "Sandy Becker Presents The Our Gang Comedies" on WNEW-TV Ch.5 in NYC, weekday evenings starting on Monday, November l7, 1958. Unfortunately, the films that Sandy screened on the show were the forgettable "Our Gang" films that were produced by MGM from the latter part of l938 to l944. In these films, "Spanky","Darla","Porky',"Alfalfa","Buckwheat","Butch" (Tom Bond),and (God Help Us All!) Scott "Froggey" McLaughlin and Mickey Gubitosi (Bob Blake) would perform in horribly unfunny social satires and WWII propaganda films that were produced and created by the abusive and contempable head of MGM Louis B. Mayer. Sandy tried to offset the negative aspects of the films with his puppet skits, drawing lessons, craftmaking, informational segments, visits from "Uncle Mike's" animals, and interviews with guest performers and personalities. But his efforts were for naught. WNEW-TV Ch.5 closed down "Sandy Becker's Our Gang Clubhouse" on Friday, March 17, 1961. Sonny Fox also reran the post-l938-44 MGM "Our Gangs" on his version of WNEW-TV Ch.5 NYC's"Wonderama!", Sunday mornings from 1959 to 1960.

Kevin S. Butler



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