Girl Talk (TV Series 1963–1970) Poster


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The precessdor to today's "The View"
rcj536513 March 2007
The half-hour talk show titled "Girl Talk", which ran from 1962 until 1970,and lasted for eight years in first-run syndication was basically the forefather of all of the morning talk shows and if you wanted to know where the precessdor to today's "The View" originated,it came from this show. However,if any TV show of the 1960's deserved to be called a "bitch session" then GIRL TALK was it. It was nothing more than three celebrity women,led by opinionated Virginia Graham and her panel of experts which included Peggy Hoffman and Florence Henderson(later on of "The Brady Bunch" fame). Being with some of the talent that this show had,the only one that was theatrical experience on the panel was Henderson herself,whom at the time was a successful Broadway and movie actress at the time. GIRL TALK was nothing more than women who basically expressed there feelings about life,current events,and most often there thoughts about each other. This was the show where put-downs seemed to be the order of the day both onstage(Time magazine reported that actress Natalie Schafer of "Gilligan's Island" fame told columnist Sheliah Graham,"Oh,I'm so glad to meet you. You were the cause of my divorce")and offstage(supposedly Jayne Mansfield was nonplussed when rotund comedienne Totie Fields told her,"People are constantly telling me how much alike you and I are"). Guests the caliber of Bette Davis,Joan Crawford,Lucille Ball,Phyllis Diller,Anita Bryant,Shirley Jones,not to mention Joan Fontaine felt free to let the fur fly. And this was nothing but a show that had nothing but females bickered there thoughts and feelings all over the place like a bunch of hens cackling and hollering on the farm. A show full of female cattiness and then some with one dissing the other right there on national television. However,not all the talk consisted of backbiting. Way before Barbara Walters came up with the concept. GIRL TALK was the original of the all around "bitch fest".

For example,in one segment telecast in 1966,actress Jean Muir discussed how she had been blacklisted in 1950 from the NBC sitcom titled "The Aldrich Family" following accusations that she was a communist. Other subjects followed suit as well including some that were strictly taboo from television in the 1960's and this show really took it over the edge. One segment featured author Jacqueline Susann who was discussing her views of her novel "The Valley Of The Dolls". The program proved to be for its time rather uninformative to watch due to the subject matter,not to even mention some of the language that was censored. Censors bleeped out not only the show,network,and sponsor(General Foods)involved in the matter which was something quite new and different in the format of daytime television during the 1960's. The mother hen herself,the cackling,if somewhat loudmouthed host Virginia Graham left the show in 1969,to do her own hour-long daily syndicated talk show(The Virginia Graham Show,1970-1972),while Betsy Palmer became the hostess and from there the show adapted a more informational tone which included some men as guests not to mention minorities as well. In other words,GIRL TALK, became like every other daytime talk show and shortly lost its distinctive edge when it was cancelled for good in the Spring of 1970 after eight seasons.
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