Fine, But Now Forgotten ABC News Documentary Series
ABC's Our World had the advantage of the great news staff at ABC in 1986, who went out and filmed eyewitness accounts from regular people as well as the famous. This hour long show had a budget of under $1 million, less then the $1.5 million budgeted for the previous time slot occupant, Ripley's Believe It or Not hosted by Jack Palance, according to a New York Times article in 1986. Whatever the budget, the money spent shows in the Our World episodes I saw and taped in 1986 and 1987. In 1986, Our World production staff could still find participants for interviews to the shows covering the earliest season/year episodes in 1938 and 1939. Now, 19 years later, many of those interviewed have passed on, so this show is a real time capsule. The film archivists did an outstanding job collecting high quality film footage for the episodes, which looks good even on my taped copies, taped at EP speed, for reasons unknown now (but which I am now transferring to DVDR at XP speed).
Information on this ABC News documentary series is very hard to come by. TVTome has information on some episodes, but the air dates are not always accurate. The Bill Cosby Show, which was on opposite Our World, is out on DVD now, but Our World is still among the missing on DVD. While show host Linda Ellerbee went on to other shows, co-host Ray Gandolf and the show's production staff do not seem to have gotten another chance at ABC News after Our World flopped.
Below are the show episodes in January 1987, with the correct air dates. Since Our World was a news show with few musical segments that could cause clearance problems, ABC would have no problems issuing a DVD of the series. ABC probably won't, since niche market quality shows like Our World do not appeal to the Ipod wearing empty suits who dominate corporate American television.
Our World Episode List (1986-1987) 9/25/86 Summer Of 1969 10/2/86 13 Days In October 1962 10/9/86 Pre-empted 10/16/86 Autumn 1956 10/23/86 Forty Days In Spring 1970 10/30/86 Halloween Of 1938 11/6/86 Breaking Barriers 1954 11/13/86 Pre-empted 11/20/86 Pre-empted 11/27/86 Per-empted 12/4/86 Together And Apart 1943 12/11/86 Pursuit Of Power | Autumn 1973 12/18/86 All Shook Up | Autumn 1957 12/25/86 Pre-empted 1/1/87 Secrets & Surprises | Fall 1948 1/8/87 Inner-Struggles | Autumn 1975 1/15/87 Fear & Frustration | Winter 1952 1/22/87 Worlds Apart | Summer 1939 1/29/87 Re-run - Breaking Barriers 1954 2/5/87 Winds Of Change | Winter 1968 2/12/87 A Crowded Room | Autumn 1949 2/19/87 Gone With The Wind 1939 2/26/87 Between The Lines | Summer 1972 3/5/87 Up Against The Wall | 1961 3/12/87 Re-run 1970 Episode 3/19/87 Pre-empted 3/26/87 Re-run 1943 Episode 4/2/87 Re-run 1973 Episode 4/9/87 Liberation Summer | 1944 4/16/87 Cover Stories | Spring 1960 4/23/87 Period Of Adjustment | Autumn 1946 4/30/87 Speaking Out | Spring 1963 5/7/87 Duels In The Sun | Summer 1952 5/14/87 One Day In April 1961 5/21/87 Long Winter - Short Spring 1937 5/28/87 Spring 1953
(List e-mailed to me by LF, who saw my original posting listing 4 episodes of series shown in January 1987. He had obtained a complete list from a production assistant at ABC. I modified list slightly, adding information for two episodes).
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