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Old 08-15-2010, 05:48 PM   #1
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Question Was it True that Jim Nabors Quit to do a Variety Show???

Was Gomer Pyle, USMC the #1 show back in the late 60's? Was it true Jim Nabors left it to do a crummy variety show?
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Old 08-15-2010, 05:59 PM   #2
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Yep. Gomer was actually ranked #2 in the country when he quit in 1969.. It was called The Jim Nabors Hour. I actually remember watching it with my family although my memory is foggy. It was one of my Mom's favorite shows. Frank Sutton and Ronnie Schell also went over to the variety show. It was ranked in the top 20 during the first season but ratings dropped during the second and CBS cancelled it with all the other rural tv shows in 1971.
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Old 08-15-2010, 06:08 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stuck In The '70's
Yep. Gomer was actually ranked #2 in the country when he quit in 1969.. It was called The Jim Nabors Hour. I actually remember watching it with my family although my memory is foggy. It was one of my Mom's favorite shows. Frank Sutton and Ronnie Schell also went over to the variety show. It was ranked in the top 20 during the first season but ratings dropped during the second and CBS cancelled it with all the other rural tv shows in 1971.

Oh wow! Ok, so the Jim Nabors Hour was part of the rural massacre in the 70's? I had no idea. Thanks as always Sonny!
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Old 08-15-2010, 06:16 PM   #4
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Oh wow! Ok, so the Jim Nabors Hour was part of the rural massacre in the 70's? I had no idea. Thanks as always Sonny!
You're welcome.
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Old 08-16-2010, 12:25 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stuck In The '70's
Yep. Gomer was actually ranked #2 in the country when he quit in 1969.. It was called The Jim Nabors Hour. I actually remember watching it with my family although my memory is foggy. It was one of my Mom's favorite shows. Frank Sutton and Ronnie Schell also went over to the variety show. It was ranked in the top 20 during the first season but ratings dropped during the second and CBS cancelled it with all the other rural tv shows in 1971.
if I remember correctly, Barbara Stuart was also on it.
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Old 08-19-2010, 02:36 AM   #6
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Jim didn't 'quit' "GOMER PYLE, U.S.M.C.": he merely wanted to it to end after five years, so he could become a variety show host, like his friend Carol Burnett. I'm sure he didn't want to be "stuck" in a successful sitcom like his close friend Andy Griffith had for eight years {or more**, and he KNEW he had more talent to display every week than just "being" Gomer. CBS agreed, and scheduled daily repeats of "GOMER PYLE" [at 4pm(et)] from the fall of '69 through 1972. The first season of "THE JIM NABORS HOUR" was an unqualified success, but season two was successfully challenged by NBC's scheduling of "THE FLIP WILSON SHOW", which suddenly became #1 in its time period, with CBS finally deciding they only needed one country-flavored variety hour for the fall of 1971- Glen Campbell's, which was the more successful of the two- and cancelled Jim's. Even though Nabors continued to appear as Carol Burnett's "good luck guest" at the start of every one of her seasons (through 1977), he really never did much of anything on TV after that.

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Old 08-24-2010, 01:33 PM   #7
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I am sure he wished he had stayed with GOMER PYLE. If it was No. 2 in its fifth season, the show would have enjoyed an eight or nine year run bringing greater residual profits for Nabors.
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Old 08-24-2010, 01:48 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by lucyandethel
I am sure he wished he had stayed with GOMER PYLE. If it was No. 2 in its fifth season, the show would have enjoyed an eight or nine year run bringing greater residual profits for Nabors.
I think it only had 2 more years regardless because CBS canceled all of it's rural tv shows in the spring of 1971, no matter if they were still popular or not. Mayberry RFD and Hee Haw were both still in the top 20 when the ax swung.
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Old 08-29-2010, 10:31 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stuck In The '70's
I think it only had 2 more years regardless because CBS canceled all of it's rural tv shows in the spring of 1971, no matter if they were still popular or not. Mayberry RFD and Hee Haw were both still in the top 20 when the ax swung.
Hee Haw ( and Lawrence Welk ) did end up getting a second chance though by bypassing the networks in favor of going syndication which was a wise move for both shows as they continued to be on the air for many many years.

Several years ago I had the chance to meet George "Goober" Lindsay and I can remember he somewhat hinted that Mayberry RFD was looking at syndication at the time as well but of course, it didn't happen.
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Old 09-01-2010, 06:05 PM   #10
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Following this topic (or maybe the original poster had read this article and got the question from this article), here is an excellent (IMO) article from TV Party about the later years of TAGS and its spinoffs, along with some nice clips from Andy's later shows and The Jim Nabors Hour:

http://www.tvparty.com/andy.html
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Old 09-01-2010, 07:31 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TV Knowledge Fan
Nabors continued to appear as Carol Burnett's "good luck guest" at the start of every one of her seasons (through 1977), he really never did much of anything on TV after that.

I remember him doing a dramatic role in an episode of "The Rookies" but other than that I haven't seen him do much else.
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Old 09-27-2010, 09:26 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TV Knowledge Fan
Jim didn't 'quit' "GOMER PYLE, U.S.M.C.": he merely wanted to it to end after five years, so he could become a variety show host, like his friend Carol Burnett. I'm sure he didn't want to be "stuck" in a successful sitcom like his close friend Andy Griffith had for eight years {or more**, and he KNEW he had more talent to display every week than just "being" Gomer. CBS agreed, and scheduled daily repeats of "GOMER PYLE" [at 4pm(et)] from the fall of '69 through 1972. The first season of "THE JIM NABORS HOUR" was an unqualified success, but season two was successfully challenged by NBC's scheduling of "THE FLIP WILSON SHOW", which suddenly became #1 in its time period, with CBS finally deciding they only needed one country-flavored variety hour for the fall of 1971- Glen Campbell's, which was the more successful of the two- and cancelled Jim's. Even though Nabors continued to appear as Carol Burnett's "good luck guest" at the start of every one of her seasons (through 1977), he really never did much of anything on TV after that.


Ronnie Schell told me in an interview that "The Jim Nabors Hour" actually had better ratings than "The Carol Burnett Show" and was the more higher rated of the two and CBS still cancelled it.
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Old 09-05-2015, 07:36 PM   #13
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Saturday, September 5, 2015--6:31 pm CST
Yes, it was true. He wanted to do something else. Because he wanted to do more singing and dancing, he didn't get to do much of that on "Gomer Pyle, USMC". But Jim doesn't mind being type casted as Gomer.
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Old 09-05-2015, 10:10 PM   #14
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Yeah it was kind of weird someone wanted to stop a show that was the 2nd ranked show in the country at the time it ended
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Old 09-14-2015, 01:03 AM   #15
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I read once in TV Guide (this was about 2000 or 20001, at the time TV Land was showing reruns of GOMER)that once Jim Nabors was walking through an airport and he walked by a little girl who was with her mother. The girl pointed to him and said "LOOK MOM! An old Gomer Pyle!"
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