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1973 In Television

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1973 In Television

List of years in television (table)
In home video

The year 1973 in television involved some significant events. Below is a list of television-related events in that year.


  • Events 1
  • Programs/Programmes 2
    • Debuts 2.1
    • Ending this year 2.2
  • Births 3
  • Deaths 4


  • January 4 – The record breaking, long-running comedy series in the United Kingdom and the world, Last of the Summer Wine, starts as a 30-minute pilot on BBC1's Comedy Playhouse show. The first series starts on November 12; the 295th and last episode is broadcast on 29 August 2010.
  • January 13 – The Lawrence Welk Show airs its Salute to Mexico episode where Anacani makes her debut with the Champagne Music Makers. That episode also marks the final time Sandi Griffiths and Sally Flynn appear together as the act of Sandi & Sally
  • January 14 – Elvis Presley's Aloha From Hawaii - Via Satellite television special is seen around the world by over 1 billion viewers.
  • March 8 – The TV movie The Marcus-Nelson Murders airs on CBS. This serves as the pilot for the iconic crime drama series Kojak, which returns as a weekly series in October.
  • March 21 – Sitcom Are You Being Served? begins its first regular series on BBC1 in the U.K. (pilot aired September 8, 1972).
  • March 23 – The longest running daytime game show to date — NBC's Concentration — airs its 3,796th and final show, after a run of fourteen years and seven months. The record will be eclipsed in 1987 by The Price Is Right; today, Concentration ranks fourth in continual longevity among all daytime/syndicated game shows.
  • March 25 – The pilot episode of Open All Hours airs as part of Ronnie Barker's series Seven of One on BBC1 in the U.K.
  • April 1 – "Prisoner and Escort", the pilot episode of Porridge, airs as part of Seven of One.
  • April 16 – James Paul McCartney airs on ABC (and on ITV in the U.K. on May 10).
  • May 17 – U.S. daytime television is interrupted by the Watergate hearings, which would continue until August 7. Each network airs coverage in rotation every third day (ABC is first, then CBS and NBC).
  • July 2 – U.S. game show Match Game debuts its 1970s version; it soon becomes the #1-rated daytime television program for 1973, 1974, and 1975, as well as #1 game show from 1973–77.
  • August 6 – James Beck, who stars as Private Joe Walker in the popular U.K. sitcom Dad's Army, dies of a burst pancreas at the age of just 44. Although the series continues until 1977, the part of Walker is not recast and the show carries on without him.
  • August 11 – Programme One airs the first part of the Soviet television miniseries Seventeen Moments of Spring, which would run until the 24th. With an audience of between fifty and eighty million viewers per episode, it becomes the most successful television show of its time in the Soviet Union.
  • August 17 – CBS presents an adaptation of David Rabe's play Sticks and Bones...but only to about half of its affiliates.
  • September 15 – Betty White makes her first appearance as Sue Ann Nivens in The Mary Tyler Moore Show's fourth season opener, "The Lars Affair".
  • September 20 – The Battle of the Sexes: Billie Jean King defeats Bobby Riggs in a televised tennis match at the Astrodome in Houston, Texas. The global television audience in 36 countries is estimated at 90 million.
  • October 8 – Pat Phoenix leaves the role of Elsie Tanner on Coronation Street after thirteen years, when she felt that specific length of time was enough to play one character continuously.
  • October 20 – Sherman Hemsley) makes his first appearance on All in the Family, at his brother Henry's goodbye party, though he has lived next door to Archie Bunker for the past two years.
  • November 12 – The record breaking, long-running comedy series in the U.K. and the world, Last of the Summer Wine starts as a series on BBC1 (the pilot had aired on January 4). The 295th and last episode is broadcast on 29 August 2010.
  • November 20 – A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving airs on CBS for the first time. It will go onto win an Emmy Award the following year.
  • November 23 – Julie on Sesame Street, starring Julie Andrews, airs on ABC.
  • November – Color television is launched in New Zealand. (It will go full-time in November 1975).
  • December 12 – Kojak's trademark lollipop makes its debut in the episode "Hot Sunday".
  • December 19 – After reading a news item that said the federal government had fallen behind in getting bids to supply toilet tissue, Johnny Carson inadvertently triggers an unprecedented three-week panic when he announces, on The Tonight Show, that there is an acute shortage of toilet paper in the U.S.



Ending this year

Date Show Debut
January 16 Bonanza 1959
March 23 Love is a Many Splendored Thing 1967
Where the Heart Is 1969
March 30 Ghost Story 1972
Ultraman Ace (Japan)
Mission: Impossible 1966
May 20 Laugh-In 1968
August 24 The Mod Squad
September 9 The Doris Day Show
Bridget Loves Bernie 1972
October 27 The New Scooby-Doo Movies
December 28 Needles and Pins 1973


Date Name Notability
January 16 Josie Davis Actress (Charles in Charge, The Young and the Restless)
January 23 Lanei Chapman American actress
January 29 Miranda Krestovnikoff English archaeologist and television host
January 31 Portia de Rossi Actress (Ally McBeal)
February 12 Tara Strong Canadian voice actor (The Powerpuff girls)
February 15 Alex Borstein Actress/comedian (Family Guy)
March 24 Jim Parsons Actor (The Big Bang Theory)
April 8 Emma Caulfield Actress (Beverly Hills, 90210, General Hospital, Buffy, the Vampire Slayer)
April 11 Jennifer Esposito Actress (Spin City, Related, Samantha Who?, Blue Bloods, Taxi Brooklyn, Mistresses)
April 12 Christina Moore Actress (Hyperion Bay, Hawthorne)
April 28 Elisabeth Röhm German-American actress (Bull, Angel, Law & Order, The Client List, Stalker)
May 5 Tina Yothers Actress (Family Ties)
May 9 Chu Sang-mi Actress
May 16 Tori Spelling Actress (Beverly Hills, 90210) and daughter of Aaron Spelling
May 17 Sasha Alexander Actress (Dawson's Creek, NCIS, Rizzoli & Isles)
June 15 Neil Patrick Harris Actor (How I Met Your Mother)
June 16 Eddie Cibrian Actor (CSI: Miami)
June 21 Juliette Lewis Actress (The Firm)
July 8 Kathleen Robertson Canadian actress (Maniac Mansion, Beverly Hills, 90210)
July 26 Kate Beckinsale Actress
August 6 Vera Farmiga Actress (Touching Evil, Bates Motel)
August 22 Kristen Wiig Actress and singer (Saturday Night Live)
August 24 Dave Chappelle Actor (Chappelle's Show)
September 3 Jennifer Paige Singer and actress
September 5 Rose McGowan Italian-American actress (Charmed, Chosen)
September 7 Shannon Elizabeth Actress (Cuts)
September 25 Bridgette Wilson Actress (Santa Barbara)
October 3 Neve Campbell Actress (Party of Five)
October 9 Jennifer Aspen Actress (Party of Five, Rodney, GCB)
Steve Burns Actor (Blue's Clues
October 10 Mario Lopez Actor (Saved by the Bell)
November 5 Danniella Westbrook Actress (EastEnders)
November 9 Alyson Court Canadian actress (Beetlejuice)
November 12 Radha Mitchell Australian actress (Sugar and Spice, Neighbours)
December 3 Holly Marie Combs Actress (Picket Fences, Charmed, Pretty Little Liars)
December 4 Tyra Banks Model and talk-show host (The Tyra Banks Show)


Date Name Age Notability
January 24 J. Carrol Naish 77 Character actor (Life With Luigi)
January 28 John Banner 63 Actor (Sgt. Schultz on Hogan's Heroes)
March 13 Stacy Harris 54 U.S. actor (Dragnet, The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp)
April 26 Irene Ryan 70 Actress (Granny on The Beverly Hillbillies)
September 21 Diana Sands 39 Actress (The Fugitive)
December 23 Irna Phillips 72 Soap opera writer and creator (The Guiding Light, As the World Turns)
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