First Airdates?

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First Airdates?

Post by PrettyCoolStairs on Thu Jun 09, 2016 11:18 pm

I was browsing the Arthur Wikia for premiere dates of early seasons today. While looking at Season 1, I found it strange that each episode supposedly first-aired on a Monday for several weeks beginning on September 2, 1996. I have no recollection of this (I was not even 2-years-old at the time), so I cannot say whether or not this is true. But, according to these dates, it would appear Arthur only aired once a week? The dates on the wiki are referenced to TV Guide, which also seems like a reliable source; however, I know sometimes their episode guides can be kinda screwy from time to time.

I thought this was strange, so I put some detective skills to work (Fern would be proud Watteau ). I looked at the schedule archives from KET which go back to June 1999 (why KET still has those schedules is beyond me, but thank goodness they're still there for times like this!). The first airdates on the wiki for Season 4 and Season 5 are all incorrect when compared to KET (i.e., S04E01 Wiki/TVG:09-06-1999 vs. KET:10-04-1999, and S05E01 Wiki/TVG:09-04-2000 vs. KET:09-25-2000). I have no reason to believe KET's information would be inaccurate as they appear to follow the national PBS schedule very closely. Perhaps the premiere dates for Arthur seasons 1-5 are not entirely accurate on the wiki? Any thoughts or comments about this? Is there any documentation that is referenced that shows Arthur actually premiered in September 1996? I found one source that said it premiered in October 1996.

By the way, looking AHEAD... Arthur's Eyes/Francine's Bad Hair Day S01E01 which evidently has not aired since 2010, is coming up in August!! cheers Some discrepancies exist between different station's schedules as to the exact date (could be 08-18-2016 or 08-23-2016), but in any case... an oldie but goodie is in our near future.
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Re: First Airdates?

Post by Kerry9Story on Sun Jun 12, 2016 9:35 am

this shit comes out gain ima see it cause old eps better aeyway.
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Re: First Airdates?

Post by MatthewHecht on Sun Jun 12, 2016 2:30 pm

A lot of shows on PBS start as once a week for the first month or two, and then start airing daily.
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Re: First Airdates?

Post by A Lotta Moms on Mon Jun 13, 2016 9:30 pm

Nice detective work!  It's good that classic episodes are still being aired from time to time.  It says a lot for their content quality. Regarding air dates, I unfortunately don't have any clandestine info, but it's possible someone else around here might.
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Re: First Airdates?

Post by MatthewHecht on Tue Jun 14, 2016 9:47 am

I saw that some networks like the Boston PBS aired new episodes one day a week and finished in a month. I am still going to guess Arthur started as Mondays only (like many PBS daily shows started), and after they had 4 or eight episodes aired it changed to daily.
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Re: First Airdates?

Post by PrettyCoolStairs on Tue Jun 14, 2016 11:41 am

MatthewHecht wrote:I saw that some networks like the  Boston PBS aired new episodes one day a week and finished in a month.  I am still going to guess Arthur started as Mondays only (like many PBS daily shows started), and after they had 4 or eight episodes aired it changed to daily.    

Actually, PBS Kids airing new programs once per week is more of a recent trend. PBS typically used to air new programs on weekdays for several weeks before ever airing any reruns. Compare that to today: PBS will either launch a new program one day a week, or air a couple new episodes every so often, mixed in with reruns on weekdays. That's why I was so speculative toward the airdates, and even more so with seasons 4 and 5 being incorrect. It's just something I've been thinking about. I mean, if the TV Guide information is all we have, then I guess that's the best we can go with.
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Re: First Airdates?

Post by Snowth Poogle on Sun Jun 26, 2016 8:31 pm

I think it's difficult to determine any actual airdates for early seasons and episodes, mainly because back then, many PBS stations had their own individual schedules, and as I've said before, my own PBS didn't even start airing ARTHUR regularly till fall 2000 - prior to that, ARTHUR was only on for special occasions, such as pledge drives and such. We didn't even get Season 6 for years. It's only been within the last decade or so that my PBS seems to have adopted the national schedule.

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Re: First Airdates?

Post by Kerry9Story on Thu Jun 30, 2016 12:29 am

think i member i seen the first fw when im bout 4? IDK. then sommore@mid school en they keep showen em so I keep seein em. IDK mabbe its sooner?
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Re: First Airdates?

Post by DWWW on Fri Jul 15, 2016 2:23 pm

Hello, I'm new to this forum and I'd like to share my thoughts on this topic.

I too, have suspected that the Arthur air dates on Wikipedia are wrong. I'm a lot older than the OP, I was 11 when Arthur premiered. I didn't watch it from day one, but I did pretty early on (my first episode was D.W. All Wet/Buster's Dino Dilemma). Even I can't remember if it was September or October at the time, but whenever it was I really really don't think that Arthur only aired once a week. I think I would remember something like that (for example, another one of my favorite shows at the same time was The Timon and Pumbaa Show and I remember that show did only air on Mondays) I really think Arthur was on 5 days a week.

Awhile back I found some pretty solid proof that Arthur premiered in October on the Wayback Machine, unfortunately it's gone now.

https://web.archive.org/web/19970607114234/http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/arthur/tv.html

There used to be a picture at the top of Arthur and Francine that said something along the lines of "Arthur premieres on PBS in October" or "Arthur airs on PBS in October", but now the picture is broken. The archive also used to go back to December 1996, but now it only goes back to June 1997. There is still some information about which episodes aired in March-October 1997, if anyone wants to check that out.

I tried to see if I could find anything else and I found an old article from 1998 that says Arthur premiered in October 1996:

http://adage.com/article/news/marketing-100-arthur-marc-brown/65343/

And this old site lists the premiere date as October 7th:

https://web.archive.org/web/20000818001446/http://207.114.151.6/saturday/shows/synopsis/838.php

It does seem that all older sites/articles (that are from or a lot closer to the actual time period) say Arthur debuted in October 1996. Was it not until Wikipedia was created that the September date started to be used?

I can see why somebody might have just guessed that Arthur premiered on Labor Day 1996, after all many newer PBS Kids shows from the 00s and this decade have premiered on Labor Day. I don't know where they got the idea that it only aired once a week?
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Re: First Airdates?

Post by PrettyCoolStairs on Mon Jul 18, 2016 3:14 pm

I would also agree that the series premiere was in October 1996 with weekday airings. A few weeks ago I came across a couple newspaper archive websites which had limited access to a few articles from '96. I'll have to research the actual URLs, but there were two specific sources which cited October as the time when the series began airing (in reference to one of the New York PBS stations, which would likely follow PBS' suggested schedules)
BTW, currently enjoying today's Season One gem "Arthur's Family Vacation / Grandpa Dave's Old Country Farm" -- hasn't aired in YEARS. Smile
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Re: First Airdates?

Post by 磁計算機騎士 on Thu Jul 28, 2016 6:50 am

PrettyCoolStairs wrote:I have no reason to believe KET's information would be inaccurate as they appear to follow the national PBS schedule very closely. Perhaps the premiere dates for Arthur seasons 1-5 are not entirely accurate on the wiki?
From what I understand, the original wiki founders copied a lot of early information from Wikipedia. We tried solving that problem by requiring a reference be put next to each item in the infobox, but it has taken a while to do them all and now even the ones we fixed need to be updated because some web links have broken since then.

For a long time, TV Guide and KET have been the only references we've had for American broadcast dates. If anyone knows another one, please share it.

Snowth Poogle wrote:I think it's difficult to determine any actual airdates for early seasons and episodes, mainly because back then, many PBS stations had their own individual schedules,
Even recently I came across this issue for season 18. http://arthur.wikia.com/wiki/ARTHUR_Summer_2015_Premiere_Week
During one premiere week, KET showed an additional new episode that most stations did not. However, the PBS Kids Video Player had it available online for a week after that date, which it usually only does for the national schedule episode premieres. Yet the wiki guys eventually decided something like that only the national broadcast should count as the first official showing, so its page says September instead of June.

DWWW wrote:The archive also used to go back to December 1996, but now it only goes back to June 1997.
https://web.archive.org/web/19961225213502/http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/arthur/tv.html
I was able to access that date. It indeed has the message up: "ARTHUR premieres on PBS on October 7, 1996. Check local listings or call your local PBS station for times."
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Re: First Airdates?

Post by _Glaceon_VI on Thu Jul 28, 2016 12:23 pm

Hey ya guys, there's news that the other animation studios called Oasis Animation will produce new episodes of Arthur on season 20 & 21. φ(,_,*)(*'-')ノ□ペ パク(*'〜'*) Here's the news: http://www.awn.com/news/oasis-animation-tapped-new-seasons-arthur
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Re: First Airdates?

Post by DWWW on Sat Jul 30, 2016 5:07 pm

磁計算機騎士 wrote:https://web.archive.org/web/19961225213502/http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/arthur/tv.html
I was able to access that date. It indeed has the message up: "ARTHUR premieres on PBS on October 7, 1996. Check local listings or call your local PBS station for times."

Thanks for finding it again.
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Re: First Airdates?

Post by PrettyCoolStairs on Fri Aug 12, 2016 9:59 pm

磁計算機騎士 wrote:
Snowth Poogle wrote:I think it's difficult to determine any actual airdates for early seasons and episodes, mainly because back then, many PBS stations had their own individual schedules,
Even recently I came across this issue for season 18. http://arthur.wikia.com/wiki/ARTHUR_Summer_2015_Premiere_Week
During one premiere week, KET showed an additional new episode that most stations did not. However, the PBS Kids Video Player had it available online for a week after that date, which it usually only does for the national schedule episode premieres. Yet the wiki guys eventually decided something like that only the national broadcast should count as the first official showing, so its page says September instead of June.

I was part of that discussion. I believe what happened was KET had misinformation in its schedule listings. Since they release their schedules often 2 months in advance, it seems the actual aired programs were altered since the original schedules were published on their website. This was actually happening a few weeks ago, as KET's (as well as my own local schedule on some sources) schedule was on a 3-day delay. Since we have so many eyes watching to verify which episodes are airing nowadays, it makes it easier to confirm actual airdates.
磁計算機騎士 wrote:
DWWW wrote:The archive also used to go back to December 1996, but now it only goes back to June 1997.
https://web.archive.org/web/19961225213502/http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/arthur/tv.html
I was able to access that date. It indeed has the message up: "ARTHUR premieres on PBS on October 7, 1996. Check local listings or call your local PBS station for times."
Interestingly enough, assuming Mon., Oct. 7 is the true series premiere date, if you count 30 weekdays from then (30 days for 30 episodes in season 1), #0130 would be first aired on Fri., Nov. 11. And, assuming the episodes are cycled through again, it matches up with #0111 being aired on Mon., Dec. 2, as listed on this archived webpage. This would mean all 30 episodes premiered on weekdays without any repeats until the entire season had aired.

Also, somewhat in support of the October start date... Season 20 is scheduled to start on October 10, 2016, which would roughly coincide with the 20th anniversary of October 7, 2016.

Season 2 premiered on Mon., Oct. 20, 1997 according to https://www.highbeam.com/doc/1P2-4417685.html ["This is the dilemma as "Arthur" has its season premiere at 4:30 this afternoon on Channel 11." dated October 20, 1997]

Season 3 premiered on Mon., Nov 16, 1998 according to https://www.highbeam.com/doc/1P2-8508934.html

While there's no uniform source or explicit TV schedule listings of these start dates, I feel that there are enough pieces to the puzzle. I don't know if it's adequate enough to adjust the dates on the wiki pages, but in my mind, these are the correct dates for most PBS stations.
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