Tuesday, November 28, 2006

city-tv every day in every way

Vintage Ad #87 - City TV, Channel 79 Cable 7
Another break from the vintage CBC ads this week for a peek at how CITY-TV advertised itself in the late 70s. Little flash or uber-hipness here, just strong lettering and increasing shades of grey.

On air for five years when this ad appeared, CITY had upped its signal the year before, when the CN Tower went into service. Note that the station was way up the dial at channel 79, where it stayed until 1983. The station had a mixed ownership, including Moses Znaimer - CHUM wouldn't buy its first stake until the following year and wouldn't gain full control of the station until 1981.

Brian Linehan's City Lights enjoyed a healthy run on the station and in syndication (1973-89). Known for digging deep into the background of those he interviewed, he was later parodied by Martin Short as "Brock Linehan" on SCTV. Linehan's 2004 obituary from the Globe and Mail.

Another CITY regular spoofed on SCTV was Morton Shulman, whose life included stints as Toronto's chief coroner in the 60s, a provincial MPP (High Park, 1971-75), talk show host (The Shulman File, 1977-82) and financial adviser. His controversial methods as a coroner inspired the 60s CBC drama Wojeck.

On the information end, CityPulse launched in '77. Looking at the current CITY bios page, longtime anchor Gord Martineau joined the station that year, with Anne Mroczkowski and JoJo Chintoh coming aboard the following year.

While nothing resembling a "Baby Blue" movie is mentioned among the station's upcoming flicks, there are a few whose content wouldn't have made it onto network TV unless they were heavily chopped (I'm looking at you, Straw Dogs).

Source: Saturday Night, April 1977

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