Schedule Spotlight: ABC Sundays 89-90

This is the first in a returning series of posts looking at the 1989-90 US network prime time schedules, with an emphasis on sitcoms. To being, we’ll look at ABC on Sundays.

Like CBS and NBC, ABC dedicated most of its evening to a movie from 9pm till 11pm. But the evening began at 7pm with Life Goes On, an hour long drama about a family living in suburban Chicago, starring Bill Smitrovich. You’d be forgiven for thinking it was a sitcom, based on these opening titles.

From 8pm, most of the season was taken up with America’s Funniest Videos, but during the Fall, half a season of Free Spirit was airing. This was a sitcom about a witch, and featured a young Alyson Hannigan, in her pre-witch days.

This sitcom was followed in the autumn by another sitcom called Homeroom, about a teacher at an inner city school. Like Free Spirit, it only lasted a dozen or so episodes.

So, here’s how the early evening was being promoted by the affiliates.

Homeroom was replaced mid-season by a half-hour drama about Elvis, which itself was replaced by Mr Belvedere, which had been moved from Saturdays. Based on the novel Belvedere, which spawned the movie Sitting Pretty, this was a sitcom about a butler.

This show managed to survive a cancellation after its third season, but in its final year was being shunted around like no-one cared about it anymore. When it was finally cancelled, it was replaced by Tim Conway’s Funny America.

Then it was time for the movie.

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