“Jeopardy!” Moves To TXA 21

By Ken Foote, Director of Programming for CBS 11

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Beginning Monday, August 12th, the 11am telecasts of Jeopardy will move from CBS11 to TXA21 at 6pm while our TXA21 schedule of Jeopardy will move up to 5:30pm from its current 6pm slot.

This will mark for the first time in TXA21’s history that there has been a 1-hour game show block between 5pm and 7pm and the first time that the current season of Jeopardy has ever aired on an independent station in the Dallas/Fort Worth area since it went into syndication in 1984. Concurrently, CBS11 will premiere its news midday news, “CBS11 At 11”.

Jeopardy, created by the late Merv Griffin, has for the most part been seen consistently starting with KXAS, WFAA, and then moving to KTVT starting in 2005. However, Jeopardy did have a minor disruption in airing in the market for a very short time in 1985.

When I was the Director of Programming for KXTX Channel 39 under CBN ownership, my general manager and I wanted to acquire it to pair it up with a syndicated version of The All New Let’s Make A Deal from Telepictures (now a part of Warner Brothers Television). KXAS did not renew Jeopardy after the 1984-85 season and so it was available in the market.

King World Productions, the distributor of the show, did not want Jeopardy on what they viewed as a second-rate television station with a religious owner, although KXTX was the #1 station in the markets on weekends with its western block and World Class Championship Wrestling. We offered a fair license fee and a great time period but both were rejected. The rep replied back, “We will have a time period back on KXAS by January 1986”. Sure enough, he was right, as one of KXAS’s new first run syndicated shows that season failed and was cancelled early. Other than the period September 1985-January 1986, Jeopardy has been seen in our area without any gaps.

To make sure you know, at 5:30pm TXA21 will air what is called “Jeopardy Daytime” which are episodes from previous seasons. At 6pm, the current season of Jeopardy will air. Each season the producers of Jeopardy tape around 190-200 original shows out of a total of 260 airdates, so you may see some encore airings from the 2012-2013 season The new season will begin mid-September and those episodes will air at 6pm on TXA21. So now each weekday you will have an hour of Jeopardy with two shows back to back.

During the time Jeopardy has aired at 11am, daytime during the work week has a very active news activity cycle and as a result it has been a victim of pre-emptions for breaking news both locally and nationally. With the show moving to TXA21, that factor will no longer be in the equation!

Thanks again for watching our stations. See you next time.

(©2013 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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