Friday, December 18, 2009

Late Night Saturday Morning: Pryor's Place

In 1984, CBS thought it was good idea to give a live-action Saturday morning TV series to Richard Pryor, a comedian mostly known for profanity and edgy material (and an unforgettable hosting gig during the first season of Saturday Night Live).

As it turns out, Pryor's Place was basically just Sesame Street with a laugh track. Produced by Sid and Marty Krofft (and co-written by Mark Evanier), Pryor's was just another preachy, soulless kid's show. Evanier recalls here that Pryor lost interest in the project early on, and it was a struggle to get him to show up to the tapings.

It ran for 13 episodes from September to December, 1984 - and then ran in repeats until the Summer of the next year. (Standard run for Saturday mornings).

Couldn't find any clips, but here's the opening - which featured a song from then-popular singer Ray Parker, Jr.

Tomorrow - NBC's fascination with turning the stars of SCTV into Saturday morning cartoons.