When I was growing up in Walla Walla, we could get KVOS on cable. We were also able to get KTNT on channel 11 which eventually became KSTW. The best cable channel was CHEK which was out of Victoria. It had wrestling and NHL Hockey.
MV Mike – you may be interested to know about the current status of CHEK-6 Victoria. Several years back, it’s corporate owner (the Global network) decided it wasn’t pulling in enough profits for it’s greedy shareholders, so decided to shut the station down & turn in the license. They whined loudly to the CRTC who granted permission to delete the license. This didn’t sit well with staff, local advertisers or viewers as Vancouver Island only has two TV signals & the other is barely local. The staff, including some prominent local broadcasters, some of the advertisers bought the station & made a last-minute appeal (with huge local support!) to the CRTC to re-issue the license & give the new “owners” time to get set up. With only a brief off-air period of a few days, CHEK came back as Canada’s first & only employee-owned station. It has no network affiliation & has struggled ever since. However, things are just beginning to turn around for CHEK-6. It’s main revenue is a daytime schedule of syndicated religion. It has two back-to-back supper-hour local newscasts. Evenings are a mix of new first-run shows not shown on any Canadian networks, a quirky array of syndicated oldies such as “Star Trek” “Twilight Zone” “Mission Impossible” & many in-house locally-produced programs covering subjects such as fine dining/cooking, wines, real-estate, public affairs, a fishing show. It also features indie productions from BC program producers. CHEK-6 has the feel of a “cable-TV community access” channel & sometimes has it’s share of tech glitches, bloopers & screw-ups…noe of which viewers get critical about! They’ve recently hired some fresh new talent for news reporting & weekend anchoring. They’ve expanded their weekend supper-hour newscasts too. So, things are very slowly starting to look better for channel 6. Admittedly, a few years back it looked as though this would fail & ad rates sank to the floor in order to attract new sponsors. Last year, CHEK-6 proudly celebrated their 60th birthday as Vancouver Island’s first television station.
Back on topic…”Merv Griffin” in prime time on KVOS wouldn’t last long as there ended up too many conflicts scheduling CBS shows – particularly once they added a couple of movie nights to their prime time schedule. Merv would end up in the 11pm slot for many years on ch 12. KVOS was an early pioneer of this type of talk/variety show format. Around the same time, they added the 90-min “Mike Douglas” show to mid-days due to the ability to opy-out of an hour of CBS soaps. Once KVOS dropped the CBS secondary affiliation in the 80’s, they again added syndicated talk/variety to the 10pm hour – notably “Arsenio Hall” with his first successful attempt at a prime-time show.
Thank you for the head’s up on that! I almost missed that as it’s hard to keep track of follow up comments. Happy 60th to Chek TV.
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