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On This Day in Sitcom History — April 13th
1969: The Mothers-in-Law Series Finale with Marni Nixon
The series finale of The Mothers-in-Law, “The Not-So-Grand Opera,” aired on this day in 1969. It guest starred legendary singer Marni Nixon as herself. You may not recognize her face, but you’d probably recognize her voice. She provided the singing voices of Deborah Kerr in The King and I, Audrey Hepburn in My Fair Lady, and Natalie Wood in West Side Story.
1972: My Three Sons Surprise Series Finale
The series finale of My Three Sons, “Whatever Happened to Ernie?,” aired on this day in 1972. It lacked any kind of finality because it wasn’t supposed to be the series finale. The network had previously promised to renew the show for another season, then changed their minds at the last minute.
1987: The Professor Watches Gilligan’s Island on Newhart
The Newhart season five finale, “Much Ado Without Muffin,” aired on this day in 1987. In this episode, Michael (Peter Scolari) invites the Beavers to his apartment to watch a marathon of Gilligan’s Island. When Stephanie (Julia Duffy) comes back from her trip early and surprises Michael, he quickly ushers the Beavers out of the apartment. On his way out the door, one of the Beavers exclaims, “I think this is the one where they finally get off the island!” This particular Beaver is none other than Russell Johnson, who played The Professor on Gilligan’s Island and should really know better.
1999: Only NewsRadio Episode Directed by David Foley
David Foley appeared in every episode of NewsRadio, but he only directed one: season five’s “Padded Suit,” which aired on this day 1999.