Grab the remote and rabbit ears, 86 and 99 are back on the tube

Listen up! Get Smart will be airing on Decades starting in October.

Listen up! Get Smart will be airing on Decades starting in October.

Unless you’re living on your own island or in some sort of cocoon, 2020 has been pretty horrendous. There’s a global pandemic that, as of this blog, has infected more than 32 million people and killed more than 980,000 worldwide. There’s also civil unrest, supply chain and food shortages, lockdowns, massive job losses (yes, I’m still looking!) and devastating forest fires on the west coast of the U.S. What a way to start a decade.
Here’s some good news. That’s right, there is legitimate good news that may offer some

Why go to the fuss of streaming and casting when you can grab the clicker and enjoy Get Smart on the tube?

Why go to the fuss of streaming and casting when you can grab the clicker and enjoy Get Smart on the tube?

distraction from all that other crap. Get Smart is set to air on American TV. Decades, a nostalgia station known for its Weekend Binge, has announced that Get Smart will be part of its “Smart Comedy” lineup on Oct. 5. The show joins a schedule that includes The Dick Van Dyke Show, Cheers, Taxi, The Bob Newhart Show, The Honeymooners (the lost episodes), The Phil Silvers Show, Car 54, Where Are You?, The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis, The Abbot and Costello Show and Our Miss Brooks.
There is a catch. I mean, why not? It’s 2020 so there has to be a catch. Get Smart will be shown at 1:30 a.m. Eastern/10:30 p.m. Pacific. Fans on the East Coast and Midwest will need to keep their eyes open. Alright, there’s another catch: Not everyone can pick up Decades in their pay-TV package or over the air. I feel your pain. Sometimes I have it, but right now I don’t. All I can do is rescan the TV and hope for the best.
In terms of prior syndication, GS was shown on varying stations starting in 1970. Chicagoland kids of the 1980s may remember seeing it on Channel 32. It’s worth noting that the season five CBS episodes didn’t air in syndication for a number of years due to restrictions, reporting requirements and red tape.
Get Smart made its way to cable when Nick at Nite aired it from 1991 to 1995. TVLand

A TV Guide ad from 1972 when Get Smart aired in syndication on New York's WOR-TV.

A TV Guide ad from 1972 when Get Smart aired in syndication on New York’s WOR-TV.

began airing GS in 2001, but bumped it from their lineup in 2003.
In the mid-2000s Chicago-based MeTV began showing it randomly on their affiliates in ‘da region -usually around midnight Saturday. In 2010 the channel went national so GS was available to “most markets” via pay-TV or antenna, but it was mostly shown in that midnight time slot. Get Smart’s time on MeTV ended in 2018.
I’ve noticed a pattern to these syndication stints. Get Smart often ends up in the midnight or later time slot. During its run on Nick at Nite, I would often stay up to 2 a.m. to watch it.
With syndication comes a side effect: Editing. Will Decades give us “Cut” Smart? I would imagine that would be the case. In its original run, a Get Smart episode lasted 23 minutes. During its cable syndication runs that was trimmed down to 20 minutes. Different channels offered different edits – as noted in this Smartian Controversies installment on Get Smart’s missing scenes.
Now, if you’re not a night owl and want to watch an unedited episode, there are other options in these modern times. Of course there are the DVD sets. Get Smart is also available for streaming on Amazon and iTunes. However, they charge per episode and having Amazon Prime won’t get you episodes for free. Personally, I’ll take the ease of turning on the TV and catching GS on the airwaves.

Get Smart's run on Nick at Nite and TVLand led to a few fun promotions: Collectible watches from each channel and the storied Nick at Nite Get Smart Shoe Phone.

Get Smart’s run on Nick at Nite and TVLand led to a few fun promotions: Collectible watches from each channel and the storied Nick at Nite Get Smart Shoe Phone.

Don’t tell me Yahoo Groups is deleting its content!

Another one of your headaches, Chief? I had the same reaction upon finding out Yahoo will be deleting the archives and data on Yahoo Groups.

Another one of your headaches, Chief? I had the same reaction upon finding out Yahoo will be deleting the archives and data on Yahoo Groups.

Would you believe the internet really isn’t forever?

It’s not and Yahoo – aka Verizon – has not so graciously offered to prove that fact for us.
Yahoo Groups will be shuttering its website before the end of this year. What does this mean? Well if you were in a group or owned a group you’ll still be able to email the group – that’s the good news. The really bad news is the groups site with all the data, messages and images from your group will be deleted.

Here’s the basics:
– Starting Oct. 28 you will not be able to upload anymore content to the Yahoo Groups site. That’s some rotten Halloween treat – like ending up with those nasty peanut butter kisses.
– As of Dec. 14, previously loaded content on the site will be permanently removed. Merry Christmas. Seriously, Yahoo, lumps of coal, potatoes or a pair of Crocs would have been less crappy stocking stuffers.

I’d like to point out that group owners weren’t given any special notification of this – the news has been pretty much word of mouth. They do explain everything briefly in their help page

So, what does any of this have to do with ilovegetsmart.com? Well, back when we were all younger people with more free time on our hands, I moderated a Get Smart Fan Fic group. It can be found at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/gsfic

While the group hasn’t had any posts in a long time, I have had people request to join just to go through the archives and read the fan fic stored there. Yes, message archives are useful!

The big rub in all of this is the lost data. The link I posted above offers guidance on how to download your group data, which involves submitting a data request and whatnot. I’ve started this process with the fan fic group. We’ll see how that turns out.

If you have posted fic to that group and you don’t have it backed up somewhere or have it locked in a safe deposit box, I suggest logging back into the group and getting what you need before it’s dispatched.

The prevailing view is that listserves such as these are an archaic form of internet since social media sites (Read: Facebook) now dominate how people share information. The sad thing is, by deleting its group archives, Yahoo is killing a trove of information, history and a lot of good times.