Wednesday, July 5, 2023

Wayback Wednesday: 1976

Wayback Wednesday: 1976

Ten days until Dial S for Second Chances releases, so we’re headed back to the 70s! This time we’re visiting 1976. I finished my freshman year and my brother graduated from high school. America was celebrating her bi-centennial. Network television had a banner year with attaining critical and rating success with the miniseries Rich Man, Poor Man, the Gerald Ford-Jimmy Carter presidential debates, the debut airing of Gone with the Wind, and the broadcast of the Montreal Olympics that drew an estimated one billion viewers worldwide.

The year saw a varied collection of new shows on TV, all of which did very well: Charlie’s Angles, The Bionic Woman, Laverne and Shirley, What’s Happening, Baa, Baa Black Sheep, Quincy, ME, and The Gong Show. Interestingly, as Quincy, ME debuted, Marcus Welby, MD was canceled. Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood was also canceled but would return in 1979.

In an effort to boost their ratings against the CBS Evening News, NBC finally made David Brinkley co-

anchor of the NBC Nightly News with John Chancellor after providing commentaries for several years. The first-ever vice-presidential debates took place in October between senators Bob Dole and Walter Mondale, and Barbara Walters makes a splash with her first interview special with guests Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter, Barbra Streisand, and Jon Peters.

The music industry seemed to put out an exceptional number of memorable hits such as Don’t Go Breakin’ My Heart (Elton John), Shake, Shake, Shake (KC and the Sunshine Band), Afternoon Delight (Starland Vocal Band), Dancing Queen (ABBA), You Should be Dancing (BeeGees), Tonight’s the Night (Rod Stewart), If You Leave Me Now (Chicago), Night Moves (Bob Seeger), New Kid in Town (Eagles), and More than a Feeling (Boston).

On the other hand, the movie industry didn’t seem to do as well. Yes, Taxi Driver, a highly controversial film, Carrie, Rocky, and All the President’s Men were box office hits, but Ode to Billie Joe, Marathon Man, Murder by Death, King Kong, The Man Who Fell to Earth, and A Star is Born were met with mixed reception from critics and audiences.


There seemed to be more good news than bad during the year: Clifford Alexander is confirmed as the first African-American Secretary of the US Army, the Cray-1, the first commercially developed supercomputer is released, Concorde service begins, Nadia Comaneci, a 14-year-old Romanian becomes the first gymnast to score a perfect 10 for her routine on the uneven bars at the Olympics, and Viking 1 successfully lands on marks taking the first close-up color photos of the planet’s surface.

How much do you remember of 1976?


Dial S for Second Chances:

Can years of hurt and misunderstanding be transformed into a second chance at love?

Jade Williams agrees to be on the high school reunion committee because the-one-that-got-away is out of the country and won’t be home in time to attend the festivities. Now, he’s not only home, but joined the committee. Is it too late to back out or can she set aside forty-five years of regret and pretend she isn’t to blame for her broken heart?

One of the downsides of being rich means fielding requests for money and favors. But when an old high school buddy contacts Derek Milligan to be on the reunion committee as just one of the gang, no strings attached, he can’t resist. At the first meeting, he’s dismayed to find himself sitting next to his former high school sweetheart. He should be angry. Instead, he’s attracted. Can he risk his heart a second time?

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