Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Old School AMC vs. TCM

The movie-related blogosphere is all abuzz this week over the 15th anniversary of our dear TCM. But I want to buck the trend and talk about my first love: the old AMC . . . American Movie Classics.

Back in my high school days, I'd often whip out my dreaded literature homework, park my butt in front of the TV and switch on AMC. Deep down inside, I think I was attempting to channel Cary Grant to help me with an impossible reading assignment. It never worked.

I even subscribed to their monthly programming magazine, whatever the name of it was.

Back then, AMC played movies without commercials. Boy, what a concept. That got lost somewhere along the line.

And then there was Bob Dorian. I guess he was what you would consider the "Robert Osborne" of AMC. There was another older fellow which I can't remember his name. Whatever happened to Bob? Oh, and Nick Clooney - I think he was a host on the network as well. Nowadays, I just think of him as George's dad.

Yeah, these days I guess AMC is good for one thing: Mad Men. I've never watched the show myself, but half the free world has told me I need to.


C.K. Dexter Haven said...

I wouldn't be as nearly as hardboiled as I am today if AMC (A Million Commercials) hadn't become what it has today. You talk about a tragic demise...

Oh, and happy Elizabeth Montgomery's birthday!

Kate Gabrielle said...

Oh! I used to subscribe to the AMC listings thing too! AMC was my sole source for classic movies until my parents treated me to TCM for Christmas in 2001. I'm glad they did, because it was around the same time that AMC started going downhill.. I wonder if I still have those AMC listings anywhere, it would be interesting to go back and see which movies they have totally stopped playing since "the switch"!!

ps. ditto to EVERYTHING C.K. Dexter Haven said!!

Elsie said...

Oh, gosh, AMC! I used to watch that just as religiously as TCM nowadays. Didn't TNT (or another similar, Turner-owned channel) also once have classic film programming?

Carrie said...

CK: Whoops...totally missed that birhtday opp (makes note...)!

Kate Gabrielle: I had kept my AMC magazine for a while - for some odd reason. I'm pretty sure they're gone now. The odd think...I see them every once in a while at the movie collectibles shows!

Elsie: Yep, TNT would show oldies prime-time. I remember watching a few big name films (NxNW for one) during the evening. I have no clue what they show these days.

Anonymous said...

ohhh yes, those were the days. I still have old VHS tapes chock-full of movies taped off AMC during its glory years. Oh, and remember AMC's first original TV show back in the day? It was about a radio network in the 40s, wasn't it?

50sgal said...

I watched mad men before I travelled to 1955 where I am living this year, but at the end of it, I will look forward to seeing the season that will happen this fall.

Carrie said...

Kitty: Wow, now that you mention it, I vaguely remember that radio show...and the name is on the tip of my tongue...

50sGal: I'm half way through my first episode of Mad Men and am still catching up on the setting, etc. Your 50s lifestyle sounds fun...I need to check out more of your blog!

la peregrina said...

If you remember AMC was very sneaky when it first started showing commercials. They only showed them between movies at first and then later they started showing them during the movies. I actually called them and complained about it but they did not seem to care that I was unhappy with their decision. That was the last time I watched a movie on AMC.

Oh, and that show about radio was called Remember WENN.

Bacall said...

AMC was a gem back in the day of "commercial free." I remember when I moved from NYC to VA, the first thing I asked the cable company was, "will I get AMC?" Suffice it to say I would've never gotten cable if they didn't. Now I am so grateful for TCM and I hope they never change.

I don't watch AMC at all, but I have watched Mad Men. This is a gem of a series, any classic movie fan will enjoy this series. It's well done. We can say that AMC has one good thing going...Mad Men.

Carrie said...

la peregrina: YES, you got it - Remember WENN!! Wow, there's a Web site, too:

Bacall: I'm looking forward to watching Mad Men. Believe it or not, I'm getting tired of CSI!

stellypippin said...


Seriously - ONLY thing worth it on AMC.

And I clearly remember coming home after school and tuning in to AMC - I remember on Saturday nights they would air AMC POP, which was basically all Baby Boomer stuff, where I would get my fix of classic commercials, classic performances by artists, such as Herman's Hermits or The Animals, and of course, watch classic rock and teen movies, like A Hard Day's Night or Hair with the Monkees - it was just brilliant and I would stay up late, watching all of it!

AMC Pop was actually going to be a new movie channel, but it never went through - so sad! :'(

I mourned the passing of classic AMC, lol

Oh, those were the good ol' days!

Carrie said...

Stelly: I'm three episodes into Mad Men now (Sunday nite repeats) and am hooked. My only issue is catching up on who's who! Oh gee...what a problem to have ;0)

When I was thinking of your comments, it made me think of the music shorts they used to play - shoot I forget what they called them, something like jukebox or whatever. Ahh, memories!

stellypippin said...

It's such a fabulous show, isn't it? I love Joan - she's just gorgeous! And I want to marry a perfect gay man like Sal, lol - and Don Draper? Gah, so handsome! - the clothes are to die for, as are all the furniture and stuff - I knew you'd be hooked!

Yeah, I remember something 'jukebox' in the name - ah, the nostalgia. I just hope and pray TCM doesn't go in that direction!

Here's a gem for ya:

stellypippin said...

Oh, and regarding the other shows on AMC - I think you're talking about Remember WENN, which was one of my faaaaaaaaaaavorite shows - in fact, if you join the Remember WENN community on LiveJournal, you'll be able to download several episodes :D!!!

I also remember another AMC original program called Backlot, which was basically a drama based on real events that happened in Hollywood backlots - in other words, the names of the people involved had been changed to protect the innocent and not so innocent, lol

A clip of Remember WENN:

Seriously needs to be relasedon DVD!!!

stellypippin said...

Okay, I'm on a nostalgia role - the intro to Remember WENN:

I'll stop now, lol

Carrie said...

Ok, now I have to do a follow-up post with all the AMC stuff you dug up! :0)