1968 in television
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For the American TV schedule, see: 1968–69 United States network television schedule.
The year 1968 in television involved some significant events. Below is a list of television-related events in 1968.
- January 20 – Houston defeats UCLA 71-69 at the Houston Astrodome in what is billed as "The Game of the Century"; the first prime-time national broadcast of men's college basketball.
- January 27 – The Lennon Sisters make their final appearance on The Lawrence Welk Show.
- January 31 - Turkey's first national TV channel TRT 1 was opened.
- February 6 - The Xth Olympic Winter Games in Grenoble, France are the first Olympics to be fully broadcast in color for the U.S. market by ABC.
- April 2 – British singer Petula Clark appears on a US television special on NBC with Harry Belafonte as a guest. An innocent, affectionate gesture between the two during a song (Clark touched Belafonte on the arm) prompts concern from the show's sponsor (Chrysler Corporation) due to the difference in their races.
- April 4 – Singer James Brown appears on national television in an attempt to calm feelings of anger in the United States following the assassination of Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King Jr.
- April 6 – The Eurovision Song Contest 1968 is held at the Royal Albert Hall in London, the first to be televised in colour.
- May 2 – The Israel Broadcasting Authority commences television broadcasts.
- May 4 – Mary Hopkin performs on the British TV show Opportunity Knocks. Hopkin catches the attention of model Twiggy, who recommends her to Beatle Paul McCartney. McCartney soon signs Hopkin to Apple Records.
- May 20 – Harlech (which will become HTV in 1970) starts its dual service for Wales and the West Country, replacing the interim ITSWW, which had replaced TWW.
- June 2 – The first cricket match to be televised in colour by the BBC, Surrey v International Cavaliers held at Cheam Cricket Club Ground. The game attracted 8,000 people.
- October 13 - Actress Bea Benaderet of the popular CBS-TV sitcom Petticoat Junction dies of lung cancer at the age of 62 shortly after the start of the popular program's sixth season.
- October 14 – First live television broadcast from a spacecraft in orbit, during the Apollo 7 mission. There were six broadcasts during the eleven-day mission.
- October 21 – 25 – Joan Crawford makes a guest appearance for five episodes on the soap opera The Secret Storm, filling in for her ailing daughter, Christina. Joan slurs her lines and appears to be intoxicated during the tapings.
- November 17 – NBC breaks away from a pro football game to air a TV movie adaptation of Heidi, sparking furious protest. After the break away, the Oakland Raiders scored two touchdowns to defeat the New York Jets, in the final minute of play.
- November 22 – William Shatner and Nichelle Nichols share the first interracial kiss on US television in the Star Trek episode "Plato's Stepchildren".
- December 3 – Elvis Presley's Elvis airs on NBC, followed by a Brigitte Bardot special.
- December 24 – Apollo 8 broadcasts to the Earth, relaying a report that there is a Santa Claus and reading a passage from the Book of Genesis.
- Also in 1968
- Rosemary Prinz, one of the first big soap opera stars, leaves As the World Turns in a less-than-amicable departure.
- Nearly 200 million households now own television sets, 78 million of which are in the US.
- The Guiding Light and Search for Tomorrow expand to 30 minutes.
- The last round-screen color TV sets are produced by all American manufacturers.
- American Bandstand (1952–1989)
- Another World (1964–1999)
- As the World Turns (1956–2010)
- Bewitched (1964–1972)
- Blue Peter (UK) (1958–present)
- Bonanza (1959–1973)
- Bozo the Clown (1949–present)
- Candid Camera (1948–present)
- Captain Kangaroo (1955–1984)
- Come Dancing (UK) (1949–1995)
- Coronation Street (UK) (1960–present)
- Crossroads (UK) (1964–1988, 2001–2003)
- Daniel Boone (1964–1970)
- Dark Shadows (1966–1971)
- Days of Our Lives (1965–present)
- Dixon of Dock Green (UK) (1955–1976)
- Do Not Adjust Your Set (1967–1969)
- Doctor Who (UK) (1963–1989, 1996, 2005–present)
- Face the Nation (1954–present)
- Family Affair (1966–1971)
- Four Corners (Australia) (1961–present)
- General Hospital (1963–present)
- Get Smart (1965–1970)
- Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. (1964–1970)
- Grandstand (UK) (1958–2007)
- Green Acres (1965–1971)
- Gunsmoke (1955–1975)
- Hallmark Hall of Fame (1951–present)
- Here's Lucy (1968–1974)
- Hogan's Heroes (1965–1971)
- I Dream of Jeannie (1965–1970)
- Ironside (1967–1975)
- I Spy (1965-1968)
- It's Academic (1961–present)
- Jeopardy! (1964–1975, 1984–present)
- Love is a Many Splendored Thing (1967–1973)
- Love of Life (1951–1980)
- Mannix (1967–1975)
- Match Game (1962–1969, 1973–1984, 1990–1991, 1998–1999)
- Meet the Press (1947–present)
- Mission: Impossible (1966–1973)
- My Three Sons (1960–1972)
- Opportunity Knocks (UK) (1956–1978)
- Panorama (UK) (1953–present)
- Petticoat Junction (1963–1970)
- Peyton Place (1964–1969)
- Play School (1966–present)
- Search for Tomorrow (1951–1986)
- Spider-Man (1967–1970)
- Star Trek (1966–1969)
- That Girl (1966–1971)
- The Andy Griffith Show (1960–1971, became Mayberry RFD on September 23 of this year)
- The Avengers (UK) (1961–1969)
- The Beverly Hillbillies (1962–1971)
- The Carol Burnett Show (1967–1978)
- The Dean Martin Show (1965–1974)
- The Doctors (1963–1982)
- The Ed Sullivan Show (1948–1971)
- The Edge of Night (1956–1984)
- The Flying Nun (1967–1970)
- The Good Old Days (UK) (1953–1983)
- The Guiding Light (1952–2009)
- The Hollywood Palace (1964–1970)
- The Late Late Show (Ireland) (1962–present)
- The Lawrence Welk Show (1955–1982)
- The Lucy Show (1962–1968)
- The Mike Douglas Show (1961–1981)
- The Money Programme (UK) (1966–present)
- The Mothers-in-Law (1967–1969)
- The Newlywed Game (1966–1974)
- The Saint (UK) (1962–1969)
- The Secret Storm (1954–1974)
- The Sky at Night (UK) (1957–present)
- The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour (1967–1969)
- The Today Show (1952–present)
- The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson (1962–1992)
- The Wednesday Play (UK) (1964–1970)
- This Is Your Life (UK) (1955–2003)
- Tom and Jerry (1965–1972, 1975–1977, 1980–1982)
- Top of the Pops (UK) (1964–2006)
- Truth or Consequences (1950–1988)
- TRT 1 Foreign films day (Turkey) (1968–present)
- TRT 1 Turkish films day (Turkey) (1968–present)
- Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color (1961 – July 1971)
- What the Papers Say (UK) (1956–present)
- World of Sport (UK) (1965–1985)
- Z-Cars (UK) (1962–1978)
- January 1 – Vremya (Вре́мя, "Time") in the Soviet Union (1964–1991, 1994–present)
- January 5 – Gardeners' World on BBC1 in the UK (1968–present)
- January 22 – Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In on NBC (1968–1973)
- February 19 – National Educational Television begins airing Mister Rogers' Neighborhood
- April – Audubon Wildlife Theatre on CBC (1968–1974)
- May 18 – The Prisoner has its U.S. premiere on CBS
- July 15 – One Life to Live (created by Agnes Nixon) on ABC (1968–2012, 2013–present)
- July 30 – Magpie on ITV in the UK (1968–1980)
- July 31 – Popular sitcom Dad's Army run on BBC1 in the UK (1968–1977)
- September – What's My Line in first-run syndication (1968–1975)
- September 14
- September 17 – Julia on NBC (1968–1971)
- September 21 – Adam-12 on NBC (1968–1975)
- September 22 – Land of the Giants on ABC (1968–1970)
- September 23 – Here's Lucy on CBS (1968–1974)
- September 24
- September 25 – Here Come the Brides on ABC (1968–1970)
- September 26 – Hawaii Five-O on CBS (1968–1980)
- September 29 – Fabeltjeskrant on NOS (1968–1989)
Ending this yearEdit
|January 15||The Man from U.N.C.L.E.||1964|
|February 4||The Prisoner (UK)||1967|
|March 6||Lost in Space||1965|
|March 11||The Lucy Show||1962|
|March 15||Speed Racer (Japan)||1967|
|March 25||The Monkees||1966|
|Armchair Theatre (UK)||1956|
|The Bell Telephone Hour||1959|
|The Fulton Sheen Program||1961|
|The Stairlit Starways|
|April 15||I Spy||1965|
|September 8||Ultra Seven (Japan)||1967|
|Unknown||The Mavis Bramston Show (Australia)||1964|
|The Gumby Show||1957|
|The Road Runner Show (returned in 1971)||1966|
|January 2||Cuba Gooding, Jr.||American actor|
|January 14||LL Cool J||American actor and rapper (NCIS: Los Angeles)|
|January 19||Matt Hill||voice actor (Ed on Ed, Edd n Eddy)|
|February 1||Pauly Shore||American actor and comedian|
|February 8||Gary Coleman||American actor (Diff'rent Strokes) (died 2010)|
|March 29||Lucy Lawless||Australian actress (Xena: Warrior Princess)|
|April 24||Stacy Haiduk||actress (The Young and the Restless)|
|July 24||Kristin Chenoweth||American actress and singer|
|August 25||Rachael Ray||American author, chef and television host|
|September 4||John DiMaggio||actor (voice of Bender on Futurama and Jake the Dog on Adventure Time)|
|September 20||Philippa Forrester||British television presenter|
|September 21||Ricki Lake||American actress, talk show host|
|September 25||Will Smith||American actor (The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air) and rapper|
|September 28||Naomi Watts||British actress|
|October 12||Hugh Jackman||Australian actor|
|November 18||Owen Wilson||American actor|
|December 3||Brendan Fraser|