Classic Television Thursday #017 – A Classic New Year’s Roundup

It’s New Year’s Day, so I figure today is a good day to look back at some of the classic television celebrations from years past. So here are a few television episodes that have to do with the holiday, along with some classic takes on that famous Times Square ball drop that has become a television tradition.

Let’s start with Jack Benny‘s 1956 New Year’s Day show

Before Dick Clark started rocking us into the New Year, the face of the evening was Guy Lombardo. Here’s the earliest example I could find of Guy and his band from 1956 – it doesn’t include the ball drop, but we’ll get there.

And here’s  part of his last appearance, moving from 1975-1977

We’ll get back to the ball drops, but first, here’s a classic Dragnet episode entitled “The Big New Year”

From 1965, here’s some clips from the Tonight Show back when Johnny Carson was the host. It’s not the full show, unfortunately, but it does include the ball drop. Interestingly, it also includes Ed McMahon‘s audience warm-up

One last Carson clip, with Jimmy Stewart sharing a New Year’s resolution

Here’s an episode from Gunsmoke’s second season entitled “Puckett’s New Year”

Of course, it doesn’t matter if it’s a holiday or not, we’ve still got to pay for this stuff

Here’s an early version of the Rocking New Year’s Eve from 1974 – hosted by George Carlin

Here’s one for the kids: Arthur’s First Sleepover and Arthur’s New Year

Here’s a classic New Year’s episode from the first season of The Lucy Show:

Here’s a collection of ball drops from 1975-2011

And finally, just to wrap things up, here’s the ball drop from last New Year’s Eve

Happy 2015, everyone!



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