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The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour

The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour

  • Premiered: 
    February 5, 1967
    (Click date to see TV listings for that day)

  • Network: CBS
  • Category: Series
  • Genre: Variety
  • Type: Live Action
  • Concept: 
  • Subject Matter: Comedy
  • Tags:

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  • Best of Season 2
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Legal Full Episodes
Not Available Online
(That We Know Of)

Plot Synopsis

Starring the folk singing, comedy duo Tom and Dick Smothers, the variety show attracted a younger, hipper, and more politically engaged audience than most other TV offerings of the 1960s. The show's content featured irreverent digs at many dominant institutions such as organized religion and the presidency. It also included sketches celebrating the hippie drug culture and material opposing the war in Vietnam. These elements made THE SMOTHERS BROTHERS COMEDY HOUR one of the most controversial television shows in the medium's history. Questions of taste and the Smothers' oppositional politics led to very public battles over censorship. As CBS attempted to dictate what was appropriate prime time entertainment fare, the Smothers tried to push the boundaries of acceptable speech on the medium. The recurring skirmishes between the brothers and the network culminated on 4 April 1969, one week before the end of the season, when CBS threw the show off the air. Network president Robert D. Wood charged that the Smothers had not submitted a review tape of the upcoming show to the network in a timely manner. The Smothers accused CBS of infringing on their First Amendment rights. It would be 20 years before the Smothers Brothers again appeared on CBS.