Monday, February 15, 2016

Cincinnati's a good town.

The creators, writers, cast and crew of WKRP in Cincinnati took on a monumental task when they decided to do an episode about the December 1979 disaster at the Who concert at Riverfront Coliseum. And honestly, it wasn't strictly necessary for them to do it. But WKRP writer Steve Kampmann thought it would be irresponsible not to, given the show's close connection to both the world of rock 'n' roll and to Cincinnati, Ohio.

In our upcoming episode, dropping on Wednesday, we talk a little bit about how television shows reinforce and represent civic pride for cities outside of the media hubs of New York and L.A. We talk a little about Cheers and Boston, and of course there are lots of other examples. But WKRP does its best, even in episodes which aren't so dramatic and serious, to make you feel like the show is steeped in Cincinnati.

We mention in Wednesday's episode how some members of the cast and crew visited Cincinnati in the lead-up to WKRP's debut, and how there were some promotional photos taken. One of them actually is taken at "The Cricket," which Herb mentions back in "Put Up or Shut Up"! These little touches and nods gave WKRP a lot of goodwill with the people of Cincinnati, which allowed them to do this dual tribute to the victims of the disaster/call for the cities of the United States to ban festival seating.

These great photos below come from a slideshow from the Cincinnati Enquirer, celebrating the 37th anniversary of the debut of the show. Check out the slideshow here, but we've grabbed the Cincinnati-relevant ones below.

You guys remember this amusement park from The Brady Bunch, right?


  1. Little seems more dated on WKRP than the notion that a disaster such as is examined in this episode could prompt a reasoned national debate, one that might ultimately result in the passage of new regulations restricting the freedom of the private sector.

  2. They never sent us a Carter, Jeff. :(

  3. I'm so close to making a tasteless joke about the Riverfront disaster being a false flag operation in which no one was really hurt and the mainstream media colluded with the fascist anti-stadium-seating real racists, but the sudden taste of bile in my mouth prevents me.

    1. Well, we do talk in the Cincinnati Triangle segment of the podcast this week about John G. Fuller, and his conspiratorially coverage of "fringe" topics like UFOs, food additives, psychic surgery, nuclear safety, corporate pollution, and of course the collective "death wish" of rock 'n' roll fans:

      It seems like for every topic Fuller gets it 100% right on, he gets another one completely wrong. Such is the danger in throwing one's lot in with conspiracy theorists, I guess. You take the good with the bad.