There’s a lot going on with television legend Carol Burnett. For starters, the book she wrote about the relationship between her and late daughter Carrie Hamilton is being turned into a movie she’s producing with Tina Fey; she was the recipient of the Golden Globes‘ first TV Lifetime Achievement Award; and now lost episodes of her classic TV series, The Carol Burnett Show, will be returning to the airwaves (many for the first time in 40 years), thanks to MeTV, beginning on April 14.
Airing on Sunday nights at 10:30pm ET/PT and Monday through Friday at 11pm ET/PT, these episodes will feature sketches from the first five seasons of The Carol Burnett Show — including the premiere episode with Jim Nabors, who became Carol’s “good luck charm” over the years, and first appearances of iconic characters like the pitiful Eunice and air-headed Mrs. Wiggins, still fan favorites to this day.
“I’m thrilled that our show will be on MeTV, especially since many of the episodes coming up haven’t been seen since they were first aired,” said Carol, the subject of a recent exclusive in-depth profile at Closer Weekly. “The fact that the show holds up after all this time is a testament to the writing and creative staff. It will be fun to see how all of us grew and changed over the course of the first five years. We had the time of our lives and I hope that our viewers will have the time of their lives!”
The Carol Burnett Show made history when it debuted on CBS in 1967 as the first comedy variety series ever hosted by a woman. Accompanied by supporting cast members Vicki Lawrence, Harvey Korman, Lyle Waggoner and Tim Conway, Burnett showcased her signature charm to over 30 million viewers per week. In 1977, the show was reedited for syndication and repackaged as Carol Burnett and Friends, which only included sketches from Seasons 6-11.
Over 50 years later, The Carol Burnett Show is still lauded as the last successful variety series of its kind among critics and historians, and remains a hallmark of Carol’s legendary career. From 1967-1978, the series earned 25 Emmy awards and 8 Golden Globe awards, making it one of the most acclaimed shows in television history. The series also boasted a 28-piece orchestra, a dozen dancers, a repertory company, and costumes designed by prolific fashion designer, Bob Mackie, with extravagant song and dance numbers and iconic guest stars including Lucille Ball, Alan Alda, Diahann Carroll, Betty White, Cher, The Jackson 5 and many others.
“The iconic and hilarious comedy of Carol Burnett and the cast of The Carol Burnett Show is a tradition on MeTV that our audience tunes to every weeknight,” said Neal Sabin, Vice Chairman of Weigel Broadcasting Co. “It is our honor to present to her many fans the early seasons of this timeless comedy, back on TV for the first time in 41 years, available six nights a week on MeTV. We love Carol and can’t wait to share these rare episodes.”