Friday, June 15, 2018

New to TCM Saturday Mornings

Back in March after the end of 31 Days of Oscar, TCM started a new programming block from 8:00 to noon on Saturday mornings that tries to imitate the old Saturday matinee experience of a feature, a serial, a bunch of shorts, and so on. The serial in question was Red Barry, and last Saturday was apparently the final chaper of that serial. (I wasn't watching, and the TCM monthly schedule doesn't say much in the way of a synopsis.)

That means it's time for a new serial, which is Tailspin Tommy in the Great Air Mystery: Wreck of the Dirigible, at 9:30 AM Saturday. This is actually the second Tailspin Tommy serial. I had never heard of it, but apparently Tailspin Tommy was a comic strip from 1928 to 1942, and the popularity led to one serial in 1934, the one that TCM will be showing in 1935, and then a couple of one-hour feature movies. There don't seem to be any other changes to the Saturday lineup, in that they aren't through with the Tarzan movies, while we still get another Popeye short. The John Wayne westerns ended some time back, I think, and we've had other B westerns for a while.

IMDb says that there are 12 chapters in the Tailspin Tommy serial, which means that including the break for Summer Under the Stars, the last episode should be airing on Saturday, Sept. 29: three chapters in June, four in July, none in August, and the last five in September. Indeed, a quick look at the schedule shows that the 9:30 AM slot on September 29 is taken by Tailspin Tommy in the Great Air Mystery: The Last Stand, which certainly sounds like the last chapter. (I believe the October schedule hasn't been announced yet, so who knows what the next serial will be.)

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