You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

‘Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour’ resurrected on E!

“The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour,” not seen on TV since CBS fired the satirist folk singers in 1969, will be recycled on E! Entertainment Television as an hourlong nightly series on the cable network starting Jan. 4.

E! has struck a three-year exclusive deal with Comedic Prods., Tom and Dick Smothers’ company, to air episodes of the 1960s program that was once at the center of a fiery dispute over censorship rights.

This go-round, E! will cut the hourlong shows by 10 to 15 minutes and will add new commentary by the Smothers Brothers.

Dick and Tom Smothers will introduce and close the shows on E! in wrap-arounds shot at the cabler’s Wilshire Blvd. studios.

It’s an effort to put the program into context so it will be accessible to viewers who may not have been around when “The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour” was top-rated and inflaming the Vietnam-era censors with its political edge, said straight man Dick Smothers.

The Smothers Brothers always owned the rights to the variety show, and they have never before licensed the rights.

Licensing a variety show involves the complex process of gaining clearances from the performers, and the unions that represent them. With some effort, the duo has done that, manager David Carroll said.

“The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour,” E!’s first hourlong strip, will air Monday through Friday at 5 p.m. (PT). The deal calls for airing 71 original episodes.

The Smothers Brothers have not been regulars on TV since a short-lived revival of the series was broadcast on CBS in 1988 and 1989.

Currently touring around the country as a successful nightclub act, their career “is going really well,” Dick Smothers said. But, he continued, “You hope your future doesn’t lie in your past.”

More TV

  • 'Queer Eye,' 'Jersey Shore' Creators Reveal

    'Queer Eye,' 'Jersey Shore' Creators Reveal How Unscripted Franchises Were Revived

    “The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour,” not seen on TV since CBS fired the satirist folk singers in 1969, will be recycled on E! Entertainment Television as an hourlong nightly series on the cable network starting Jan. 4. E! has struck a three-year exclusive deal with Comedic Prods., Tom and Dick Smothers’ company, to air episodes […]

  • Forest Whitaker at the Photocall For

    Forest Whitaker to Star in Epix Drama Series 'Godfather of Harlem'

    “The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour,” not seen on TV since CBS fired the satirist folk singers in 1969, will be recycled on E! Entertainment Television as an hourlong nightly series on the cable network starting Jan. 4. E! has struck a three-year exclusive deal with Comedic Prods., Tom and Dick Smothers’ company, to air episodes […]

  • Gavel Court Placeholder

    Sharp Entertainment Sets $226,000 Settlement With New York State Over Overtime Pay

    “The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour,” not seen on TV since CBS fired the satirist folk singers in 1969, will be recycled on E! Entertainment Television as an hourlong nightly series on the cable network starting Jan. 4. E! has struck a three-year exclusive deal with Comedic Prods., Tom and Dick Smothers’ company, to air episodes […]

  • George RR Martin

    George R.R. Martin Says 'Winds of Winter' Will Not Be Released in 2018

    “The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour,” not seen on TV since CBS fired the satirist folk singers in 1969, will be recycled on E! Entertainment Television as an hourlong nightly series on the cable network starting Jan. 4. E! has struck a three-year exclusive deal with Comedic Prods., Tom and Dick Smothers’ company, to air episodes […]

  • Nkechi Carroll WBTV

    Nkechi Carroll Inks Overall Deal at Warner Bros. TV

    “The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour,” not seen on TV since CBS fired the satirist folk singers in 1969, will be recycled on E! Entertainment Television as an hourlong nightly series on the cable network starting Jan. 4. E! has struck a three-year exclusive deal with Comedic Prods., Tom and Dick Smothers’ company, to air episodes […]

  • 'Walking Dead' Star Lauren Cohan on

    'Walking Dead' Star Lauren Cohan on Season 9: 'I'm Going Back'

    “The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour,” not seen on TV since CBS fired the satirist folk singers in 1969, will be recycled on E! Entertainment Television as an hourlong nightly series on the cable network starting Jan. 4. E! has struck a three-year exclusive deal with Comedic Prods., Tom and Dick Smothers’ company, to air episodes […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content