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Like his contemporary, Merv Griffin, Mike Douglas was a singer who moved into the field of talk television as he hit middle age. His show was rarely controversial but his welcoming personality made the show very popular for a 20+ year run.

The Mike Douglas Show originally was produced in Cleveland at Westinghouse’s KYW-TV in 1961. It would be syndicated to several other Group W stations until 1964 when it went national. A year later the show moved to Philadelphia and was produced there until 1978. The final two years of the show’s run emanated from Burbank.

Douglas’ show was lighthearted, reflecting his personality and the type of entertainment he himself enjoyed. He took the concept of a celebrity guest-host and utilized it almost non-stop until the program’s eventual cancellation in 1980. People often remember specific programs based on the guest host. Stars such as Burt Reynolds, Rosemary Clooney and John Lennon & Yoko Ono were some of the names to work with Douglas for an entire week. In fact, the John & Yoko appearances have become part of television legend.

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