As I’ve written here before, I like to collect things such as vintage girlie magazines and pinups. About a year ago at a memorabilia show, I picked up this 1963 tv guide from the now-defunct New York Journal-American newspaper. My attention was caught, naturally, by the girls on the cover, stars of the then-popular show Petticoat Junction:
I recall it was only when I got this home that I looked at the contents carefully; that’s how dazzled and distracted I can be by three pairs of shapely stems in short-shorts, and how satisfied I was by the acquisition for my modest collection of this little digest with its pretty cover. I was really charmed by the image; and I take my pinups wherever I can find them.
But then I realized this little mag was for the week of November 17-23, 1963, which was of course was marked by the assassination of President Kennedy on November 22 at 12:30 p.m. Central Standard Time. Here is what was on television directly before the event (in New York it would be 1:30 p.m Eastern Time), from pp. 48-49 of the guide:
On that day I was in seventh grade in Chicago and returning to school after lunch, so I probably heard the news somewhere between 12:30 and 1:00, Central Time.
These are some of the movies that played on New York television that week, from pp. 58-59 of the guide (all the TV Magazine images can be enlarged by clicking on them):
Some of the actresses who appeared in the movies playing that week (in order of appearance below) included Diana Dors tangling with Rod Steiger and Tom Tryon in The Unholy Wife (1957) and Allison Hayes being vexed by John Carradine in The Unearthly (also 1957). Sally Todd was also particularly memorable in The Unearthly (I didn’t see in 1963, but in recent years) but she is not mentioned in the guide.
On the morning of November 22, 1963, a superb film noir called Too Late For Tears (also known as Killer Bait) played on NYC’s Channel 11 at 10 a.m. Eastern Time. Lizabeth Scott gets deadly with Dan Duryea, Arthur Kennedy, and Dan DeFore in that one…
In subsequent years, as a film buff, I have seen many, many of the movies listed on that schedule.
But only a few of those movies are quite as vivid in my memory as the nightmare we all lived that day, when I was walking up the steps to the school and someone said, “The President was shot!”