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Today in History – Thursday, February 18, 2021

Television and Radio
John Lennon and Yoko Ono ended a week of co-hosting syndicated daytime talker “The Mike Douglas Show” in 1972…”Tattletales” hosted by Bert Convy premiered on CBS in daytime in 1974. The game show about celebrity couples who answered questions to win money for the studio audience lasted four years in its original run. It returned to CBS in 1982 for an additional two-year run…“Roots: The Next Generations,” which was set two years after “Roots” made television history, debuted on ABC in 1979. The story resumed in 1882, when Tom Harvey (Georg Stanford Brown), the great grandson of Kunta Kinte, became a prominent leader of the black community in Hennings, Tennessee…An anti-smoking ad, featuring Yul Brynner, aired for first time on TV in 1986. He died of smoking-induced lung cancer on 10th October 1985…The sketch “Wayne’s World” starring Mike Myers and Dana Carvey made its debut on NBC’s “Saturday Night Live” in 1989. Three years later, its feature film version became a box office smash. Currently, the characters are featured in Uber Eats’ ad campaign… George Clooney departed NBC medical drama “ER” as a series regular in 1999. He spent four-and-a-half seasons as attending pediatrician Dr. Doug Ross. Clooney would make two brief returns to “ER” as Dr. Ross — near the end of season six to greet the exiting Nurse Hathaway (Julianna Marguiles) and in an episode during its 15th and final season…Sitcom “Reba” starring Reba McEntire, JoAnna Garcia, Steve Howey, Christopher Rich and Melissa Peterman concluded its six-season run in 2007. It spent its first five seasons on The WB; its sixth and final season aired on The CW…Reality competition series “My Dad Is Better Than Your Dad” debuted on NBC in 2008. Co-produced by Mark Burnett (“Survivor”), the series was hosted by Dan Cortese. It only ran for eight episodes…Patrick Jane (Simon Baker) and Teresa Lisbon (Robin Tunney) get hitched on the two-hour series finale of “The Mentalist” on CBS in 2015. The detective drama ran for eight years; for some of the weeks during its first season, when it had aired following “NCIS”, it was the No. 1 show on television…Docuseries “The Zoo“, about the behind-the-scenes look at the  world-famous Bronx Zoo, launched on Animal Planet in 2017. To date, four seasons have been produced… card magician Shin Lim was crowned the winner of the first season of NBC’s “America’s Got Talent: The Champions” in 2019. Lim had also won the 13th season of “America’s Got Talent” just five months prior.
George Harrison released single “True Love” in 1972…Clint Black released single “A Better Man” in 1989. It won the Billboard Song of the Year…Andrea Bocelli made his operatic debut as Rodolfo in “La bohème” at the Teatro Comunale in Cagliari in 1998.

Legendary driver Dale Earnhardt died in a crash at the Daytona 500 in 2001. He was 49 years old.

Celebrity Birthdays:
Yoko Ono is 88; Styx lead singer Dennis DeYoung is 74; Cybill Shepherd is 71; John Travolta is 67; “Wheel of Fortune’s” Vanna White is 64; Matt Dillon is 57; rapper-entrepreneur Andre Young aka Dr. Dre is 56; actress Molly Ringwald (“Sixteen Candles”) is 52; actor Ike Barinholtz (“The Mindy Project”) is 44; singer Regina Spektor is 41; “Shameless” star Jeremy Allen White is 30.
Did You Know?
Molly Ringwald is remembered for appearing in season one of NBC’s “The Facts of Life” at age 12. But, to-date, she has appeared as a regular on three other TV series: ABC sitcom “Townies” in 1996, ABC Family’s “The Secret of the American Teenager” from 2008 to 2013, and “Riverdale” on The CW at present.