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Today in History: Thursday, November 30, 2023

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Everybody’s favorite TV couple, Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, married on this day in 1940. Their union, which spawned sitcom “I Love Lucy” and a media empire, lasted until 1960. And their offspring, Lucie Arnaz and Desi Arnaz, Jr., of course, followed in their show business footsteps…ABC TV film “Brian’s Song, the true story Chicago Bears running back Brian Piccolo (James Caan) and his friendship with Gale Sayers (Billy Dee Williams), who watched Brian die a tragic death, debuted in 1971. It was remade in 2001 on ABC with Sean Maher and Mekhi Phifer in the lead roles…Actress-model Tanya Roberts joined ABC’s “Charlie’s Angels” for the fifth season in 1980. Her stint there would not last long; the series was canceled in the spring of 1981…”Father Dowling Mysteries” starring Tom Bosley and Tracy Nelson premiered as a TV movie on NBC in 1987. It became a weekly series in the winter of 1989, then moved to ABC later that year where it remained until 1991…Middle school sitcom “Good Morning Miss Bliss” debuted on Disney Channel in 1988. It starred Hayley MillsDennis HaskinsMark-Paul GosselaarDustin Diamond and Lark Voorhies. It was the first series produced by a Big-3 network (NBC, in this case) for cable television. Following the conclusion of its brief 13-episode run, NBC retooled it as the classic teen comedy “Saved By The Bell“…Celebrity chef Ina Garten‘s cooking show “Barefoot Contessa” debuted on Food Network in 2002…Contestant Ken Jennings lost to Nancy Zerg on “Jeopardy!” in 2004, ending his record-breaking 74-game winning streak on the quiz show. He accumulated $2.52 million throughout that storied run, and he was recently named the first interim host of the game show in place of the beloved Alex Trebek…Also in 2004, reality competition “The Real Gilligan’s Island” debuted on TBS. The show that combined the format of “Survivor” with aspects from the classic sitcom ran for only two seasons. Notable actresses Nicole EggertRachel HunterErika Eleniak and Angie Everhart competed as “Ginger” during its brief run…On ABC’s “The View” in 2010, Susan Boyle‘s live performance of “O Holy Night” abruptly ends due to a coughing fit. The West Coast saw a re-recorded uninterrupted version in its entirety…Two sitcoms debuted in 2011: Fox’s short-lived “I Hate My Teenage Daughter” starring Jaime Pressly and TV Land’s “The Exes” starring Kristen JohnstonDavid Alan BascheDonald FaisonWayne Knight and Kelly Stables. The latter ran for four seasons.

Michael Jackson’s legendary album “Thriller” featuring the hits “Billie Jean“, “Beat It” and the title track was released in 1982… Reacting No. 1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart: “Love Child” by Diana Ross and The Supremes in 1968; “Set Adrift on Memory Bliss“, the PM Dawn song that sampled Spandau Ballet‘s No. 1 hit “True“, hit No. 1 itself in 1991.

In 2013, Chris Davis ran the length of the football field for a game-winning touchdown for Auburn after catching the ball kicked short via Alabama’s missed field goal attempt. The famous play that concluded the 78th Iron Bowl matchup was labeled as the “Kick Six“.

Celebrity Birthdays:
Film director Ridley Scott (“Alien”) is 86; film director Terrence Malick (“The Thin Red Line”) is 80; “Homeland star Mandy Patinkin is 70; Singer Billy Idol is 67; “Whose Line is it Anyway?” performer Colin Mochrie is 65; pro football and baseball All-Star Bo Jackson is 61; actor-director Ben Stiller is 57; TV producer Ryan Murphy (“American Horror Story”) is also 57; baseball Hall of Fame catcher Ivan Rodriguez is 52; DJ Steve Aoki is 46; actress Elisha Cuthbert (“24”) is 41; season two “American Idol” runner-up Clay Aiken is 38; “The Big Bang Theory” star Kaley Cuoco and model Chrissy Teigen are 38.

Did You Know?
Louis Gossett, Jr. was originally cast as Gale Sayers in the original “Brian’s Song, but tore his Achilles’ tendon exercising days before shooting was set to begin.