Mike Douglas Passes On

It’s a name very few of our younger readers will remember.

Mike Douglas was truly a television pioneer, and he started his road to nationwide stardom right here in Cleveland. The Cleveland Plain Dealer’s Michael Heaton reports that Douglas has died in a Florida hospital at the age of 81.

Your Primary Editorial Voice(tm) is just old enough to remember the last TV years of the syndicated “Mike Douglas Show”.

But long before that, in 1961, then-KYW/3 lured him to town hoping to knock off WEWS/5’s popular “One O’Clock Club” with Dorothy Fuldheim and Bill “Smoochie” Gordon…two names that also live in local broadcast legend.

A year after its debut, then-KYW then-parent company Group W syndicated Douglas, and the host then powered to top national daytime ratings and iconic status. If someone was a big name in their chosen field, they appeared on The Mike Douglas Show. It was as simple as that.

Douglas was also known for his singing talent, which set his show apart from other contemporaries like Dick Cavett and Merv Griffin.

Unfortunately, Douglas didn’t stay around here very long. The show moved to Philadelphia the year after it went national – and for that matter, the KYW calls ended up there, too. “The Mike Douglas Show” eventually moved to star-studded Los Angeles.

Douglas put together some 4-thousand plus shows before retiring…

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