Book Report. Dangerously Funny. The Uncensored Story of the Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
I have just finished Listening to the audio version of this book. I must say I was under several misapprehensions about why the Smothers Brothers were Fired from CBS in 1969.
This book clears the air about what actually happened. After some research This book is found by me to be extremely factual. The author David Bianculli did his homework, he conducted extensive interviews with those involved that are still alive, got access to what were confidential memos and correspondence between the parties involved.
As most who were alive and paying attention during that time know that the Brothers were heavily censored during the run of their show from 1966 thru 1969, the censorship came from CBS Standards and Practices not the White House.
Now we all know that the “Decency Standards” come from so called Government Guidelines, thru the National Association Of Broadcasters or NAB, this is not a Government agency. It takes guidance from the Federal Communications Commission or FCC, there is only a small guideline that the FCC says that is not allowed on the commercial airwaves in the USA, Mainly the 7 dirty words ( See George Carlin).
I was always convinced that Nixon had the Brothers fired in 1969. The author states that “after extensive research and interviews I can find no evidence that Nixon was involved with the cancellation of the show.”
In fact the author states ” It is my opinion that in 1969 The Nixon White house was so busy with the transition after the Inauguration and with the escalation of the Vietnam War that the Smothers Brothers were the last thing on his mind“.
The CBS Standards and Practices or “Censors” were a bunch of insecure, snobby old farts that could not handle that someone had the guts to speak their mind week after week. Also they had their old fashioned ideas about what they wanted us to see on TV.
The network used a sneak attack, and used things that were never agreed to or even put in any contract, to cancel the show. Just 3 weeks after they re signed them for the ’69-’70 season, which Tommy Smothers used as the basis for his lawsuit against CBS which he won.
It was after the lawsuit was filed that Nixon became involved, when Tommy tried to file a suit against the Network based on “Denial of 1st Amendment Freedom of Speach rights” Nixon got the Justice Dept, J. Edgar Hoover, and what would eventually come to be known as the “Plumbers” of Watergate fame to work on The Brothers and the writers.
So as much as I hate Nixon and everything he stood for, In this case I have been blaming the wrong person.
I urge everyone to pick up this book, especially if like me, you are against Censorship, and are a fan of the Smothers Brothers. I am also going to buy both volumes of the DVDs of the Show.

2 Responses to “Book Report. Dangerously Funny. The Uncensored Story of the Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour.”

  1. J.J.

    How did the “Plumbers” work on the Brothers and writers??

  2. Sorry It’s took so long to answer, this damn phone…. In chapter 26 the author relates a story from Tommy,”I started recieving tips from an inside source, that a drug bust was coming after the 1st admendment lawsuit, and the writers were also investigated throughly” In the authors opinion this has the stamp of the “Special Investigations group/Plumbers”

Leave a Reply

To prove you're a person (not a spam script), type the security word shown in the picture. Click on the picture to hear an audio file of the word.
Anti-spam image