Oh My God! They’re Turkeys!

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screencap of Richard Sanders as Les Nessman during the 'Turkey's Away' episode
Richard Sanders as Les Nessman during the ‘Turkey’s Away’ episode

Today is Thanksgiving in the United States. It’s when we gather with friends and family and give thanks for what we have. Some of us have large family dinners with turkey and side dishes. We also watch football on TV. The holiday also falls during the November TV sweeps period so many shows have episodes that have a Thanksgiving theme. My all time favorite is an episode of the sitcom WKRP in Cincinnati titled “Turkeys Away”.

WKRP in Cincinnati aired on CBS from 1978 to 1982 and the episode “Turkeys Away” was broadcast on October 30th 1978. Station manager Arthur Carlson decides he has a terrific promotion idea for the station but keeps it a secret until it is revealed during a live remote hosted by station Les Nessman.

Check out this abbreviated version that shows all the funny parts:

WKRP “Turkey’s Away”

In case you can’t or don’t want to view the video here is a brief summary:

Arthur Carlson’s greatest Thanksgiving promotion in radio history? Dropping live turkeys from a helicopter – of course. Les Nessman, during his live remote, witnesses the turkeys hitting the pavement “like bags of wet cement”. The drop causes all kinds of mayhem in the parking lot where the stunt was attempted.

Carlson and his flunky account manager Herb Tarlek return with ripped clothes and turkey dander all over them.

The final line from Carlson is my favorite:

As God as my witness, I thought turkeys could fly…

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