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1979-1980 Television Season

The top five shows of 1979-80 were Dallas, M*A*S*H, Alice, That's Incredible, with the most popular being Three's Company. (See below for the list of the top 30 programs.)

This was a notoriously bad year for NBC, whose highest rated show was Real People at #15. NBC only managed four shows in the top 30! They were also responsible for one of the worst programs in the history of television, Pink Lady. Despite all of this, NBC ran ads claiming it was Proud as a Peacock.

Programs that started before 8:00 p.m. on Sundays (and not on our grid below) include Out of the Blue, Disney's Wonderful World, and 60 Minutes. Select a show below to read all about it and to share your memories!

Prime Time TV Schedule for 1979-1980
    8:00 8:30 9:00 9:30 10:00 10:30
Shows that aired on Mondays ABC 240-Robert Monday Night Football
CBS White Shadow M*A*S*H WKRP in Cincinnati Lou Grant
NBC Little House on the Prairie NBC Monday Night Movie
Shows that aired on Tuesdays ABC Happy Days Angie Three's Company Taxi Lazarus Syndrome
CBS California Fever CBS Tuesday Night Movie
NBC Misadventures of Sheriff Lobo NBC Tuesday Night Movie
Shows that aired on Wednesdays ABC Eight is Enough Charlie's Angels Vega$
CBS Last Resort Struck by Lightning CBS Wednesday Night Movie
NBC Real People Diff'rent Strokes Hello Larry Best of Saturday Night Live
Shows that aired on Thursdays ABC Laverne & Shirley Benson Barney Miller Soap 20-20
CBS Waltons Hawaii Five-O Barnaby Jones
NBC Buck Rogers in the 25th Century Quincy, M.E. Kate Loves a Mystery
Shows that aired on Fridays ABC Fantasy Island ABC Friday Night Movie
CBS Incredible Hulk Dukes of Hazzard Dallas
NBC Shirley Rockford Files Eischied
Shows that aired on Saturdays ABC Ropers Detective School Love Boat Hart to Hart
CBS Working Stiffs Bad News Bears Big Shamus, Little Shamus Paris
NBC CHiPS B.J. and the Bear Man Called Sloane
Shows that aired on Sundays ABC Mork & Mindy Associates ABC Sunday Night Movie
CBS Archie Bunker's Place One Day at a Time Alice Jeffersons Trapper John, M.D.
NBC Big Event Prime Time Sunday
    8:00 8:30 9:00 9:30 10:00 10:30

Note: Television seasons have generally begun in September of each year. And new shows often do not last the entire season. The shows below began the new season but did not necessarily run all the way through to summer reruns.
Continued - Indicates show began before the time period indicated. 

1979-80 Ratings

Rank Show Network Estimated
1. 60 Minutes CBS 21,669,200
2. Three's Company ABC 20,066,900
3. That's Incredible ABC 19,685,400
4. Alice CBS 19,303,900
5. M*A*S*H CBS 19,303,900
6. Dallas CBS 19,075,000
7. Flo CBS 18,617,200
8. The Jeffersons CBS 18,540,900
9. The Dukes of Hazzard CBS 18,388,300
10. One Day at a Time CBS 17,549,000
11. Archie Bunker's Place CBS 17,472,700
12. Eight is Enough ABC 17,396,400
13. Taxi ABC 17,091,200
14. House Calls CBS 16,862,300
15. Real People NBC 16,862,300
16. Little House on the Prairie NBC 16,633,400
17. Happy Days ABC 16,557,100
18. CHiPS NBC 16,404,500
19. Trapper John, M.D. CBS 16,175,600
20. Charlie's Angels ABC 15,946,700
21. Barney Miller ABC 15,946,700
22. WKRP in Cincinnati CBS 15,794,100
23. Benson ABC 15,717,800
24. The Love Boat ABC 15,717,800
25. Soap ABC 15,641,500
26. Diff'rent Strokes NBC 15,488,900
27. Mork & Mindy ABC 15,412,600
28. Fantasy Island ABC 15,336,300
29. Tenspeed and Brown Shoe ABC 15,260,000
30. ABC Sunday Night Movie ABC 15,260,000
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