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Nick at Nite logo 2009.svg
Launched July 1, 1985
Network Nickelodeon
Owned by Classic Viacom (1985-2005)
New Viacom (2005-present) (operated by MTV Networks)
Picture format 480i (SDTV)
1080i (HDTV; limited programming available in 1080i)
Country United States
Language English
Broadcast area Nationwide (with international versions in Latin America, Japan, India, Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States, and Southeast Asia)
Headquarters New York, New York
DirecTV Channel 299 (East)
Channel 300 (West)
Dish Network Channel 170 (East)
Channel 171 (West)
AMC 11
N/Central America/Caribbean
4060 H / 29270 / 3/4
Channel 630
(Transponder 18)
AMC 10
N/Central America/Caribbean
3920 V / 29270 / 3/4
Channel 140
(Transponder 11)
AT&T U-verse Channel 314 (East)
Channel 315 (West)
Verizon Fios Channel 252 (East)
Channel 253 (West)
Available on most other cable systems Check local listings for details

Nick at Nite (stylized as nick@nite and occasionally abbreviated off-air as NaN) is the nighttime programming block broadcast over the channel space of Nickelodeon on Sunday through Thursdays from 8:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m., Fridays from 9:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m., and Saturdays from 10:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m. (Eastern and Pacific Time).

Nickelodeon is known for its children's shows during the day, while Nick at Nite appeals to adult and/or adolescent audiences with a lineup of live-action sitcoms. However, due to the fact that Nick at Nite shares channel space with Nickelodeon, an undetermined number of Nick at Nite viewers are under 18 years of age. Though it shares channel space with Nickelodeon, A.C. Nielsen Co. rates Nick at Nite as a separate channel from Nickelodeon for ratings purposes.



Nick at Nite debuted at 8 p.m. on July 1, 1985 as a block on Nickelodeon. MTV Networks President Bob Pittman had asked Nickelodeon General Manager Gerry Laybourne to develop programming to fill the time vacated by A&E Network (which occupied the former Alpha Repertory Television Service time slot), to take better advantage of precious satellite time. After futile attempts at original program development, she asked programming and branding consultants Alan Goodman and Fred Seibert of Fred/Alan Inc. (successful as the original MTV branders, and Nickelodeon's explosive rebranding) to come up with programming. After being presented with over 200 episodes of The Donna Reed Show (which Laybourne despised), Goodman and Seibert conceived the idea of the "first oldies TV network." They modeled the new evening and overnight programming block on the successful oldies radio format, "The Greatest Hits of All Time," and branded the block with their next evolution of MTV- and Nickelodeon-style imagery and bumpers. Head programmer Debby Beece led the team to the name "Nick at Nite," and Fred/Alan developed the original logo with Tom Corey and Scott Nash of Corey McPherson Nash, Boston, creators of the well-recognized Nickelodeon orange logo.

Its initial programming (running from 8 p.m. - 6 a.m., seven days a week) was a block of classic sitcoms such as The Donna Reed Show and Dennis the Menace, and the classic drama Route 66. As Nick at Nite grew, it would add to its library of shows branching out to rerun sketch comedy, such as original Saturday Night Live episodes as well as the Canadian series SCTV. It also briefly reran the 1970s mock local talk show Fernwood 2Night. As the years went by, the channel's sitcom library swelled to over a hundred shows. For the station's 20th birthday celebration in June 2005, TV Land aired an episode from almost every series that had appeared on Nick at Nite.

Nick at Nite 10th Anniversary Logo (1995)

In 1995, Nick at Nite celebrated its 10th Anniversary with a week long event. Throughout the week, the channel aired "hand picked episodes" of almost every series aired on the network. Each episode was introduced with its history, episode number, and how long it ran on Nick at Nite. The 10th Anniversary on-screen bug was shown at the bottom left corner of the screen for 10 seconds once per half hour show, it was used for the entire year of 1995 as was the 20th Anniversary logo in 2005.

Nick at Nite logo used from September 1, 2007-September 28, 2009.

Nick at Nite has also spun off a niche network, TV Land, which features a variety of rerun programming. The networks were operated together until December 17, 2006, when Nickelodeon began overseeing Nick at Nite, and "Nick at Nite's TV Land" became "TV Land". On February 13, 2006, the Latin American version of Nickelodeon started broadcasting Nick at Nite for the first time. Since January 2007, the network has aired shows like ALF, Mork & Mindy, The Addams Family, The Munsters, Bewitched, I Dream of Jeannie, Growing Pains, The Facts of Life, Clarissa Explains It All, Kenan and Kel, Diff'rent Strokes, Get Smart, Perfect Strangers, and more, which have been broadcast in Latin American local networks and other cable channels. Although the Latin American Nickelodeon was born in the mid-1990s, it had never carried the Nick at Nite block before.[1]

In 2007, the Nick at Nite logo changed the color from blue to orange thus creating a match with Nickelodeon's colors. On September 1, 2007, a new logo similar to the former Nickelodeon logo but in the shape of a crescent moon, was introduced. The first program ever aired on the relaunched Nick at Nite was America's Funniest Home Videos.

The logo changed again on September 28, 2009 upon the launch of Nickelodeon's universal rebranding effort, with Nick at Nite stylized as nick@nite rendered as one word in lower case letters within the new network logo. The @ sign had been used in some versions of the Nick at Nite logo from 2002 to 2007 for visual symmetry, owing to the character's building ubiquity from the Internet and eventually into general pop culture.

Along with the rebrand, Nick at Nite extended its programming hours to end at 7:00 a.m. seven days a week and to begin at 8:00 p.m./ET Sunday-Thursdays and 9:00 p.m./ET Fridays (the Saturday lineup remains to start at 10:00 p.m./ET due to the presence of the long-running Saturday night comedy schedule on Nickelodeon). Nick at Nite's times of operation have changed several times over the years, to at one point beginning as late as 9:00 p.m./ET on Sunday-Thursdays and ending as early as 5:30 a.m./ET. Nick at Nite also stopped using the show's production credits for most shows (except those that have tag scenes during the end credits) instead employing generic closing credits, bringing it in line with Nickelodeon which has been using generic credits since the early 2000s.


Though Nick at Nite has been known for years as being a "classic TV" network, in recent years programming on Nick at Nite has begun to feature more recent programming, including series that debuted in the 2000s. The first such show on the lineup was George Lopez, added in 2007; Everybody Hates Chris and Malcolm in the Middle have also since joined the schedule. The channel still airs older programming, mostly from the 1990s, such as Family Matters and The Nanny. The longest-running series (and also the oldest in terms of the year of its original broadcast premiere) currently airing on Nick at Nite is The Cosby Show, which originally began airing on the channel in May of 2002, only I Love Lucy and The Donna Reed Show have aired as long or longer on Nick at Nite.

Nick at Nite airs virtually all of its programming in hour-long (and sometimes two-hour) blocks, known from 2002 to 2007 as "Double Takes"; for about a year-and-a-half prior to the September 28, 2009 rebrand, Nick at Nite aired marathons of programming from midnight to 5:00 a.m./ET.

In addition to running sitcom reruns, Nick at Nite has also experimented with airing movies in early primetime; the first time this occurred was during the summer of 2007, when the channel ran movies on Tuesday nights. The channel has aired films occasionally since then, most recently in February 2010 on Sunday nights, with telecasts of the Nickelodeon Movies-produced Good Burger and Angus, Thongs and Perfect Snogging, Drumline and Uncle Buck.

Original programming

Nick at Nite has also occasionally experimented with creating its own shows, sometimes with bizarre and surrealistic results. In 1988, the channel had a contest called the Do It Yourself Sitcom Special, where viewers could create their own sitcoms and send them in and the winner would supposedly get their own show. In 1988, the channel aired a 30-minute animated Christmas special, the pilot for what was to be an animated series entitled Tattertown, created by Ralph Bakshi. The series never emerged, but the special, later renamed Christmas in Tattertown, was aired every Christmas on Nick at Nite for several years. In 1990, the channel briefly aired a show called On the Television,[2] a mock TV critic show hosted by Siskel and Ebert-type characters and featured bizarre, sometimes disturbing clips from parodied TV shows supposedly beginning that week.

In the early 1990s, a special made up of old TV commercials was aired only once, but the idea of showing old commercials would be rehashed by the network on several other shows and eventually become a staple of offshoot channel, TV Land. There was one special that was promoted as a TV dad quiz. The host walked through a "typical TV Home", and quizzed the viewers at home with trivia about classic TV dad clichés. At one point, the host told the viewers to connect pictures of TV dads with their appropriate TV moms displayed on the screen with a magic marker. At the end of this segment he mentions that he forgot to tell the viewers to place a piece of plastic over their screen while doing this and made jokes about the viewers futilely trying to clean the magic marker off their screens for the rest of the show.

In 1991, Nick at Nite created its own sitcom based around the rerun genre it had pioneered. The sitcom, named Hi Honey, I'm Home! after the cliché phrase used by TV dads addressing their TV wives when returning home in the evenings from work, was about a 1950s sitcom family, the Nielsens. The family's show has been removed from syndication and they are forced to leave TV Land and move into a real 1990s suburban neighborhood. Once there, the family is repeatedly confronted with culture shock. The show aired on ABC on Fridays during the network's TGIF lineup, and then would "rerun" on Nick at Nite the following Sunday nights.

In 2008, the channel announced that it was making a remake of the 1990s game show Nickelodeon GUTS called My Family's Got GUTS for families, as well as hosting a dog competition show: [1]. My Family's Got GUTS eventually premiered on Nickelodeon in September 2008. In 2009, Nick at Nite released a new stop-motion "Claymation" series called Glenn Martin DDS. The show premiered on August 17, 2009 at 8:00 P.M. eastern time.[3]


Programming marathons were an innovation that began with Nick at Nite in 1985. Working together in college radio at WKCR-FM (Columbia University, New York) Fred/Alan's Alan Goodman & Fred Seibert saw the ratings success of radio marathons featuring Ludwig van Beethoven, John Coltrane, and Charles Mingus. As the Nick at Nite "oldies" format was adapted from radio, they suggested the multi-hour (sometimes multi-day) marathon might also work with television programming. The marathon format proved successful and marathons became a ratings boosting staple of cable television networks for over two decades.

During the week of Halloween 1990, the network held a special contest, hosted by game show host Wink Martindale, in which a marathon of the show Alfred Hitchcock Presents was shown. The at home viewers were supposed to keep a running total of the total number of deaths on the show. At the end of the marathon the persons who had gotten the total number right were entered into a drawing to win a prize. As Martindale said "It's kind of like guessing the number of jellybeans in a jellybean jar, but instead of jellybeans, you're using cadavers!"[citation needed]

When new shows are added to the line-up, they are usually accompanied by some kind of marathon complete with logo and sometimes hosted by a star from the show. For instance, when Newhart was added, the channel also acquired Bob Newhart's short-lived third sitcom Bob, and showed a programming block entitled "Bob's Bob, Bob Newhart, Newhart Marathon" and showed the two shows and The Bob Newhart Show which it already had the rights to, in a programming block hosted by Bob Newhart. Nick-at-Nite's debut of The Mary Tyler Moore Show was called the "Marython." When I Love Lucy joined Nick-at-Nite in 1994, "Nick-at-Nite Loves Lucy" marathon aired all week which showed every Lucille Ball series (I Love Lucy, The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour, The Lucy Show, Here's Lucy, and Life With Lucy). When some older shows were retired they would also frequently have a marathon send-off. For instance, when a long rerunning show on the channel Mister Ed (from the channel's inception in 1985 to 1993) was finally retired, there was an all-weekend marathon of the show called "Au Revoir Mister Ed!" as well as a similar send-off for The Donna Reed Show, which ran on the channel even longer (1985-1994). "My Three Sons" was sent off the night Daylight Savings Time ended in 1991, permitting two extra episodes in the marathon, called "Night of the Setting Sons."

During the summer months of the late 1990s the station for a while created a programming block called "Vertivision" (later, "Block Party Summer") during which a different series was shown in a three-hour block each night of the week. In the first year, commercials referred to the nights as "Mary Mondays, Lucy Tuesdays, Bewitched Be-Wednesdays, Jeannie Thursdays, and Sgt. Joe Fridays" (for The Mary Tyler Moore Show, I Love Lucy, Bewitched, I Dream of Jeannie, and Dragnet, respectively). With the passing years, the summer blocks shifted to include series newly in the Nick at Nite repertoire.

Other seasonal scheduling blocks were also not uncommon such as Christmas-themed blocks during late December, Thanksgiving-themed blocks in November, and Valentine's themed episodes in February. From 1989 until 1998 on New Year's Eve, the channel would host "Nick at Nite's (year) Rerun/Classic TV/TV Hits Countdown" hosted by longtime countdown radio DJ, Casey Kasem. Kasem would spend noon until 12:30 a.m. on New Year's Eve Day counting down the 25 "most classic" episodes of the TV shows currently airing on Nick at Nite determined by viewers at home, revealing the #1 episode at midnight.

Another famous scheduling block was the "Lucy: Queen of Comedy" block which ran on Saturday nights from June 4, 1994 to May 3, 1996. The line-up consisted of I Love Lucy, The Lucy Show, and The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour, which were all airing on the network at that time (a similar block called "A Whole Lotta Lucy" aired on Saturday nights from 1996 to 2001, featuring only I Love Lucy and The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour). In the mid-1990s, another programming block entitled "Very, Very Nick at Nite" aired which centered around a theme each Saturday night, such as "Very Very Mary" with four classic Mary Tyler Moore Show episodes. In summer of 2008, Nick at Nite aired a marathon called Battle of the Sexes, which featured episodes of their regular programs that involved conflict between man and woman.

Nick at Nite generally broadcasts a marathon of their programming on holidays, i.e. the "Luck of the Lopez" George Lopez marathon that aired on Saint Patrick's Day one year. For two years in a row, in 2007 and 2008, Nick at Nite broadcast the Shocktober marathon around Halloween, featuring Halloween-themed episodes of the regularly scheduled program. However, the second year running in 2008, it was titled Shocktober 2. Other holidays that have been featured as marathons include Mother's Day, Father's Day and Christmas. In November 2006, Nick at Nite was proud to continue Nickelodeon's "Best Day Ever" marathon, 24 hours of Spongebob Squarepants which, at the end of the marathon, led to a new episode with the same name.


Nick at Nite is ranked number one with Adults 18-49 for 2008 in total day, according to Nielsen Media Research (12/31/07-12/14/08)--averaging a .6/655,000 A18-49 (up +20% in rating over last year), and marking its most-watched year in four years with A18-49.

According to Market Watch, Nick at Nite is the top cable network with Adults 18-49. In total day, average ratings are about 1.5 million viewers. It's also the number one cable network with women (18-49).[4]


International versions of Nick at Nite currently exist in Latin America, Japan, India, and Southeast Asia. A British version of Nick at Nite was planned for launch in the United Kingdom, but plans for this were later scrapped.


External links

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