Supertrain's NBC Broadcast History
There are a total of ten hours, eight 60-minute episodes
and one 2-hour movie, of "Supertrain" broadcast beginning Wednesday February 7, 1979 and concluding Saturday
July 28, 1979.
NBC originally put "Supertain" as the opening of the network's Wednesday night schedule airing at
Though "Supertrain" premiered with reportedly decent ratings, the numbers quickly went down. NBC removed
the show from its schedule for re-tooling little more than month after its premiere. The first five episodes carried the credit
of Dan Curtis as Executive Producer for the series. The "Supertrain" crew for these first five shows included Edward Andrews,
Patrick Collins, Harrison Page, Robert Alda, Nita Talbott, Arrika Wells, William Nuckols, and Michael DeLano.
series returned to the air with a new day and time slot, Saturdays at 10pm (Eastern) on April 7th, 1979. That night the sixth
episode, "Pirouette," featured a new Executive Producer Robert Stambler and a slimed down crew. Edward Andrews, Harrison Page,
and Robert Alda were the only surviving crew members from the original five episodes.
The following week, April
14th, 1979 the sixth show added two new crew members, Joey Aresco and Ilene Graff, to the regular cast.
change arrives with the last new episode airing, May 5th, 1979...a "laugh-track" is added to the series. No further
tinkering and no more new shows at that point, as "Supertrain" left the airwaves after the May 5, 1979 broadcast.
Never a good sign when a network removes a regular program during one of the ratings "sweeps" periods.
"Supertrain" returned in June of 1979 and NBC
repeated all eight one-hour episodes, concluding the show's run July 28, 1979. The premiere episode, "Express To Terror,"
fails to be repeated and is the only installment that aired only once on NBC.
Willard Scott, of NBC's Today Show, hosted a program reviewing TV's Greatest
Turkeys not long after the demise of "Supertrain." In this special that aired on NBC, "Supertrain" is shown
briefly in one of its rolling by shots.
More recently, NBC's 75th Anniversary program featured "Supertrain"
in a montage of the newtork's less impressive programs. Piled in with "Manimal" and "Hello, Larry" was a quick shot
of the "Supertrain" logo from the color-tinted credit sequences. Oddly, this logo appears with a yellow background that
is not similar to what is found among the opening credits from which it appears to have been lifted.
Supertrain's Post-NBC Broadcast
There is no known U.S. syndicated airings for the series. Certainly the
limited number of hours produced would be a major factor, among others, behind it disappearing after its NBC run.
NBC International included "Supertrain" among programs available in its catalog.
Those with copies of the series obtained in recent years trading video tapes and DVDs are likley familiar with the Caribbean
Super Station. The Caribbean Super Station serving Aruba is at least one place that "Supertrain" was aired sometime
in what appears to be the mid-'80s. Big thanks to whomever originally bothered to record "Supertrain" from this satellite
service as these copies appear to be about the only one floating about for certain episodes.
The only known U.S. exposure the series received was a run of the "Express To
Terror" episode on Lifetime Cable TV in 1987. The Lifetime Cable TV presentation presented the episode with the
title "Supertrain" and did not include the on-screen title "Express To Terror" as found on the Prism VHS release.