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One of the rare times where you see Richard Pryor hosting a kids show
Sid and Marty Krofft,the producers and creators who were behind some of the most not to mentioned the weirdest and wildest forms of children's programming in the history of Saturday Morning television. From their humble beginnings with the psychedelic kids shows "H.R. Pufnstuf", "The Bugaloos","Lidsville","Sidmund and the Sea Monsters","Wonderbug", "Land of the Lost",not to mention "Electra Woman and Dyna Girl",to name a few. We all know The Kroffts did some strange stuff for children's television,but the craziest things they ever did was back in 1984.
Who would have thought that foul-mouthed controversial comedian Richard Pryor would be a great candidate to host his very own Saturday Morning children's show? Despite a notorious reputation for raunchy behavior and all out profanity as a comedian,Producers Sid and Marty Krofft along with the powers that be for children's programming at CBS-TV,gave the green light for Richard Pryor to host his very own Saturday Morning kids show intitled "Pryor's Place" that ran for 13 episodes that was broadcast from September 15, 1984 until December 8, 1984,with the repeated episodes airing until June 15, 1985. The show was aimed at children with Richard Pryor as the host playing a variety of characters including a street corner saxaphone playing Rastafarian,not to mention bringing back for this show,his character of Mudbone. The show was set in inner city environment that feature a cast of puppets,several children having fun in a friendly atmosphere,along with a assortment of supporting characters,among them actress Marla Gibbs(yes,aka Florence Johnston of The Jeffersons fame in a kids show opposite Pryor),Akili Prince(as Little Richie who played Pryor as a child),along with Tony Cox, Danny Nucci,and Leanne Richelle. Pryor was also the executive producer of this series who in fact had full creative control along with some of the writing for the episodes by Paul Mooney(who was also the writer and one of the cast members of The Richard Pryor Show),and Mark Evanier who brought in some ethnic humor to the series.
But "Pryor's Place" didn't sit well with network executives either who were keeping an eye on things too. Some affiliates refused to air the show when it premiered in 1984,since several CBS-TV affiliates didn't air it,among them several stations within the Bible Belt who thought Pryor was not the right kind of man to host a Saturday Morning kids show. Pryor was no Captain Kangaroo,but in retrospected Paul Reubens wasn't exactly Mister Rodgers neither. "Pryor's Place" is one of those clever and brilliant ideas that could have work,but didn't have time to marinate into a great series. R&B crooner Ray Parker,Jr.(along with his band Raydio,which was HUGE in the 1980's who was the behind the theme of the song Ghostbusters,which was a huge hit in 1984)sang the theme song,and it goes like this:
(Whoa-oh-oh)Let's get on over to Pryor's Place (Whoa-oh-oh)We're gonna party,so don't be late We've got friends Who live in the street The craziest people you'll ever meet on Pryor's Place (Whoa-oh-OOOH) Pryor's Place
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