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A Non-affiliate First: Kcop To Air Three New Prime-time Series

September 09, 1990|DANIEL CERONE | TIMES STAFF WRITER

In an unprecedented programming move for a non-affiliated television station in Los Angeles, KCOP will be airing three original television series this series, which the independent channel has developed with New York's WWOR-TV and MCA Television Entertainment.

Original prime-time programming on this level signifies a new era for independent Los Angeles stations. Those stations--KTLA, KCAL, KTTV and KCOP--have traditionally broadcast old movies to compete with the networks for prime-time viewers. But the increasingly competitive television arena is forcing a change.

This fall, KCOP has cut back its benchmark movie playlist to make room for the following first-run series, which are scheduled to premiere in October:

* "They Came From Outer Space" (Tuesdays, 8-9 p.m. beginning Oct. 9) is a buddy comedy about two boys, played by Stuart Fratkin and Dean Cameron, from the planet Crouton who take a year away from school to study "abroad"--or in this case, planet Earth.

* "She-Wolf of London" reveals herself the same night (Tuesdays, 9-10 p.m. beginning Oct. 9). The series stars Kate Hodge as a young American graduate student nicked by a werewolf while pursuing parapsychology studies in New York. She and her mentor, the handsome professor Neil Dickson, search for a cure for her monthly metamorphoses as they encounter other supernatural beasties.

* "Shades of L.A." (Wednesdays, 9-10 p.m. beginning Oct. 10) follows KCOP's successful run of the syndicated series "Star Trek: The Next Generation," which moves to 8 p.m. the same night. "Shades of L.A.," an action-adventure show, stars John DiAquino as a detective who is shot in the head and has a near-death experience. In limbo between here and eternity, DiAquino encounters pesky spirits of the dead who haunt his life and his workplace.

Meanwhile, here's what's happening on the other local independents in prime time:

KCAL continues its efforts to recruit Los Angeles viewers with Prime 9 News. Despite struggling ratings, the local three-hour newscast airs weekdays beginning at 8 p.m. On weekends, KCAL broadcasts movies.

KTLA is upholding its prime-time tradition by running a steady flow of movies weeknights and weekends starting at 8 p.m., before switching to local news at 10 p.m.

KTTV, which carries Fox Television's expanded programming five nights a week--Thursday through Monday--broadcasts movies, specials or sports programming Tuesday and Wednesday evenings at 8.

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