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Monday, February 25, 2013
Q: [I] Have eagerly been looking forward to Season 2 of “Call the Midwife” on PBS. Season 1 aired at 8 p.m on Sundays last fall. [The website] www.pbs.org/programs/call-the-midwife shows Season 2 beginning March 31, yet WBRA’s online March Prime Time schedule doesn’t list it, and neither does clicking the link on the site to check local listings.
Can you please find out if and when WBRA plans to air Season 2? With so little quality programming available, surely I’m not the only one seeking this information. Thanks for any help you can give us!
Tacey Dale, Roanoke
Tacey, I used to hear a lot of questions like this when I worked for Blue Ridge Public Television. People just don’t like it when you mess with their viewing schedule, but local PBS stations might not exactly follow the program’s national broadcast schedule for a variety of reasons.
Commercial stations such as WDBJ (Channel 7) and WSLS (Channel 10) don’t have as much leeway. Take my example of the fictional (I think!) program “CSI-Bonsack.” If CBS says it is airing on Mondays at 8, then generally the local station will carry it on Monday at 8, barring a national emergency — or a Virginia Tech football game.
But Blue Ridge PBS has a little more flexibility, especially when it comes to all-important fund drives or, as they like to call them, “pledge events.” Because the station depends on support from viewers like you, they often interrupt the PBS program feed to bring you a concert by: A.) Celtic singers performing in front of a castle, B.) Faded, formerly famous doo-wop singers, C.) Anything remotely related to the Civil War, or D.) Puppies.
Now, about your show, “Call the Midwife.” According to ever-helpful Sherry Spradlin, the program director at Blue Ridge PBS, the show will begin on March 31 at 8 p.m., as scheduled. It may not have been in their online schedule when you checked this month, but it will air on Sunday nights at 8. Spradlin said that the show is popular with viewers .
In the meantime, if you have access to Netflix, let me recommend another small-town British show called “Doc Martin.” Much like “Call the Midwife,” it features a fish-out-of-water medical professional who arrives in a small town and has to confront the fact that things work differently out in the sticks than he’s used to. My wife and I watched all five seasons of the show in less than two weeks while recovering from the flu. I think you’ll like it, too.
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Thanks to those readers who emailed about their experiences in the old Navy Reserve building at Franklin Road and Reserve Avenue, featured in last week’s column. Because of you, I’ve learned that a former reservist once cleaned his service revolver in the room with the round window on the corner of the building, and that the Roanoke City Public Schools offices that used to be there are now located at the old Ruffner Middle School building on Ferncliff Avenue.
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Look for Tom Landon’s column on Mondays. Read the blog at blogs.roanoke.com/whatsonyourmind.
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