I came across this commercial while checking the contents of a VHS tape I found. It played during a commercial break in an episode of the CBS comedy Everybody Loves Raymond back in December 2001. In the commercial, Gary Burghoff spoofs his famous character of Radar for Connecticut’s CBS affiliate (WFSB-TV, Channel 3) and its Doppler 3000 radar system.
I was actually surprised to find only one article about the commercials, published in The Hartford Courant on February 2nd, 2000. According to the article, there were initially three 30-second commercials, titled “Incoming Storm,” “The Airport Spot” and “The Boardroom.” Said Burghoff about the commercials, “It’s fun because it’s in Connecticut, and it’s being seen by all my friends and relatives. It’s fun because Channel 3 goes back in my memory as far as it goes.” Burghoff was born in Bristol, Connecticut and still has a summer home in the state.
In the article, Burghoff explains that he didn’t have a problem spoofing his character from M*A*S*H. “When I heard they wanted to do a parody of Radar, I thought it was a cute idea. Parody is one thing I will do on a selective basis of Radar. Anything else lowers the dignity of the ‘M*A*S*H’ experience.” The article notes the first three commercials debuted on January 17th, 2000 and were set to run for at least two months.
There’s no mention of the commercial I found from December 2001 but obviously Burghoff filmed at least one additional commercial for WFSB-TV. I have no idea if there were even more commercials or when they were last shown.
Weiss, Tara. “‘Radar’ Pitches Radar.” Hartford Courant. 2 Feb. 2000: D.1.