Channel 12

The famous Marvin Kitman returning from Cicely, Alaska.

    The Marvin Kitman, to whom this web site is dedicated, is the Famous Marvin Kitman. TV critic for New York Newsday from 1969 , his column was printed three times a week and was syndicated nationally by the Los Angeles Times Syndicate. It was seen, if not read, by hundreds of thousands. The column, in which he modestly listed himself as the "Executive Producer," was called "The Marvin Kitman Show." For 32 years and 6,641 performances, it lasted longer than many other shows he had written about, i.e. David Frost, Dick Cavett, Merv Griffin and Johnny Carson. 

   Marvin Kitman is also famous for being the author of The Man Who Would Not Shut Up The Rise of Bill O’Reilly 
(St Martins Press 2007)

   The Making of the Prefident 1789 (HarperCollins, 1989), also published in paperback (Harper Perennial). Marvin is the only living co-author of George Washington.

  Their George Washington's Expense Account, written by " General George" and Marvin Kitman PFC (Ret.), also re-published by Harper Perennial in paperback.

Mr. Kitman is also the author of I Am A VCR (Random House, 1988), the story of his first 20 years as a TV critic and the impact TV has had on one of the greatest minds in Western civilization.     

This is the same Marvin Kitman who was born in 1929 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. His parents then brought him to Brooklyn in the 1930s so that he might have the advantages of the New York public school system. Other parents sent their children to Switzerland, but he was sent to Brooklyn - for polishing.. After graduating Brooklyn Tech in 1947, he attended City College graduating without honors in 1953. He then attended the U.S. Army, where in only two years, he rose to the rank of PFC.

(L-R) Dick Cavett at the famous Marvin Kitman's 
famous New School Lectures (1991)
and the famous Marvin Kitman.

  Marvin was a freelance writer where his motto was publish -- and perish. He worked for a number of defunct publications, including the Saturday Evening Post and Monocle.  
The famous Marvin Kitman as a schoolteacher in the late 1870's.

The famous Marvin Kitman as a
schoolteacher in the late 1870's.

    A true Renaissance man, he is a former runner on Wall Street (1947), former Madison Avenue copy writer (Carl Ally, 1968), a former tennis player (1986), a former former (cq) before turning to a life of crime as a TV critic. "Imagine getting paid to watch TV? he says, " Why, I know some people who do it for nothing -- and call it fun." 

     Mr. Kitman began his studies of television in 1967 when the New Leader Magazine first hired him as a TV critic. He had never watched television until he started getting paid to do it. "I may be crazy," he explained, "but I'm not stupid." 

    He has one wife, three children, and four TV sets, all bought on his newspaper's expense account. He is the inventor of Quadraphonic Viewing, a method of watching programs on four sets at once. In 1979, he conducted an experiment watching "Laverne & Shirley" on four sets at once. The theory was programs might sound better on four sets at once. They didn't.

   He still buys TV sets from time to time, as others collect books. His collection currently includes four Sonys and a Zenith.

    His hobbies are owning VCRs. Currently, he is the proud owner of three VCRs: a 3/4" JVC U-matic (which no longer works, but has sentimental value) , a 1/2" JVC VHS, and a 1/2" RCA, none of which he knows how to operate. When he has an important program to tape, he has a neighbor's son come in and set it.

He is the author of Kitman's Law: "On the TV screen pure drivel tends to drive off ordinary drivel."

His five other books include:

    For six years  (1981-7) he was the commentator about TV on a local news show, "The Ten O' Clock News" on WNYW (formerly WNEW) in New York. His commentaries were also heard on the RKO Radio Network, now defunct.

     He is a founding father of Monocle, a member of the Leonia Public Library, AFTRA, PEN and a member of F.D.I.C." 

    He is a resident of New Jersey. Some day he hopes to win the state's highest honor: having a rest stop on the New Jersey Turnpike named after him. [see right]

    His favorite indoor sports include watching television and running for president. A former Republican candidate (1964.), currently he is running for president of all four major networks at the same time - in order to keep his options open. 
   His pets include a treadmill. He is also a member of the Stationary Bicycle Club of Northern New Jersey and a participant in the Tour de TV of 1987. 


The famous Marvin Kitman pitching for the Pittsburgh Pirates. (1979)
    His highest professional goal is someday appearing in a national "real person" commercial, a role he feels he can do given the chance. His other goals include endorsing TV sets. Surely there is some smart manufacturer like Sony who wants a TV critic to say, "The reason I like so much TV is because of my sets..." His dream is to sign TV sets in Bloomies' major appliance department. Someday.... 

This has been a



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