Pocket Money (non-existent inaugural Nickelodeon series; 1979)

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Pocketmoney.jpeg

The paragraph in the Nickelodeon 1979 press kit mentioning Pocket Money.

Status: Non-existent

Pocket Money is a non-existent TV series set to air on Nickelodeon that was first mentioned in the 1979 press kit for the channel.[1] Until being confirmed to not exist as a separate property, it was unknown if the show ever entered production for the network or if it was mentioned for another reason entirely.

History[edit | edit source]

Pocket Money was mentioned for the first and only time in the 1979 press kit for the then-new children's cable network Nickelodeon. On page 2 of the press kit, the network is introduced and various inaugural shows that were set to air on the network such Video Comics, Nickel Flicks, America Goes Bananaz, and Pinwheel were given brief descriptions, including Pocket Money.[1]

The description reads:

"Pocket Money, a show that will cover everything from lollypop factories to youth in politics."[2]

This is the only mention of the show officially by Nickelodeon, as the show was never mentioned again in any capacity by the network. It is unknown what exactly the show was and what exactly became of it.

Theories[edit | edit source]

There are several theories of what exactly Pocket Money was and what became of it, and they go as follows:

Early Name for By The Way[edit | edit source]

The most well-known theory for Pocket Money is that it was an early name for By The Way, another obscure inaugural Nickelodeon show. This theory was first corroborated by YouTuber poparena in an addendum episode of his series Nick Knacks.[2]

This theory is backed up by the fact that besides Nickelodeon's inaugural TV schedule, By The Way is not mentioned anywhere else in the press kit, while other inaugural Nickelodeon shows are.

However, some found footage of By The Way goes against the original plot of Pocket Money mentioned in the press kit, though another mention of By The Way seems to be somewhat vague like the Pocket Money description, meaning this theory is still up for debate.[3]

Pocket Money was Cancelled[edit | edit source]

Another theory is that Pocket Money was outright cancelled entirely by Nickelodeon, explaining why the series was never mentioned after the press kit. However, this theory does not confirm nor deny that Pocket Money ever entered production in the first place.

Pocket Money was Filler in the Press Kit[edit | edit source]

The final theory is that Pocket Money was simply filler in the press kit to make it seem like there were more shows set to air on Nickelodeon or to make the kit seem longer. This explains why the show's description is not very detailed and doesn't explain clearly what the show was about. This seems to also support the fact that the show would never be mentioned again afterward.[2]

Non-existence[edit | edit source]

On March 21st, 2022, YouTube user and Nickelodeon archivist CDCB2 had found a listing from The Shreveport Journal in Shreveport, Louisiana from July 6th, 1979, mentioning Nickelodeon's premiere and the shows that would launch onto the network. The description of By The Way in the listing has similar wording as the description of the show that would be described in future newspaper articles, with the heading stating "BY THE WAY (Title changed from Pocket Money)".[4]

This confirms the theory that Pocket Money was an in-development name for By The Way, and not a separate show as previously touted. It also confirms that no other footage of Pocket Money separate from By The Way exists.

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Images[edit | edit source]

Videos[edit | edit source]

BrayBray's video on the subject.
Poparena's Nick Knacks Addendum 1979 episode, where the press kit and Pocket Money are mentioned.

See Also[edit | edit source]

Anthology and Short Series[edit | edit source]

Bumpers and Promos[edit | edit source]

Game Shows[edit | edit source]

Inaugural Series[edit | edit source]

Live Action[edit | edit source]

Pilots[edit | edit source]

TV Films[edit | edit source]

Other[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]