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Nexstar to launch new retro digital television network

(Graphic courtesy Nexstar Media Group)

Nexstar Media will launch a new digital broadcast television network full of repeat programs from the 1980s and 1990s.

The new network, called Rewind TV, will siphon off certain shows currently in rotation on Nexstar’s other digital network, Antenna TV, which was launched by Tribune Broadcasting in 2011. Nexstar acquired Tribune in 2019.

Starting September 1, Antenna TV’s program list will change to include only shows from the 1960s and 1970s as part of the network’s new focus on the “Baby Boomer” generation.

Programs from the 1980s and 1990s that previously aired on Antenna TV will then move to Rewind TV, which is expected to be offered as a digital broadcast network across Nexstar’s vast portfolio of local television properties.

Shows that will move to Rewind TV include “Growing Pains,” “Wings,” “Becker” and “Murphy Brown.” The network will also start airing “The Drew Carey Show,” “Sabrina the Teenage Witch” and “Suddenly Susan,” with some slows slated to be added next year.

“This year marks Antenna TV’s 10-year anniversary, and it continues growing and finding new audiences,” Sean Compton, Nexstar’s executive in charge of networks, said in a statement. “To complement Antenna TV’s strong following with Baby Boomers, we created Rewind TV to give Gen X viewers a network dedicated to their own nostalgic comedy classics.”

Both Antenna TV and Rewind TV will be programmed out of Nexstar’s Chicago broadcast facility, which currently houses WGN-TV (Channel 9) and the cable channel NewsNation.

Channel placement was not announced, but Rewind TV is expected to land on most of Nexstar’s local television stations across the country. Some of those stations currently have affiliate agreements with E. W. Scripps Company for digital networks programmed under the Katz Broadcasting brand, which includes Court TV, Bounce TV and Laff.

Scripps has announced plans to move its Katz Broadcasting networks away from some affiliates in favor of placement on Ion Media television stations, which it acquired last year. The move will likely see Nexstar replace some of those Katz stations with Rewind TV from September onward.

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About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is a nationally-recognized, award-winning journalist who has covered the business of media, technology, radio and television for more than 10 years. He is the publisher of The Desk and contributes to Know Techie, Digital Content Next and StreamTV Insider. He previously worked for Thomson Reuters, the Walt Disney Company, McNaughton Newspapers and Tribune Broadcasting.
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