KTXH, virtual channel 20 (UHF digital channel 19), is a MyNetworkTV owned-and-operated television station located in Houston, Texas, United States. The station is owned by the Fox Television Stations subsidiary of 21st Century Fox, as part of a duopoly with Fox owned-and-operated station KRIV (channel 26). The two stations share studio facilities located on Southwest Freeway in Houston (between the Uptown and Greenway Plaza districts); KTXH's transmitter is located in unincorporated northeastern Fort Bend County (near Missouri City).
The station first signed on the air on November 7, 1982, becoming the third independent station in Houston, after KRIV (then owned by Metromedia), and Gaylord Broadcasting's KHTV (channel 39, now Tribune Broadcasting-owned KIAH). Its original studio facilities were located on Kirby Drive in Houston. It was also the second station in Texas owned by a group headed by television station entrepreneur Milton Grant. The station used originally branded on-air as "20 Vision."
The group signed on a similarly formatted station, KTXA in Fort Worth, in January 1981. KTXH programmed a general entertainment format consisting of cartoons, vintage off-network sitcoms and dramas, classic movies, westerns and sports events. The fledgling station was broadcasting from the original Senior Road Tower that collapsed on December 7, 1982, killing seven workers as the top half of the master FM antenna was being hoisted to the top. It was eventually replaced by a second tower. The station resumed operations on February 13, 1983 from the original KRIV (originally KDOG) transmitter site on top of One Shell Plaza in downtown Houston.
Ownership changes, switch to UPN
Grant Broadcasting sold both KTXH and KTXA to Gulf Broadcasting in 1984. Gulf sold its television station holdings to Taft Broadcasting in 1985. Even after going through three owners within the same year, the station did not change its programming format, aside from adding more programming owned by Taft and distributed by new sister company Worldvision Enterprises, such as Hanna-Barbera cartoons.
Taft sold its group of independent and Fox-affiliated stations, including KTXH and KTXA, to the TVX Broadcast Group in February 1987. In 1989, Paramount Pictures purchased a minority ownership in TVX, which suffered from financial problems after the Taft purchase. Paramount bought out the remainder of TVX's shares in 1991 and integrated the TVX stations into the Paramount Stations Group. Under Paramount, the station added several first-run syndicated programs in the mid-1990s, and changed its on-air branding to "Paramount 20" (mirroring other Paramount-owned independent stations, such as KTXA, that incorporated such branding).
Viacom acquired ownership of KTXH, KTXA and their sister stations when the company purchased Paramount Pictures in 1994. Channel 20 became an owned-and-operated station of the United Paramount Network (owned by Chris-Craft Industries in a programming partnership with Viacom, and later co-owned in a joint venture with Chris-Craft when it bought a 50% share in the network in 1996) upon the network's January 16, 1995 launch.
Sale to Fox, switch to MyNetworkTV
KTXH was purchased by Fox Television Stations (then a subsidiary of News Corporation) in 2001, as part of a four-station trade deal which saw Viacom swapping KTXH and WDCA in Washington, D.C. in exchange for KBHK-TV (now KBCW) in San Francisco, which Fox had bought as part of its purchase of Chris-Craft's broadcasting division (that acquisition in turn, occurred after Viacom bought Chris-Craft's 50% ownership interest in UPN). The transaction established the first television duopoly in Houston between KRIV and KTXH (Fox had also owned several of KTXH's former sister stations under Taft). Channel 20 also relocated its broadcasting facilities from the original studios on Kirby Drive, near present-day Reliant Park, to KRIV's studios.
On January 24, 2006, the Warner Bros. unit of Time Warner and CBS Corporation announced that the two companies would shut down The WB and UPN and combine the networks' respective programming to create a new "fifth" network called The CW. Through an affiliation agreement with Tribune Broadcasting, KHWB (channel 39, which changed its callsign to KHCW shortly before the network's launch) was announced as The CW's Houston affiliate. Almost immediately, KTXH dropped all UPN network branding from its station promotions, revamped its logo to just feature the boxed "20", and ceased all promotion of any UPN programming. Additionally, the station began referring to itself in promos as "Houston's 20". Similar changes were also made to Fox's other UPN affiliates, as the initial list of CW charter affiliates consisted of both stations owned by the Tribune Company and network co-parent CBS. News Corporation also chose not to affiliate stations with The CW in markets where neither Tribune nor CBS (excluding CBS owned-and-operated stations) owned a station.
On February 22, 2006, in response to The CW's launch announcement, News Corporation announced the creation of a new "sixth" network called MyNetworkTV, which would be operated by Fox Television Stations and its syndication division Twentieth Television, with KTXH and the other Fox-owned UPN affiliates serving as charter affiliates. With the impending switch to MyNetworkTV, channel 20's on-air branding was changed to "My20" in June 2006. KTXH became a MyNetworkTV owned-and-operated station when the network began operations on September 5 of that year. Although UPN continued to broadcast its programming on stations across the United States until September 15, 2006 (with some stations airing the final two weeks of the network's programming outside their regular primetime slots), KTXH and its Fox-owned sister stations did not carry UPN's final two weeks of programming as those stations dropped the network entirely on August 31, 2006.
On October 1, 2009, KTXH launched its new website at www.my20houston.com using the same platform as its sister station KRIV. Early content included a schedule for both local and national programming with links to weather, news, and traffic on www.myfoxhouston.com.
On the night of May 25, 2015, KTXH's over the air signal was knocked off the air for several hours as a result of the historic severe flash flooding event in Texas.
The station's digital channel is multiplexed:
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP Short Name||Programming|
|20.1||720p||16:9||KTXH-DT||Main KTXH programming / MyNetworkTV|
KTXH discontinued regular programming on its analog signal, over UHF channel 20, on June 12, 2009, as part of the federally mandated transition from analog to digital television. The station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition UHF channel 19, using PSIP to display KTXH's virtual channel as 20 on digital television receivers.
For many years, KTXH was the over-the-air broadcast rights holder for Houston Astros baseball and Houston Rockets basketball. Hannah Storm, later a noted national broadcast personality, anchored the station's coverage of the Rockets in the mid-1980s.