This UsefulNotes/{{Atlanta}}-based cable channel began as WTCG, (for '''T'''urner '''C'''ommunications '''G'''roup), an independent station owned by Ted Turner. It then changed its call sign to WTBS (for '''T'''urner '''B'''roadcasting '''S'''ystem) as its U.S. cable coverage increased. Now known as TBS, and separate from the Atlanta station [[note]]now known as WPCH, "Peachtree TV", which split in 2007 to allow TBS to carry Major League Baseball games involving teams other than the Braves. TBS doesn't even run it anymore, having leased its operations to Atlanta's Creator/{{CBS}} station WGCL 46[[/note]] it and the other Turner properties currently belong to Time Warner (also the owner of Creator/WarnerBros).

Its secret weapon was "Turner Time", scheduling programs 5 minutes after the top of the half/hour in order to make sure viewers would miss the beginnings of other channels' fare and thus be resigned to stay with TBS for another show.

Back in the 1990s, most TV watchers [[FanNickname referred to TBS as "The Beastmaster Station"]] because of [[AdoredByTheNetwork its frequent showing]] of the film ''Film/TheBeastmaster''. The channel was "[[Wrestling/DustyRhodes tha Mothership]]" of Wrestling/{{WCW}} and its antecedent promotions (GCW, CWG, Mid-Atlantic/Jim Crockett) from basically the national launch until the premiere of ''[[Wrestling/WCWMondayNitro Monday Nitro]]'' in 1995. Afterwards, ''Thunder'', the much-loathed B-show, aired on TBS.

TBS was also known for many years (1973 to 2007, to be more precise) as the TV home of the [[UsefulNotes/MLBTeams Atlanta Braves]]. Famously, at one point Ted Turner tried to get pitcher Andy Messersmith (who wore #17) to wear the name "CHANNEL" on the back of his jersey (CHANNEL 17, get it?) The league immediately put the kibosh on that. However, the national broadcasts on TBS helped the Braves build a considerable nationwide fan base, so much so that the franchise was nicknamed "America's Team".

In June 2004, in response to sibling TNT's post-2001 focus on dramatic programming (and possibly Time Warner's divestiture of its stake in Creator/ComedyCentral to Viacom the previous year), it decided to situate itself into the genre of comedy, after years of not having a genre (the comedy focus is a little looser than TNT's on drama, though, as evidenced by the movies it tends to run). To that end, on April 12, 2010, Creator/ConanOBrien announced a five-year deal with TBS to do an [[Series/{{Conan}} 11 PM talk show]].

Not to be confused with Creator/TokyoBroadcastingSystem, which is known for airing many {{anime}} series.