I was born in 1971. I tell you this because it should help to tell you something about the point of view from which I have watched TV shows. As a child, I watched reruns of sitcoms and cartoons from the 60s, as well as new programming on PBS, and Saturday morning children’s programming. During the late 70s, I also started watching a few shows regularly during prime time. In the 80s I watched a huge number of shows during prime time. During the 90s and later there have been far fewer new shows that I liked, although among those few that I did like, I found them to be excellent.
Let’s start out with this one. Even when almost all the letters are visible, the answer is still too top secret for some people to know what it is:
This season one episode of “The Jeffersons” is called “Like Father Like Son.” As is always the case with early seasons of this excellent show, the entire episode is worth watching. But the part I most want to draw your attention to runs from 13:08 to 16:28
The contestant, the studio audience, and the online audience all got this easy math question wrong.
Both of these animated shorts from the 1950s are about a boy named Ralph Phillips, who has these extraordinarily amazing daydreams. These are two of the greatest Looney Tunes cartoons ever made. Both were written by Michael Maltese and directed by Chuck Jones.
I fear that if a child acted this way today, he would be put on Ritalin, and have all of his creativity forcefully removed.
Can you count how many “politically incorrect” things there are in these two cartoons?
You Can’t Do That On Television is a sketch-comedy TV series that was made in Canada and aired in the U.S. on Nickelodeon in the 1980s. The show starred character actor Les Lye, who played all of the adult male roles – and there were dozens of them. Abby Hagyard played all of the adult female roles. At least five children appeared in each episode, and they always played themselves. Some of the children were on the show long term and appeared in many episodes over the years (such as Christine McGlade, Lisa Ruddy, Alasdair Gillis, Adam Reid, Vanessa Lindores, and Doug Ptolemy) – others appeared in only a few (such as Alanis Morissette, who appears below in the episodes “Pop Music” and “Enemies and Paranoia”). The show portrays many of its adult authority figures as worthy of being mocked, whether it be because they’re incompetent, evil, corrupt, or power hungry. Anyone who said “I don’t know” would have green slime fall on them, and anyone who said “water” would have water fall on them. The series was created by Roger Price, who wrote the script for every episode.
I have fond memories of watching U2 on MTV in the early 1980s. I’d never heard of them before MTV. I thought their early songs were full of energy and emotion. Here are four of my favorite videos of theirs: (more…)
Here are seven music videos from the B-52′s. These are just so much fun! (more…)
I was 11 years old when our family first got cable TV in the summer of 1982, and I remember watching MTV as it celebrated its one year anniversary a few weeks later. I consider the music of the early 1980s to be some of the best music ever made, and I think a lot of that has to do with the new wave influence that was so pervasive at the time, combined with a strong pop sensibility, and just so many creative artists who were around at the time. (more…)
I love watching TV. I mean, I really, really love watching TV. I grew up watching far more TV than what the “experts” say anyone should ever watch. (more…)