I was clicking the TV remote this past weekend looking for something to watch that didn’t involve sports when I came across a channel I’d never seen before – MeTV. Short for Memorable Entertainment, it’s a channel showing classic TV shows – not classic as in the 80’s or even the late 70’s, but mainly the 50’s and 60’s. The show I happened on wasÂ Dobie Gillis. Filmed in black and white, it was a show about a typical teenager whose only interests were girls, cars and money (Dobie) and his best friend, Maynard G Krebs, a beatnik. Everybody know what a beatnik is, right? No?Â Beatniks were theÂ non-conformists, the early version of the hippies of the late 60’s andÂ 70’s.Â Â Maynard was played by Bob Denver, who later went on to become better known as Gilligan.
I couldn’t resist going back in time to when I was a kid -Â Â I watched The Dick Van Dyke Show, Car 54, Where Are You (with Fred Gwynne before he became Herman Munster), the original Hawaii 5-0, Petticoat Junction, Rawhide (before Clint Eastwood became … well, Clint Eastwood)Â and I even watched the original Fugitive series.Â I won’t list every show I watched last weekend, but let’s just sayÂ it wasÂ a marathon. Good thing I had a good supply of popcorn.
The film quality wasn’t the best,Â the sound was off at times and some of the shows themselves were pretty corny. But it was interesting to look back – no graphic violence, no blood spatter a la CSI, no sex, just shows the whole family could watch without worrying aboutÂ what the little ones were watching. And what was more interesting to me was to see where some of Hollywood’s biggest names got their start.
If you have an urge to go back to when TV was a baby – or at leastÂ very young, check it out. And if you’re as old as I am, tell me, what was your favorite show from way back when?
Until next time,