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OTHER ITA SITES:
Classic Television Shows; Re-Introduce Your Family Today
“They don’t make ‘em like they used to.” You hear this said about everything – cars, houses, toys, clothes… Well, they don’t make TV shows like they used to, either. If you grew up watching classic TV, you probably have some very fond memories of sitting in front of the television with your family watching some of the classics at night. There are very few modern television shows that the whole family can sit down and watch together. Either they are geared towards kids and the grown ups aren’t interested or they are geared for adults and are inappropriate for the kids.
There is good news for families who would like to share some time in front of the television together, though. Many of the classic TV shows are being released on DVD, usually a season at a time. Families can now enjoy TV classics from the 50’s, 60’s 70’s, and 80’s on DVD’s that include lots of extras like interviews with the cast members and outtakes.
One of the biggest perks of watching the shows on DVD – no annoying commercials. Today, we’re used to watching television on our terms. We fast forward through commercials on shows we’ve recorded on DVRs. When these classic shows first aired, there was no fast forwarding. Viewers had to sit through the commercials or flip the channel (sometimes manually!) often only to find more commercials.
Think about it. You can now introduce your kids to TV classics such as Happy Days, season by season and show them the first time a television show literally “jumped the shark.” Retro is cool right now, and it doesn’t get much more retro than Happy Days. It was retro from the day it debuted.
What’s available on classic TV DVD? Just about anything you’re interested in.
Variety Shows. Remember a few years back when Nick and Jessica attempted a Christmas special variety show? If your kids were interested in that, then they would probably be interested in The Sonny and Cher Show or The Donny and Marie Show. Sure these 70’s shows were high on the cheese factor, but the performers had some real talent.
Another great variety show from the 70’s that the family will love is The Carol Burnett Show. You’d be amazed at how much today’s kids appreciate good, clean, funny comedy when they are actually exposed to it.
Some of the best episodes of variety shows were the Christmas specials. Sonny and Cher and Donny and Marie had their share of Christmas specials, but the master of the Christmas special was Bob Hope. Many of his classic Christmas variety shows are available on DVD.
Classic Sitcoms. I Love Lucy. The Honeymooners. The Dick Van Dyke Show. Leave it to Beaver. The Brady Bunch. The Beverly Hill Billies. The Cosby Show. Family Ties. The Jeffersons. Happy Days. Mash. The Monkees. Did you sit around watching these shows (or reruns of these shows) with your family when you were a kid? Chances are you did. All of these classic television sitcoms are available on DVD. Wouldn’t it be great to sit back with your kids and a great big bowl of popcorn and watch The Cosby Show’s Claire Huxtable tell her husband Cliff to please go upstairs and kill the children? Now that’s classic tv.
Classic Drama/Adventure. Most dramas fall into the one hour crime show genre nowadays. They aren’t always pleasant to watch and they certainly aren’t appropriate for the kids. Adventure type shows like 24 or Prison Break aren’t for the kids either. But McGyver. Now there’s a show the whole family can watch together and learn a thing or two about how to make a bomb from a piece of chewing gum, a paperclip and a pencil.
Little House on the Prairie. Gunsmoke. Bonanza. The Waltons. Wonder Woman. Murder She Wrote. Columbo. Emergency. The A Team. Mission Impossible. The Lone Ranger. The list of classic drama/adventure tv shows on DVD goes on and on.
Talk Shows. It seems like anyone can get his or her own talk show these days, but they don’t last long. The king of all talk show hosts is Johnny Carson and classic excerpts from his late night talk show The Tonight Show are DVD. Show the kids some real talent and real class by introducing them to Johnny.
Instead of renting a movie this weekend for the family enjoy, why not try renting a season of a classic TV show to introduce the kids to?
-Ben Anton 2007
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