Last week I was surfing around the web and came across Margie and Edna’s Basement. I’ve been reading their blog for ages and love it. Last week they had a little video montage of classic shows from the 60’s. I played it while the kids were in the room with me since I knew there would be nothing they shouldn’t see. As I was watching it I came across shows I had forgotten and some I really missed. Of the many shows featured there were only two I hadn’t heard of.
I was a kid of the 70’s. The first generation to spend gobs of time in front of the boob tube, as they liked to call it back then. I assume they called it that because it made boobs out of the people watching rather than that there were boobs all over the place. Of course it was the 70’s and there were a lot of boobs. Clothed boobs rather than the naked boobs we see all over cable now.
Anyway, as I am watching this montage an image of Gilligan’s Island is shown. My son was standing next to me watching the video and asked what that show was about.
I was stunned. My son has not seen one episode of Gilligan’s Island. This disturbs me to no end for some reason. Worse, he is not alone. I polled several of his friends this weekend and none of them have seen an episode of Gilligan’s Island.
I didn’t raise my kid in a barn. We have several TVs in the house. There is no reason he couldn’t have caught an episode. It’s still in syndication and I’m sure he could find an episode on YouTube if he searched.
I watched a lot of TV when I was a kid. When I got home from school I watched TV until the evening news was on and then I went to do something else because the news was just a big buzz kill. I watched, in order, Gilligan’s Island, The Brady Bunch, The Partridge Family, Hogan’s Heroes, Love American Style, and Room 222.
Gilligan’s Island had a huge impact on me. At first it just taught me the basics about how to get along with a bunch of people you don’t necessarily like. Ginger was a diva and MaryAnne just irritated me but the Professor was cute and Lovey was the kind of grandma I wanted to have. Not too bright but really rich. The guest star episodes were always special. As I got older I understood more of the underlying themes of the show and I had my first taste of Shakespeare from Gilligan’s Island. Who from that era is able to read Hamlet’s famous soliloquy without singing it to The Toreador Song? Probably no one.
Gilligan’s Island also taught me to questions things. The Professor was a brilliant man, I don’t think anyone can dispute that fact, but yet he couldn’t get them off the damn island. He could power a radio using coconuts but just didn’t have the skill to fix the boat. This realization was an eye opener for me and led me to question just about every authority figure I have met since those days. They might think they know everything but can they get everyone off the island? Until they can they can’t pass themselves off as an authority.
I’m bothered that my son and his whole generation haven’t seen Gilligan’s Island. I’m on a mission now to ensure that this generation doesn’t continue down the path they are on. I will find a way, at least in my house, to make sure these kids see this wonderfully educational show.
- What’s the best TV theme of all-time, Happy Days or Gilligan’s Island? (tvsquad.com)
- Retro TV trays feed cravings for nostalgia and comfort food (thestar.com)
- What Four Year Olds Know About Media (debaird.net)
- The Best Night Of Television (over40andstartingover.blogspot.com)
I’m not sure Gilligan’s Island illiteracy bothers me as much as science illiteracy. If I had to chose…
My kids have been forced to watch just about everything that hubby and I have crooned about. Something will come up in dinner table conversation, and it magically shows up in the Netflix cue the next day. Musicals, documentaries, movies, old tv shows.
Better yet, hubby has a ‘name that tune’ contest going on with the boys on his oldies station. You just can’t beat that.
.-= The Mother´s last blog ..I Think My Kids are Abnormal =-.
So which 2 shows were you not familiar with? I’m curious.
Be sure to stop by, I’ve got a cookbook review up.
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I LOVE Gilligan’s Island! I don’t find it on tv anywhere any more, not even cable. Also, Lost in Space, Land of the Giants, The Time Tunnel…
We had some good shows when I was a kid in the 60’s.
.-= Joe Cap´s last blog ..13 Going On 18 =-.
I bet my Son doesn’t know Gillian either. Guess I will have to look up some YouTube episodes to share with him.
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I can still sing the whole theme song!
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did you ever notice that Gilligan and Hogan’s Heroes are almost the same story?
I loved them both
.-= Pricilla´s last blog ..Goatucation: My Rich Milk =-.
Wow… I’ve never heard such a deep analysis of “Gilligan’s Island.” The show had underlying themes? I may have to rent a season. I guess it’s never too late to learn a thing or two — even from such an unlikely teacher.
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Loved Gilligan and the Prof. and Mariann…
My daughter and I watched Little House on the Prairie together – she really liked it.
.-= Laura´s last blog ..ignore this post =-.
The Partridge Family was one my favorite shows ever. And I think Gilligan’s Island MIGHT still be on TV if you check late night on TV LAND. Although I’m pretty sure your kids will be sleeping at that hour.
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Mother: If my kids were normal, or at least like me, they’d know all about Gilligan’s Island. The daughter listens to operas and the boy can do just about anything with a computer, including building his own out of coconuts. They are too smart for me.
Lola: I can’t remember the names exactly, the prisoner and the contest maybe? I’d have to go back and take a look. I mentioned them in the comment section on their blog.
Joe: I don’t remember the Time Tunnel, what was that about?
Amy: You should get right on that. All kids should have seen at least one episode. The problem with that is that then they want to see all of them.
Waisting Time: “Just sit right back and you’ll hear a tale….” They don’t make good theme songs anymore.
Pricilla: Now that you mention it they were very similar. My grandfather was always appalled that we were watching Hogan’s Heroes and even more that they made a show that made fun of WWII. He thought it was too soon. I just thought it was funny.
Jayne: There is a lot you can learn from unconventional sources. The government programs can’t teach us everything 😉
Laura: I loved Little House too. Mostly because I loved the books more than anything. I haven’t gotten my daughter hooked on them yet and don’t know if I will be able to since they didn’t have the internet back then.
Meleah: I also loved The Partridge Family but that was because I had a thing for David Cassidy. That lasted until the Hardy Boys was on and then I switched my loyalty to his brother Shaun.
Loved them all, well maybe not so much the Brady Bunch, Marcia Marcia Marcia, got to me. But the Skipper and Gilligan. OMG yes Room222 they are also Sanford & Son, WKRP in Cincinnati, Taxi, Mary Tyler Moore Show, The Jeffersons, All In the Family, Bob Newhart Show, Welcome Back Kotter, Barney Miller and what boy could forget Charlies Angels???
.-= Man Over Board´s last blog ..Signs =-.
I loved Gilligan’s Island too. Everytime I try to get my kids to watch something I loved as a kid they think it’s lame. Because 10 and 7 year olds are so very worldly and wise.
.-= Tracie´s last blog ..I Must Have Been A Very Bad Person In My Former Life =-.
Loved all those shows and thank you for the Love American Style now playing in my head…..Love..American Styyyyyyy I ylllee….sorry, didn’t mean to sing.
I’ve tried to shove these classics down my son’s throat but he won’t have it.
I haven’t given up though!
.-= mrsblogalot´s last blog ..Cafe Bite-Me =-.
What kind of childhood is it with out Gilligan’s Island…:)
I was so abused as a child. The only shows I was allowed to watch were Little House on the Prairie and The Waltons. Torture. The only time I got to watch anything good was when I spent the night with my best friend.
.-= Sheila Sultani´s last blog ..No Surprise Here, Another Charity Under Fire =-.
MOB: I remember all of those shows and of course Mary Tyler Moore was a must watch since it took place across the river in Minneapolis. Never a big fan of Sandford and Son but I loved All in the Family. These shows were still first run, the shows I was talking about were all in the afternoon in syndication which meant we could watch five different episodes each week.
Tracie: Aren’t they though? When my daughter was sick with the H1N1 last year we were up many nights watching TVland. I was sure she would love I Dream of Jeanie but she didn’t care of it all that much. I tried to explain the problem with her bellybutton but she just couldn’t understand it.
MrsBlogalot: what I have noticed is a lot of these actors go on to do voice work in some of the Disney movies our kids love so they still get exposed to a lot of these people even if they don’t watch the shows.
Thanks, I’ll be singing that song for the rest of the day.
livintheblues: One that needs a lot of therapy.
Sheila: You were abused. I don’t know how you made it on just Little House and the Waltons. I couldn’t stand the Waltons, it was just too much for me to believe, no one is that happy, especially without indoor plumbing and all those siblings and grandparents living under the same roof.
I was always trying to decide between Ginger and Mary Anne, who I would rather be. I could never figure that one out. I loved Room 222, and I could still sing every word of the theme song to Love American Style!
.-= Maureen@IslandRoar´s last blog ..525,600 Minutes =-.
I wonder if I could talk Vlad into a Gilligan’s Island film fest some weekend….
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Maureen: Was it Karen Valentine on Room 222? I so vaguely remember that show, it was a drama about teachers I think. Love American Style was so risque at the time, I can’t believe they showed it after school.
Oh, remember the After School Specials about drugs and teen pregnancy?
CatLady: Who could turn that down. I could watch Gilligan and his antics all weekend long. It might be more fun doing it the way Bob Denver would have however.
I think I saw every episode of Gilligan’s Island and certainly never put as much thought into it as you have. I mostly watched it when I was home from school, sick. By then it was in repeats so it was on every day. Now I want to watch it again to examine all the themes you have raised.
.-= Anne´s last blog ..What the Hell… Snow! =-.
It’s so funny you wrote this post because just this evening my husband and I were talking about the oldies and goodies (the shows you mentioned, plus the Brady Bunch, etc.) I grew up on a lot of TV, but in my opinion it was good TV. My parents considered Three’s Company to be racy, so I had to sneak that in, but by today’s standards that show is tame. There was something innocent and wonderful about those 70s shows. I’m going to shield my son–as much as possible–from the smut that’s on today. It serves no purpose. Well, except to make me want to cancel cable.
.-= frogmama´s last blog ..Are you curious about what I was doing at 3:30 a.m. last night? Hmmmm? =-.
Nooo! I can’t believe someone hasn’t seen Gilligan’s Island! I watched the same TV shows you did, and…wow, this post was a flashback. I really hate it when my brat makes me feel old! Even if he “is” 23 and married. The nerve!
If I have the TV on, it is either TV Land or the classic movie channel (can’t remember its correct name). Couldn’t care less about American Idol or any of the reality TV shows that fill every other channel now.
Gilligan’s Island, What’s Happening, Welcome Back Kotter,.. were so much better than what is on now. Travolta will always be Vinnie Barbarino to me.
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Anne: I am sure you can find it somewhere. When I was watching it it was reruns too, I don’t think I started watching it until long after it ended. Great show however stupid is really was.
Frogmamma: You said it. Those shows were considered racy, remember soap with Billy Crystal playing the first gay character on TV? Maude and her abortion (she looked old enough to be my grandmother on that episode so I didn’t buy it, but I probably didn’t know what she was talking about either. All those shows were great, nothing like the Jersey Shore shit they have on now.
Dee: Me too, I still can’t get over and yet he still isn’t convinced it is worth his time to watch. I will say this, he is hooked on M*A*S*H right now so that’s something.
Paul: I loved Welcome Back Kotter, and WKRP, whenever that is on I have to watch it. The turkey one is my all time favorite episode of any show.
The old ways are passing away like the wind, Jen, and will soon be forgotten except in legends that men and women tell their children and children’s children.
Now I feel sorta sad.
.-= MikeWJ at TooManyMornings´s last blog ..I Won’t Be Posting Today Because I Got Distracted Watching The Olympics =-.
I LOVED Gilligan’s Island! Never saw much deep stuff in it, other than yup, why didn’t they EVER get off that Island? I mean heck, even the cast of LOST can go back and forth, so why not Gilligan!
Funny, I would have called Ginger the slut. Oh, speaking of, did ANY of these ppl have a romantic episode, other than the married ones? Did Maryanne like the professor? I kind of remember that?
As a kid I also loved the Bugaloos, HR Puffinstuff and Sigmund the Seamonster. Oh and Land of the Lost. California played lots of Sidd and Marty Kroft or however you spell it. Wonder if they had those shows in Tucson?
.-= Katherine´s last blog ..My Brain Is A Scary Thing – But What DID That Dog Eat? =-.
Oh, but kids these days HAVE seen Gilligan’s Island, only now it’s called “Lost”.
And speaking of Tucson…I know you weren’t but Katherine just before me was, is also giving you a hard time over on my blog today…and you weren’t even there! There were 2 Jen’s that commented and I think she thought on of them was you. Or she thought BOTH of them was you – LOL!
.-= Margaret (Nanny Goats)´s last blog ..California is from Mars, Arizona is from Venus =-.
Being a vintage film geek, I think it’s even more tragic that most kids haven’t seen Laurel & Hardy! (I mean, how many kids are going turn on Turner unless their parents force them?) I grew up catching their (sadly rather chopped up) film shorts on TV during the day, then watching the usual sitcoms at night. I remember few of the sitcoms – Gilligan and The Mary Tyler Moore Show are among the few that come to mind – but Laurel & Hardy set the bar for comic duos, and they’re still hilarious today.
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This is why I make my kids watch ‘Family Guy’ – there are so many references to those old shows, it’s kind of like crib notes that teach them horrible, horrible things.
It’s a ‘two birds’ thing.
.-= moooooog35´s last blog ..My Son is an Angry Black Man =-.
Mike: That is sad, but thank goodness we have our blogs to document everything, absolutely everything.
Katherine: I loved all the Sid and Marty Kroft shows, talk about acid trip. Those were great. I had a crush on the boy with the flute, I saw a picture of him recently and he hasn’t aged too well, and he’s really short. Stop giving me shit about Tucson.
NGIP: I saw that, what’s up with that? I made my rambling comments on Meleah’s blog yesterday.
When I first started watching Lost I thought the same thing, it’s just like Gilligan but without the laugh track. I don’t watch Lost now because I could never remember when it was on and all that. I still don’t know.
Janis: Have no fear my children are well versed in all things Laurel and Hardy, Three Stooges too. They have had a well rounded education save for the omission of Gilligan’s Island.
Mooooog: I hate to admit it but we watch Family Guy each night during dinner. Most of it goes over the daughter’s head and son and I then have something to debate over dinner. I let them watch South Park too.
All classics Jen and your kids should be well versed in the classics, right? Totally forgot about Room 222! I used to adore that show. Mod Squad? Fab! I need a Nick At Nite marathon.
.-= Buggys´s last blog ..Music Box Dancers – Unbelievable! =-.
I hear you on this. The other night we watched a crazy movie “Zotz!” with Jim Backus (Mr Howell) in it, and nobody in the room had ever seen Gilligan’s Island. I was appalled, me, who had watched the show every day growing up. It’s a hard sell, though, because the only island show on anybody’s mind these days is Lost.
Incidentally, the Professor lives across the water from Seattle and I’ve long pondered paying him a visit. He was always my favorite character and the best-dressed of the bunch.
.-= wngl´s last blog ..Writing at West 5 =-.
Amen to that, sister! Not so long ago I had a disturbing conversation with my own kids that went something like this:
kids: “whose that guy?”
me: “oh, yeah! That’s Gilligan!”
kids: ~blank stares~
me:”you know… The Professor…MaryAnne…”
kids:(mom’s an alien look exchanged, followed by eye rolls)
I was severely annoyed until I realized that their kids will be hearing about the idiotic shows that disgrace the screen today. Hah!
.-= Maggie ´s last blog ..My Recipe Is A Finalist! =-.
I love these shows too… Gilligan’s Island was a fav but the Brady Bunch was the best.
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I loved those old shows too. I watched the reruns not the first airings mind you!
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Thanks a bunch! Now I can’t get the freakin’ song out of my head…you know, the TV songs you know by heart.
I suppose now I’ll be singing this song all night long…at least in my head.
Some things you can never forget and I am glad my son got to see those old shows and KNOWs who Gilligan is!
Hooray for TVLand!
.-= Lisa´s last blog ..Who Says You Can’t Have a Day Off? =-.
Oh, the good old tv days. I watched all those same shows. Remember Dark Shadows or I Dream of Jeanne? You brought back lots of nice memories today. Thanks.
.-= SuziCate´s last blog ..When You Give A Little, You Get A Lot =-.
Even more disturbing…one of our interns at work had never seen SEINFELD.
I’m not that old…how is it possible that someone has never seen Seinfeld?!?!? I was stunned.
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How in the freekin hell do you get so many comments on sumthin that is so OBVIOUS.
I wanna grow up to be just like you, Redhead sweetie!
.-= Don E. Chute´s last blog ..COULD THIS MAN BE OUR NEXT PRESIDENT? =-.
Hey Jen, thanks for the walk down memory lane. What about Dark Shadows, and The Munsters??? Can’t for those “dark” ones 🙂 I mostly watched after school. My dad was “the king of the castle” so he picked from the evening news on! My kids watched ’em all. Of course they got to watch their favorites too, unlike my own childhood. We seasoned, if you will, our kids in tv, music, movies, news, and history. They watched/listened to all the old stuff right along with the new. Looking back, it was definitely the right move.
.-= redkathy´s last blog ..Quick Cakes – Spontaneous Sugar Satisfaction =-.
Gilligan’s Island was a fun show, but reruns of “I Dream of Jeanie”, “Bewitched” and “Little House on the Prairie” were my favorite!
.-= TheAL´s last blog ..How do you Bib it up? =-.
Gilligan’s Island was evidently pretty deep. I missed that. I just wanted to see Mary Anne in shorts.
Hogan’s Heroes. Wonder if Bob Crane was shooting any of his homemade porno flicks with Sgt. Schultz in them?
.-= Dave DeWall´s last blog ..Two Med Techs, One Doctor, No Blood! =-.
I watched all those shows too. My son has watched them all too. I’d not thought that the kids today haven’t seen some of those classic shows.
Have a terrific day. 🙂
.-= Comedy Plus´s last blog ..Laura Lou =-.
With all the technological advances of the present, coupled with many options to watch, it is understandable that our kids may have a hard time appreciating the classics. 🙂
Hey guys just checking in here. Thanks for all your comments. I got slammed with some bug yesterday and spent the day on the couch. Still not feeling great but wanted to stop in and read the comments
i think jack is professor and maryannes love child
.-= Nooter´s last blog ..Mushy Olympics =-.
I always thought, Mary-ann was the sexy one.
Have me over for a Bologna, sandwich and we could talk TV, all DAYLONG!
.-= Don E. Chute´s last blog ..COULD THIS MAN BE OUR NEXT PRESIDENT? =-.
My 15 year old has his own collection of Gilligan’s Island, Hogan’s Heroes, and Happy Days. He loves them and it makes me so happy to hear him laugh out loud while watching them, as opposed to me having to remind him that we do not watch…say Two and a Half Men. Geez I loved the old days. I MUST be getting really old.