My sister sent me a video clip this morning. It was a couple of chimps telling an off-color joke. Very clever. But it brought to mind one of the revered shows of my youth... Lancelot Link, Secret Chimp. They just don't make shows like that any more. My kids would never get that show... it was really pretty bad. Somehow, at the time, though, it was amusing; must watch TV. Along the same lines were shows like Lost in Space, HR Pufnstuf, Lidsville, Banana Splits, the Monkees... Who could forget Land of the Giants, Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, or Time Tunnel? OK, so the special effects were anything but special, at least by current standards. At the time (considering I was probably no more than 10 when any of these were on!), it was possible to view them in state of suspended belief. Ah, the sweet memories.
I once rented the Rocky Horror Picture Show to view at home. I have seen this movie probably 100 times in the theater. The Westwood, known more as a XXX theater, used to show it as the midnight movie on Friday and Saturday nights in the late 1970's and early 1980's. I became a true fan. Who can resist Tim Curry in fishnets? Really? But I digress. Viewing this at home lost the impact. The guys actually tried to follow the plot line (and yes, there is a plot line, weak as it is). They missed all of the subtle comments and nuances. Of course the demise of different product lines makes it difficult for them to understand why people would want to throw toilet paper when someone said "Great Scott." Also, they thought it was a bit strange when I pulled out the toast and started throwing it around.
Last night, I watched a retrospective of Dean Martin on the Biography Channel. Ah Dino. I can recall watching Dean in the Matt Helm movies and remember liking them better than James Bond. Matt Helm was pure camp and exceptionally cheesy. That's probably why I liked the series. I looked them up on Amazon. One of the "raters" mentioned that anyone who never viewed these movies just wouldn't get them. The acting wasn't the greatest and the special effects were poor, but for me, these movies will always be near and dear.
I wonder what my kids will remember about their youthful viewing when they near the mid-century mark.