Five Things – 05.30.16 – And The Wind Would Carry Your Light To The Skies

Kid’s Court Court shows are the connective tissue of the daytime TV schedule.  They seem to be necessary components for local TV stations to function. They’re everywhere and have been everywhere for decades.  Perhaps I have rose-colored nostalgia glasses on (I have several pairs), but I feel like the court shows of the 1980s were a little more…

Five Things – 05.23.16 – Dare You Let It In Your Library?

The Stephen King Library Stephen King’s pretty well-regarded nowadays, but in the 1980s and 1990s he had a polarizing level of fame. While he had a dedicated fanbase, he tended to be regarded in the mainstream as a shlocky horror writer who put out a new book every week and opinion of him was formed on whether…

Five Things – 04.04.16 – That Men May Fight

You Dont Know Jack In the summer of 2001 ABC tried to create a televised version of the crazy successful trivia video game show You Don’t Know Jack.   It was not successful, but it did end up being kind of crazy. The show was pretty loyal to the game’s format. Instead of the game’s regular host Cookie…

Five Things – 02.15.16 – Eye Popping Moves Like The Centipede

1. Hot Fudge This 1974 kids’ show from Detroit has a little bit Muppet, a little bit Pinwheel, and a little bit Great Space Coaster all lumped together. Originally hosted by comic Arte Johnson, Hot Fudge featured humans interacting with puppets (called “Mits”), lots of music, and segments where kids narrate things out in the real world.  Johnson…

Five Things – 02.1.16 – Bring Back The Glove

1. The Weird Al Show Here’s a 1997 Saturday Morning kid’s show hosted by “Weird Al” Yankovic. Produced by Dick Clark Productions, taped at NBC Studios, and broadcast on CBS, The Weird Al Show had a lot going for it.  In many ways it took the formula that made Pee-Wee’s Playhouse so popular; it starred a well-known personality,…

Five Things – 1.18.16 – Suppose You Wanted To Count Five Things

1. Star Lore – Here’s a weird one. This local Public Television show produced by the University of Nebraska at Omaha features a librarian who is kidnapped by an alien queen to teach the queen about story structure.  It’s basically Santa Claus Conquers The Martians but with a librarian instead of Santa and, well, whatever the…

Five Things – 12.7.15 – Thanks For Lending Me The Suit

1.  A Bionic Christmas Carol – This 1976 episode of The Six Million Dollar Man does a copy/paste of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol in a way that fits mostly, but not entirely. Steve gets assigned to investigate a potential sabotage issue at a space-tech factory…on Christmas Eve… He’s not happy about it, but he goes because that’s his…

Five Things – 11.23.15 – An Attractive Customer Is Courteously Assisted

1. Boosting is a Business – Here’s a 1950 informational film detailing various techniques used by “professional” shoplifters.  The tactics used range from pedestrian “grab-and-put-it-in-your-pocket” theft to coordinated operations involving multiple people  Beyond the actual shoplifting there’s a lot to love about this film: the locations, the fashions, and the little slice-of-life glimpes you get…

Five Things – 08.31.15 – Faster Than You Can Say Modern Art

1. Pioneer Laserdisc Demo – In 1980 Pioneer enlisted the help of Patrick O’Neal and Mr. Wizard to host a demo video for their Laserdisc player.  It’s quite a bit stuffier than Leonard Nimoy’s effort for the Magnavision, but it still has a certain charm to it. The first half of the demo is O’Neal…