The Evolution of Primetime Programming

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When I think back on my childhood, I remember trips to the library, kickball games on the street, sitting in classrooms, field trips to museums, playing with transformers and television. I grew up in front of the tv.

My childhood is filled with snippets of episodes involving extra-human strength and right trumping evil. I grew up in the era of the Superhero.

How many of you remember watching Lee Majors in the Six Million Dollar Man? Or Lindsay Wagner, his mate, in the Bionic Woman?

And then there was my all-time favorite show – Wonder Woman. I wanted to be Diana Prince and sometimes actually believed I was. (see #44)

I had the biggest crush on Aquaman and rarely missed an episode of The Man From Atlantis.

Meanwhile, my brother’s favorite program was The Amazing Spider Man with Nicholas Hammond as Peter Parker….. followed closely by reruns of Batman and Robin. One Halloween, being particularly clever, my parents brought home a Cinderella dress for me, and Batman suit for my brother. A few days after our night of trick or treating, my brother managed to get on the roof of our one-story ranch in full Batman regalia. He wanted to “test out the powers in his cape.”

On that occasion, it was Wonder Woman to the rescue. I don’t remember what I said to talk him down, but we got off the roof safely and lived to tell about it.

And how can I leave off icons like Lou Ferrigno as the Incredible Hulk and, although he was a film star, Superman?

One of my Seseme Street-watching, Highlight-reading pals was horrified after I wrapped up the list. She commented that in spite of being subjected to all those hours of trash growing up, I turned out okay.

Trash? Wonder Woman wasn’t trash. She kicked some serious bad guy butt every week. AND she was really smart. My bionic friends taught me that you could be human, and a crime-fighter, even with all sorts of artificial limbs. The Hulk, well, c’mon – admit it. We’ve all got two sides to our personalities – the civilized self we present to society and our more private self that drinks milk from the carton and dances naked in the shower. Oh – and there’s Aquaman (sigh)…. I’m still searching for that perfect Atlantean.

Trash – ph

eh – whatever!

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg my friends. Part II takes on the primetime soaps.

Did you grow up in front of the tv? What did you watch? Do you [would you] allow your children to watch tv? How much?


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