Better And Better

If you don't draw yours, I won't draw mine.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Reviewing childhood entertainment.

It's no secret that I have kids in the house. These children do, in fact, watch some age-appropriate television, and see movies. This of course means that Mrs. G and I watch them, too. I've come to some sudden flashes of realization, lately:

1. Speed Racer wasn't really the star of the show; Racer X was.

2. Remember that black and white scene toward the beginning of The Wizard Of Oz, in which Zeke the farm hand (played by Bert Lahr, who also played the Cowardly Lion) jumps into the pigsty? Remember how, after he jumped in and carried Dorothy out, he mopped his brow with panting anxiety? Remember how the others chuckled at the scaredy-man, who was afraid of a few pigs? I saw that scene the other day while my daughter watched it on DVD, and I realized something: he didn't hesitate to climb in and get Dorothy out. I asked my 10 year old daughter if she though that the character Zeke was a coward. She said that he was. I corrected her, because for the first time it struck me: Zeke overcame his fear to do what was needful. Only afterwards did he show his fear. This is the very definition of courageous. How had I missed that for so long?
Oh, and my daughters and I agree that the over-heavy male vibrato in the Cowardly Lion song "If I Were King Of The Forest" sucks dirty rocks. We also agree that troupes of giant flying monkeys are still a terrifying concept. We also note, having read the original book, that the Witch had sent packs of giant wolves to kill the traveling group, but that the Tin Woodsman had slain them neatly with his axe. Funny how that didn't make it into the movie.

3. The Electric Company, a TV show on PBS that used to come on after Sesame Street when I was a kid, had an amazing array of talent on it. Morgan Freeman and Mel Brooks each did 780 episodes. Gene Wilder (and the lesser talent Joan Rivers) did 650 episodes. Bill Cosby did 260 episodes. Repeat guest stars like Carol Burnett and Lily Tomlin. Wow. That show only lasted six seasons? Huh. You mean there were other reasons to watch it besides Spider Man?

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5 Comments:

At Tuesday, July 28, 2009 7:49:00 AM, OpenID williamthecoroner said...

Yes, Electric Company was brilliant. I miss it and the old Sesame Streets. I know some are on DVD, but they newer ones have changed, and not for the better IMHO.

 
At Wednesday, July 29, 2009 10:49:00 AM, Anonymous aczarnowski said...

Wasn't RacerX Speed's brother or something?

Vague childhood rememberances of coming home from church to catch Speed Racer and Robotech are coming back. Thanks for that reload.

 
At Wednesday, July 29, 2009 5:22:00 PM, Anonymous Larry Correia said...

Matt, over on the MHI patch contest, somebody did one for Kansas where Dorothy is standing over a dead flying monkey, reloding her over under.

It is a little known fact that Dorothy was Kansas state junior sporting clays champion two years running.

 
At Wednesday, July 29, 2009 7:20:00 PM, Blogger John B said...

I want my kids to grow up to Mr Rogers, Sesame Street, Electric Company same as I did.

And that evil purple dinosaur will be placed 25 yards out on the target line.....

 
At Monday, August 17, 2009 12:42:00 PM, OpenID farmist said...

Re:pigpen - 30+yrs ago I occasionally helped friends work hogs. We NEVER went into the pen without at least one .357Mag revolver among the group. Those critters will EAT you if given half a chance.

 

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